Andres: The ghosts that haunt us

Apr 24, 2017 by

Last month, the live-action remake of the 1995 anime film Ghost in the Shell hit theaters. Set in a future when many humans are augmented with cybernetic enhancements, the story follows Major Mira Killian,...

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Bible: Mercy wider than we imagine

Apr 24, 2017 by

It’s worth reading the Book of Jonah in one sitting. It won’t take more than five minutes. Getting the details freshly in mind as well as the entire scope of the story can make an old, familiar tale come...

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Washington Witness: The same, and worse

Apr 24, 2017 by

“America’s deportation machine: The great expulsion.” “Undocumented mom of 3 U.S. citizen kids deported.” “Study: 5,100 kids in foster care after parents deported.” These may sound like recent...

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Watson: Generations at odds?

Apr 24, 2017 by

The older generation always thinks the younger generation is going to pot. I hear this statement regularly in the church, repeated by the older generation who dedicated their lives to the church. I also hear...

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History: An antiwar conspiracy?

Apr 24, 2017 by

The president had squeaked by in the general election. A key plank in his platform had been opposition to foreign military intervention. But in a matter of months after his inauguration, he reversed...

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Book review: ‘Simple Life Fretz’

Apr 24, 2017 by

During the early 1980s, while a senior at Bethel College, I participated in a monthlong interterm travel course to Washington, D.C., focused on peace issues and Mennonite social justice engagement. Faculty...

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Showalter: Want renewal? Pray

Apr 10, 2017 by

In the 1640s, a few English nonconformists and Puritans who had migrated to the New World began to share the gospel with Native Americans around them. In 1646, Pastor John Eliot began to lead his Indian...

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Kehrberg: A Fitbit for what matters most

Apr 10, 2017 by

Tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it. . . . Yet. — Anne Shirley My daughter received a Fitbit for Christmas. For those unfamiliar with this technological accessory: it looks like a wristwatch, and it...

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Book review: ‘A Doubter’s Guide to God’

Apr 10, 2017 by

When I was young, I had no idea normal people doubted God. So when I doubted, I was ashamed. Normal people believed. They flourished as Christians and at church. I wasn’t normal. I was bad. Roger Martin’s...

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Powell: Freedom from anxiety is right around the corner

Apr 10, 2017 by

A Feb. 15 Harris poll for the American Psychological Association found Americans haven’t experienced this much stress in many years. According to the poll, 66 percent of participants are stressed about the...

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Yoder-Short: Define ‘political’

Apr 10, 2017 by

“We can’t put up the sign because it’s political.” When seeing the sign, “No matter what country you’re from, we are glad you’re our neighbor,” what do we see? Does including Spanish and Arabic...

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Bible: How can we keep from singing?

Apr 10, 2017 by

“Nothing can separate us from God’s love in Christ Jesus,” the speaker said. “Nothing at all. Not anything we do — or anything we don’t do.” I pushed the rewind button and played the recording...

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Kennel-Shank: Staying awake in Gethsemane

Mar 27, 2017 by

The cemeteries where members of my extended families are buried are truly places of repose, surrounded by the fertile fields of Lancaster County, Pa. When I visit their graves, I sense that they are at rest,...

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Kriss: Pastoring in polarities

Mar 27, 2017 by

Many who preach regularly are finding it a tough navigation in the pulpit in the United States. Our highly politicized environment means it’s difficult to find ways to speak that are both relevant and...

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Kraybill: Where truth confronted power

Mar 27, 2017 by

Today multiple versions of “truth” compete for attention in politics and media. We ask the same question Pontius Pilate famously put to Jesus: What is truth? (John 18:38). Truth already had been...

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Longhurst: Liberals who thrive

Mar 27, 2017 by

Last fall, researchers from two Ontario universities set out to discover why mainline churches in Canada are dying. Of the 22 Anglican, United, Lutheran and Presbyterian churches they surveyed, all in Ontario,...

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Bible: Songs of miraculous love

Mar 27, 2017 by

Of all the musical settings of Psalm 23 that I enjoy, the tune and text that resonate most deeply for me is “My Shepherd Will Supply My Need” (No. 589 in Hymnal: A Worship Book). The text, set to an early...

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Book review: ‘Wholly, Holey, Holy’

Mar 27, 2017 by

In his self-published memoir, Melvin D. Schmidt reflects on his life and nearly 50 years as a Mennonite pastor. It is a page-turner, wonderfully written with hundreds of anecdotes, picturesque language (beware...

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U.N. Witness: Half an apology

Mar 13, 2017 by

On Dec. 1, the staff of the Mennonite Central Committee United Nations Office awaited the commencement of Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s address to the people of Haiti. After more than six years of advocacy...

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King: Buying the field even when it’s idiotic

Mar 13, 2017 by

Even more unsettling than usual: the stories in the Feb. 25 New York Times. There is Srinivas Kuchibhotia, an Indian immigrant and his friend shot in a Kansas bar by a man who wants them out of “his” U.S....

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Book review: ‘A People of Two Kingdoms II’

Mar 13, 2017 by

Half a century ago, James C. Juhnke was a graduate student in history at Indiana University, completing a dissertation on his people, Kansas Mennonites, and their experiences in politics from the 1870s to...

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Bible: Coming home, where God dwells

Mar 13, 2017 by

Few things are as satisfying as returning home after a long trip. Though I enjoy the exhilaration of travel, I’m usually glad when it’s time to unpack my suitcase and inhabit my own space again. I savor...

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Watson: High-fiber activism

Mar 13, 2017 by

“Every time I leave one of these, I have a headache,” a woman groaned as we left the community town hall meeting. More than 150 people had crowded into a church’s multipurpose room to discuss the issues...

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History: Confessing a weakness for humor

Mar 13, 2017 by

S.G. (Samuel Grant) Shetler (1871-1942) of Johnstown, Pa., was known for moving his audiences to tears one moment and laughter the next. This was natural, he said, because “the well of tears and the fountain...

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Powell: Pray, resist, act

Feb 27, 2017 by

Alternative facts promoted as truth have become a hallmark of President Trump’s administration. Sociologist and former senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan once said, “You are entitled to your opinion. But you...

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