(Image by Free-Photos/Pixabay)

I was working from home early last month when the doorbell rang. A delivery man handed me a box. An initial shake gave me the impression it contained books. Occasionally I do... Read More
November 8, 2019 | Anthony G. Siegrist

"We Are Best Friends," an acrylic painting by Laura Gross from the Millshof Community.

There are one hundred and seven Hutterite colonies in Manitoba and those colonies are home to a talented enclave of visual artists. I recently visited the Mennonite Heritage... Read More
October 31, 2019 | MaryLou Driedger

'It seems to me that we could be out participating in the wider culture; joyfully, cheerfully, confidently handing out ‘sweets’ in the various cultural arenas.' (Image by Tesa Robbins/Pixabay)

When I was a kid, Halloween was one of the best nights of the year. We lived in Drumheller, Alta. then. My mom and dad were both quite into Halloween and often lent their skills... Read More
October 24, 2019 | Steve Bell

'People want to come out and show their compassion.' (Image by carolynabooth/Pixabay)

Does this sound familiar? “At George’s request, cremation has taken place. There will be no funeral home visitation or service. As expressions of sympathy, donations to the... Read More
October 18, 2019 | Fred Redekop

'I believe the one thing individuals can do to have the greatest impact in the fight against climate change is to give up their cars.' (Image by tookapic/Pixabay)

The climate strike in Waterloo last month raised awareness and got people talking about climate change, which is a good thing. What's a lot more important but a lot more difficult... Read More
October 11, 2019 | Jonathan Klassen

'If nothing else, [this article] might inspire you to say a prayer for your pastor as they clear their throat behind the pulpit next Sunday morning.' (Image by Björn Eichenauer/Pixabay)

Around this time last year, someone forwarded an email to me about “Pastor Appreciation Month.” I think I vaguely knew that this was a thing, but I had no idea that it was upon us... Read More
October 3, 2019 | Ryan Dueck

'This is a prayer we are reluctant to pray because it is so hard to name what we fear out loud... We feel so small in the story of the world, and yet our actions have such big consequences.' (Image by Tumisu/Pixabay)

This is a prayer we are reluctant to pray because it is so hard to name what we fear out loud. We go through our days trying to pretend that life as normal will continue forever,... Read More
September 26, 2019 | Carol Penner

'I still make paper cranes often...' (Image by Anke Sundermeier/Pixabay)

As the policy analyst for Mennonite Central Committee Ottawa, I’m constantly engaging with Canadian politics. I mostly love politics, but it’s also so easy to get drawn into toxic... Read More
September 19, 2019 | Bekah Sears

"We all carry more profound debts than car loans and credit cards." (Image by Mohamed Hassan/Pixabay)

One of the terms I heard repeatedly at Gathering 2019 from June 29 to July 1 in Abbotsford, B.C. was “institutional church.” As in, “The institutional church would do things that... Read More
September 5, 2019 | Anthony G. Siegrist

'Our wanting is deeply influenced by what other people want, whether it’s a glass of expensive wine or the meticulously curated Instagram holidays of our friends.' (Image by StockSnap/Pixabay)

Most of us are at least dimly aware that our thinking and behaviour is influenced in important ways by our social circumstances. We tend, in general terms, to think and act like... Read More
August 22, 2019 | Ryan Dueck

'Her baby was crying loudly...' (Image by joffi/Pixabay)

Four weeks ago, just over 40 volunteers returned to Winnipeg from a week of service, learning and community engagement in Cross Lake, Man. This marked the 10th year that our... Read More
August 15, 2019 | Moses Falco

‘Just because we take a vacation from ordinary daily life does not mean that the events of ordinary daily life vacate us,’ Gareth Brandt writes. (Image by David Mark/Pixabay)

To “vacate” means to “leave a place once occupied.” In North America, summer is the time many people choose to leave home and travel somewhere else in order to rest and relax from... Read More
August 8, 2019 | Gareth Brandt

Dann and Joji Pantoja with their seven grandchildren. (Photo courtesy of Dann Pantoja)

My peace and reconciliation ministry is motivated ultimately by my love of the Creator, my service to Christ and my submission to the Comforter. Yet, I also have familial... Read More
August 1, 2019 | Dann Pantoja

Tim Wiebe, centre, stands with fellow Walk for Common Ground participants Cassidy Brown, left, and Allegra Friesen-Epp, right. (Photo courtesy of Steve Heinrich)

The image on the Treaty 6 flag is striking. The crest shows a European and Indigenous leader engaged in a never-ending handshake, a longstanding and well-understood symbol of... Read More
June 27, 2019 | Tim Wiebe-Neufeld

"If someone declares to us, 'I am a refugee,' we must listen carefully and discern. This has roots in Old Testament law which speaks about caring for the stranger in your land." (Image by Capri23auto/Pixabay)

What is a Christian response to migration? While on a day to day basis, I tend to deal with the nuts and bolts issues of refugee resettlement and Canadian and international policy... Read More
June 13, 2019 | Brian Dyck

Sara Wenger Shenk is president of Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary in Elkhart, Ind. (AMBS photo)

Excerpt from MHEA vision statement Sara is focusing on: These schools form graduates who understand that the professional expression of their vocation will require deep roots in a... Read More
June 6, 2019 | Sara Wenger Shenk

'Scriptural Reasoning invites us into each others’ faith tradition by choosing scriptural passages from the Hebrew Bible, the New Testament and the Qur’an.' (Image by congerdesign/Pixabay)

As part of an effort among Alberta Mennonites to bridge understanding between Christians and Muslims, Christian-Muslim dialogues have been organized annually since 2013, under the... Read More
May 24, 2019 | Suzanne Gross

'We heard about monarch butterflies and how they are the symbol of migration. This really captured my heart and stayed with me during the following days.' (Image by PublicDomainPictures/Pixabay)

Mennonite Central Committee’s “People on the Move: Human Rights and Global Migration” student seminar in Ottawa this past February sparked in me a new curiosity and interest in... Read More
May 17, 2019 | Hannah Gray

'I left the jail one Monday morning last month feeling a heaviness that I have not felt in some time.' (Image by Fifaliana Joy/Pixabay)

I left the jail one Monday morning last month feeling a heaviness that I have not felt in some time. I don’t go there each Monday with some big agenda—I’m not there to reform or... Read More
May 7, 2019 | Ryan Dueck

Gareth Brandt speaks at the Mennonite Church Canada Assembly in Saskatoon in 2016. (Photo by Matt Veith)

I am not one of those people who says, “I’m not religious, I just love Jesus” or “I don’t belong to any denomination, I’m just a Christian.” Rather, I have sometimes said, “Those... Read More
April 30, 2019 | Gareth Brandt

(Image by Larisa Koshkina/Pixabay)

One of the most persistent questions I hear about the Christian faith relates to what we believe about the future—our future, the future of our communities, the future of the... Read More
April 25, 2019 | Anthony G. Siegrist

Easter moves because its date is determined by the lunar calendar and proximity to Jewish Passover. It can be celebrated by the Western church anywhere between March 22 and April 25. (Image by Germán R/Pixabay)

This year, Easter is on April 21. Last year, it was April 1. Next year it is April 12. Why does it move around so much? And would it be easier if it was the same date every year?... Read More
April 18, 2019 | John Longhurst

Jack Penashue and Rick Cober Bauman, executive director of MCC Canada, sit together in Sheshatshit during a visit to Labrador in December 2018. (MCC photo)

Mennonite Central Committee shares God’s love and compassion for all in the name of Christ. We have a vision of communities worldwide in right relationships with God, one another... Read More
April 16, 2019 | Rick Cober Bauman

Miriam Toews (above) has a complicated relationship with her hometown, writes MaryLou Driedger. (Photo courtesy of

Alexandra Schwartz writes a lengthy feature in the current issue of The New Yorker magazine about author Miriam Toews, who was born and raised in Steinbach, Man. Toews’ eighth... Read More
April 4, 2019 | MaryLou Driedger

'I want to learn from our history and remind others that cultural and religious differences must not make us complicit in denying dignity and equality for all,' Leona Lortie writes. (Photo by Johannes Plenio/Pixabay)

In contemplating where our passions come from and why we do what we do, we often look to our childhoods. In my childhood, I was faced with several tensions, which formed me and... Read More
March 21, 2019 | Leona Lortie

In 2006, a Kansas City pastor challenged his congregation not to complain for 21 consecutive days—the time, he says, it takes to break an ingrained habit. (Photo by philm1310/Pixabay)

“You better stop whinin’, pinin',” Dolly Parton sings in her song, “Better Get to Livin'.” If you’re “underpaid or under appreciated,” you’ll get no sympathy from her. Her advice... Read More
March 12, 2019 | John Longhurst

'It’s the place where I can be formed and reoriented to what’s really important.' (Photo courtesy of Pixabay)

Times are a-changin’. They always are, and one of our challenges and joys is to figure out how we should live in a changing cultural and social context as followers of Jesus. In... Read More
February 21, 2019 | Moses Falco

Darryl Neustaedter Barg leads worship in Laurelville, Pa. last month. (Photo by Kreg Ulery)

How many of the songs in our “Hymnal: A Worship Book” (HWB), and the two supplements “Sing the Journey” and “Sing the Story” do you think are Mennonite? What does that even mean?... Read More
February 12, 2019 | Darryl Neustaedter Barg

Sue and Sam Steiner celebrate Sam’s Canadian citizenship in 1974.

My husband Sam and I went out for lunch at the end of October to celebrate Sam's 50th anniversary of arriving in Canada as a Vietnam-era draft resister. Back in Indiana, I had... Read More
February 5, 2019 | Sue Steiner

Photo by Marcello Gambetti from

As I’ve continued to follow the process set in motion by the Future Directions Task Force (FDTF), I’ve come to a different place with my thoughts on this major restructuring of... Read More
May 26, 2016 | Susie Guenther Loewen

Chilean mothers of the “disappeared” gather, holding signs of their missing loved ones. (Photo by Kena Lorenzini, from Wikimedia Commons)

When I was a young child, my family lived in Chile, where my parents worked at an inter-Protestant seminary. We happened to be there to witness the end of the brutal, U.S.-backed... Read More
May 7, 2016 | Susie Guenther Loewen

Tear gas containers litter the gardens near the separation wall between Israel and the West Bank Palestinians know that every Friday they can expect tear gas to be lobbed into the refugee camps outside of Bethlehem. (Photo by Brandi Friesen Thorpe)

‘How you experience holy is different than you expect it to be.’ -Rev. Carrie Ballenger Smith After a year of travel, seeking faith and justice on four continents, there are... Read More
April 11, 2016 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe

Sunset in Bethlehem (Photo by Brandi Friesen Thorpe)

Holy Saturday, The place for bleakness, twisted mourning, black. I like this day, today, How it holds permission to wallow and be in the dark, To wander in the twisted depths... Read More
April 9, 2016 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe

“Crucified Woman” by Almuth Lutkenhaus-Lackey (Photo by Susie Guenther Loewen)

The sculpture above stands on the grounds of my theological college, Emmanuel College in Toronto, of the United Church of Canada. I used to walk by her almost daily, on my way to... Read More
March 25, 2016 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the wider Mennonite church these past few weeks, as there have been discussions about the future of Mennonite Church Canada at the... Read More
March 23, 2016 | Susie Guenther Loewen

The bleeding woman touches Jesus’ cloak, in an image from the catacombs in Rome. (Photo from Wikimedia Commons)

I got into an interesting discussion with a friend from my church recently. In adult ed., we were talking about liberation theology and its view of sin. (You can read about... Read More
February 29, 2016 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I’ll be honest right from the beginning: when it comes to music in worship, I’m a hymn-person. Always have been. Especially as a youth, when everyone assumed that because of my... Read More
February 22, 2016 |

Christmas in Sicily (Photo by Brandi Friesen Thorpe)

At Christmas time families journey to meet other family members. There is a Christmas tree up in the corner, and some twinkly lights afloat somewhere. Somewhere in the corner... Read More
December 26, 2015 |
Last year I wrote about Advent as a time of pregnant waiting, and of the way that Mary exemplifies mothering as the embodied practice of hospitality, fulfilling the biblical call... Read More
December 22, 2015 |

A pre-20th century Muslim depiction of Mary and Jesus by the stream and the date palm that sustained her during childbirth. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

These are times of uncertainty and hatred, when our political and social discourses are marred by xenophobic, Islamophobic, and just plain racist rhetoric. (Remember the niqab... Read More
December 15, 2015 |

The cover of the children’s book The Sun and the Wind, retold by Cornelia Lehn and illustrated by Robert W. Regier. 

With Peace Sunday past, we approach the time of waiting for the Prince of Peace to be born, so I wanted to share a few children’s books on peace which have been getting repeat... Read More
November 25, 2015 |

Photo by Brandi Friesen Thorpe

Once again, we have lived through a moment that will continue to define our century. The wake of the triad of terror that has happened in the last days in Paris and Beirut and... Read More
November 18, 2015 |

Photo by Brandi Friesen Thorpe

Recently at my church here in central Winnipeg, we have been navigating a sermon series on the Psalms. My small group, some ten or so very diverse people at various stages in... Read More
November 17, 2015 |

Mennonite Central Committee’s 2015 Go Purple postcard

As we celebrated Peace Sunday at my church this week, a friend of mine got up during the time of sharing and prayer. He told us that November has been designated Domestic Violence... Read More
November 10, 2015 | Suzanne Guenther Loewen

The poster for the conference, “Mennonites, Medicine and the Body: Health, Illness and Medical Research in the Past and Present,” held at Canadian Mennonite University in October 2015.

I had the privilege of participating in a conference this past weekend (Oct. 23, 24, 2015) at the University of Winnipeg hosted by Royden Loewen, the chair of Mennonite Studies... Read More
October 27, 2015 |

A page from the children’s book The Dumpster Diver, by Janet S. Wong, illustrated by David Roberts. 

Being a parent, I’ve found, can be profoundly clarifying in terms of what aspects of faith one finds most meaningful, and therefore most worthy of teaching to one’s children. One... Read More
October 15, 2015 |

Settler and indigenous participants shake hands during the Reconciliation Walk at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission events held in Ottawa, in June 2015. The five-kilometre walk included about 10,000 people. Members of the Student Christian Movement (SCM, also known as WSCF), Mennonite Church Canada, Mennonite Central Committee, and Christian Peacemaker Teams were present during this walk, as were representatives from many other church denominations and justice-oriented organizations, and individual citizens.  (Photo by Brandi Friesen Thorpe)

I’ve been on the road three of the last six months, in no particular order. As I return home and begin to reflect on the encounters and experiences that I’ve had, my heart returns... Read More
September 23, 2015 |

Simone Weil, 1909-1943. (Photo from Wikimedia Commons)

The Anabaptist-Mennonite tradition arose in a context of great suffering. If you’ve ever done any reading (or even leafed through!) the Martyr’s Mirror (a collection of the... Read More
September 22, 2015 |
I wrote this story two years ago, and since then another suicide has occurred and been mourned, in a neighbouring community. That man I did know. To remember both of these men who... Read More
September 12, 2015 |
As I write this I am flying over the ocean, returning from an international ecumenical gathering in the north of Italy. People from across the world were there, including some... Read More
August 27, 2015 |

Pope Francis on his 2013 visit to Brazil. (Photo by Agencia Brasil, from Wikimedia Commons.) 

God is not afraid of new things! That is why he is continually surprising us, opening our hearts, and guiding us in unexpected ways. –Pope Francis Being the theology enthusiast... Read More
August 19, 2015 |

The Italian Alps, near the Agape Ecumenical Center in Prali, Italy. (Photo by Brandi Friesen Thorpe)

I have spent the last week in the beautiful Alps of Italy, at the Agape Ecumenical Center, gathering with an international community to delve into interreligious dialogue. I am... Read More
August 17, 2015 |

One of Tomie dePaola's beautiful collages in The Song of Francis. (Photo by Susie Guenther Loewen)

I was happy to discover another gem of a children’s book on the subject of faith at my public library recently: it’s called The Song of Francis , written and illustrated with... Read More
July 30, 2015 |

Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective was published in 1995 and is still used by Mennonite Church Canada and Mennonite Church USA.

You may have heard about what happened at Mennonite Church USA’s convention earlier this month, specifically with regard to same-sex marriage and LGBTQ Mennonites. And, like me,... Read More
July 20, 2015 |
Sometimes I think the church struggles with the tension between its individual members and its task of being a communal body. In a socio-economic context such as ours, where... Read More
June 29, 2015 |

“David and Abigail” by 16th-century painter Guido Reni (Wikimedia Commons)

This week I was reminded of a biblical figure who is often overlooked: Abigail (or, as my Bible disappointingly calls her, “the wife of Nabal”!). Her story is found in I Samuel 25... Read More
June 19, 2015 |
There is a popular language arising in the church when it comes to justice work, that of “being an ally.” It means to align yourself with whoever your “other” is, so to love your... Read More
May 28, 2015 |

The cover of the children’s book, Where is God? published by 

Here’s an unusual question: Do the children in your life read theology books? It might seem odd to combine a big, academic word like theology (the study of God, or God-talk) with... Read More
May 28, 2015 |

The icon of Sophia (Wisdom) by Eileen McGuckin (Wikimedia Commons)

Earlier this year I was invited to give a lecture on feminist Christology to a class of undergraduate students. Now feminist Christology is something very dear to me, even though... Read More
May 27, 2015 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Hello my friends of faith and curiosity! I happy to announce that the project I have been curating for quite some time is ready for launching! Huzzah! As a part of the Beautiful... Read More
May 4, 2015 |

The logo of the #ReclaimHolyWeek campaign, organized by Holy Week of Resistance

After a recent experience in New York comes this reflection on racism and the social context of our faith. I can't breathe. At this moment, this is one of the most politically... Read More
April 24, 2015 |

The resurrection as a peaceful response to violence. (16th-century engraving by Jean Tisserand, from Wikimedia Commons)

Here we are, a couple of weeks post-Easter, and I’m still thinking about the resurrection. Have you ever considered the resurrection as symbolic of peace and nonviolence? And don’... Read More
April 21, 2015 |
So my son, who is almost two years old, has a set of wooden building blocks—you know, the kind with the letters of the alphabet on them, along with pictures of things that start... Read More
April 15, 2015 |

Big Sister welcomes the new family member.

He came one week and one day early. He came quickly, so quickly that his dad and midwife almost missed his grand arrival. “He’s here,” the nurse yelled while everyone else was... Read More
April 2, 2015 |

A typical Latin American welcome or parting kiss. (Photo courtesy of Palmer Becker)

A lot has happened since I last wrote. The ten days in Chile were especially unforgettable! Chile, with seven climate sub-types, is 4,300 km (2,670 miles) long and 350 km (220... Read More
April 2, 2015 |

C. Paul and Hildi Amstutz serve in chaplaincy and spiritual formation ministries in Asuncion, Paraguay. (Photo courtesy of Palmer Becker)

Ardys and I have been able to spend ten wonderful days together first in Asuncion, then at the world-famous Iguazu Falls and now in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Ardys is now on her... Read More
April 2, 2015 |
Now that we’ve entered once again into the sombreness of Holy Week, I’d like to share a poem of mine which expresses some of my reflections on the cross, which I’ve shared on this... Read More
April 1, 2015 |
God, our Mother and our Father Jesus Christ, Holy Son Holy Spirit, our Comforter We offer our gratitude , for you are with us. You are familiar without struggles and joys, and... Read More
April 1, 2015 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Luke 19: 28-44 Verse 40: “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” (NIV) I wish you a happy celebration of this Holy Week, and most recently, happy... Read More
March 31, 2015 |
God, our Mother and our Father, Jesus Christ, Holy Son, Holy Spirit, our Comforter. We offer our gratitude, for you are with us. You are familiar without struggles and joys, and... Read More
March 31, 2015 |
Passage: Luke 19: 28-44 Verse 40: “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” (NIV) I wish all of you a happy celebration of this holy week, and most... Read More
March 31, 2015 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
It’s become clear to me from a lot of the conversations occurring within Canadian Mennonite , especially in the letters to the editor, that as Mennonites, we’re not of one mind... Read More
March 19, 2015 |

Paraguayan pastors and church workers arrive by truck to attend a four-day workshop. (Photo courtesy of Palmer Becker)

Everywhere I go I extend greetings from my church, family and friends. There is always an enthusiastic response saying that I should convey greetings back to you. Greetings! This... Read More
March 18, 2015 |

Youth are engaged in graffiti evangelism. Note that Jesus is going to church in a boat on a skateboard with a Bible in one hand and a spray can in the other! (Photo by Palmer Becker)

Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world, both in land mass and population. The densely forested Amazon Valley, which includes up to 69 Indian tribes, makes up a large... Read More
March 12, 2015 |
I’m now in my ninth month of pregnancy, which is hardly the beautiful and magical time magazines and mommy-blogs would lead one to believe that it is. Pregnancy is difficult,... Read More
March 11, 2015 |

Lizette, co-director of MCC, was an excellent translator.  (Photo by Linda Shelly)

Bolivia, named after its first president, Bolivar, is about 4,500 miles south and one time zone east of Kitchener. It is a beautiful country with lots of tropical foliage,... Read More
March 9, 2015 |
Earlier this month, I was one of many who gathered in the new Marpeck Commons building at Canadian Mennonite University to hear from a panel of “young adults” on their age group... Read More
February 27, 2015 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Every week my grandma sends every member of her family an email update on her weekly events and the happenings of the entire family’s whereabouts. She’s been providing these... Read More
February 23, 2015 |
Having gone public with my New Year’s resolutions this year, it was inevitable that I would be asked the dreaded follow-up question: “How are your resolutions going?” While I’m... Read More
February 12, 2015 |
It’s interesting being a Mennonite and an academic. Sometimes I find my Anabaptist-Mennonite sensibilities grating against the norms of academia: my “priesthood of all believers”... Read More
February 6, 2015 |
It’s interesting being a Mennonite and an academic. Sometimes I find my Anabaptist-Mennonite sensibilities grating against the norms of academia: my “priesthood of all believers”... Read More
February 6, 2015 | Susie Guenther Loewen

A 17th-century Dutch church. (Photo from Wikimedia Commons)

Earlier this month, I was one of many who gathered in the new Marpeck Commons building at Canadian Mennonite University to hear from a panel of “young adults” on their age group... Read More
February 2, 2015 |
What is grafted poetry, you ask? It's an invention of my poetic play, and I offer you a definition; /ˈgraft·ed po·et·ry/ : A style of writing where in a writer grafts in another... Read More
January 30, 2015 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Today's guest blogger is Deanna Zantingh , a masters of Theology student who currently resides in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Let her powerful insights and sharp intel be the sparks for a... Read More
January 29, 2015 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
We’re having a baby boy. We’re excited and scared and overwhelmed and underprepared. Mostly excited, but it’s taken me a little while to get here. I have two young girls. They are... Read More
January 9, 2015 |
I’m a fan of new beginnings and fresh starts and the start of the New Year is the ultimate in possibilities and promise. Yes, I am a fan, a big fan, of New Year’s resolutions. I... Read More
January 8, 2015 |
We are accustomed to reading the narrative of the Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38) as something of an ethereal event, a moment of encounter with the divine realm during which Mary’s... Read More
December 23, 2014 |
We are accustomed to reading the narrative of the Annunciation (Luke 1:26-38) as something of an ethereal event, a moment of encounter with the divine realm during which Mary’s... Read More
December 23, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Time. We never seem to have enough of it, and yet it dominates us, ruling our days and how we view and spend our hours, even our very lives. Time was Professor John Swinton’s... Read More
December 12, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Did you know that Thursday, November 27 was American Thanksgiving? You might not, since this holiday seems to have faded into the shadows of the sinister Black Friday—which is... Read More
November 28, 2014 |
“So they took up arms, these and a million other Canadians - men and women - who put on the uniform and beat their ploughshares into swords.” – Prime Minister Stephen Harper “The... Read More
November 9, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I am a big fan of CBC Radio. In our house, it takes the place of the TV, and it plays almost non-stop in our small kitchen, providing me with comforting background noise. On... Read More
October 30, 2014 |
It’s full on fall and what a lovely season it is. We spent last weekend browsing the stalls at our local farmer’s market, stealing samples and purchasing way too many baked goods... Read More
October 30, 2014 |
I’m finding it difficult to respond without cynicism as I think about the violent events which occurred in Ottawa this past week. By now, we’ve heard the sequence of events... Read More
October 26, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
At the beginning of this month, I had the pleasure of going to “Ex-Mennonite, Near Mennonite: Liturgical, Non-denominational, Secular,” a conference hosted by the Chair in... Read More
October 22, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Do you know a lot about Pies, Peace, and Prophets? Come to a live comedy performance of I’d Like to Buy an Enemy by Ted and Company. Bring a handcrafted pie for auction (along... Read More
October 18, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Mary Magdalene is one of the most controversial and mysterious biblical characters. She often gets a bad rap. She was pegged as a prostitute and temptress by Pope Gregory I, and... Read More
October 8, 2014 |
This is midpoint in my five-week ministry here in Gaza and Bethlehem. Things are going well. While my students in Gaza are doing research, book reports and various kinds of... Read More
October 6, 2014 |
I am writing this from prison. All 1.8 million of us who are living in Gaza are in prison. The walls around Gaza keep us (except us privileged foreigners) from leaving to work, to... Read More
October 6, 2014 |
Hello fellow Mennonites, near Mennonites, and perhaps even ex-Mennonites . I just want to take a quick to highlight an event going on this weekend in Winnipeg -- it sounds like a... Read More
October 2, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Jesus said, “So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly... Read More
September 30, 2014 |
I've been thinking a lot about what I've been studying in the last year, including a biography of Gandhi. It has left me with some interesting reflections on dust, truth and... Read More
September 30, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
The CMU Farmers Market is TODAY folks! We've got 28 vendors lined up, a toonie lunch (farmer sausage on a bun) to offer, and a forecast of sunshiney goodness. Also, I'll be a... Read More
September 27, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
September has been a whirlwind of change. It always is. One day we’re enjoying the lazy days of summer, when our mornings are spent park-hopping, lunches are always picnics, and... Read More
September 25, 2014 |
It's been quite a while since I have posted here. This September is the least busy that I have been in a long time, and I intend to take some time to read, write, and reflect, as... Read More
September 15, 2014 | Max Kennel
In his famous address at 1984 Mennonite World Conference, in Strasbourg, France, Ron Sider described shalom as “being in right relationship with God, neighbor and the earth.”... Read More
September 2, 2014 |
I’ve recently started the practice of praying with my one-year-old son before bed. We’ve had mealtime prayers going for a while now, usually in the form of a song, and at night I... Read More
August 31, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
It’s been over a month since the Mennonite Church Canada Assembly was held in my new/old hometown of Winnipeg, but I for one am still thinking about everything I heard there. I... Read More
August 26, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I have been absent from this blog for a while. I wish I had a grand excuse, like gallivanting around Europe, or road tripping across the country, or building a treehouse for my... Read More
August 22, 2014 |
Today's guest blogger is Peter Brown , 23, is a recent graduate from CMU. He recently took a trip to Iran (May 25 - June 15) for interfaith dialogues . He travelled to Qom,... Read More
July 31, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Today's guest blogger is Tim Wenger , a masters student located in Winnipeg, MB. He writes about how we need to remember that as Mennonites, our social justice work is rooted in... Read More
July 22, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
My Saturday morning began with discord. I woke up, checked Facebook, and found my newsfeed full of statuses that made me feel sick. I couldn't stop reading, every line filling me... Read More
July 10, 2014 | Sarah Ens
Less than a month ago a vigil was held in Winnipeg for the school aged girls kidnapped in Chibok, Nigeria. Today I discovered, in much heartache, that our brothers and sisters in... Read More
June 30, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
The other day I was enjoying a night out sans children. However, even if children aren’t physically present, they are still always in our hearts, on our minds, and still... Read More
June 23, 2014 |
Life has been… hectic. I am reluctant to use the word “busy” because I hate how society has come to embrace the word like a badge of honour, or throw the term around as an excuse... Read More
June 18, 2014 |
This Saturday at 6pm, the #HopeForOurGirls All Night Vigil will take place in Assiniboine Park. Attendance by all is welcome, for the entirety of the night, or just an hour. We... Read More
June 5, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
One of the gifts the church has attained in the modern era is the ability to interact with the global church in an ease of access never before seen. Communication, travel, and... Read More
May 31, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
When I shared the story of my attack, I got a wide variety of responses from my friends, family, and co-workers. It is difficult to know what to say to people after things like... Read More
May 29, 2014 |
One of the best gifts my father has ever given me is an online subscription to The New York Times . He has always been an ardent fan of good news sources. The man has a... Read More
May 27, 2014 |
As many of my friends already know, I flew directly from Bogotá to Canada in early May, rather than journeying to Barrancabermeja to complete the final month of my stint on team... Read More
May 27, 2014 |
Now, as I am quite sure is realized, I am by no means a fulltime blogger. What do I do with the rest my time? Well, I am studying for my masters degree, and I work with a... Read More
May 17, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
I’ve been thinking lately about the Trinity, the central way that Christians throughout history have expressed who God is to us – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. From recent... Read More
April 28, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
This Easter is going to be different. I probably sound hypocritical stating how uncomfortable I am talking about death in one post and then writing about that very topic in... Read More
April 17, 2014 |
As we experience another Holy Week leading up to Easter, I’m thinking of Mary, the mother of Jesus. I know, she’s not the first biblical figure who comes to mind at this time of... Read More
April 16, 2014 | Susie Guenther Loewen
“But we can't do this forever, and we face the much wider problem of poor air quality every day. The Saharan dust will pass, but we will continue to fail its citizens on air... Read More
April 10, 2014 |
Before I left Canada, I met up for coffee with a friend of mine in Waterloo—a pastor named Steve Tullock. We talked about my upcoming work in Colombia with Christian Peacemakers... Read More
April 8, 2014 |
At this moment, I am sitting in the warmth of a sunbeam, sipping a cup of tea, and enjoying a quiet afternoon while both my girls nap. What a glorious moment. Or, at least it... Read More
April 1, 2014 |
This past week we celebrated a pretty significant birthday in our family. Baby E, who will now be referred to just as E, turned one! I am experiencing every emotion possible. Like... Read More
March 20, 2014 |
I set out on my first accompaniment with Christian Peacemaker Teams early in the morning on Tuesday, February 18. As international accompaniment, CPT’s role is to document events... Read More
March 13, 2014 |
The other day, in celebration of the impending spring weather, I went for a run around the neighbourhood. I didn’t go far, but at the end, I was tired-tired of the scenery... Read More
March 11, 2014 |
Hello and welcome to my new blog. I’m excited to be here. I have been an avid blog reader for many years now and, at any given time, I am following at least 20-some blogs. My... Read More
March 11, 2014 |
Classes are going very well. Students are appreciating the role-plays, practical illustrations, and the newly published textbook, which was partially funded by Waterloo North... Read More
March 11, 2014 |
I got a warm welcome when I arrived at Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv, but, of course, nothing like the unprecedented welcome that Stephen Harper received! He was here with about... Read More
March 5, 2014 |
I have received a new call from Bethlehem Bible College (BBC) and Mennonite Church Canada to go to Palestine/Israel for nine weeks to teach Pastoral Care and Counseling in the... Read More
March 5, 2014 |
What does active pacifism look like? What exactly is violence when you get past the classic images of guns and combat? What unique insights does my Christian faith have to offer... Read More
March 5, 2014 |
As our friends participating with the Honour Walk prepare for their three-week walk to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in honor of residential school survivors, we invite... Read More
February 26, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
In the last season of my life have been engaged in learning how to love and honour my Aboriginal neighbours. I have been journeying with some friends and as a group we have longed... Read More
February 25, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Heads Up! Circles of Support and Accountablity, a restorative justice initiative in Winnipeg, MB, is having a fundraiser and awareness night TOMORROW! Dates: Sat, Feb 01, 2014... Read More
January 31, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Hey folks! For anyone looking for a new place to try, I have to recommend L’Arche Tova Cafe in Winnipeg. This lovely cafe, aside from serving tasty food, is a cafe committed to... Read More
January 23, 2014 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Pt. I – Anticipation Behold! This is the season of waiting. We mirror And remember the shadows and hints of prophetic words That were actualized in the birth and life of Christ... Read More
December 31, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
We Mennonites hail from a rather iconoclastic tradition, but Christmas seems to be a partial exception to this. You see, this is a time of year when many of us set up small scenes... Read More
December 25, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Well, we’re already up to Third Advent, meaning Christmas is right around the corner. As the shops near my apartment have gotten busier and busier, I’ve been thinking about the “... Read More
December 13, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
In reading Nelson Mandela biography, as well as a book by Richard Stengel called 'Mandela's Way', I was inspired to write the prayer of a peace leader. This prayer is informed by... Read More
December 2, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Okay, so now that I’ve got your attention, let’s talk about the “f” word: feminism. (What did you think I was going to say?!) Feminist theology is part of what I’m studying and I... Read More
November 30, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Recently the Conrad Grebel College newsletter and the Canadian Mennonite have lent some publicity to the fact that myself and a fellow MTS student have received SSHRC research... Read More
November 30, 2013 | Max Kennel
A few weeks ago, my little family (my husband, my baby son, and I) celebrated parent/child dedication along with our church community. Though it’s obviously a different sort of... Read More
November 11, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
This past summer, the worship theme at my church, Toronto United Mennonite, was about how the church is or can be salt and light, as per Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 5:13-16. The... Read More
October 30, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Before a couple years ago, I couldn’t pinpoint Cambodia on a map. I mean, generally I knew it was in Asia somewhere near Vietnam and Thailand. Really I didn’t have a clue about... Read More
October 29, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
This past summer, the worship theme at my church, Toronto United Mennonite, was about how the church is or can be salt and light, as per Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 5:13-16. The... Read More
October 27, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Monday October 7th marked an anniversary of 250 years since the Royal Proclamation of 1763 was made. This proclamation, or promise, recognized the Aboriginal people of Canada as... Read More
October 8, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Ever since I read this article by the current president of the Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary and this editorial in a recent issue of the Canadian Mennonite , I’ve been... Read More
September 29, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
For those of you who are justice minded and love a good conversation starter, I want to direct you to Kris Miner's blog. LINK: Kris' blog - Read More
September 29, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Like me, you may be following the recent news from Quebec about the “Charter of Values” that’s being proposed, and, like me, you may be feeling appalled at the very idea... Read More
September 21, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
A few weeks ago, my sister and I swapped stories about our summers spent working for Camps with Meaning. In a conversation that ranged from outrageously horrible mosquitoes to... Read More
September 1, 2013 | Sarah Ens
This is a follow up sermon in the two-part series I preached at Crosshill Mennonite Church called 'The Work of Love'. The first part can be found here. This morning we heard the... Read More
August 31, 2013 | Max Kennel
I preached for the first time a few weeks ago--a challenging, stressful, and rewarding experience. I chose the topic of generosity with the help of one of the pastors from my... Read More
August 29, 2013 | Sarah Ens
The other day my housemates and I had an interesting conversation. We asked ourselves: if we are dreamers and made in the image of God, what is God’s dream? This is what we... Read More
July 31, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
The other day my housemates and I had an interesting conversation. We asked ourselves: if we are dreamers and made in the image of God, what is God’s dream? This is what we... Read More
July 31, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
With my colleague Doug being away on holidays, this past Sunday and next Sunday I'm going to try my hand at a two-part sermon series on some themes in the second and third letters... Read More
July 29, 2013 | Max Kennel
What does cross-cultural learning have to do with our faith? I believe it's at the heart of the good news that Jesus taught and lived: Reconciliation with God and reconciliation... Read More
July 28, 2013 |
“When unbelievers lead the way in inventions and artistic expression, its because the church has embraced a false kind of spirituality” --- Pastor Bill Johnson, of Redding,... Read More
July 25, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
A mini-retreat this week for me, with a couple nights spent at a local camp while my spouse leads the Bible time. Good time for reflection, writing, thinking, reading scripture,... Read More
July 25, 2013 |
We Shall Remain is the title of a documentary series by PBS. We watched a few of the episodes while living in Virginia, where we heard very little of indigenous people, culture,... Read More
July 21, 2013 |
My hand rested on the shelf of books and I looked at the title of the volume under my palm. It was the same book that I'd remembered. Another time, in the same small library, I'd... Read More
July 19, 2013 |
One class from my MA studies at Eastern Mennonite University's Center for Justice and Peacebuilding which continues to stick in my mind is a course called "Narrative Negotiation... Read More
July 18, 2013 |
A couple of months ago I read a post that had been shared around among some of my Facebook friends. It told the story of a bride-to-be, just moments before her wedding, praying... Read More
July 1, 2013 | Sarah Ens
You might have noticed that my blog posts have been somewhat sporadic over the past months. I do have a reason: my husband and I just had our first child last week. The experience... Read More
June 30, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Two weeks ago, I attended the Canadian Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event in Steinbach. As I watched my dad complete the Survivor’s Walk two and a half years after his last... Read More
June 18, 2013 | Sarah Ens
Every once in a while, I’m reminded of forgotten characters from the dusty corners of the biblical narrative, characters we tend not to read or think about much during worship... Read More
June 7, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
There have been more and more suggestions for good Menno blogs - and I really can't decided between them all. So instead of choosing one this week, I'll present you with five... Read More
May 31, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
I caved and bought an iPhone earlier this month. It is shiny and efficient and useful. It’s also a whole lot of fun. Addictive fun. The first game I fell in love with was “Candy... Read More
May 31, 2013 | Sarah Ens
It is easy to imagine angry fundamentalist types in the Middle East. And they most certainly exist- thugs or bigots who grew beards. Faces that never smile. Yet your typical... Read More
May 29, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
I am a complainer. I almost always feel cold, hungry or tired—sometimes all three at once—and I am almost always vocal about it. Most of the time, unfortunately, I don’t even... Read More
May 29, 2013 | Sarah Ens
Living in a Muslim country has been an amazing experience. The Islamic world had long-fascinated me as something so strange and different from my own context. I would often wonder... Read More
May 24, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
I've still this great list of blogs that people have been emailing me! They share some diverse opinions, and I think they are well worth sharing - so get ready for it. May is all... Read More
May 17, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
It has been a busy few weeks with travel, a new set of courses, and the happy arrival of my Uncle Bob and Cousin Jon. Due to all the activity, my body finally wore down a couple... Read More
May 15, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's blog Life in Egypt We are home safe and sound in Egypt after an MCC retreat in Spain. Barcelona is a place we had never imagined we... Read More
May 13, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's blog, Life in Egypt We are currently on holiday after a wonderful MCC retreat in Barcelona, Spain! It has been a wonderful and... Read More
May 3, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
As some of you will know from a previous post of mine, I enjoy Mennonite literature a great deal, so I was delighted to be able to attend a lecture on Mennonite lit. this past... Read More
April 30, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
My roommate Julia and I like to hold hands. Walking to the bus stop, walking to class, walking to a theatre, mall, or grocery store, we are almost always holding hands. We like it... Read More
April 30, 2013 | Sarah Ens
I am a wonderful time-waster. My skills at procrastinating are top notch. So when exam season again reared it’s so very ugly head this month, I managed to do just about anything... Read More
April 27, 2013 | Sarah Ens
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's blog Life in Egypt Less than a week ago we bid farewell to my parents Tim and Johanna. They came to Egypt for two weeks and saw the... Read More
April 26, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
Hey there readers! In the last few weeks I've received lots of emails and suggestions of blogs to share. It's now time to start passing some of these on so you can explore them... Read More
April 22, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's Blog Life in Egypt We just returned home from Cairo after bidding farewell to Wanda's parents. We enjoyed two wonderful weeks... Read More
April 22, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
In this post-Easter season, I’ve been continuing to mull over the significance of the cross for our faith – and not only because I recently wrote an exam on this topic! I... Read More
April 17, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Much has been written on this blog about the stories we tell. This narrative perspective is becoming a stronger one in many fields of study, including therapy, education, conflict... Read More
April 16, 2013 |
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's blog Life in Egypt I clearly recall our first visit to Beni Suef back in May 2011. We had been living in Cairo for a month, and drove... Read More
April 10, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
Hey guys --- I've decided that April is Blog Month. In the next few weeks I am going to be scouring the internet in search of some unique blogs Mennonite influenced blogs worth... Read More
April 9, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's blog Life in Egypt As we reach the two year point in our term, we look back on past blog entries and realize we have not adequately... Read More
April 8, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's blog Life in Egypt Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a... Read More
April 8, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
This post first appeared on Isaac and Wanda's blog Life in Egypt Winter has breathed its last breath in Egypt, as recent weather has been unusually warm. While we welcome the... Read More
April 8, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
When I am in Vancouver, I am bad at going to church. I was better last year when my friend Rebecca and I would go, sharing ear buds and listening to One Direction all the way... Read More
April 1, 2013 | Sarah Ens
I think that every season is a time to reflect, and that poetry is a great way to do that. The following poem I love in any season, but particularily at Easter. I want to hear... Read More
March 29, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
When I was in grade 9 or 10 I remember a boy in my class, who wasn’t religious, asking several students if they “supported gay people” or if they thought “being gay was okay”. We... Read More
March 17, 2013 | Sarah Ens
This post first appeared on Issac and Wanda's blog Life in Egypt. Visit the site for a full archive of their posts. Egypt usually appears in the news due to political unrest... Read More
March 16, 2013 | Isaac Friesen and Wanda Wall-Bergen
More stories of the past at Kumomoto . Stories that complex-ify . Japan not as a cohesive, evil, military power all seeking destruction of neighbouring nations, but as a land of... Read More
March 14, 2013 |
Blame. Hatred. Lament. Ignorance. Shame. Defense. It might just seem like stories of the past, but the struggle for history brings out deep feelings, as I discovered in our visit... Read More
March 10, 2013 |
My impression of Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo was a college trying to keep its identity as a Christian college on a growing campus with increasing diversity. They seem to be... Read More
March 3, 2013 |
With Christmas having come and gone, I would guess that not many of us are thinking about the “little town” of Bethlehem these days. Even at Christmas-time, many of us probably... Read More
February 28, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
The view was breathtaking. On a clear day, from the 52nd floor, they said we should be able to see Mount Fuji. It was too hazy that day, though. All we could see were the blocks... Read More
February 24, 2013 |
Last year I had the opportunity to interview numerous people living in intentional communities across Ontario. The following are words of experience and wisdom from people who... Read More
February 21, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Well, I’m back after some time away from this blog, and I must admit, I’ve missed writing and posting here! For my first post back, I thought I’d weigh in on the controversy... Read More
February 21, 2013 | Susie Guenther Loewen
We were on the island! The train had risen about the surface of the water out of the underwater tunnel that had taken us a half hour to traverse. We looked at the rural villages,... Read More
February 19, 2013 |
Every now and then a familiar story comes to new meaning. A recent re-reading of the story of Bartimaeus in Mark 10:46-52 pushes me into an area of discomfort that challenges my... Read More
February 11, 2013 | Cheryl Woelk
Last year I had the opportunity to interview numerous people living in intentional communities across Ontario. The following are words of experience and wisdom from people who... Read More
February 8, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Procrastination happens for a reason. A quote I saw once suggested that often, it's because I don't give ourselves enough between projects to fully rest and enjoy the sense of... Read More
February 3, 2013 |
In my last post, I wrote about feelings of inadequacy common, in my experience, among university students regarding the world’s “big issues”. I want to focus this post on another... Read More
January 31, 2013 | Sarah Ens
I've been borrowing books from the Mennonite Church Canada Resource Centre and highly recommend their "recommended titles." Recently, I finished Emma LaRocque's "When the Other is... Read More
January 27, 2013 |
Earlier this month we published 'Advocating for the Orphan' The following is more of the extended interview. Enjoy! 1. Basic Bio information - Names/ages of family, church,... Read More
January 18, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
At a seminar on cooperative organizations in Saskatchewan, Harold Chapman, a 93-year-old professor, historian, and writer, told us the history from the inside of his involvement... Read More
January 16, 2013 |
Once again I am sitting in The Beanery, a coffee shop about two steps from my apartment, with my roommate and friend Julia, and once again we are discussing what we identify as... Read More
January 15, 2013 | Sarah Ens
"Nowhere to lay his head..." We've been living lightly, moving lightly. Not that it's been a bad experience, but we've been lay our heads down in a variety of places over the last... Read More
January 8, 2013 |
Meet Kathy Moorhead Thiessen, of Winnipeg, Manitoba. While she may look like your normal mother and wife, this 52 year old from Hope Mennonite Church spends half of her year in... Read More
January 6, 2013 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
It was hard to know this Christmas how to hear the familiar story. Every year I look forward to advent, to hearing about Mary and Joseph and the new baby, to reflect again on what... Read More
January 5, 2013 |
Christmas is by now long over and I am, as always, sad about it. I love the candles, the cookies, the darkness complete and frozen outside the window, and the hymns, stuck in my... Read More
December 30, 2012 | Sarah Ens
This past November, Miriam Toews gave a keynote address at the International Festival of Authors in Toronto. In the address she discussed the idea of national literature, and,... Read More
December 23, 2012 | Sarah Ens
Come the new year I will be continueing a column called 'Peacebuilder Profiles', where we will hear the stories of Mennonite peacebuilders in our communities. A number of weeks... Read More
December 20, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
At this point in the Mennonite Church, the miracle of God’s son being born into this world. can be considered a common conversation. It is one of the major stories of hope that we... Read More
December 19, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Over the last year or so, I've appreciated the paintings, poetry, and musings of Jan Richardson on her blog, . Recently, one post caught my attention, "... Read More
December 18, 2012 |
Chris Koelle: Religious Art Reborn Web: & Bio Chris Koelle is an artist and illustrator living in Greenville, South Carolina... Read More
November 25, 2012 | Max Kennel
Pastor Ishiya met us at Fudoin station and we drove the ten minutes up the hills, through the back streets, until we arrived at a traditional Japanese house - Hiroshima Mennonite... Read More
November 21, 2012 |
worship is about honest expression Part of having a dynamic faith involves a cultivating a habit of looking for God in every place. It means looking for God in how we worship in... Read More
November 19, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Let me introduce you to today’s spotlight peacebuilder . Every night he heads out to the streets of Osborne Village in Winnipeg, Manitoba, takes out his guitar, lights a candle,... Read More
November 8, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
We sat in a large circle in the lounge, some sitting straight with legs crossed, others stretched out on the carpeted floor. One by one we passed the "talking piece" and we... Read More
October 30, 2012 |
There are moments in my study of theology, especially at the current stage, when I lapse into silence, feeling that the complexity and mystery of God render our attempts to... Read More
October 27, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Looking back, it was one of the most energizing and renewing courses that I've taught so far. The combination of my co-facilitator, the participants, and the content was great,... Read More
October 26, 2012 |
A blog reader recently sent me an email asking if I would write about my experiences with arts in the church (Thanks Michael Turman). Being an artist in many ways, I thought it... Read More
October 18, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
“Swing your partner ‘round and ‘round” used to be a predictable slogan, conjuring up images of people square dancing in a barn to jigs and reels, but this is no longer true. Gone... Read More
October 10, 2012 | Max Kennel
Well, it’s fall, or as it’s known in my psyche: school season. By now, school, university, and Sunday School are well underway in all their educational glory (as in this photo,... Read More
October 9, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Mr. Koh's story powerfully demonstrates the complexity of forgiveness. On Oct 9, his house was broken into and his mother, wife, and son were brutally murdered. Later, the person... Read More
October 9, 2012 |
Most of us had never heard of the tiny island off the coast near Hiroshima called Okonoshima . In fact, we discovered, it was also erased from many maps on purpose. Yet in this... Read More
October 9, 2012 |
As I gather my garden harvest, I can only marvel at the bounty of all that grows. My shelves are filled with things canned and delicious. It seems as though every time I visit a... Read More
October 3, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Many churches are exploring the what 'formation' means in their life and work. At First Mennonite Church in Winnipeg we are doing the same. Here is a sermon I preached on the... Read More
September 25, 2012 |
What does it mean to think of the Bible as our story, or to think of faith as entering into God’s story? In Adult Ed. at my church, we’re currently looking at the Bible studies... Read More
September 23, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
The following is an outline of a piece that I would someday like to write. Beginning with the conviction that robust concrete practices require theoretical backing, the... Read More
September 19, 2012 | Max Kennel
For those of you who may know me, you know that my roots are pure prairies --- something I am proud of. While I do struggle with aspects, one thing I can always count on is the... Read More
September 18, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
If you’ve been reading my blog since last year, you might remember my first article on technology, which was part interview, part opinion piece. I thought I’d revisit the topic... Read More
September 17, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
NARPI stands for Northeast Asia Regional Peacebuilding Institute and is run through collaboration among several organizations across South Korea, Japan, and China. Their goal is... Read More
September 7, 2012 |
It took two weeks and some intense times together, but by the second "cultural night" of NARPI (Northeast Asia Regional Peacebuilding Institute), groups were no longer isolated by... Read More
September 6, 2012 |
My friend once wrote me an email, saying that she had been praying for me. While she had been praying for me, she saw a vision, and wrote to share it with me She saw a picture of... Read More
September 3, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Since we’re getting near the end of wedding season (which has been far less hectic for me this year – I was only invited to one wedding!), I thought I’d bring up this topic again... Read More
August 31, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I believe that one of the great joys in life is meeting strangers. Sometimes strangers are kindred spirits. Sometimes strangers are a window from a world you don’t understand, but... Read More
August 30, 2012 | Brandi Friesen Thorpe
Akido is sometimes described as a nonviolent martial art . At the Northeast Asia Regional Peacebuilding Institute in Hiroshima, Japan, I had the privilege of learning a bit from a... Read More
August 24, 2012 |
It's hard to hear the stories. The images are sickening. My imagination cannot grasp the kind of suffering the people of Hiroshima endured and even survived. My faith in humanity... Read More
August 17, 2012 |
I’ve been impressed with the campaign begun earlier this summer by several Canadian Mennonite University and Canadian School of Peacebuilding students in response to the... Read More
August 16, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
While studying in Harrisonburg, Virginia, I was fortunate to have work on campus. What I didn't realize when taking the job that I would have an ethical dilemma. If I received a... Read More
August 16, 2012 |
While living in the United States, I thought a lot about J. Nelson Kraybill's " Apocalypse and Allegiance: Worship, Politics, and Devotion in the Book of Revelation " and I've... Read More
August 14, 2012 |
Mountaintop removal. Tar sands. Mass destruction of earth and creation for sake of getting at the coal and oil underground. While there are inevitably complexities for each... Read More
August 5, 2012 |
Since I no longer live in one of the Mennonite “centres” like Winnipeg and Waterloo, I find myself sometimes feeling cut off from the larger Mennonite church. Earlier this month,... Read More
July 28, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
A statement made by Mennonite Church Manitoba’s Executive Director Ken Warkentin concluding a recent Canadian Mennonite piece “ We’re Sorry ” caught me off guard. In it he took,... Read More
July 27, 2012 |
As someone in my late 20s, I don’t really consider myself a “young adult” anymore, yet I keep encountering that ambiguous label. In a recent CBC Doc Zone documentary about young... Read More
July 20, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I wanted to share something in my sermon this Sunday that reflected my experience at Assembly 2012. I decided to reflect on the two passages that conclude Being a Faithful Church... Read More
July 20, 2012 |
The time has come to move again . We were in Harrisonburg, Virginia longer than I thought we would be, and it's been good. But the end always comes and somehow we say goodbye... Read More
July 20, 2012 |
Having reviewed two albums from talented American Christian groups I feel it is high time I move North of the border. Canada has a number of accomplished and excellent Christian... Read More
June 30, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
The next album under review comes from one of the most popular Christian groups of the last decade. Though they recently played their last show together as a group, the David... Read More
June 30, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
I’ve listened to quite a few sermons in my lifetime, and have crafted and preached a dozen or so myself, too. They’re usually the part of worship that I most look forward to: they... Read More
June 28, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Lately, I’ve been thinking about how the ideas of service and hospitality play out in our society – namely, in the so-called “service” or “hospitality industry” of restaurants,... Read More
June 15, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
"The Wounded Heart of God: The Asian Concept of Han and the Christian Doctrine of Sin" by Andrew Sung Park is not light bedtime reading. Yet, I think this is one of the most... Read More
June 12, 2012 |
Now that I've finished my master's in Education and a certificate in Peacebuilding from a Mennonite university, I suppose I should know something about Anabaptist education. In... Read More
June 9, 2012 |
I’ll admit it – I am a huge choir nerd. I absolutely love choir concerts and choral music in general. I don’t know how I came to be this way. I mean, I have always loved a large... Read More
May 31, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
He poured the bowl full of water, then held it out, balanced on his palm, fingers angled down and away from the thick bronze base. Slowly, he moved the wooden mallet around the... Read More
May 31, 2012 |
In my last post I was pushing towards more care in how we articulate possible notions of faithfulness tied up in practices intimately linked with having a social awareness and... Read More
May 24, 2012 |
I was walking through my university campus a few weeks ago, when I noticed something rather chilling. The campus is littered with war memorials, honouring the dead Canadian... Read More
May 22, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
In my last post, entitled “In Defense of Christian Contemporary Music” I gave my opinion and perspective on Christian pop, rock and worship music. I also promised to review... Read More
May 18, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
A number of blogs that I follow push back (most recently here ) pretty hard against a type of personal activism that ends up creating a structure a moral evaluation with no sense... Read More
May 16, 2012 |
I’ve been getting the feeling lately that we’re not asking ourselves this question very often, if at all. In our society, Christianity and “family values” are understood as... Read More
May 9, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I have been a walker for years now. I remember it beginning in high school. Whenever I needed time to think I would walk. They need not be long walks, though some went on for... Read More
April 30, 2012 | Adam Klassen
I have a confession; my contemporary Christian music library is huge. Christian pop, rock and worship can all be found in abundance in our apartment. Why is it a confession for a... Read More
April 27, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
I have never quite known what to do with Earth Day. “Ever” is perhaps a bit of a strong word. Up until six or seven years ago I did not even know it existed. True, the United... Read More
April 24, 2012 | Adam Klassen
I have never quite known what to do with Earth Day. “Ever” is perhaps a bit of a strong word. Up until six or seven years ago I did not even know it existed. True, the United... Read More
April 24, 2012 | Adam Klassen
I’ve mentioned before that I enjoy collaging (collage-ing?), which I guess makes me an amateur collageur (collage-ist?). Anyway, I like to cut up colourful papers and glue them... Read More
April 20, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
“We look for the resurrection of the dead.” (Nicene Creed) “It was always the broken hand we learned to lean on after all.” (Sam Beam, Iron and Wine, “Innocent Bones”) In the past... Read More
April 13, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Arianna Huffington claims that a big problem for women (and men, although she's focused especially on women) is that we don't get enough sleep. She even offered a challenge in... Read More
April 12, 2012 |
I once heard a story about the influential biblical scholar Brevard Childs. A student asked him how to become a better interpreter of the Bible. Childs's response, as it was told... Read More
April 10, 2012 |
Easter this year felt special. I guess it does every year, but I thought a lot this Lent and Easter season about the meaning of all of this in a way that I haven't before. In our... Read More
April 9, 2012 |
Two women, working as "maids" in 1960's segregated southern United States, cross racial lines to take a risk in telling their stories to an eager young writer. Watching " The Help... Read More
April 4, 2012 |
Our newborn King lies in a manger bed Swaddled in clothes, by his mother lain, Soon to wear a crown of thorns upon his head. A jealous king desired to see him dead, Command that... Read More
April 1, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
These days, you might see more people wearing hooded sweatshirts than normal. You might see more people eating Skittles than normal. If you notice this, don't feel intimidated. If... Read More
March 30, 2012 |
A book study I am a part of is reading James Bryan Smith’s 'The Good and Beautiful Community.' In a chapter entitled 'the serving community' Smith all too quickly mentions a... Read More
March 30, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
"When you being to see nature as a mentor rather than a warehouse, your emotions to the rest of the natural world become one of respect." This quote comes from a unique... Read More
March 27, 2012 |
What does the cross mean to you (if it means anything)? I’ve heard this question asked a few times recently, and have been surprised at some of the answers. For some, you see, the... Read More
March 23, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I have come to expect that the people I invite over to my house may feel uncomfortable doing so. This is not surprising as even until recently my street in particular has made it... Read More
March 13, 2012 |
One of the privileges of doing a Ph.D. is that you get plenty of time (I’m talking a decade) to think about the meaning of work. In our society, it seems, work is synonymous with... Read More
March 8, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I am not entirely sure how my recent piece in CM will be received with respect to church authority. The basic point of the column was draw attention to both the conflicting or... Read More
March 1, 2012 |
Perhaps this is a little late for the Canadian context, as most (all?) of the occupy settlements in this country have been removed. But I thought I would share a poem I wrote... Read More
February 29, 2012 | Adam Klassen
This past weekend I attended the MCM Leadership Seminar with other pastor’s in our province. Willard Metzger was our speaker and in his opening session he recapped some Anabaptist... Read More
February 28, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s been giving a lot of thought to questions about sexuality since the Mennonite Church Canada Assembly last summer, where it was decided that the... Read More
February 21, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
“Clinical depression is not just unhappiness, it’s a mood disorder, but more than half of us still believe it is a weakness not a sickness.” - Michael Landsberg in Darkness and... Read More
February 20, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
In the house that I am living in we have been trying to find times where we can worship together. When this group of people came together we were looking to be more than roommates... Read More
February 20, 2012 | Adam Klassen
It's been a while since I've shown up on the CM blog, and I apologize for that. Life has been busy, and for a while it felt like I was posting too frequently. When I was a kid, I... Read More
February 14, 2012 |

'There’s a certain openness that’s necessary for a relationship to develop,' Susie Guenther Loewen writes.

For this month, it being Valentine’s Day and all, I’d like to focus on sexuality – and no, this isn’t just a cheap gimmick to try to increase my readership! The truth is, the... Read More
February 8, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
For the last two weeks, Terrell and I have been glued to the TV watching the Australian Open. We love tennis, and especially like to watch newbie Milos Raonic setting records as... Read More
January 31, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
I am often jealous of people who believe they know exactly what the Bible says about a certain topic. They see the Bible’s words as rigid truth and that is the end of discussion... Read More
January 31, 2012 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
*Note: This is adapted from a sermon I preached at Hope Mennonite Church on January 22, 2012. It is based on the hymn text Strong Son of God, immortal Love, which can be found... Read More
January 30, 2012 | Adam Klassen
*Note: This is adapted from a sermon I preached at Hope Mennonite Church on January 22, 2012. It is based on the hymn text Strong Son of God, immortal Love, which can be found... Read More
January 26, 2012 | Adam Klassen
Attending an ecumenical theological school has taught me a lot about how different Christian denominations view the Bible, since Christians, along with Muslims and Jews, are known... Read More
January 17, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Today I read a post from the Globe and Mail highlighted by Dan Dyck on the MC Canada facebook page about a retired teacher and church member who decided to start helping people... Read More
January 8, 2012 |
A new year begins. It's such an exciting and fun time of the year. So many expectations, plan, and ideas for how the year will go. It always ends up completely different. Sure... Read More
January 7, 2012 |
During our trip to Canada for the Christmas break, I was surprised how many times I heard the same story. It goes something like this: They are trying to get us not to say "Merry... Read More
January 6, 2012 |
From what I know about pastoral ministry, I think I can honestly say that it’s one of the most challenging jobs out there. In our denomination, where the emphasis is on... Read More
January 6, 2012 | Susie Guenther Loewen
It was the end of the work day and I had been forced into taking the bus. A nicely spectacular winter related wipe out had incapacitated my bicycle, leaving me with a strained... Read More
January 1, 2012 | Adam Klassen
If you’re looking for conversation starters this week, try asking people if they’re making any New Year’s resolutions. People will generally respond in a few different ways. The... Read More
December 31, 2011 |
The Christmas season has officially come and gone and if you are like me you likely spent much time eating, shopping, giving or receiving, visiting, singing and worshipping. You... Read More
December 30, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
A highlight of the worship on the fourth Sunday of Advent for me was the children's story. Well, actually, after the children's story when the storyteller asked four of the... Read More
December 24, 2011 |
Sitting with the sadness. The third advent's theme was "Sadness Changes to Gladness." The part that is so hard to swallow, though, is that "changing to gladness" doesn't... Read More
December 24, 2011 |
Recently I was reading an excerpt from Tim Loder’s prayer book 'Guerrillas of Grace.' Oh Lord, deepen my wounds into wisdom; shape my weaknesses into compassion; gentle my envy... Read More
December 22, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
I'm a reader. I've always been a reader. From as far back as I can remember I read a lot of books and anything I can get my hands on. It's no surprise, then, that probably the... Read More
December 19, 2011 |
At this time of year, we focus on Jesus’ birth, on the event of God becoming incarnate and enfleshed as a tiny baby. One of the main characters in this story is of course Mary,... Read More
December 17, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I did not like Bob Dylan the first time I heard him. Or the second. Or the third. What I heard when I listened to Dylan was simplistic chord structures, obvious social or... Read More
December 13, 2011 | Adam Klassen
Second Advent comes. We wait. We ponder the wilderness. Are we driven to this wilderness, chased by the attackers of fear, wrong decision, and unknown future? Or are we called to... Read More
December 5, 2011 |
I wrote this post about community long before I heard the research. But now it's neurologically true - community makes things easier. During the attachment conference at Eastern... Read More
December 4, 2011 |
I’m a third-generation thrift shopper. It’s one of my favourite things to do on a day off – just to walk over to the thrift store, and take a look at what they’ve got this time (... Read More
December 2, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I had an interesting cultural experience last week. Visiting friends for the U.S . thanksgiving holiday, we were invited to accompany them on a late night / early morning shopping... Read More
November 29, 2011 |
Whenever I don’t feel like doing a chore that I need to do, music has always helped me accomplish the task. In Jr. High, I LOVED cleaning my room, because I would put on my... Read More
November 28, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
With the first Sunday of advent come the simple little changes that I have come to make to mark this season as set apart. Placing candles on the table, shifting devotionals from... Read More
November 27, 2011 |
In our home, we discovered a new favourite fusion dish. In a surprisingly tasty combination,we ate Pflinzen and Chapjae together. Pflinzen is a food from the Russian Mennonite... Read More
November 27, 2011 |
How much do I know? Not very much, I suspect. While I was getting my B.A. I often felt that I was only learning enough to know how much I do not know. For every text I could point... Read More
November 23, 2011 | Adam Klassen
In his book entitled Prayer, Phillip Yancey compares the way we come to the Lord in prayer to the way in which toddlers approach their parents. Yancey says that if we were to ask... Read More
November 17, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
As someone who’s been a university student for almost a decade, I may not be an authority on money (considering that I’ve never really had any), or the economy more generally. But... Read More
November 15, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I remember once thinking that it would be fantastic if we could travel faster than the speed of light. If we could do that, we could theoretically go back in time. I wondered... Read More
November 14, 2011 |
Today during a field trip with the Intensive English Program at Eastern Mennonite University, the staff had some miscommunication. The resulting disorganization didn't cause any... Read More
November 3, 2011 |
I do not know if this story is true, though it may be. And it does not matter if it is. For the one who told it to me it is true, that I do believe. Frank was a frightening man to... Read More
November 1, 2011 | Adam Klassen
Having spent most of my life in Winnipeg, a city of about 750 thousand which apparently has as prolific an arts scene as a city of several million people, I’ve developed a great... Read More
October 31, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Throughout all these centuries, El Shaddai dropped hints about who was coming. “There is a king,” he said, “That will reign forever in my kingdom.” And who else to reign as El... Read More
October 24, 2011 |
I can understand how the underground can inspire a song. Or this Winnipeg underground at least. Suites attempt to pass by the filthy without brushing them with their delicate... Read More
October 23, 2011 | Adam Klassen
(I wrote this as a newsletter article for church. This imagery continues to stick with me and mean a lot to me today.) Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of... Read More
October 21, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
I visited Occupy Winnipeg ( FB ) today ( a global movement that spread out from Occupy Wall St ). With nights already dipping below freezing I had one initial question on my mind... Read More
October 20, 2011 |
Is it just me, or are women under a lot of pressure in our society these days? In my last article, I talked about some of the current issues surrounding masculinity, so this time... Read More
October 18, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
The October 3rd print edition of the Canadian Mennonite contans two articles related to the return of professional hockey to the city of Winnipeg. They can be read here and here... Read More
October 18, 2011 |
Do you think Tina Fey is funny? How about the recent hit movie Bridesmaids, which was written by women, for women and has many "funny" women in it's cast? Well if you do, then... Read More
October 12, 2011 |
One of my favourite things about the popular T.V. show Mad Men is its fascinating portrayal of how gender was understood in the 1960s. For the most part, the ideal men’s and women... Read More
October 5, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Another realization on the walk of faith: We all have that annoying friend. Not the one that whines too much or the one that cancels plans last minute, but the one who is annoying... Read More
September 30, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
Since the 1960s, Mennonite novels and poetry have graced the Canadian literary scene. Writers such as Rudy Wiebe, Miriam Toews, Sarah Klassen, and Patrick Friesen, to name just a... Read More
September 20, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
El Shaddai’s land is coming, and the people are moving that way. They enter the land, El Shaddai making it absolutely clear that it wasn’t through their power but through his. But... Read More
September 19, 2011 |
Nothing, in my mind, can be healthier for a youth group than a church that cares about them and wants to know them. The first part is the easier one. Most churches care about... Read More
September 16, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
I bought 2666 by Roberto Bolano in the discount bin at McNally Robinson based almost solely on the cover. I read the inside jacket to be sure that this was something I wanted to... Read More
September 11, 2011 | Adam Klassen
This is a good year to be a Bible collector. The New International Version has been updated re-released and the Contemporary English Bible will soon be available as well. For... Read More
September 6, 2011 |
If you’re reading this blog, the chances are pretty good that you or someone you know attended Canadian Mennonite University or another Mennonite post-secondary institution. My... Read More
September 6, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
In August I took a train trip from Manitoba to B.C. Here are some of my thoughts during and about that trip. I ride the rails of my grandfather and a generation of the unemployed... Read More
September 5, 2011 | Adam Klassen
Early last week, NDP leader Jack Layton passed away after a courageous battle against cancer. We were in Ontario, visiting my in laws, and after brunch on the deck my father-in-... Read More
September 1, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
Earlier this month, I had the chance to attend a graduate student conference at Conrad Grebel College, hosted by the Toronto Mennonite Theological Centre (the “Mennonite club” of... Read More
August 30, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
El Shaddai repeats an older command to fill the earth, to spread out. But it’s like the humans have no ears – again they come together in direct obedience to El Shaddai’s command... Read More
August 29, 2011 |
My life is about to change in what I hope is a drastic way. I am about to move into a house with five other people. This in and of itself is not a new thing in my life, as I have... Read More
August 25, 2011 | Adam Klassen
What would you say if I told you that beauty is a peace issue? It seems bizarre, I know, but I’ll try to explain how I got to this point. If one reflects on the extremes to which... Read More
August 22, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
It has been a few weeks since twenty of our church’s youth and young adults headed three hours north to a place called Matheson Island, but the memories are still fresh in my mind... Read More
August 12, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
In her 1975 book, New Woman/New Earth , theologian Rosemary Radford Ruether wrote, “The ecological factor will be built into consumer products in some trivial way and then sold... Read More
August 12, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
What’s Behind the Label? Food. It’s what sustains us, nurtures us, and gives us life. It gives us strength, energy, and for some, the will to live another day. But where does this... Read More
August 4, 2011 | Jessica Buhler
*Note: The majority of this is an excerpt from a sermon I preached at Hillside Community Church in Morden, MB on the Sunday of July 31, 2011, though the end is different... Read More
August 1, 2011 | Adam Klassen
From my perch in the cement gazebo in Nazinga, the early morning sun shines on my face. I crunch my granola and sip my Lipton tea happily, waiting patiently for the arrival of the... Read More
July 29, 2011 | Jessica Buhler
I have been thinking about this for a long time, and the recent terrorist attack in Norway and militia banning the WFP in Somalia has finally pushed me over the edge. It’s time to... Read More
July 29, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
There were two days last May when the same baby made the cover of my local newspaper, The Toronto Star (May 21st and 25th, 2011). The story was a provocative one which has since... Read More
July 23, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
Part 2... The story progresses.Read More
July 23, 2011 |
"By embracing what they had most wanted to avoid they gained what their hearts yearned for" - Yearning for Home The title captured my attention first. Wandering through the stacks... Read More
July 21, 2011 |
I am fairly certain we were not supposed to see it, and I am even less sure I'm supposed to talk about it. But I feel it is a story that needs to be shared, so share it I will. In... Read More
July 18, 2011 | Adam Klassen
Part 1 There are three requirements for “heaven,” or “perfection,” as we understand it: God’s people, in God’s place, underRead More
July 17, 2011 |
As a point of clarification I wrote this post before I realized that fellow CM blogger Paul Loewen is the son of Arvid Loewen (see below post ). So I welcome any clarifications... Read More
July 15, 2011 |
“What we need is a sign, people don’t even know we exist.” That was a sentiment stressed by several of our church members at a recent visioning meeting. Our church is going... Read More
July 15, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
Biking 20 out of every 24 hours, sleeping only 2 hours. What does it take to get across the country in record time? My dad's an ultra-marathon cyclist. In this sport, everything... Read More
July 11, 2011 |
As we all know, technology has become increasingly common in our everyday lives: many of us spend many hours a day in front of a computer, or carry a phone or other device... Read More
July 8, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
I spend much of my time in the company of a beautiful man. Dark flawless skin, friendly eyes, gentle composure. Not only do I think he is beautiful, but on several occasions he... Read More
June 30, 2011 | Jessica Buhler
Once again we as Canadians are able to send and receive mail by regular post and the story of this labour dispute will likely fade from our newspaper pages. For me, this is... Read More
June 30, 2011 |
As a youth pastor (and young adult), I am constantly trying to keep up with today’s ever changing pop culture, as the youth in our youth group are totally immersed in it. Knowing... Read More
June 30, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
The old joke goes: Mennonites don't have sex because it might lead to dancing. I recently was at a birthday party for some friends of mine, held at a club. This brought to mind an... Read More
June 28, 2011 | Adam Klassen
Well, it’s begun: wedding season is upon us. I think I’ve received invitations to seven weddings happening this summer. Maybe because of all these weddings, as well as all the... Read More
June 15, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
The "new" science of love, she calls it. Well, I wouldn't say it's so new, except in perhaps in western scientific knowledge. There's nothing much new that she said. It's just... Read More
June 15, 2011 |
It seems appropriate for my first post to be one of introduction. This way you can get a bit of a sense where I am coming from; of who I am and what I plan to do with this space... Read More
June 14, 2011 | Adam Klassen
I recently made a pact with myself to stop scanning all readers’ comments to online articles. Why? Simply because they always have a way of making me angry. When I read post-game... Read More
June 13, 2011 | Terrell and Janna Wiebe
This spring’s federal election rekindled my interest in Canadian politics after I’d experienced disillusionment with the whole process. Several elections changed nothing and the... Read More
June 13, 2011 | Susie Guenther Loewen
On Feb. 12, 2008, an informal national recruitment day, 30,400 people joined or were forced into the Colombian armed forces. That is 2,533 per hour. In Colombia, it is mandatory... Read More
June 13, 2011 | Jessica Buhler
I hate feeling at the mercy of other specialists. I am not thinking so much about my occasional visit to the doctor’s office. I am thinking particularly of the specialists who... Read More
June 7, 2011 |
Sometimes it's not the big things that shake me as much as the little things. The daily worries of house, car, money, food, clothes, family and community relationships. These are... Read More
June 3, 2011 |
My wife and I had a baby recently. That is the biggest reason I haven't been on this site to blog lately. Now that it's been a month since his birth, we have to get back to... Read More
June 3, 2011 |
I agree that narrative is a major part of human reality. As Paul Loewen said here , the stories we tell make up our worlds. This can be "our" story which shapes our identity and... Read More
May 31, 2011 |
About ten years back I was the caretaker of an apartment block that a church had renovated to provide low-rent stable apartments in Winnipeg's West End. The visionary and work-... Read More
May 26, 2011 |
Sometimes I think I need to slow down. What do I mean by this? I mean that life goes very quickly. We rush from one thing to the next, glancing at our watches and depending on the... Read More
May 21, 2011 |
Winnipeg experienced its tenth homicide last week. The shooting took place around the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation parking lot at Portage and Young. We were likely just... Read More
May 11, 2011 |
How resilient are people? Do we really fall apart in every situation of grief? How is it that we can recover from horrendous trauma to life normal lives again? In his book The... Read More
May 9, 2011 |
When I went downstairs near the beginning of In-House (our local drop-in) to get the dodgeballs, two young boys were sitting on the stairs outside the washrooms, eating watermelon... Read More
May 5, 2011 |
Thinking about trauma and how it impacts our lives, I begin to see it everywhere. Is everything a story of something whole becoming broken, and seeking to become whole again? Is... Read More
April 26, 2011 |
I just read through my "morning pages," looking for nuggets to blog about and ripping out pages to shred. "Morning pages" come from a class I took last year. It focused on "... Read More
April 18, 2011 |
A while ago I was standing in the bookstore, staring at the magazine rack and found a few publications that dealt with the subject of writing. As I flipped through the articles on... Read More
April 15, 2011 |
Yesterday evening I asked the Junior Youth to picture a world in which God's one and only characteristic was love. "Chaos," "Hectic," "Covered in foam" were some of the answers... Read More
April 13, 2011 |
A couple who had been a part of our church community in the past and who had moved to Ohio to become part of an intentional community, returned for a visit and shared about their... Read More
April 2, 2011 |
A few weeks ago in the first Sunday of Lent I challenged our congregation to fast from the fruits of privilege. One minor act on my part has been to ride the bus as often as... Read More
April 1, 2011 |
Ted Schwartz gave a workshop about the spirit in the performing arts. Despite the sleepy time-slot, immediately after lunch, soon everyone in the audience had forgotten their... Read More
March 30, 2011 |
If you're reading this article on this page, then you are probably far too pious to put five dollars into a pot and fill out an NCAA March Madness bracket. I play so cautiously... Read More
March 25, 2011 |
This year I made a resolution to work through all of Kierkegaard’s writings . I am now about halfway through his Eighteen Upbuilding Discourses and have come across his... Read More
March 17, 2011 |
Every year around this time, a lot of Mennonites across Canada do something very un-Mennonite, they give something up for Lent. The idea behind the modern Lenten fast, where... Read More
March 16, 2011 |
I touched on it last week - stories shape who we are. What do I mean by this? Nowhere do I find it more prevalent than in teenage society today. It used to be that pride was a... Read More
March 10, 2011 |
Sometimes I think we don't give stories enough credit. I, for one, love stories. But by the time the public education system has had its way, people lose their imagination. And... Read More
March 4, 2011 |
I recently had a conversation with an atheist that did not fit the narrow conception I had of how that should have gone. It was a helpful and constructive experience. In any event... Read More
March 4, 2011 |
Recently we had a whole weekend of hockey here in Calgary. I attended three of the four games. An AHL game indoors on Friday, a game with NHL alumni outdoors on Saturday afternoon... Read More
March 2, 2011 |
Special Training with Nate Yoder consisted of a fascinating walk through a history of Mennonites in the U.S. and their relationship with Pentecostalism. It explained a lot. For... Read More
February 28, 2011 |
I have always been a little uneasy with Jesus’ parable of ‘planning’ (Luke 14:28-31). Jesus asks whether the people would not plan ahead of time to make sure they had sufficient... Read More
February 26, 2011 |
I have never been so excited to get a pair of shoes. Let me tell you, I'm not the kind of person to care about clothing. To me, clothing is always functional. But I gotta tell you... Read More
February 23, 2011 |
The chapel was filled with faces, many of them known to each other, younger, older, in between, all excited , anticipating the next few days . We began in worship. The room was... Read More
February 21, 2011 |
Three times in one day, I was reminded of the need to listen. Worship in the morning focused on listening for God's voice, trying to calm our own voices and chattering to hear... Read More
February 16, 2011 |
Yesterday I swung by the University of Winnipeg to pick up a book. On my way back to the car I noticed a flash of colour standing out against the dirty white snow on the curb... Read More
February 9, 2011 |
In grade 7 I met a particularly tall kid whose nickname was 'Moose.' One day I asked one of the guys that went to the same junior elementary school as him when this nickname came... Read More
February 7, 2011 |
I can't tell you much about the experience. I signed a paper swearing me to secrecy, and allowing them to use anything I said. Maybe it's one of the most top secret organizations... Read More
February 7, 2011 |
This past Sunday I preached on Ephesians 4:4-16. I wanted to draw attention to two themes in the book. First is the abundance of language about abundance. Believers are filled... Read More
February 1, 2011 |
To start off the school year, I decided to make the first week a personal prayer week. Although I usually prefer this kind of commitment together with others, like Will's efforts... Read More
January 31, 2011 |
In the book Compassion: A Reflection on the Christian Life , Henri Nouwen, with co-authors Donald P. McNeill and Douglas A. Morrison, describe the current society's obsession with... Read More
January 26, 2011 |
I suppose I need to apologize for my relatively long absence from blogging. Things have been busy around the Loewen household. Last Monday we welcomed Jaden Timothy into our... Read More
January 24, 2011 |
After a refreshing and relaxing Christmas holiday in Canada, my spouse and I have returned to Harrisonburg, VA to continue our studies at Eastern Mennonite University. While going... Read More
January 17, 2011 |
I am detecting a consistent trend in my preaching. I am targeting the individual . This comes in part from my own experience and formation in existentialism but also in my... Read More
January 12, 2011 |
Reflecting on international students and culture the other day, a colleague commented on how a group of students who had been struggling in classes refused to blame anyone for... Read More
January 10, 2011 |
Top 5 Books of 2010 Worthy of Mention: Faith Begins at Home - Mark Holmen Blood of Heaven - Bill Myers 5. Have a Little Faith - Mitch Albom I have always enjoyed Mitch Albom's... Read More
January 4, 2011 |
Last summer, we were camping at Crabtree Falls in North Carolina. It was a new experience for us. We'd been through the state before, but had never spent a night and had never... Read More
January 4, 2011 |
I remember the first time I heard of the idea of reading the Bible all the way through. It seemed weird that this book I had only read verses or short stories from could be read... Read More
December 30, 2010 |
Recently, I've been asked a lot of questions about "things" in Korea. It's hard to know what to think about the recent violence on the peninsula from the English and Korean media... Read More
December 27, 2010 |
I have never gone shopping on Boxing Day. I'm not entirely sure why. Perhaps in some families it is tradition. In mine it wasn't, and I never showed any interested myself. Last... Read More
December 27, 2010 |
So as the end of the year approaches it seems that I will successfully live out my promise not to eat at McDonald's this year. The odds were against me from the very beginning... Read More
December 21, 2010 |
Ronald E. Osborn. Anarchy and Apocalypse: Essays on Faith Violence, and Theodicy (Cascade Books, 2010). Osborn’s short collection of essays is one of the more eclectic... Read More
December 17, 2010 |
Throughout the history of email there have always been people who think every funny thing they read should immediately be forwarded on to their friends. While this habit can... Read More
December 14, 2010 |
Today I went caroling with a group of about twenty undergraduates at the local retirement home. It was fun to sing, many of the residents sang along, and there were many smiles... Read More
December 9, 2010 |
Christmas comes soon, doesn't it? I took a picture of my advent calendar yesterday with 8 windows open. There aren't that many days left until Christmas. Perhaps it's a part of... Read More
December 9, 2010 |
This weekend, the campus movie theatre showed “ Inception .” An entertaining story about technology allowing entry into another person’s dreams, the film strangely reminded me of... Read More
December 8, 2010 |
I have to admit I feel little bad about my comments on Paul's most recent post below. He offered a light hearted reflection on how we can complain about 'problems' most people... Read More
December 3, 2010 |
Romans 13 has long been a thorn in my Anabaptist side. John Howard Yoder of course went a long way in clarifying the distinction between being subject to those in authority and... Read More
December 2, 2010 |
I love snow - always have. When Jeanette and I purchased our house last May, we knew it had a large driveway. But it wasn't so much the size as it was the layout. It is directly... Read More
November 30, 2010 |
Nathan R. Kerr, Christ, History and Apocalyptic: The Politics of Christian Mission (Cascade, 2008) While the release date of Nate Kerr’s first work is barely over a year old I... Read More
November 30, 2010 |
" So that is how to create a single story, show a people as one thing, as only one thing, over and over again, and that is what they become. " - Chimamanda Adichie In " The Danger... Read More
November 29, 2010 |
In 9th grade I took an art class, mostly to fulfill my Arts requirement. It turns out I could have waited until the 11th grade when I took Drama, which would have given me the... Read More
November 25, 2010 |
As part of the annual Augsburger Lecture Series at Eastern Mennonite Seminary, Ched Myers and Elaine Enns spoke on " The Personal and Political Dimensions of Conversion:... Read More
November 24, 2010 |
My wife and I recently purchased our first home. The house is located in a neighbourhood of Winnipeg in which I have spent the vast majority of my adult Manitoba life. Moving back... Read More
November 16, 2010 |
I'm usually not one for a ton of sentimentality, but bear with me a little. Many people like to complain about where they live, whether it be because of rain, cold, snow, heat, or... Read More
November 13, 2010 |
It is probably clear from my last post that I don't have a tonne of respect for the theology of Franklin Graham. While I probably agree with him on most points of Christianity, I... Read More
November 2, 2010 |
It seems that Money is an interesting topic. Perhaps we could go on forever on this subject. David mentioned in his previous post about a Money Mart moving into his neighborhood... Read More
November 1, 2010 |
I have been reading a very illuminating work by Franco Berardi entitled The Soul at Work: From Alienation to Autonomy . The title will be somewhat misleading for a Christian... Read More
October 28, 2010 |
Since Winnipeg has experienced (until now) an exceptionally warm October (still cracking double digits!) I have tended to wander a little outside during my lunch break. Yesterday... Read More
October 28, 2010 |
Should a church parking lot be full of $50,000 cars? Someone once said that it was wrong for Christians to own vehicles of that value. On the one hand, I don't own a $50,000 car... Read More
October 27, 2010 |
Leaf blowers are everything that is wrong with this world. Let me back that statement up. Jeanette and I are spending our first Fall in a house. When we lived in our apartment, we... Read More
October 18, 2010 |
The first time I ever visited the Sky Dome, I mean Rogers Centre, it was for a Billy Graham crusade. I walked right onto the field, ran onto the bases, and then took a seat for... Read More
October 18, 2010 |
I'm trying to be less critical. Lately, I've noticed my tendency to critique everything. From the beginning. Often before I even have enough information to properly critique. I... Read More
October 6, 2010 |
I'm looking forward to the upcoming issue of the Canadian Mennonite where some attention will be given to the life and work of former Conrad Grebel University College professor A... Read More
September 23, 2010 |
Do we care too much about creation? To continue what I said last week, there are all kinds of good things that can separate us from God. It still is strange to me that Paul would... Read More
September 23, 2010 |
I first heard of Nel Noddings in a class on "Social and Ethical Issues in Education." Her comments on the ethics of care, that is, putting caring first in ethical decision-making... Read More
September 15, 2010 |
Life is a good thing. I don't think there's anyone who would argue that. In the beginning, God created life. In fact, given that there are plenty of potential times I probably... Read More
September 13, 2010 |
For anyone following U.S. media, it would seem that there is a divide between Christians and Muslims that has lead to violence in the past and will inevitably lead to more. This... Read More
September 10, 2010 |
Romans 8:38–39 pro­vides a list of all kinds of things. You’re prob­a­bly famil­iar with it. It goes some­thing along these lines, “Nei­ther A nor B, nei­ther C nor D, nei­ther E... Read More
September 6, 2010 |
At the cor­ner of St. James St and Portage Ave in Win­nipeg is a build­ing which has pro­vided the can­vas for some mas­sive murals for Win­nipeg Hydro. As I passed by the mural... Read More
September 5, 2010 |
After the sum­mer of peo­ple com­ing and going, hol­i­days, and uncer­tain sched­ules, we finally returned to wor­ship. Although it felt strange com­ing back up the hill after so... Read More
September 1, 2010 |
Do you know Bradley Manning? And no, he is not related to Preston. Some would argue he is a new American military hero. Some would argue he is a traitor. We have no idea how the... Read More
August 31, 2010 |
I’d like to con­tinue to add to last week’s post. There I made the point that, although we are cer­tainly using tech­nol­ogy more and more for com­mu­ni­ca­tion, human beings will... Read More
August 31, 2010 |
There’s some­thing about being in God’s cre­ation that seems to stretch time. I feel a sense of abun­dance and re-connection with the Cre­ator of all. Time taken in rest, away... Read More
August 30, 2010 |
Let’s face it, we all use tech­nol­ogy. The fact that we’re read­ing from oth­ers on a blog is evi­dence to that fact. Jeanette and I use email as our pri­mary com­mu­ni­ca­tion... Read More
August 22, 2010 |
I will be sub­mit­ting a shorter review for print but any­one inter­ested can read a longer engage­ment with a great new col­lec­tion put out by CMU Press, The Gift of Dif­fer­... Read More
August 10, 2010 |