The art and the artist

Jul 13, 2020 by

Can we separate the art from the artist? This is one of the questions raised by the removal of seven songs by Catholic composer David Haas from the forthcoming Voices Together hymnal. Haas is credibly accused...

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Why we should reconsider Augustine

Jul 2, 2020 by

I love St. Augustine of Hippo. That might not seem like a big deal, but since at least the time of John H. Yoder, Augustine has been on the outs with the Anabaptist world, seen as the author of all that was...

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Reconciling the news of Jean Vanier with the work of L’Arche

Mar 2, 2020 by

It all came at once — a messy break up, the death of a close friend and the troubling news of Jean Vanier and sexual abuse. These three experiences all hit me hard, wounding the core of my being, making me...

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Book review: Warriors who renounced war

Oct 22, 2018 by

Three decades ago, Julie Putnam Hart sat in a peace lecture opposing the Stra­tegic Defense Initiative, commonly known as Star Wars. Intrigued by the presenter’s journey, she wanted to understand how a...

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Worship service confronts convention’s wounds

Jul 6, 2015 by and

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The emotional wounds inflicted by discourse and decisions in the Mennonite Church USA convention delegate hall were the focus of a contemplative and repentant evening worship service on...

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Sexual abuse: ‘Won’t somebody listen here?’

Jul 4, 2015 by and

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Laments and hopes by and for those who have endured sexual abuse were tied and untied in a July 3 evening worship service at the Mennonite Church USA convention. Moving from sorrow and...

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Secrecy enabled sin

Mar 30, 2015 by

Few things cause as much damage and pain in the church as secrecy. Hiding information spawns suspicion, distortion and lies. Secrecy fosters an imbalance of power, as those few people in the know can act with...

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AMBS on abuse: ‘We failed you’

Mar 23, 2015 by and

ELKHART, Ind. — For 40 years, women who had been sexually violated by John Howard Yoder were left suffering in silence while the Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary professor became one of the most...

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Healthy obsession

Mar 16, 2015 by

Leonard Gross (Letters & Comments, Feb. 16) may well be right that Mennonite Church USA institutions are obsessed with John Howard Yoder. Or not. But for sure, this independent Anabaptist certainly is....

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Opinion: Mistakes, regrets, lessons

Mar 2, 2015 by

When the controversy about John Howard Yoder’s sexual conduct resurfaced in 2013, I was mystified. Why was this coming up again? He’s been dead since 1997. He hasn’t been in the employment of a Mennonite...

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Learning from stories that stink

Feb 2, 2015 by

As I took down my string of Christmas cards and letters, I smiled as one friend noted the danger of a Christmas letter becoming “a list of stellar achievements accomplished by perfect people.” Ours had no...

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New sources give clearer view of abuse by theologian

Jan 5, 2015 by and

For years, hushed fragments of information circulated in certain circles. John Howard Yoder, the famous Mennonite theologian, did something wrong, but spe­cifics were scattered and elusive. Then, in 1992,...

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Peaceful theology, violent acts

Jan 5, 2015 by

This is excerpted from a longer article, “ ‘Defanging the Beast’: Mennonite Responses to John Howard Yoder’s Sexual Abuse,” in the January issue of The Mennonite Quarterly Review, based on newly...

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Seminary announces service to acknowledge harm from John Howard Yoder actions

Dec 8, 2014 by

ELKHART, Ind. — Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary is taking steps to acknowledge responsibility for the harm inflicted by theologian John Howard Yoder’s sexual exploitation of women and for seminary...

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Why the Church needs her martyrs

Oct 16, 2014 by

Human life is the most sacred thing. Blood trumps everything. To be sure, many would rush to say that God is the most sacred thing. That God trumps everything. But in point of fact, that’s not true....

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The limits of Stan the Man Hauerwas

Sep 29, 2014 by

When I was in seminary, I got drunk on Stanley Hauerwas. His polemic works against modernity, Christendom, liberalism, individualism, etc., struck a chord with me, and gave me a certain set of diagnostic...

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Way of forgiveness

Sep 15, 2014 by

Are we forgetting the Jesus way, so at odds with the Old Testament spirit of vindictive justice? Jesus proclaimed repentance and forgiveness. He literally commanded that, in order for me to be forgiven my...

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MC USA group reports more evidence of abuse

Jun 30, 2014 by

ELKHART, Ind. — A Mennonite Church USA discernment group addressing sexual abuse by the late theologian John Howard Yoder has reported finding additional evidence of abuse. After a June 3 meeting in...

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Avoiding avoidance

Jun 27, 2014 by

This semester, my co-teacher colleague and I decided to put Body Politics: Five Practices of the Christian Community Before the Watching World on the assigned reading list for an upper-level course in...

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Graham’s almost agreement with nonresistance

Apr 9, 2014 by

A seminal event in Anabaptist history happened when, in 1961 dialogue began between Mennonite and Brethren in Christ leaders and Billy Graham — at the time, one of America’s most famous figures and...

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Theologian’s reconciliation with his church

Mar 31, 2014 by

There is an essential side of the John Howard Yoder story that begs to see the light of day. Here is that story: From its beginning the Anabaptist movement emphasized the redemptive process of the Rule of...

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Historian to study abuse by theologian, church’s response

Feb 18, 2014 by

A Mennonite Church USA discernment group has appointed a historian to document the scope of the late theologian John Howard Yoder’s sexual abuse of women and the church’s response to it. Rachel Waltner...

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Abuse discernment group sets goals

Oct 11, 2013 by and

A Mennonite Church USA discernment group addressing sexual abuse by the late theologian John Howard Yoder has set five goals. The six-member discernment group met for the first time Sept. 4-5 in Goshen, Ind....

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