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Urban farm not just about growing veggies

Pictured from left to right, are this season's workers at Metanoia Farms: Trey Dornn, Megan Klassen-Wiebe, Kayla Drudge and Bryn Friesen Epp. (Photo by Daisy Belec)

Pigs are a new addition to Metanoia Farms. (Photo by Daisy Belec)

Metanoia Farms is an urban farm located on Canadian Mennonite University’s campus in Winnipeg. (Photo by Daisy Belec)

Trey Dornn, Megan Klassen-Wiebe, Kayla Drudge and Bryn Friesen are hard at work at Metanoia Farms. (Photo by Daisy Belec)

Lifetime experiences and vegetables are being harvested at Winnipeg’s urban farm, Metanoia Farmers Workers Cooperative Ltd., located on the campus of Canadian Mennonite University (CMU).

Celebrating a half-century of MCC Thrift

Many volunteers gathered in St. Catharines, Ont., on July 12, to celebrate 50 years of thrift. (Christian Benefit Store archives photo)

Fiftieth anniversary centrepieces adorned tables at a celebration of the beginning of thrift stores in the Niagara area, in St. Catharines, on July 12. (Christian Benefit Store archives photo)

The first Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) thrift store opened in March 1972 in Altona, Man. In 2022, the thrift stores are celebrating the 50th anniversary of this first store in Canada. Celebrations are taking place at various times in different locations.

Bridgefolk asks how to repair harm to Indigenous Peoples

Muriel Bechtel, left, Jay Freel Landry, John Stoesz, Fr. William Skudlarek OSB, and Samantha Lioi are pictured at the Bridgefolk hymnsing. (Photo by Gerald W. Schlabach)

Jaime Arsenault, tribal historic preservation officer for the White Earth Nation. (Photo by Gerald W. Schlabach)

Reverend Jim Bear Jacobs of the Stockbridge-Munsee Mohican Nation. (Photo by Gerald W. Schlabach)

John Stoesz of Mountain Lake, Minn. (Photo by Gerald W. Schlabach)

Abbot John Klassen of St. John’s Abbey takes part in a panel discussion with Bridgefolk founders Weldon Nisly, on screen, Gerald W. Schlabach, and Marlene Kropf about the history of Bridgefolk. (Photo by Joetta Schlabach)

Participants in the Bridgefolk movement for dialogue and greater unity between Mennonites and Roman Catholics have long made the phrase, “Proceed through friendship,” their byword.

 

Jubilee Mennonite votes to become an affirming congregation

Jubilee Mennonite, which is located in northeast Winnipeg, was founded in 1995 as a dual-conference congregation through the merger of MC Manitoba’s Northgate Mennonite Fellowship and the MB Churches of Manitoba’s Valley Gardens Community Church. (Photo by John Longhurst)

After more than a year of discussion, study and prayer, Winnipeg’s Jubilee Mennonite Church—which is part of both Mennonite Church Manitoba and the Manitoba Mennonite Brethren Churches—has decided to welcome members of the LGBTQ+ community to become full members of the congregation.

 

MCC calls on PM to remove barriers to humanitarian assistance

Charitable Foundation Uman Help Center, an MCC partner, distributes MCC relief buckets, hygiene kits and blankets in Uman city, at a Baptist church, along with other humanitarian supplies. (MCC photo)

Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Canada has joined other leading Canadian aid organizations to launch Aid for Afghanistan, a national campaign calling on the Government of Canada to immediately act to remove barriers that have blocked and deterred the provision of lifesaving humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan for the past year.

Manitoba congregations awarded mission grants

Jamie Arpin-Ricci of Little Flowers Community, left, surveys the Winnipeg neighbourhood with Melanie Neufeld, MC Manitoba’s mission engagement director. (MC Manitoba photo)

Eight Mennonite Church Manitoba congregations will receive a total of $30,000 for missional engagement in their local communities.

“Finding intentional ways to love our neighbours is an important practice for the church,” says Melanie Neufeld, MC Manitoba’s director of mission engagement. “We’re excited to see what God will do with these new and ongoing initiatives.”

A focus on rest and renewal

Glen Guyton, MC U.S.A.’s executive minister, was the guest speaker for the afternoon session. His session focused on key concepts from his book Reawaken: Activate Your Congregation to Spark Lasting Change. (Photo by Ruth Bergen Braun)

Pastors and other leaders from across the five regional churches joined together at First Mennonite Church in Edmonton for Spiritual Leaders Day, part of the Mennonite Church Canada’s Gathering 2022.

After breakfast together on July 29, attendees were invited to spend the morning in worship. The theme for the morning was “be at rest.”

‘Do you hear what I hear?’

Riley Koop and Rebecca Janzen take part in the panel discussion around young leaders in the church. (​​​​​​​Photo by Jessica Evans)

Who has ever been a young adult? Who has ever interacted with a young adult at church? Who has witnessed a young adult leaving church? Who has witnessed a young adult stepping into leadership?

These were the questions asked of the audience during the workshop entitled “Do you hear what I hear?” at Mennonite Church Canada’s Gathering 2022.

In This Together aims to widen the circle of inclusion

Attendees at the Gathering 2022 worship gathering on July 31 were encouraged to come forward to tie a coloured ribbon, representing their own self-expression, onto a tree branch. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Pictured from left to right are the In This Together steering committee: Matthew Froese, Leah Harder, Alissa Bender, Pieter Niemeyer and Mauricio Palacio. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Timothy Wenger, left, and Alissa Bender explain the origin and purpose of the Rainbow Christ Prayer. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Michele Rizoli, pastor of Toronto United Mennonite Church, reads scripture during the service. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Pieter Niemeyer shares his story at the service. (Photo by Jessica Evans)

Timothy Wenger shares his story while Alissa Bender looks on. (Photo by Jessica Evans)

Steph Chandler Burns offers their own coming-out experience as a challenge to the church to love well. (Photo by Jessica Evans)

“In This Together [ITT] is one way to feel those prophetic nudgings of the Spirit,” said Alissa Bender, pastor of Hamilton (Ont.) Mennonite Church, and a member of the ITT steering committee, as she led more than 75 people in a worship service that celebrated the gifts that LGBTQ+ people offer to the church, on July 31 in the evening.

Bethel Mennonite leaves MC B.C.

More than 80 years of ministry in B.C. as Bethel Mennonite Church came to a close this summer when the building was given to the MB conference to be replanted as a campus of North Langley Community Church. (Internet photo)

Bethel Mennonite Church of Langley, one of the oldest congregations in Mennonite Church British Columbia, held its last service on June 26. However, its doors are not closed; the church will continue to function under a new identity and a new affiliation.

Myanmar church growing, though half its members displaced

Amos Chin, left, and two Mennonite colleagues baptize young people in rural Myanmar. (Photo courtesy Amos Chin)

Amos Chin (second from left)—a Mennonite leader in Myanmar—with (left to right) Jeanette Hanson, Norm Dyck, David Martin, and Jehu Lian meet in Myanmar in 2019. (Photo courtesy of Norm Dyck)

Roughly half the members of the Bible Missionary Church (BMC), a Mennonite denomination in Myanmar, are now displaced. An estimated 415 families, or 2,000 people, have fled to the jungle or elsewhere in the vicinity of the border with India to escape escalating civil unrest.

 

Looking back, looking forward

Danforth Mennonite Church congregants from the 1990s to the present are pictured at the church’s 115th-anniversary celebration in late June.

Bonnie Wright, Tessa Rose and Ed Ford, foreground left to right, lead the congregation out of the sanctuary during the Danforth Mennonite Church’s 115th-anniversary celebrations.

Danforth Mennonite Church is a small, urban congregation on the Danforth in Toronto. In late June, we met in person and virtually to celebrate 115 years as a congregation.

Camp Squeah featured on CBC National news

Rob Tiessen of B.C.’s Camp Squeah is interviewed on a CBC news broadcast, telling how camp attendance has been affected by fewer staff this summer. (Screenshot of CBC news clip on YouTube)

Rob Tiessen, executive director of Camp Squeah in Hope, B.C., was interviewed on CBC television’s The National broadcast on June 20 in a story about summer-camp staffing shortages across the country.

Lao translation of Anabaptist Essentials completed

Sririsack Saythavy, left, author Palmer Becker, Som Phanpha and Sangoune Ounbounheuang are very pleased to see the completed Lao translation of Anabaptist Essentials. (MC Eastern Canada photo)

Mennonite Church Eastern Canada hosted a book launch for the Lao translation of Palmer Becker’s book Anabaptist Essentials on June 18. In partnership with the Lao Mennonite Fellowship of Canada and MC Canada, 300 books were printed for use in MC Eastern Canada congregations and other groups in North America, as well as in Laos and Thailand.

Interpretive path tells story of reconciliation efforts in rural Saskatchewan

Leonard Doell shares a few words at the event. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Wilmer and Barb Froese serve as masters of ceremony during the program. (Photo by Emily Summach)

George Kingfisher, Young Chippewayan ancestral chief, and Ray Funk describe each other as ‘like a brother.’ (Photo by Emily Summach)

Students from Rosthern Community School in Rosthern, Sask. hold up a collaborative art “quilt” they made for the event. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Guests examine the chainsaw-carved archway that serves as the entrance to the interpretive path. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Visitors pause to read a storyboard along the interpretive path. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Theresa Driedeger examines a storyboard and the views of the land from the top of Stoney Knoll. (Photo by Emily Summach)

The final storyboard on the path overlooks the land surrounding Stoney Knoll. (Photo by Emily Summach)

Members of the Stoney Knoll Historical Committee and special guests cut the ribbon to open the new interpretive path. (Photo by Emily Summach)

An area of disputed land in Saskatchewan has become a seedbed of reconciliation with the launch of an interpretive path to make the story of that journey come alive for visitors.

 

‘Heeding Christ’s call to break down barriers’

The congregation of Altona Mennonite Church dedicated its new accessibility ramp during a Sunday morning worship service in June. (Photo courtesy of Loren Braul)

Ken Loewen, a metal artist and sculptor, created three images of worshippers at the cross to incorporate into the railing. (Photo courtesy of Altona Mennonite Church)

Members of Altona Mennonite Church built a ramp to make their worship space more accessible. (Photo courtesy of Robert Martens)

In June, Altona Mennonite Church completed the construction of a new ramp, to help make its worship space more accessible. But, whereas many churches might have built the ramp and just left it at that, the Altona Man., congregation held a dedication for it during a Sunday morning worship service.

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