United for a safe community

Jan 30, 2015 by and

FRESNO, Calif. — The Goliath they face is huge: gang violence, unemployment, drug and alcohol abuse and more. But, like David, United Faith Christian Fellowship is boldly stepping up to the challenge. The...

[read more]

Movie review: American Sniper

Jan 30, 2015 by

I’ve now watched two lousy Academy Award-nominated films in a row. But American Sniper is infinitely worse than Foxcatcher. Foxcatcher at least has its heart in the right place. It is trying in its...

[read more]

The biggest obstacle to spiritual formation

Jan 29, 2015 by

I’ve spoken at a quite a few churches over the last few years and have had even more conversations with ministers and pastors at churches. Most of these conversations have been about hospitality, about...

[read more]

Blessed are those who mourn

Jan 28, 2015 by

My friend Tim asked me to speak at his church about mourning, and how it can be a pathway to God. It got me thinking that we Americans don’t make a lot of room for mourning. Unlike some other cultures, we...

[read more]

How does race work?

Jan 27, 2015 by

Chances are you aren’t blatantly racist. I wouldn’t give much of my time if you tried to convince me I was. But does race still work in unique and particular ways to affect how we see and experience the...

[read more]

A deadly sin Mennonites seldom talk about

Jan 26, 2015 by

It may be true that the body is only a temporary thing, but that’s no excuse for stuffing your body with food, or indulging it with sex. Since the Master honors you with a body, honor him with your body! ....

[read more]

Vietnamese pastor severely beaten

Jan 26, 2015 by

HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam — Nguyen Hong Quang, leader of the unregistered Vietnam Evangelical Mennonite Church, was severely beaten on his way to evening worship Jan. 18. A few minutes after leaving his home...

[read more]

Pastors speak of renewal at new church network gathering

Jan 23, 2015 by and

When Wesley Furlong first learned about Anabaptists, the discoveries broke his stereotypes. “There was such a crazy boldness when I had assumed a sheer passivity, a refusal to retreat and compromise where I...

[read more]

Listening for the God that doesn’t meet expectations

Jan 23, 2015 by

This is an excerpt of the sermon Harader preached on 1 Samuel 3 on Jan. 18. Read the sermon in its entirety here. The very first sentence of this story tells us that “the boy Samuel was ministering to the...

[read more]

New group to offer alternative to MC USA

Jan 23, 2015 by and

HARTVILLE, Ohio — A new Anabaptist network of churches that expects to attract some who leave Mennonite Church USA plans to launch in the fall, organizers announced during a consultation Jan. 16-17 at...

[read more]

Kids in worship: The other problem

Jan 22, 2015 by

“[My daughter] doesn’t sit still and read a book. She is tired, squirmy, talks loudly, wanders. . . . I once took [her] out the service to correct disobedience five different times. . . . My husband and...

[read more]

Peace is a calling

Jan 21, 2015 by

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. — Matthew 5:9 Just over 20 years ago, in a 100-day period, the genocide in Rwanda resulted in the deaths of almost 1 million Tutsis and...

[read more]

I don’t have a hammer, but I have a Mennonite hymnal

Jan 20, 2015 by

This is the text of a speech made by Bobby Switzer at the Laurelville Worship and Song Leaders’ Retreat held Jan. 10. If I had a hammer, I’d hammer in the morning, I’d hammer in the evening, all over...

[read more]

Cultural divide splits MC USA in survey results

Jan 19, 2015 by and

Though same-sex relationships dominate Mennonite Church USA conversations, the “real cultural divide” includes many deeply rooted factors, says Conrad Kanagy. “It’s quite clear now this is not one...

[read more]

AMBS students join Fort Benning SOA witness

Jan 19, 2015 by and

ELKHART, Ind. — For the students who traveled from Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary to Fort Benning, Ga., in November, the experience of witnessing for peace and justice raised questions while it...

[read more]

Feast or fast?

Jan 19, 2015 by

It seems appropriate that in the time between Christmas and Ash Wednesday our texts focus on feasting and fasting. During Advent we celebrated the liturgical new year — a time of anticipation and beginnings....

[read more]

What is really important?

Jan 19, 2015 by

Three generations of the Lehman family of Wisconsin come to the annual Thanksgiving celebration with a complicated understanding of what holds them together as a family. A fourth generation, long deceased, is...

[read more]

Beliefs that bind us

Jan 19, 2015 by

2014 was a year of testing for my congregation, for Lancaster Mennonite Conference and for Mennonite Church USA. Beginning the new year on a clean page, our faithful redeemer God offers us hope for the...

[read more]

Never be afraid of what is right

Jan 19, 2015 by

Martin Luther King Day, which commemorates King’s birthday, is one of those days that I think should be celebrated throughout the world. It is a day used to promote equal rights for all Americans, though I...

[read more]

A church in trouble

Jan 19, 2015 by

When talking about the future of the church in North America, I sometimes joke there are only two kinds of denominations today — those that are in trouble, and those that will be. One Canadian denomination...

[read more]