Shane Claiborne

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Shane Claiborne speaking in 2007

Shane Claiborne (born July 11, 1975) is a Christian activist and author who is a leading figure in the New Monasticism movement and one of the founding members of the intentional community The Simple Way in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[1][2] Claiborne is also a social activist, advocating for nonviolence and service to the poor. He is the author of the book, The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical.[3]


Claiborne grew up in east Tennessee.[4] His father, who was a Vietnam War veteran, died when Shane was 9 years old. A graduate of Eastern University, where he studied sociology and youth ministry, Claiborne did his final academic work for Eastern University at Wheaton College in Illinois. While at Wheaton, Claiborne did an internship at Willow Creek Community Church. He has done some graduate work at Princeton Theological Seminary, but took a leave of absence, and now is a part of The Alternative Seminary in Philadelphia.[citation needed]

Claiborne worked alongside Mother Teresa during a 10-week term in Calcutta.[5] He spent 3 weeks in Baghdad with the Iraq Peace Team (IPT), a project of Voices in the Wilderness and Christian Peacemaker Teams.[6] He was witness to the military bombardment of Baghdad as well as the militarized areas between Baghdad and Amman. As a member of IPT, Claiborne took daily trips to sites where there had been bombings, visited hospitals and families, and attended worship services during the war. He also continues to serve as a board member for the nationwide Christian Community Development Association which was founded by the authors and community developers, John Perkins and Wayne Gordon.[7]

On June 20, 2007, a seven-alarm fire at the abandoned warehouse across the street destroyed The Simple Way Community Center where Claiborne lived.[8] He lost all of his possessions in the fire.[8] The Simple Way immediately set up funds to accept donations to help those who lost their homes in the fire.[9]

Claiborne is featured in the documentary The Ordinary Radicals, and co-directed the three volume Another World is Possible DVD series. Claiborne wrote the foreword to Ben Lowe's 2009 book Green Revolution: Coming Together to Care for Creation.

In 2011 he has appeared as both a guest and co-host of the TV show "Red Letter Christians" with Tony Campolo.[10]


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