Kraybill: Bold in face of terrible truth

Nov 25, 2019 by

Yad Vashem Holocaust museum in Jerusalem tells terrible truth about the complicity of many, including Christians, in Hitler’s campaign of hatred and genocide across Europe. I leave darkened halls of that...

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Scholars take a hard look at the Holocaust

Nov 18, 2019 by and

WINNIPEG, Man. — About 80 years ago, Jews and Mennonites lived peacefully together in the Ukrainian city of Chortitza. Then the Nazis came, and everything changed. In 1941, before the invasion, Chortitza had...

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History: Mennonite sisterhood of service

Nov 11, 2019 by

In 1890, American Mennonite women had few opportunities to serve the church in a formal capacity. Pastoral ministry was reserved for men, and Mennonite mission work was still in its infancy. David ­Goerz...

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Welcome the stranger

Oct 28, 2019 by

Anabaptist history is defined by migrations, typically to escape persecution or pursue opportunity. What can get overlooked, on the flip side, is the welcome that made each chapter possible. Northern German...

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History: How Congo became a Mennonite stronghold

Sep 30, 2019 by

Aaron Janzen believed passionately in missions. A member of the Mennonite Brethren from Mountain Lake, Minn., he wrote of the value of leaving “homeland, kin and kindred, ease, comfort, physical and...

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The shocking neighbor

Aug 19, 2019 by

In the 1950s, dictator Fulgencio Batista and the rich and powerful of Cuba oppressed countless Cubans. On April 9, 1958, rebels against Batista called a strike. Batista fought back, including in Sagua la...

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History: Enduring witness of the ‘Bloody Theater’

Aug 19, 2019 by

The 17th century has been called the Dutch Golden Age, when the Nether-lands rose to international prominence in commerce, art and science. It was a gleaming era of prosperity for many, including...

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From Zimbabwe to the world

Aug 5, 2019 by and

HESSTON, Kan. — The growth of early shares in companies like Microsoft and Apple pales in comparison to Jacob E. Stauffer’s 1894 investment in Brethren in Christ missions. His $5 gift at a general...

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History: Big family begat bigger church

Jul 8, 2019 by

Christian (1788-1846) and Christiana Buzzard Holdeman (1788-1865) had Mennonite church leaders in their family tree. Christian’s father had been a minister, while Christiana’s great-grandfather was the...

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MCC celebrates, serves where its work began

Jul 1, 2019 by and

KHORTITSA, Ukraine — Under shade trees in a city park on June 16, about 40 Anabaptists shared a picnic of corn grits, rye bread and warm cocoa. The unusual menu held symbolic meaning. It was a “relief...

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The central purpose

Jul 1, 2019 by

Mennonite Central Committee wasn’t meant to last 100 years. In the beginning, it was, in fact, a committee, with a specific task — to save the lives of starving Mennonites in Ukraine. It proved too good an...

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Oregon beginnings

Jun 24, 2019 by

We read with fascination Rich Preheim’s article on West Coast Mennonite church beginnings (History, May 27). We are most familiar with the Oregon story and Zion Mennonite Church of Hubbard, as this is our...

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History: Gold or not, West Coast beckoned

May 27, 2019 by

By the mid-19th century, North American Mennonites and Amish had barely crossed the Mississippi River, venturing west only as far as southeastern Iowa. That changed with the discovery of gold in California in...

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Embarrassing graffiti

Apr 29, 2019 by

I agree with the concern expressed by Tim Huber in “Shame­ful Tourists” (Editorials, April 1). This past year, we visited the Trachselwald castle along with our tour group (TourMagination, “Life and...

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History: From Mennonite to Missionary

Apr 15, 2019 by

North American Mennonite history is peppered with schisms prompted by disagreements over issues such as prayer meetings, revival meetings, conversion experiences and Sunday schools. Seven groups that split...

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Shameful tourists

Apr 1, 2019 by

Switzerland is a land of beauty and Anabaptist history. Many North American Mennonite and Amish people visit to get in touch with their faith’s roots. Most Swiss hosts are too gracious and polite to offer...

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History: A Mennonite college at a state university

Mar 4, 2019 by

Illinois State University’s academic programs are organized into six colleges: Applied Science and Technology, Arts and Sciences, Business, Education, Fine Arts and the Mennonite College of...

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Anabaptists: best supporting actors

Feb 25, 2019 by and

A new film dramatizing the life of Reformation leader Ulrich Zwingli is giving moviegoers a chance to see early Swiss Anabaptist leaders on the big screen — as long as they can get to Switzerland. The...

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Book review: Spiritual cousins not so distant

Feb 18, 2019 by

For many Mennonites, the Brethren in Christ are distant spiritual cousins. The BIC, while firmly Anabaptist, have also drawn deeply from the wells of pietism and Wesley­anism, which has created some...

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History: The first non-Western Mennonites

Jan 21, 2019 by

Mennonites today are found on every continent of the world (save for Antarctica, of course). But in the mid-19th century, the original Anabaptists’ spiritual descendants lived only in North America and...

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Drinking coffee with Canada’s National Mennonite Historical Society

Dec 3, 2018 by

Over the Nov. 15-17 weekend, I listened to no less than 30 academic presentations in a space of 2.5 days as Canada’s National Mennonite Historical Society hosted scholars and speakers for the annual...

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History: From ‘Tauferkammer’ to Burkina Faso

Dec 3, 2018 by

In 1743, 275 years ago, the Swiss city of Bern dissolved its Commission for Anabaptist Affairs, or Tauferkammer. It had been established in 1659 to oversee the elimination of the local Anabaptist population....

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Discovered documents detail French Nazi resistance

Dec 3, 2018 by and

More than seven decades after World War II ended, revelations about Mennonites and the war continue coming to light. Stéphane Zehr of Anduze, France, presented research about French Mennonite resistance to...

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“Djagalah Anak Kambing Koe” (“Tend My Lambs”)

Nov 12, 2018 by and

Renewal 2027 is a 10-year series of events organized by Mennonite World Conference’s Faith and Life Commission to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the beginnings of the Anabaptist movement. This series...

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Commemoration at the Presidio

Oct 26, 2018 by

Recently I had the privilege of being asked to speak in San Francisco at the event, Presidio 27: “Mutiny” at the Stockade. The occasion was the 50th anniversary of the peaceful sit-down by 27 Army...

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