Latest issue

These stories appeared in the latest issue of MWR. Stories can be found sorted by issue here. To see more subscribe online or to the print edition here.

Bible: Bargaining with God, and winning

By on Aug 19, 2019 in Bible, Columns, Latest Issue | 0 comments

Reta Halteman Finger

The formal title of this lesson is “Faith and Doubt,” but the twists and turns in the complex narrative comprising Genesis 18-19 are worthy of a more dramatic title. How about “Debate, Destruction and Deliverance”? The story begins in chapter 18, where three men appear before Abraham, who is sitting at his tent entrance. Abe prepares a lavish meal for them, and they promise that his wife, Sarah, will have a son. We don’t hear about Sodom until 18:16 when the divine visitors (as they turn out to be) head off for Sodom and Gomorrah...

read more

Warning in Scripture

By on Aug 19, 2019 in Latest Issue, Letters | 2 comments

J. Nelson Kraybill’s account of visiting the replica of Noah’s ark in Williamstown, Ky., (“Ark Encounters Modern Science”) was both sobering and hilarious. Imagine “juvenile dino­saurs” on the ark! Although the effort and money spent on this project was designed to convince visitors of a literal and un-scientific interpretation of Scripture, its true message lies elsewhere. Fundamentalists reassure us that God will never destroy the Earth with water again, but Noah’s story is a warning that we humans ourselves are destroying it...

read more

Unique spiritual life

By on Aug 19, 2019 in Latest Issue, Letters | 0 comments

On July 27, about 40 people gathered at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary for a memorial service for Alice Bauman. Alice had prepared the service, reflecting the spirit of poustinia, the practice of worship in silence and the name of her and [husband and AMBS professor] Clarence’s Hermit­age, their home ­located at the Sixth Street entrance to AMBS. For some students, their life and unique ministry was life-changing. The service consisted of five parts, with five minutes of silence between each. The celebration conveyed the mystical...

read more

Weighing inerrancy

By on Aug 19, 2019 in Latest Issue, Letters | 0 comments

Thank you for publishing Ted Grimsrud’s “How I Gained, and Lost, Inerrancy.” I appreciated his pointing out that human doctrines and traditions are often mistakenly promoted as biblical truths rather than the human interpretations that they are. In determining what is truth, it is correct for us to examine all human interpretations, wheth­er they are Chris­tian doctrines or traditions. Abner J. Schlabach South Royalton, Vt.

read more

Central District aspires to follow where God leads

By and on Aug 19, 2019 in Latest Issue, News | 0 comments

Delegates confer during the annual meeting of Mennonite Church USA’s Central District Conference June 20-22 in Milwaukee, Wis. Milwaukee Mennonite Church, which meets at Martin Luther Lutheran Church, hosted the gathering. The conference welcomed new churches from Ohio, Georgia and Florida. — J. Tyler Klassen/CDC

MILWAUKEE — Sunlight streamed through stained glass windows as participants gathered at Milwaukee Mennonite Church for the annual meeting of Mennonite Church USA’s Central District Conference June 20-22. The theme, “Come Walk With Us . . . to God Knows Where,” echoed through the days in songs, stories and sermons. Doug Luginbill, conference minister, noted that the theme can have different emphases. It can be a confession of faith: “to God knows where.” It can express a mystery, asking: Where is God leading? Or it can be admitting...

read more

MBs around the world: ‘God is moving among us’

By and on Aug 12, 2019 in Latest Issue, News | 0 comments

Participants in the International Community of Mennonite Brethren summit stand for a group photo on the Matthew Training Center campus in Guadalajara, Mexico. — ICOMB

Delegates from 21 Mennonite Brethren national conferences reported challenges and joys at the International Community of Mennonite Brethren annual summit May 29-June 2 in Guadalajara, Mexico. “It was obvious that God is moving among us, as the number of overall baptisms numbered in the hundreds,” said Don Morris, national director of the U.S. Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches. Growth was reported in Malawi and Germany and among the Khmu in Southeast Asia. “Although much of the reporting was about the many good things taking place...

read more

Restructured MC Canada gathers for first time

By and on Aug 12, 2019 in Latest Issue, News | 0 comments

Darryl Neu­staedter Barg, Bruno Cavalca, John Briner (hidden behind the music stand) and Anneli Loepp Thiessen lead music during Mennonite Church Canada’s Gathering 2019. — Jane Grunau/Canadian Mennonite

ABBOTSFORD, B.C. — “Sing a new church into being,” sang the 300-plus people who gathered for the first nationwide meeting of Mennonite Church Canada since its restructuring in 2017. Behind the blended voices was a vision, “Igniting the Imagination of the Church,” the theme of Gathering 2019, June 28-July 1. Representatives came from each of MC Canada’s five regional churches. The event began with a day for pastors and other leaders, followed by two and a half days of worship, inspirational speakers, a delegate business meeting,...

read more

School gets new name — and a mascot

By and on Aug 12, 2019 in Latest Issue, News | 0 comments

Iowa Mennonite School students Eli Ours, Blake Bontrager and Aaron Hershberger test the acidity of a vinegar-water base with teacher Mark Miller, right. — Iowa Mennonite School

In an effort to attract more students who do not identify as Mennonite or Anabaptist, Iowa Mennonite School is confronting a shrinking enrollment by changing its name. The school announced on July 30 it is changing its name to Hillcrest Academy, beginning with the coming school year. The grades 9-12 high school in Kalona graduated 22 students earlier this year, and has 60 enrolled for the coming fall. “We had 78 this past year, so our incoming class at this point is low,” said principal Dwight Gingerich. “The enrollment figure has...

read more

God Speaks Potawatomi

By and on Aug 12, 2019 in Latest Issue, News | 0 comments

Trail of Death participants gather for a time of lament in the shade of a white oak tree in Illinois that may have sheltered the Potawatomi people during their forced removal. — Peter Anderson/MMN

On Pentecost Sunday, God’s words in the Potawatomi language, “I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and daughters will prophesy,” anointed the day’s journey for 19 Trail of Death pilgrimage participants as they broke camp at Mark Twain State Park in Monroe County, Mo. George Godfrey, a Potawatomi elder and co-leader of an 11-day pilgrimage that retraced the 1838 forced removal of more than 850 Potawatomi people, read from Acts 2 as part of the morning worship. “It is appropriate that the Trail of Death pilgrimage...

read more

A system of (dis)trust

By on Aug 5, 2019 in Latest Issue, The World Together | 0 comments

The World Together Blog

A long time ago, Ona, a leader in the Bolivian Mennonite Church, made an offhand but accurate comment: In Bolivia, everything is negotiable. I’ve found that to be true even now, more than two decades later. For example, there are traffic lights now, but no one steps off the curb for a green light without making sure traffic is, in fact, stopping. Drivers don’t always stop. It’s not uncommon just to keep driving through — until the light has been red for a while. And then, as if at the end of a stretched-out elastic band, they finally...

read more