In the words of David Martin, executive minister of Mennonite Church Eastern Canada, at the 2015 annual church gathering, “Since our habit is to normally talk about God in the abstract or to reflect on how my intellectual beliefs impact my values or actions, I have chosen to share with you more concretely how I have experienced the presence of God in my life.” We share his story as the firs
God at work in Us
When Ken Reddig was too depressed to get out of his chair, he sat at his window and watched birds. In winter, the nuthatches squabbled over dropped seeds. In summer, the hummingbirds jostled for a place at the feeder. “Summer and winter, there was constant activity that kept me entertained, but also inspired,” he says.
Parkland Restorative Justice has a new executive director. The agency, which is supported by Mennonite Church Saskatchewan (MC Sask), hired Heather Driedger to fill the position recently vacated by Ryan Siemens. Originally from Saskatoon, Driedger is a 2004 graduate of Rosthern Junior College.
There’s never a dull moment at the thrift shop. Whether it’s a truckload full of donations five minutes before closing or a till that needs balancing, Mennonite Central Committee thrift shop managers are always on the go. But sometimes there are unexpected duties to attend to at the local thrift shop.
Looking bleak and lifeless today, the burned area surrounding Forest House will explode with life by next summer, says Ric Driediger, who owns the property. (Photo by Sarah Driediger)
“I’m not very good at being helpless,” says Ric Driediger as he reflects on the impact Saskatchewan’s forest fires have had on his business and his life. Driediger and his wife, Theresa, own Churchill River Canoe Outfitters in Missinipe, Sask., 457 kilometres north of Saskatoon. This summer promised to be one of their best, with many bookings.
Pop psychology writer Malcolm Gladwell popularized the 10,000-hour rule—the notion that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to master a craft. Jeremy Hamm will tell you a different story. He figures it took him at least 25,000 hours of painstaking trial and error before he got good at making guitars.
Ken and Debbie Martin are ready to head out from Elmira (Ont.) Mennonite Church on a countryside tour as part of the MennoHomes fifth annual bike-a-thon for affordable housing on June 20. More than 100 adults and children participated by walking, cycling or riding, and raised $40,000 toward a three-storey apartment building to be built in Elmira.
Ester Neufeldt has been around Mennonite Church Eastern Canada longer than MCEC has existed. The area church came into being on Feb. 1, 1988, but Neufeldt began her job on Jan. 25.
He pastors Little Flowers Community, a small Mennonite congregation in Winnipeg’s west end neighbourhood that chose to belong to the larger church body through Mennonite Church Manitoba/Mennonite Church Canada. He co-directs Youth With A Mission (YWAM) Urban Ministries Winnipeg.
Children and their parents remained engaged in the children’s auction time led by Darcy Krahn on Saturday afternoon at the Mennonite Central Committee Alberta relief sale in Didsbury.
Low oil prices in 2015 have not dampened the generosity of Alberta Mennonites. On June 5-6, 2015, the annual Mennonite Central Committee relief sale was held in Didsbury, and as of June 8, over $172,000 had been received with donations still trickling in. The last Didsbury sale, held in 2012, raised $170,000.
Henry Poettcker, who served as president of Canadian Mennonite Bible College (CMBC), one of Canadian Mennonite University’s (CMU) predecessor institutions, died on Sunday, May 24, following a stroke. He was 90 years old. A scholar with a PhD from Princeton, Poettcker joined the faculty of CMBC in 1954 and became its president five years later at the age of 34.
The late Isaac Andres and his wife Mary are sharing their passionate faith and generosity in a legacy that continues to inspire and nurture new generations of Mennonites.
“When I was 17 years old I dedicated my hands to the Lord. I was going to play his music in the church,” said Lydia Derksen, whose hands have been a blessing at Bergthal Mennonite for 65 years and counting. She plays the piano for the congregation, the choir and a variety of musical groups.
Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) lost one of its most enduring and faithful supporters on Feb. 11 with the passing of Roy G. Snyder of Waterloo, Ont. He was 99.
If you want Tamworth heritage bacon or Golden Guernsey milk, Jacqui Schmucker can provide them. If you want maple syrup from a horse-and-buggy farm or honey from a black-bumper Mennonite farm, she’s got that too. If you want to know who grew your food, where and how, she can do that too, with an energetic smile to boot.
Refugee camps around the city of Suleimani in the Kurdish region of Northern Iraq have become pressure cookers of cultural and religious tension. Thousands of people displaced by Syria’s civil war and the violence of Islamic State (IS) are living shoulder to shoulder, unable to return to their homes.
When as a young teenager Larry Kehler delivered coal in the Altona, Man., area for his father, his wildest imagination could not have taken him to where his life eventually led.
Evelyn Rempel Petkau is retiring after more than 18 years of reporting for Canadian Mennonite. She was hired as the provincial editor for Manitoba in 1997, just after Mennonite Reporter changed its name and format to become Canadian Mennonite.
Gerry Loewen runs her fingers along a row of books and moves toward a clothing rack packed with sweaters and cardigans. She is explaining what sort of donations come in to the thrift shop when a customer approaches her. He holds out a business card and tells his story. She listens patiently and, once he’s finished, asks if this is his first time visiting the shop. He answers yes.
In his own words, Reverend Ibrahim Nsier, a pastor of the Arab Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Aleppo, tells about his ministry in Syria. Mennonite Central Committee, through the Fellowship of Middle East Evangelical Churches, supports the work of Nsier’s church as it addresses the urgent needs of the most vulnerable.
Ruth Zehr believes that everyone has a story worth telling.
A decade ago, Zehr overheard a conversation involving Norma Iutzi, program assistant coordinator at the Nithview Community in New Hamburg, about the many stories she heard when she visited the residents of this Tri-County Mennonite Homes multi-stage facility.
Vernon Erb had a busy fall. Wet weather combined with a late planting season last spring meant the soybeans and corn were hard to get off the fields.
Marianne (Dyck) Thiessen, a charter member of Pineridge Christian Fellowship, Calgary, died on Nov. 8, 2014. Professionally a nurse, yet she was much more than that: a flower that never faded, a softener of hearts, an exemplary mother and wife, a gentle spirit who eased tensions and warmed relationships.
In the 1800s, church clergy were often called “sky pilots,” in part in reference to their heavenly themes from the pulpit.
In his “Remembering Jack” soliloquy at Jack Dueck’s memorial service, the famous Mennonite novelist and writer, Rudy Wiebe, termed his friend, “a very large and complex human being,” and rendered this story as an example: