In Benin, economic empowerment born out of tragedy

Jan 19, 2015 by and

COTONOU, Benin — It took the death of a child to create a community bank that brings more abundant life to many people in Benin. In the early years of the partnership of Mennonite Board of Missions, a...

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Shifting toward inclusion

Jan 19, 2015 by

There’s a dramatic moment in the mountain of data about Mennonite Church USA released Jan. 5: Credentialed leaders are much more accepting of gay and lesbian church members and leaders than they were eight...

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View from the outside

Jan 19, 2015 by

Since the late 1950s my wife and I have never lived in a Mennonite community but have kept in touch with the faith of my childhood by subscribing to Mennonite publications. As we participated with another...

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Seek first the kingdom

Jan 19, 2015 by

Clarence Jordan once reportedly quipped in his typical salty fashion that many Christian preachers will preach the hind legs off of Jesus but rarely pay attention to what Jesus himself preached. Jordan was a...

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Finding hope at the border

Jan 19, 2015 by

There are never enough winter jackets in the stacks of sorted clothes in the salon de fiestas (fellowship hall) at Sacred Heart Church in McAllen, Texas. The stream of Central American refugees who arrive...

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Bluffton forum game show puts Ebola in context

Jan 19, 2015 by

BLUFFTON, Ohio — The emphasis was on perspective in “Ebola and Fear: A Public Health Perspective,” offered by Ross Kauffman Jan. 6 in a Bluffton University Forum. Outlining the disease’s history,...

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A faithful leader engages creation care

Jan 19, 2015 by

In recent months, I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Brian Sauder, a fellow credentialed Mennonite minister. Last year he became executive director of Faith in Place, headquartered in Chicago, which...

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Gay advocacy groups get space at KC convention

Jan 19, 2015 by

Same-sex relationship advocacy groups will be allowed space at the Mennonite Church USA convention for the first time this summer in Kansas City. The denomination announced Jan. 13 that church leaders have...

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Bible as an idol

Jan 19, 2015 by

I see as idolatry the practice of calling the Scriptures “God’s Word” with a capital W. This places the Bible above Jesus, God Incarnate, the Word-Made-Flesh (John 1:1-14). It is this fallacy, imported...

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Opinion: The Gnostics are back

Jan 19, 2015 by

The God-mission Jesus taught has always faced competing understandings. Within 100 years of Jesus’ resurrection, a powerful belief system known as Gnosticism developed within Christianity and threatened its...

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‘Selma’: Recognizing yesterday is today

Jan 16, 2015 by

Last night I went to see Selma, and I was absolutely enthralled. The artistry was beautiful. The actors authentic. The lines soul stirring. When the credits began to roll, I felt as if I had just been through...

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Spiritual anchors in conflicted times

Jan 15, 2015 by

In these days of church conflict I am reminded of the story of my father-in-law, Rollin, age 94 when he died. In the last few years his balance was compromised, life was confusing, and little made sense:...

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Muslims, Mennonites and anti-religious backlash

Jan 14, 2015 by

Places of worship burned to the ground by arsonists. Increased police surveillance of neighborhoods where members of the community live. An entire group viewed with suspicion and animosity because of their...

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Isolation is not a recipe for faith

Jan 13, 2015 by

Some time ago, I went through a period of crisis in faith. I’d never experienced anything quite like it before. There were no precipitating life events; no new questions or revelations had swept in to upset...

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Planting opportunity, rebuilding lives

Jan 12, 2015 by and

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Breezes flutter the sheer fabric hanging in the doorway of Gladys Joseph’s new home in Cabaret, 24 miles outside Haiti’s capital city of Port-au-Prince. There’s room in the yard...

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The danger of a Christian label

Jan 12, 2015 by

We all use labels to some degree. Like it or not, we live in a culture that uses labels to help us identify things. Sometimes this can be very helpful. As we navigate the world we live in, labels often provide...

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Same-sex wedding a first for MC Canada

Jan 12, 2015 by and

A Saskatoon, Sask., couple became the first same-sex couple to be married in a Mennonite Church Canada congregation on Dec. 31. Craig Friesen and Matt Wiens held a ceremony with family, friends and their...

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Rare opportunity for transformative experience

Jan 12, 2015 by

Amid growing anticipation about the Mennonite World Conference assembly July 21-26 in Harrisburg, Pa., a number of questions keep surfacing within North American churches. MWC general secretary César García...

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Keep awake!

Jan 9, 2015 by

Keep awake therefore, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming! — Matt. 24:36-44 Last Friday, a large trailer truck carrying 2 million South African Rands ($1.7 million) worth of Creation Wines...

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Can we ever truly give?

Jan 8, 2015 by

Stop at any major intersection in Austin, Texas, and you will see someone with a sign asking for money, food or a job. It is a given in this city. Some of the people standing there have chosen that as their...

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