Deborah Tewelde, a member of Meheret Evangelical Church in Kitchener, Ont., a Mennonite Church Eastern Canada congregation, received the 2019 Lincoln M. Alexander award given by the Province of Ontario to youth who have shown strong leadership in eliminating racial discrimination.
Black Lives Matter
When Gabby Martin mentions that she’s a Mennonite, she’s often met with, “Okay, but where are you from?” Her father is Black and her mother is Syrian; she was adopted by Mennonites. Martin grew up in Langham, Sask., and has been Mennonite her whole life, yet, because of her appearance, it feels like she’s expected to prove it.
I’ve been embarrassed of my heritage for most of my life. I’m the son of immigrants who came from Germany and the Philippines. Even though I was born in Canada, I know that to many people, I look like I came from somewhere else.
That’s why I’ve always cringed when people ask me where I’m from. It’s never about where my home is but rather where my family came from. Saying “Canada” was never good enough, and that often made me feel like an outsider.
As rallies and protests continue across the United States and Canada in response to the murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers, the five regional churches of Mennonite Church Canada released a statement yesterday asking congregations to set a specific time of prayer this coming Sunday, June 7.