As I scan the directory of pastors and congregations in our area church, I am inspired and immensely grateful. I know that very fine pastoral leadership is happening. I know that intense hours are being spent crafting biblically sound sermons. I know that lonely people are being visited, small people are being noticed and subdued voices are being heard.
Pam Booker, Kelsey Dick and Rachel Loewen Walker were just some of the people who talked about sexuality and gender identity at Wildwood Mennonite Church’s listening event. (Photo by Rachel Bergen)
It was a “magical” and “spirit-filled” Jan. 24, 2015, evening for many who attended a Wildwood Mennonite Church event, held to provide a positive space for members of the lesbian/gay/bisexual/ transgender/queer (LGBTQ) community, family and friends to tell their stories and be vulnerable with each other.
Retired Canadian Forces Captain Wayne Johnston received a warm welcome at 50 Kent, the home of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Ontario and other Mennonite agencies in Kitchener last month. Invited by MCC Ontario director Rick Cober Bauman to make a noon-hour presentation, Johnston shared his story of harm and healing.
A new Sunday School peace curriculum in the U.S. pushes Mennonites in a direction very different than the predictable emphasis on the evils of war and the theological superiority of pacifism.
“Returning veterans, returning hope: Seeking peace together” encourages Mennonites to see veterans not as people with incorrect views, but as fellow human beings to be understood and embraced.
“Walls became an obsession when I went to Berlin in 2010,” artist Rhonda Harder Epp told the crowd at the opening of her Walls: Arbitrary Impediments art exhibition at King’s University College, Edmonton, last month.
When Gloria Dirks was retiring from the joint position of Administrator and Director of Care at Parkwood Mennonite Home in Waterloo, Ont. in 2003, she knew she wanted to use her skills in some way. The call of her congregation, the Waterloo-Kitchener United Mennonite Church, to research the potential of a parish nurse seemed like a good fit.
Across the country, many MC Canada churches are staring at the numbers and scratching their heads. As young people drift away from the church and the baby boomers retire, church leadership is faced with increasing numbers of grey heads.