Salem Mennonite Church says they were being challenged by God “to watch, look, and listen…” then join in! As they did this, Pastor Bruce at Salem was invited to organize […]
by Lora Steiner, managing editor Every year, members of Blooming Glen Mennonite Church throw a party. It’s got all the necessary elements of a good celebration: games, food, music, and […]
by John Stoltzfus, conference youth minister Recently, I spent three days with a group of conference leaders who work in youth ministry. This is an annual gathering at a beach […]
I came back from Mennonite Church USA Convention in July feeling challenged and uncomfortable, the kind of feeling that means I need to do something. In Phoenix, I’d prayed about how to respond to a drone center coming to our area. I went to the next protest. Still, I remained uncomfortable.
At a gathering of church leaders at camp Men-O-Lan in the early 70’s, I heard Gerald Studer (then pastor of Plains Mennonite) say something like: “If I were the only person living on earth, God so loved the world that he would have sent Jesus to die for me.”
As a teenager I was never sure I was good enough to take communion. I knew I did not live up to the expectations of the church community, nor of the Scriptures so I always took communion with much anxiety and guilt. I lacked an understanding of the grace of God and of my own self-worth. All my being and doing good didn’t achieve the peace and confidence I was taught or hoped for.
I’ve been a follower of Jesus in the Mennonite tradition for many years. Therefore, for me “to Mennonite” is to instinctively follow the many rhythms and routines that express my core beliefs about Christian discipleship. I engage in particular rhythms of corporate worship and private devotion, action and reflection, exercise and rest, (lots of) work and (sometime too little) play, (too much) speaking and (too little) listening, communal discernment and personal choice. I could expand on each of these routines but I have chosen to address only the last of these several pairs.
It is not easy separating the noun “Mennonite” and the verb “to Mennonite.” I think it is because the terms are not mutually exclusive. Those of us who identify as Mennonite, ethnically or culturally, and practice a Mennonite faith are likely already Mennoniting. Here are a few examples that come to mind that demonstrate the close relationship between our beliefs (as Mennonites, the noun) and our practices (as we Mennonite, the verb)….
Benjamin Sutter, Franconia Conference Communication Intern, email@example.com Franconia Conference’s vision is to equip leaders to empower others to embrace God’s mission. This summer ten young adults, pastors and congregations embodied the […]
Steve Kriss, Philadelphia Praise Center, firstname.lastname@example.org In late August the board and staff of Franconia Conference gathered to share dreams and visions, to work at logistical details for assembly and to […]
Tom Albright, RIPPLE Allentown, email@example.com This summer I spent two weeks in the United Kingdomtraveling by train to visit eight distinctly unique Urban Expression gatherings. As pastor of Ripple, an inner […]
Ken Beidler, West Philadelphia, firstname.lastname@example.org Philadelphia Anabaptist churches are planning the first ever Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Benefit Festival in Philadelphia. This inaugural event is scheduled for Saturday, October 29, 2011, […]
Brandon Bergey, Bethany, email@example.com Ayn Rand’s novel Atlas Shrugged presents ideas that are seemingly opposed to the Reign of God. Ayn Rand’s philosophy on the matter of need suggests that […]
by Scott Hackman, Salford, firstname.lastname@example.org Celebrate Souderton was a missional faith experiment birthed from the imaginations of the Open Hand Initiative, a group of people who want to help local […]