Web First - Opinion

The land of my belonging

'What is the landscape that feels like home? The mountains with their forests, snow and freshwater streams.' (Photo by Viviana Rishe/Unsplash)

I sit in my backyard watching my dog as he rolls in the grass, pressing his back as deeply into the ground as he can. He moves freely, alternating his rolling with digging into patches of the earth that intrigue him.

My CERB story

‘While Mennonite history and theology also show hesitance around state politics, we cannot let theological hang-ups stop us from actively supporting measures that could change so many lives,’ Jonas Cornelsen writes. (Photo by Christina W. Kroeker Creative)

Does the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) mean the federal government is paying people to not work during the COVID-19 pandemic? Does this prove that a universal basic income would cause a mass exodus from workplaces and weaken our economy?

The perfect complexity of Coastal GasLink protests

Wet'suwet'en solidarity action in Toronto on February 8, 2020. (Photo by Jason Hargrove)

In 2012, I spent two memorable hours in Smithers, B.C., with Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chief Na’Moks (John Ridsdale), one of the chiefs at the centre of the Coastal GasLink crisis now confounding our nation. I also spent time with the chief and other members of the Haisla Nation, which supports the pipeline. 

An overview of Christianity’s ideas about God

'Speaking of God' by Anthony G. Siegrist is an overview of how the Christian church has approached Scripture and humanity’s relationship to God over the past 2,000 years. (Photo by Aaron Epp)

Because we live in a time of change and upheaval in our culture, Anthony G. Siegrist argues that the church needs to improve its biblical and theological literacy, writing, “It’s important that Christian communities nurture their ability to speak about God, about Scripture, and about our lives with care and attention.”

A bit of ‘colour’ inside

'Prison life is deprivation... Connections with nature are missing in the too-small, brick-and-wire yard, where you might get to spend an hour.' (Image by falco/Pixabay)

I like to bring simple card-making supplies into the secure unit of the Edmonton Institution for Women. The inmates enjoy the chance to be creative but, more than that, they crave an opportunity to make something to send to family on the outside. Life stories bubble up as they write in the cards, and I listen.

Once Round the Barn: Cheap Edition

Another trip around the barn: In the video below, pigpen pundit Will Braun explores the difference between frugality and tightfistedness. (Photo by Jennifer deGroot)

“Most of us harbour a degree of financial neurosis, tinged with religious uptightness,” Will Braun, Canadian Mennonite’s resident ranter, says at the start of his latest video. 

Follow our pigpen pundit once around the barn on his southern Manitoba farmyard as he explains what really gets his goat about Mennonites and money.

What Rachel Held Evans taught me

Rachel Held Evans’s willingness to be honest about her faith journey left many readers feeling less alone, Christina Entz Moss writes. (Photo courtesy of RachelHeldEvans.com)

Since Rachel Held Evans’s sudden death on May 4, the internet has been filled with tributes to the beloved Christian author and her work. Her willingness to be honest about her faith journey left many readers, especially those who grew up in conservative evangelical churches, feeling less alone.

Once Round the Barn: Twang Edition

Another edition of ‘Once Round the Barn’: pigpen pundit Will Braun challenges you to get the feet a-stompin’ with some good old country music. See the video below.

Grab your cowboy hat and don’t mind the barn smell! Join Will Braun, Canadian Mennonite’s resident ranter, once around the barn on his southern Manitoba farmyard. This time he challenges you to cue up the country music twang. (See the video below. Then scroll down and check out some more rants.)

World Fellowship Sunday: A communion of 500 years

From the World Fellowship Sunday worship resources: Venezuelan migrants welcomed to the Iglesia Menonita de Riohacha, Colombia. (Photo by Iglesia Menonita de Riohacha)

Every year on the Sunday closest to January 21, Mennonite World Conference (MWC) invites its 107 member churches to join in a celebration of World Fellowship Sunday. (See the 2019 worship resources here.

Once Round the Barn: Pat-on-the-back Edition

Video below: ‘Once Round the Barn’ rides again. Resident ranter Will Braun has some choice words about how Mennonites talk about their generosity.

He’s our resident ranter, our pigpen pundit. Canadian Mennonite writer Will Braun rants around the barn on his southern Manitoba farmyard. This time he’s got opinions on how Mennonites talk about their generosity. (See the video below. Then scroll down more and check out more rants.)

'Winds of the Spirit' blow through the Global South

A tool for churches from the North to evaluate.

Tilahun Beyene is coordinator of International Missions Association, affiliated with Eastern Mennonite Missions. A long-time leader in Ethiopia’s Meserete Kristos Church, he authored I Will Build My Church, the Amharic language history of the growth of the MKC.

Conrad Kanagy is professor of sociology at Elizabethtown College, Pa., and pastor of Elizabethtown Mennonite Church. He authored Road Signs for the Journey, based on the 2006 Mennonite Church USA Church Member Profile.

Richard Showalter is past president of Eastern Mennonite Missions. He is current chair of the Mission Commission of Mennonite World Conference and coach for International Missions Association.

Anabaptist churches in Asia, Africa, and Latin America have grown rapidly in recent years, while membership and attendance numbers in North American and European churches have declined.

A Classic Mennonite Tale of One City

Leo Driedger is professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of Manitoba, where he taught, researched and published for more than 40 years, and as Senior Scholar still writes today. This is his 19th book. For more than 20 years, Driedger has served on boards of the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC Manitoba, MCC Canada, MCC International).

As a relative newcomer to the Canadian scene, I found Driedger’s latest book on the Mennonites in Winnipeg, his 19th, a virtual map as he traces their development in what has become the largest concentration of them in the world, surpassing Amsterdam. 

Tongue Screws and Testimonies: Poems, Stories and Essays Inspired by the Martyrs Mirror

Tongue Screws and Testimonies, a book of essays, poems and artwork reflecting on the Martyrs Mirror, is written by insiders for insiders. In the introductory essay, Kirsten Beachy, the editor, states that this volume reflects a wide variety of opinions and attitudes to the role that the Martyrs Mirror has played and is playing the Anabaptist community.

Dora and the Prince of Peace

Enough with trying to save the world – that’s an impossible and thankless job. Our real task is to save Baby Jaguar. As I sit on the living room couch with my youngest child nestled on my lap and a “Dora the Explorer” book in my hand, I’ve concluded that we can accomplish this task with God’s help. Then there will be some peace in the world.

Biography sheds light on story of southern Manitoba’s conservative Mennonites

This highly detailed and comprehensive biography of Wilhelm H Falk (1892-1976), founding bishop of the Rudnerweide Mennonite conference, is an important addition to the history of Mennonites, particularly in southern Manitoba. It provides a rich account of that era with an acknowledged bias in favour of the subject—Bishop Falk.

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