Features

The gospel of dandelions makes a lot of sense. In this gospel, a wild and stubborn counterculture thrives in a world of domesticated lawns. (Photo by D. Michael Hostetler)

I have a problem with dandelions. Late spring is high season for dandelions, when those bright-yellow blooms make their presence in yards and fields abundantly clear. Within a... Read More
June 3, 2020 | Feature | Kevin Derksen

‘. . . that God will open to us a door for the word, that we may declare the mystery of Christ . . .’ (Colossians 4:3) (Photo by Jane Grunau)

When Hymnal: A Worship Book came out in 1992, “What is This Place” was chosen to be the lead hymn in the collection. The first line describes the church building as “Only a house... Read More
May 20, 2020 | Feature | Doug Klassen

People coping with fear and anxiety swing back and forth between responses as the situation, and perceptions of it, change. We panic. We grasp for assurances and control. We deny. We try to understand. (photo © istock.com/wildpixel)

As the effects of COVID-19 grow, I am observing a variety of emotional reactions in myself and others. COVID-19 touches everyone’s life. If it isn’t personal illness or loss, we... Read More
May 6, 2020 | Feature | Lucia Eitzen

Bishop Luis Hernandez baptizes a member of a Brethren in Christ house church in El Cafetal, Cuba. (Photo by Jack Suderman)

Sixteen Anabaptist Christians from Canada and the United States came to Cuba from Jan. 12 to 16 to learn about the church there. I was one of them. Jack and Irene Suderman of... Read More
April 22, 2020 | Feature | Raylene Hinz-Penner

I have the growing conviction that the canon provides us not only roots, but also wings. Not only is it important to be ‘well-rooted’; it is equally important to be ‘well-winged.’ (Photo: © istock.com/ananaline)

For most of us, the biblical canon with its 66 “books” has always been a given, inherited from the past, our parents and churches. We have not concerned ourselves very much with... Read More
April 8, 2020 | Feature | John H. Neufeld

3d Rendering of the Corona Virus In Red Background - Microbiology And Virology Concept (Photo taken from istock.com/RomoloTavani)

Thursday, as I sat down to a board meeting for the Micah Mission, a restorative justice organization in Saskatoon, I got the news that the Juno Awards show was being cancelled in... Read More
March 25, 2020 | Feature | Josh Wallace

'Love’s as hard as nails,' C.S. Lewis wrote. 'Love is nails: / Blunt, thick, hammered through / The medial nerves of One / Who, having made us, knew / The thing He had done, / Seeing (what all that is) / Our cross, and His.' (Graphic by Betty Avery)

I could not have predicted the responses I got when I asked 15 Mennonite Church Canada pastors—all women—how they would explain the meaning of the cross and resurrection to a 12-... Read More
March 11, 2020 | Feature | Will Braun

Christian pilgrims wave palm branches as they enter the Lions’ Gate of the Old City of Jerusalem in the annual Palm Sunday procession, March 24, 2013. (Photo © istock.com/rrodrickbeller)

Soren Kierkegaard once famously said, “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” So often it’s only after we’ve lived through something that we can... Read More
February 26, 2020 | Feature | Anita Fast

photo © istock.com/alphaspirit

A year ago I asked my oldest daughter, who was in the middle of a master of physiotherapy program at the University of Manitoba, to help me figure out what was wrong with my left... Read More
February 12, 2020 | Feature | Doug Klassen

‘Vision of Cornelius the Centurion,’ by Gerbrand van den Eeckhout (1621-1674). In the collection of the Walters Art Museum. (wikimedia commons photo (public domain))

The Book of Acts is the record of what happened to Jesus’ followers when their universe exploded, when the Holy Spirit, the embracing presence of God, came upon them. Their world... Read More
January 29, 2020 | Feature | John D. Rempel

Zac Schellenberg, a teacher at Rosthern Junior College, uses his cell phone to take a picture of students taking selfies. (Photo by Jill Olfert Wiens)

The internet and the myriad technologies that have accompanied its rise to media supremacy have transformed the way people communicate. For better or worse they have also... Read More
January 15, 2020 | Feature | Donna Schulz

A Mennonite World Conference delegation made church visits in India in December 2018. (Photo: Henk Stenvers / Mennonite World Conference)

The world is getting smaller. Peoples, places and cultures that in the past existed in distant lands may today be just around the corner. Here in North America, because of... Read More
December 31, 2019 | Feature | José Luis Moraga

Unlike their elders, who have more years behind than ahead, children and youth have the benefit of unlimited possibilities for their life. (Photo taken from povertyinstitute.ca)

This year marked the 30th anniversary of the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of the Child. Fittingly, the theme of the 2019 Universal Children’s Day, held on Nov. 20, was... Read More
December 4, 2019 | Feature | Derek Cook

‘Angel announcing: Jesus is here,’ by Elizabeth Cressman, a Grade 3 student who attends Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church in Kitchener, Ont.

I was eight years old. That year, the Sunday school Christmas pageant was going to be a no-fuss event. All the kids were going to stand up in a line, each of us reciting a... Read More
November 20, 2019 | Feature | Jodie Hatlem

Capitalizing on the way that society is currently unplugging itself from traditional forms of religion, the mall is an example of a cultural institution that has successfully read the religious market and opened a new outlet for selling and consuming transcendence. (Mennopix photos by Ross W. Muir)

The human struggle has always been—and always will be—between worshiping the God who made us or worshiping a god that we have to make for ourselves. Secularism is a myth because... Read More
November 6, 2019 | Feature | Thomas Bergen

‘Face painting phantasm’ (mennopix Digital art by Ross W. Muir)

If the Bible is a story, it is also something more: It’s a book that dares to make an authoritative claim on life. Between the poems and proverbs and parables, a portrait is... Read More
October 23, 2019 | Feature | Meghan Larissa Good

2007 Flanders fields photo by Tijl Vercaemer (bit.ly/cclicence2-0)

How do we “take up our quarrel with the foe”? What does it mean to “break faith with those who die”? Those are the questions before us, especially on a Peace Sunday. John McCrae’s... Read More
October 9, 2019 | Feature | John D. Rempel

‘Bring out your dead,’ by Edmund Evans, circa 1864. This coloured wood engraving pictures a medieval street scene with a town crier and a two-wheeled cart making the rounds and collecting the bodies of plague victims; a few people have gathered around a small fire for warmth. (wikimedia.org photo (public domain))

Over the last few months, the reality of the climate crisis we are in the midst of has started to strike me in a new and terrible way. As the best-case scenarios for our planet... Read More
September 25, 2019 | Feature | Gerald Ens

Sandy Shantz holds out offering bowl for Callum Jarvis as he comes to the front of St. Jacobs (Ont.) Mennonite Church to give his gift to God. (Photo by Marcia Shantz)

We are now living in a full-blown digital world. With just one click or voice command we can ask Google for a chicken recipe, order office supplies or give to our favourite... Read More
September 11, 2019 | Feature | Joanne De Jong

Maya Janzen.

As a kid, I grew up with the ritual of walking to the front of my church and dropping a few coins in the donation box every Sunday. But as I was sitting in church several months... Read More
September 11, 2019 | Feature | Nicolien Klassen-Wiebe

Vladimir Kozlov of New Life, an MCC partner, distributes relief kits, school kits, comforters and canned meat in Nikopol, Ukraine, on June 21. (MCC photo by Matt Sawatzky)

Under shade trees in a city park on June 16, about 40 Anabaptists shared a picnic of corn grits, rye bread and warm cocoa. The unusual menu held symbolic meaning. It was a “relief... Read More
August 14, 2019 | Feature | Paul Schrag

Pictured from left to right: Darryl Neustaedter Barg; Bruno Cavalca; John Briner, hidden behind the music stand; and Anneli Loepp Thiessen lead the congregation in songs new and old. The other Gathering 2019 worship team members were Moses Falco, Sarah Johnson, Kathy Lumsden and Glenn Sawatzky. (Photo by Jane Grunau)

“Sing a new church into being,” sang the 300-plus people gathered for the first nationwide meeting of Mennonite Church Canada since its restructuring in 2017. Behind the blended... Read More
July 17, 2019 | Feature | Virginia A. Hostetler

Group photo from a picnic held at Willowgrove Camp in August 1979. Harriet Dick is pictured front left. (Photo courtesy of Harriet Dick)

Toronto United Mennonite Church was the first church in Canada to receive privately sponsored “boat people” who were fleeing Vietnam and Laos during the chaos of the Vietnam War... Read More
June 19, 2019 | Feature | Anne Konrad Dyck

Photo © istock.com/ninamalyna

“O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds. So even to old age and grey hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to all... Read More
June 5, 2019 | Feature | Claire Ewert Fisher

A Mennonite church in Ontario recently finished a six-week adult and youth Sunday school series entitled “The opioid crisis: Understanding addiction as a disease.” The six sessions were packed. (Photo © istock.com/wildpixel)

The language is stark: crisis, epidemic, tragedy. The facts are startling. According to a Government of Canada website, opioid-related overdose has become the No. 1 cause of death... Read More
May 22, 2019 | Feature | Janet Bauman

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