Volume 27 Issue 5

The piano ban

Evangelist George R. Brunk II with his wife Margaret, and their kids, left to right, George, Conrad, Paul, Barbara and Gerald, at a 1952 revival meeting in Waterloo, Ont. (Mennonite Archives of Ontario photo by David L. Hunsberger)

Influential Mennonite evangelist George R. Brunk I. (Photo courtesy of Mennonite Church U.S.A. Archives-Goshen, Ind.)

Carol Ann Weaver, left, Dorothy Jean Weaver and Kathleen Weaver Kurtz at the Chester K. Lehman family piano in 1952 in Harrisonburg, Va. (Photo courtesy of Carol Ann Weaver)

Chester K. Lehman and his sister, Elizabeth Kurtz, playing piano in 1952 at Kurtz’s house in Harrisonburg, Va. ( Photo courtesy of Carol Ann Weaver)

Carol Ann Weaver at the Chester K. Lehman family piano, which was donated to EMU, Harrisonburg, Va. (Photo by Wayne Kurtz)

October 22 was a normal Sunday. I had just arrived at Rockway Mennonite Church in Kitchener, Ont., when Conrad Brunk approached me. He is a fellow Rockway member, a former colleague at Conrad Grebel University College and a former next-door neighbour in Harrisonburg, Va. when we were very young. He wanted to talk about “the piano issue.”

Driving Miss Darcie

(Photo by Markus Spiske/Unsplash)

A few weeks ago I sent a text to a friend who I hadn’t seen for quite some time. Although we’d been in touch several times throughout the pandemic, we were long overdue for a face-to-face visit. I had no idea that the timing of this text would set my schedule askew for the next few weeks in the way that it did.

My friend has lived through some significant life experiences.

Practising for tragedy

(Photo by Anneli Loepp Thiessen)

(Photo by Anneli Loepp Thiessen)

It’s no secret that there are gaps in our congregational song. In particular, gaps in the kinds of words we have available for moments of crisis, despair and loss. Voices Together sought to speak into this opening, and features many resources that offer new words for these moments.

The pendulum, Hegel and Christ

(Photo by Sunder Muthukumaran/Unsplash)

Some have described history as a series of pendulum swings, oscillating from one extreme to the other, between tyranny and freedom, conservatism and liberalism, progress and tradition. It has also been said, the pendulum always swings too far, meaning when we find ourselves in one extreme, there tends to be an overcorrection that takes us too far in the other direction.

MC Canada executive minister visits Saskatchewan

Doug Klassen shows no fear despite Mark Bigland-Pritchard’s mallet swinging. Bigland-Pritchard shared an object lesson to talk about the ‘theological pillars’ of the Climate Emergency Response Team’s mission. (Photo by Emily Summach)

In an effort to strengthen communication and relationships between the nationwide and regional churches, Doug Klassen, Mennonite Church Canada’s executive minister, paid a visit to Saskatchewan last month.

Museum curator brings Mennonite identity and research to role

Roland Sawatzky at The Manitoba Museum, where he works. (Photo by Nicolien Klassen-Wiebe)

Roland Sawatzky by the Prairies Gallery section on Mennonite settlement. (Photo by Nicolien Klassen-Wiebe)

As Roland Sawatzky gives a tour through The Manitoba Museum, his eyes light up and his hands animatedly point out the highlights and features of each gallery. It’s clear he’s passionate about his work.

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