In her opening address to this year’s Pastors Week event at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, held during the last week of January 2016, Jewel Gingerich Longenecker, the school’s dean of lifelong learning, highlighted widespread confusion in the church today about what to do with the Bible, but implored listeners not to “put the Bible on the shelf.”
God at work in the Church
Never let it be said that young people don’t care about the future of the church.
Late last year, Katrina Woelk, a sociology student at Canadian Mennonite University (CMU) and a member of the student council, was having a conversation with some other students and members of the university administration about the challenges facing Mennonite Church Canada.
What makes a quilt Amish? Does it have to be “quilted by a group of Amish women sitting around the frame in their sitting room?” Or does it have to have an Amish pattern, like the Amish Wedding pattern created and popularized by Rachel Pellman of the Old Country Store in Lancaster, Pa? Is appliqué or pieced the appropriate technique?
Left to right: Ryan Jantzi, pastor of the Kingsfield-Zurich Mennonite Church, John Troyer of EVANA, Ron Weber from the Listowel Mennonite Church, and Dianne Roeder from Calvary Church, an MCEC congregation in Ayr, visit during a break at the EVANA workshop at Maple View Mennonite Church on Jan. 22. (Photo by Dave Rogalsky)
On January 22 to 23, 2016, Maple View Mennonite Church, with its pastor Brent Kipfer, sponsored the first Canadian workshop of the Evangelical Anabaptist Network (EVANA). Located west of Kitchener/Waterloo, Ont., the church is a member of Mennonite Church Eastern Canada (MCEC).
Hearing the word “archives” may conjure sneeze-worthy stereotypes. However, a visit to the Mennonite Historical Society of Alberta Archives in Calgary quickly dispels any dusty images.
A crowd of lively volunteers surrounded by history laugh around the lunch table, sharing discoveries made during their weekly volunteer stint to preserve the history of Mennonites in Alberta.
Helping those in lay and paid pastoral care roles better minister to their congregations, some of whom deal with issues of mental illness and addictions, was the goal of “Mental wellness,” Mennonite Church Eastern Canada’s annual pastors, chaplains and congregational leaders event held Jan. 16, 2016, at Steinmann Mennonite Church in Baden.
Most Canadian Mennonites have not experienced war first-hand or had their pacifist beliefs tested, but the stories of those who have are an important part of the peace narrative. To address this, the Mennonite Historical Society of Saskatchewan hosted an afternoon of storytelling at Bethany Manor in Saskatoon on Nov. 15, 2015, to which 140 people came.