Turn back the clock?

Feb 26, 2018 by

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Thank you, Rich Preheim, for a helpful history lesson on Lancaster Mennonite Conference and its relationship to the broader church over the years. Perhaps you unwittingly offered a way to resolve our current issues: Let’s return to pre-1898, when there was no organized denomination for the “Old” Mennonite Church conferences. Let’s close Mennonite Church USA and abolish the concept of a denomination. It’s time to decentralize and let the conferences stand alone. Some organizations and congregations are shedding their Mennonite identity anyway, and others feel less affinity and accountability to a larger Mennonite body. Folks can go their separate ways, join conferences or fellowship groups of like-minded folks and enjoy gatherings without conflict or diversity. Less energy will be spent on conflicts and correctness, and perhaps we can find our souls again and renew our commitment to . . . Well, actually, on second thought, that’s not such a great idea if we are truly committed to our Anabaptist ideals of peacemaking, service and community. It takes work to get along with those we disagree with.

Christopher Gill
South Haven, Mich.

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