Kennel-Shank: Five names

Dec 4, 2017 by

Deonta Turner, Lemont Davis, Alandis Allison, Maurice Purnell and Juan Bahena Jr. I felt these five people’s deaths most deeply amid more than 500 fatal shootings this year in Chicago. Deonta Turner and...

[read more]

Book review: ‘When the English Fall’

Nov 6, 2017 by

Iwill not soon forget an image David Williams creates in the opening chapters of his excellent novel, When the English Fall. The image is searing in its horror and in what it portends. Some kind of solar storm...

[read more]

Sparrows are falling

Sep 26, 2017 by

My wife tells me that I shouldn’t read the news because the news makes me sad. Or angry. Or confused or helpless or despairing or apathetic or cynical. Or some toxic combination of all of the above. She’s...

[read more]

Opting to be humanist

Aug 14, 2017 by

The subjects of contention in MWR’s Letters & Comments section leave me in a quandary. Having been a Mennonite Church member for 60 years, and on its payroll for 15, I treasure the love that emanates...

[read more]

‘A star in the jaws of the clouds’

Apr 14, 2017 by

Never in human history has such goodness encountered such evil. On a Friday a man was condemned to death. This man was marked by more love than the world had ever seen — read the stories of how he treated...

[read more]

Kraybill: Do you want to be made well?

Jan 2, 2017 by

With cancer in his middle-aged body and the prospect of lifespan shortened, Doug Brewer joined a pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 2014 while health permitted. Near the start of the Via Dolorosa — the...

[read more]

Waiting for liberation

Dec 5, 2016 by

Jesus was born into a community of second-class citizens waiting for a liberator. Those who experienced the first Advent endured the weight of oppression — the Roman Empire’s occupation of Judea. Those of...

[read more]

Showalter: Stover Kulp, Anabaptist

Dec 5, 2016 by

I love watching God surprise me. Recently I was asked to respond to a scholarly paper in an Asian conference. Written and presented by a Nigerian, the paper explored the history of the Kanuri people of West...

[read more]

Book review: ‘Lord Willing?’

May 23, 2016 by

People who have experienced devastating loss, like the death of a child or a terminal diagnosis, are familiar with the Christian clichés offered with loving intent but that do little to assuage their...

[read more]

Bible: Faith under stress

Mar 14, 2016 by

We cannot always predict how we will act under stress. The Apostle Peter declares he will never desert Jesus but before morning has three times denied he even knows Jesus, the Galilean, who is on trial before...

[read more]

We need to support each other

Mar 10, 2016 by

You are the salt of the earth . . . you are the light of the world. — Matt. 5:13-14 “MCC envisions communities in right relationship with God, one another and creation.” I am speaking to a summit for...

[read more]

Is that us in the furnace?

Feb 15, 2016 by

Ever since childhood I’ve wondered why we know Daniel by his Hebrew name but his three friends by their Babylonian names. It’s tempting to divine some spiritual significance to the inconsistency, but...

[read more]

God can plant seeds where tears are falling

Aug 7, 2015 by

Our community lost someone a few weeks ago: a young wife, mother of five, a friend and mentor, a follower of Jesus with a passion for the lost. She was living, laughing, serving, loving God with all she had,...

[read more]

Julian of Norwich’s great claim

May 5, 2015 by

Many of us are all too aware of the brokenness, insecurities, limitations and inadequacies in us and around us. When the women of my congregation got together on Sunday to learn from Julian of Norwich’s...

[read more]

Toward Mennonite sexual integrity

Mar 23, 2015 by

The Mennonite church needs a conversation about sexual integrity, how people respect their own bodies and those of other people. Sexual abuse — and even sexual promiscuity — requires dehumanizing male...

[read more]

Pain management

Mar 16, 2015 by

Two recent conversations about pain . . . My daughter has lately been coming to terms with the horrors of World War II. They’ve been studying this period of history in school, and last night she watched a...

[read more]

Avoiding a pro-suffering theology

Mar 6, 2015 by

Lent was a fairly new concept for me when I was in college, and one year I decided to make the ultimate sacrifice — chocolate. I still remember standing in the ice cream parlor, looking at the luscious...

[read more]