Professionals in the field of journalism have sometimes called their news content the “first draft of history.” News reporting pulls together facts—who, what, where, when, why, how—capturing an event, a moment in time. Sometimes the reporting is accompanied by analysis, sometimes by opinion. But the news gathering, and its dissemination, generally happens in a relatively short time period.
Carol Lint speaks to a young girl at a potluck dinner at Holyrood Mennonite Church in Edmonton. (Photo: Helena Ball / Holyrood Mennonite Church)
Members of all cultures at Sherbrooke Mennonite Church in Vancouver worship together in March 2020, at the last joint service before COVID-19 shut down public worship services. (Photo by Garry Janzen)
An intercultural, intergenerational worship team performs during an intercultural Christmas program at First Mennonite Church in Kitchener, Ont., in 2019. Pictured from left to right: Doug Cressman at the piano; singers Mira Baergen, John Albrecht, Selina Baergen Noa Bargen and Testimony Amayanvbo; guitarists Irene Suderman and Bryan Moyer Suderman; percussionist Dave Rogalsky; and guitarist Cesar Guevara. (Photo by Felipe Gonzalia)
Enjoying a potluck at Holyrood Mennonite Church in Edmonton are, from left to right: Guenther and Ruth Toews, and Jeremiah, Leila and Rachel Chokpelleh. (Photo by Helena Ball)
Rene Baergen, right, lead pastor of First Mennonite Church in Kitchener speaks at the congregations annual church picnic at Hidden Acres Mennonite Camp in 2019. (Photo by Felipe Gonzalia)
Dorathy Chockpelleh and Donna Entz, members of Holyrood Mennonite Church in Edmonton, warmly embrace. (Photo by Helena Ball)
In 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. stated: “We must face the fact that in America, the church is still the most segregated major institution in America. At 11:00 on Sunday morning when we stand and sing, ‘Christ Has No East or West,’ we stand at the most segregated hour in this nation.”
Relationships, not rituals, are what’s important
Mennonite Church Canada’s online study conference, “Table talk: Does the church still have legs,” had thought-provoking talks.
In Sara Wenger Shenk’s talk, she asked, “Why do instructions about how we do communion become more important than its meaning?”
Happy New Year. In reflecting on the church for 2021, I’ve been impacted by my experience creating virtual choirs—those videos where choristers sing at home, into their phone, and the video and audio from that phone recording get put together into one cohesive choir.
I read with great interest the many articles about how different churches are responding to the pandemic and government restrictions. There are many! Because there are many ways for churches to respond both to the pandemic and to the restrictions.
In 2013 I went on a pilgrimage to Scotland to explore my family roots and the “thin places” and sacred sites in the land of my ancestors. I arrived at the Glasgow airport shortly after 8 a.m. After landing, I immediately picked up my rental car and headed to my first destination. I hadn’t been able to sleep on the overnight flight, so I hadn’t slept in 30 hours.
Expectations. We all have them. We have expectations of others, and expectations placed upon us. Meeting expectations can be especially conflicting when navigating between different cultures.
The 1973 motto for the annual Conference of the United Mennonite Churches of B.C. was “Evangelism that cares.” Sessions were hosted by two churches in Vancouver: First United Mennonite and Mountainview Mennonite. The opening speaker asked, “Are we evangelists who care about people in the city?
Riverton Fellowship Circle began meeting in 1985, when a group of Indigenous people in Riverton expressed desire for a church. (Mennonite Heritage Archives photo)
Riverton Fellowship Circle always met in a circle, around a centrepiece of sweetgrass, a candle and a Bible. (Mennonite Heritage Archives photo)
Neill von Gunten (left) and Barb Daniels (right) were two of Riverton Fellowship Circle’s leaders, along with Edith von Gunten. Here they are pictured in 1997 at the church. (Mennonite Heritage Archives photo)
When the soft cloud of an expired dandelion explodes, the flower is gone, but the seeds that have spread far and wide soon erupt into new life. So it is with the recently closed Riverton Fellowship Circle.
The roof of the Mennonite Church Canada headquarters in Winnipeg before a $220,000 upgrade to the building’s energy efficiency. (Photo by Doug Klassen)
Mennonite Church Canada is backing up the establishment of a new Sustainability Leadership Group (SLG) with a $220,000 upgrade to its head office in Winnipeg.
Carol Penner presents "#Mennonites Too: Sexual Violence and Mennonite Peace Theology," at the Benjamin Eby Lecture. Her presentation also served as the C. Henry Smith Peace Lecture, which features research by Mennonite faculty in peace traditions. (Screenshot by Janet Bauman
In her recent research Carol Penner surveyed how the church periodicals, Gospel Herald, The Mennonite, and Canadian Mennonite reported on sexual violence from 1970 to the present. What she found became the subject of the annual Benjamin Eby Lecture, which features research of a Conrad Grebel University College faculty member.
Stress, anxiety and loneliness are among the many challenges that university students face during this era of remote learning and physical distancing. In past years, Inter-Mennonite Chaplaincy Association (IMCA) operated a welcoming space known as the Menno Office on the University of Manitoba campus.
When a new year begins, many people resolve to lose weight or begin exercising. But the dawning of a new year is also a good time to consider improving one’s spiritual fitness.
When the pandemic hit in March, Chris and Laura Mullet Koop, who own and operate Elmwood Farms Inc., were profoundly impacted. Their farm, located in Jordan, Ont., in the designated green belt area on the Niagara escarpment, is an egg production and grape-growing enterprise, started by Chris’s family in 1932.
With a message of “Love your neighbour as yourself,” a Mennonite Church B.C. pastor reached a wide audience on the radio with a message about in-person church gatherings.