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Muslim-Christian meeting in Lebanon warns against internal divisions

Al Hariri (above) has refused to support the appointment of Hezbollah-chosen Najib Miqati as the new prime minister.

Lebanese religious leaders have warned against growing internal divisions in their country and urged national leaders to work towards unity and tolerance, following a joint Christian-Muslim meeting convened on May 12 in Bkirki by newly appointed Maronite Patriarch Beshara Rai.



Sex dominates this week's headlines

Tantini Kahindu, 16, sits in her house in the village of Luvungi in Congo on September 4, 2010. Her house was attacked on July 30 by Hutu rebels of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) and local militias, who raped more than 280 women and minors as punishment for the villagers' alleged support for the Congolese Defense Forces

Sex and sexuality seemed to dominate the headlines this week, not only in North America but around the world,

Global South Anabaptists on the rise

General Secretary Larry Miller (left) and General Secretary-elect César García (right) share a light moment at the MWC Executive Committee meetings in Taipei, Taiwan. Photo by Merle Good

The rise of Anabaptist-related churches in the global South is becoming much more than a matter of membership. At this year’s meeting of the Mennonite World Conference’s Executive Committee, May 4-10, actions on staffing and structures also reflected that growth.

Harrisburg, Pa site of next World Mennonite Conference

Young Anabaptists (YAB) helping to decide are (l to r) Melani Susanti, Indonesia; Tigist Gelagle, Ethiopia; Rodrigo Pedroza Garcia, Mexico; Kristina Toews, Canada; Sumana Basumata, India, and Carlos Alberto Alvarez Woo, Colombia. Seated are Adi Walujo, Indonesia; Edgardo Sanchez, Argentina; and Sandra Campos Cruz, Costa Rica.

With eyes wide open about the visa challenges faced by international participants,

Peacebuilding school brings hope from 23 nations

Three generations of peacebuilders from Argentina are studying at SPI: Maria Karina Echazu, an attorney; her nephew Joaquin Echazu, a university student studying security issues; and Lilian Burlando (Maria Karina's mother and Joaquin's grandmother), director of a Peace Center in Teirra del Fuego. --Photo by Jim Bishop

Those entering the opening session of  Eastern Mennonite University’s Summer Peacebuilding Institute (SPI) were handed felt markers and circles of fabric. Their assignment: “Tell what you bring here.”  

Faisa Loyaan’s contribution: “learning and sharing.”

Even after Presbyterian Church win, gay clergy likely to remain limited

Amy Kosari, of Ellswroth, Wis. a representative of a Presbyterian church belonging to the Synod of the Lakes and Prairies in the Twin Cities area, speaks against an amendment to eliminate the celibacy requirement for gay and lesbian clergy at the Peace Presbyterian Church in St. Louis Park, Minn. --AP Photo

Gay and lesbian advocates celebrated a landmark victory on May 10 when the Presbyterian Church (USA) entered the expanding ranks of Christian denominations that allow openly gay, partnered clergy. The winds of change, they said, are at their backs.

Changes occurred in biblical text over hundreds of years

Bill Warren from Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans, leading the study.

Working in a cluster of offices above a LifeWay Christian Bookstore, Bible scholars are buried in a 20-year project to codify the thousands of changes, verse by verse, word by word -- even letter by letter -- that crept into the early New Testament during hundreds of years of laborious hand-copying.

Crossing borders marks anniversary of full communion relationship

Katharine Jefferts Schori: "the reign of God lies in the direction of more porous borders."

In a world where crossing borders is becoming a literal fact of life in economics, work and culture, U.S. and Canadian Lutheran and Episcopal/Anglican church leaders crossed the borders of their countries on 1 May to mark a decade of their denominations' "full communion" relationships.

Conrad Grebel to build $6.3 million addition to academic building

Addition completed in time for Conrad Grebel's 50th anniversary in August, 2013.

Construction will begin in March, 2012 at Conrad Grebel University College, Waterloo, Ont. on a $6.3 million addition to the academic building, particularly the library and archives.  It will be completed by August, 2013, “just in time for the beginning of the College’s 50th anniversary,” notes outgoing president Henry Paetkau. 

Canadian farmers donate 19,523 tonnes of grain worth $4.8 million

Residents of Aura in the Afar showed North American farmers on a food study tour to Ethiopia reserves of sorghum in their homes thanks to agricultural support and irrigation.

Hungry people around the world are once again benefitting from the generosity of people across Canada. 

Altogether, a total of $9.1 million was donated to Canadian Foodgrains Bank in 2010, including 19,523 tonnes of food grains worth $4.8 million.

Anglican church plays central role in British royal wedding

The crowds were treated to not one, but two kisses by the newlyweds.

An estimated two billion people around the world tuned in on Friday, April 29, to watch the wedding of Prince William, grandson of Queen Elizabeth II, and Catherine Middleton at Westminster Abbey, a ceremony infused with British pageantry and steeped in elements of Anglicanism -- past, present and future.

'MennoMedia' new name of merged organizations

Steve Shenk, succeeding John Longhurst as director of marketing/sales for MPN, has been the executive director for Valley Brethren/Mennonite Heritage Center, Harrisonburg, for the past 7 years. He has also worked in public relations for Bluffton College and EMU, as well as managing editor for Gospel Herald, now The Mennonite.

"MennoMedia" is the name emerging for the new agency that has been working its way through the approval process of Mennonite governing boards in recent months.  The new name applies when Mennonite Publishing Network and Third Way Media merge on July 1,

EMU gets top award for sustainability

EMU Charlotte Wenger and mascot HERM, featured in the award-winning video, challenge all college students to "Chill Out." Photo by Lindsey Kolb

Eastern Mennonite University has been honored as a winner of the National Wildlife Federation’s annual competition “Chill Out: Climate Action on Campus.” This award program recognizes U.S. schools that are designing and implementing creative approaches to advance sustainability on campuses. EMU is one of six winning schools that were chosen from a national pool of entries.

On Being a Conscientious Objector during an Election Campaign

The promotional supplement in the March 21 issue advances  important matters of conscience.  The proposed involvement, though, reflects an acceptance that we are out of step with what the majority of Canadians want from their government.  Electing members of parliament who are open to pursuing peace would create some space for these issues of conscience.

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