Blog

Mennonite World Review curates a blog, The World Together, of Anabaptist-themed writing from a wide variety of sources across the Anabaptist world. To submit a blog post, email rstella@mennoworld.org.

Communities of nonviolence

By on Oct 17, 2017 in The World Together | 0 comments

The World Together Blog

Nonviolence is the decision to live without committing homicidal violence. It is comparable to the familiar choices to live without committing rape, or slavery or robbery. The decision to live without killing other people does not seem, on the one hand, to be very radical, but on the other, it is very radical indeed. Our human selves We are all familiar with communities which have a covenant between members, spoken or unspoken, to not kill each other. Families, schools and universities, and corporations of all kinds are committed to...

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Unoriginal sin

By on Oct 16, 2017 in The World Together | 2 comments

The World Together Blog

As far as sins go, a rich older dude using his power and influence to sexually prey upon young women is about as unoriginal as they come. As long as men and power imbalances and women have been in existence (which is to say, forever), the former have been indecently and inexcusably forcing themselves upon the latter. As depressing as the story of film executive Harvey Weinstein is, it is also about as predictable as they come. Equally predictable is the inevitable politicking and mudslinging that follows a revelation like this. Conservatives...

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My grandma and Colin Kaepernick

By on Oct 13, 2017 in The World Together | 1 comment

The World Together Blog

In his op-ed in The New York Times, Chris Reid describes why he and Colin Kaepernick “took a knee” during the national anthem last year. “[M]y faith moved me to take action,” he wrote. “I looked to James 2:17, which states, ‘Faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.’ I knew I needed to stand up for what is right…We chose to kneel because it’s a respectful gesture. I remember thinking our posture was like a flag flown at half-mast to mark a tragedy. It baffles me that our protest is still being misconstrued as...

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A positive reading of the New Testament

By on Oct 12, 2017 in The World Together | 2 comments

The World Together Blog

There are some standard assumptions that Christians tend to have about the Bible — the Old Testament is old, outdated, primitive, problematic, violent and judgmental. And the New Testament is new, fresh, merciful, useful, peaceable and about forgiveness. I have spent a lot of time over many years trying — in sermons, classes, discussions and writings — to show that the Old Testament is actually pretty good, that it’s an asset for faith and a guide for our quest for peace and justice in our hurting world. I know I have not persuaded...

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Equipped for an unknown giant

By on Oct 10, 2017 in The World Together | 0 comments

The World Together Blog

The boy was the youngest of his family, with seven brothers older. One of his jobs as a youngster and teenager was tending to his father’s sheep. It had to be a lonely job with no one to talk to, spending hours outside in the hot sun, making sure the sheep were protected and cared for while his older brothers had more important jobs to do. How many years did he do this? No one knows. It seems the job had been passed down from brother to brother until it came to the youngest — where it stayed. He could not have known that this was how God...

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Hospitality and creation

By on Oct 9, 2017 in The World Together | 0 comments

The World Together Blog

I was recently prompted to remember an important conversation with a friend. This friend identifies “radical hospitality” as an important part of her mission and ministry. By extending and receiving hospitality, she hopes to encounter the differences that often lead to conflict, meeting them with generosity and openness, rather than suspicion. She believes that hospitality is a gift, a tool and a mandate given by God to the church. I have been nourished and grown by the hospitality she models. I believe it is a form of Christian...

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Yahweh Has Always Been a Peacenik

By on Oct 5, 2017 in The World Together | 7 comments

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Where did Jesus get his inspiration? From the Torah, the Prophets and the Writings, of course. Little of what Jesus said was original with him. His genius was not so much in the substance of his sayings as in the way he curated his source material, the methodology he used for selecting what to highlight and what to leave on the shelf. And Jesus left a lot on the shelf. He ignored the negative qualities attributed to Yahweh: the wrath, the retribution, the jealousy, the pettiness. He also ignored accounts of Yahweh’s military exploits, those...

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MC Canada LGBTQ apology

By on Oct 4, 2017 in The World Together | 1 comment

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WINNIPEG, Man. — The current General Board of Mennonite Church Canada has released a confession to LGBTQ people, families and supportive networks for “things done, and not done” during its oversight of the Being a Faithful Church Process and the years leading up to it. If delegates approve structural changes at MC Canada’s Special Assembly Oct. 13-15, the General Board will be succeeded by a new Joint Council. Anticipating this possibility, the Board issued a letter Sept. 28 acknowledging their regrets and shortcomings, while offering...

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Pick a little, talk a little

By on Oct 3, 2017 in The World Together | 0 comments

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Today while reading in Genesis something really stuck out to me. When Jacob kissed his father he knew full well he’d be betraying him. It got me thinking about how awful that was! I could never share the Holy kiss with a sister knowing I’d be betraying her soon. Or could I? Have I never saluted a sister and then later gossiped about her? Unfortunately, yes, I have. Have I greeted a sister but really had a frustration brewing within my heart? Sadly, that has happened. On Sunday morning, greeting those sisters that don’t actually kiss you,...

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Learning to think like Jesus

By on Sep 28, 2017 in The World Together | 1 comment

The World Together Blog

I’ve been coaching third-/fourth-grade soccer along with another dad this fall. (No, I don’t know what I’m doing — though thankfully, my friend does!) We drill the kids. We scrimmage with the kids. We run out there and wave our hands and try to get them to play as a team. It’s wild. Last week, the other coach gave the kids some advice. He said, “You have to think!” There are rules and muscle memory and luck, but what we most want for our team is that they learn how to think like soccer players. Anticipate the ball’s rebound....

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