1. Tom Yoder Neufeld says that teaching and learning are acts of faith, especially when it comes to sacred texts such as the Bible (page 6). What learning or teaching experiences have stretched or deepened your faith? Are there settings that are more effective than a traditional classroom? What factors encourage or hinder us from being eager to learn?
Clouds hang over the Haisla community of Kitamaat Village, just across Douglas Channel from the proposed site of the Northern Gateway supertanker terminal. (Photo by Will Braun)
I never expected that Enbridge—the Calgary-based pipeline company best known for its contentious Northern Gateway proposal and a nasty spill from one of its U.S. lines in 2010—would push its way so far into my life.
In my earliest recollection Jacob Janzen was 60-something. He was not the oldest person I knew and rather undistinguished. He came walking tiredly up the sidewalk to the house in his rubber boots and a kepi—the sort of hat factory workers wore in the 60s, not quite a ball cap, but billed with a pill-box sort of shape.
The following articles are from a presentation by Wendy and Phil Dyck at Rockway Mennonite Church several months ago.
After many hours of methodical and systematic doubting of all that he held certain, seventeenth-century French philosopher Rene Descartes came to an astounding conclusion: the only thing that he could know for certain, beyond any reasonable doubt, was that he was a thinking creature.
When I was little, I remember my dad explaining our relatives to us: “She’s my cousin, twice removed.” It’s an expression that talks about a relationship that is a bit more distant. Today I want to talk about our neighbours, once removed. Why is it easier to hurt people when they are removed from us? What does it mean to be a Christian when so many of our neighbours are once removed?
Church leaders pray for Steve Brnjas and Fanosie Legesse (kneeling) before they began their teaching tour in Ethiopia in May. (Photo courtesy of Fanosie Legesse)
Fanosie Legesse poses with the child hit by their car while travelling in Ethiopia. (Photo courtesy of Fanosie Legesse)
Wanda and Doug Roth Amstutz with (from left) Abigail, Sophia and Amani. (Photo courtesy of Doug Roth Amstutz)
(From left) Doug Roth Amstutz, Tewodros Beyene (MKC Church Chair), Kenna Dula (MKC General Secretary), Wanda Roth Amstutz. (Photo courtesy of Doug Roth Amstutz)
(From left) Yeshiareg Yohannes (MCC Ethiopia office administrator, secretary), Yeshiareg Yohannes (MCC Ethiopia office administrator, secretary), Solomon Teferi (MCC Ethiopia Assistant Program Manager), Don Peters (MCC Canada Executive Director), Mekonnen Dessalegne (Program Manager). (Photo courtesy of Doug Roth Amstutz)
As Fanosie Legesse and Steve Brnjas were driving through a small village in rural Ethiopia, their car slowed to pass through a narrow street when suddenly a boy darted into the car’s path, and was hit. His body flew and landed a few feet away. The driver stopped, though hesitantly, sensing there might be trouble. The passengers got out to see how they could help. It didn’t look good.
When a church is in need of a lead or associate pastor, do they nurture these characteristics in the youth and young adults in their congregation or search for ready-made pastors outside of their congregation? The trend among Mennonite churches is to search for pastors who are educated in seminary or at one of the many Mennonite schools in Canada and abroad.
Which is better for the church, a pastor with seminary training or a layperson groomed for the role and invited from the local context? While a seminary-trained pastor may be regarded as more professional, in some settings there are advantages to other models of leadership.