I read your piece (“The duty of tension,” June 16) and I’ve been wrestling with the content. It was a great editorial, and I commend your willingness to stomach the rhetoric for the sake of journalism (and in promotion of open-mindedness).
As a member of the Green Party of Manitoba, I had the opportunity to run against Max Bernier in the by-election but didn’t get the chance to meet him. I was late to the conversation, but it had been agreed that no official debates would take place so as not to give Mr. Bernier a platform. I was disappointed because I felt a consensus that his politics are toxic and that we could all benefit from “popping the pimple” in a sterile public environment.
I was at a different rally, Pembina Valley Pride, and a few PPC supporters showed up to antagonize what had been a peaceful, well-organized march and fun celebration. I talked to them, and it was clear they had no intention to learn what Pride is about, to abide by community standards or to be respectful of its attendees.
Rudy Wiebe warned that peace shall destroy many. It can be hard to see those you care about supporting politicians who objectively mislead people. It’s hard to do politics in this space where we neither sufficiently hold politicians responsible for what they say, nor sufficiently inform the public on what those words mean. It’s hard to fight the political apathy this creates.
Mennonites have a history of being in politics without being in politics. Mennonite Central Committee is an aid-first religious organization. We let the laity preach. These are anomalies in our culture. The way in which we do community may be part of a solution.
—Nicolas Geddert, Winnipeg
Thanks for your article on congregational closures that have occurred recently (“The facility of faith,” August 25). It’s good to learn how folks are handling our changing social and church environment. I’m a member of Waterloo Kitchener United Mennonite Church (WKUM), which was featured in the article. Our process has been complex and has benefitted from the perspectives of many people. However, the concern of Norm Dyck to suggest that some church leaders have “arrested” imaginations feels detrimental to the process and does not reflect the diligence and hard work of the WKUM Vision Team.
—Ed Janzen, New Hamburg, Ontario