Coming to terms with Nazi collaboration

Mar 21, 2017 by and

FILADELFIA, Paraguay — Violence tore through this traditionally pacifist community on the night of March 11, 1944. All the more remarkable, its perpetrators and victims were all Mennonites. And they all...

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History repeats?

Feb 27, 2017 by

Almost certainly there were many well-meaning conservatives (even Mennonites) among the throngs with arms extended in salutation when a racist, misogynist, xenophobic monster vomited his hateful rhetoric in...

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Book review: ‘A Witness in Times of War and Peace’

Jan 30, 2017 by

The subtitle of this memoir, “The Story of Gerhard Hein, a Mennonite Pastor Who Served in the Wehrmacht During World War II,” suggests why it was published now in English 35 years after it was first...

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Lessons from ‘Hacksaw Ridge’

Nov 17, 2016 by

My husband, Stuart, and I saw Hacksaw Ridge, based on a true story, and both of us were tremendously moved, for similar although markedly different reasons. We were emotionally affected in spite of this being...

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Kreider a uniter who made history

Dec 29, 2015 by and

NORTH NEWTON, Kan. — Robert S. Kreider, an educator and historian who championed causes of peace, service and cooperation through Anabaptist engagement with the world, died Dec. 27. He was 96. Driven by...

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Peace churches prepare for war

Oct 26, 2015 by

Few in the mid-1930s could have imagined another global conflict as horrendous as World War I, with its 20 million casualties. Even fewer would have believed that another global conflagration would triple that...

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Europeans confront hard truths of Nazi era

Oct 5, 2015 by and

MÜNSTER, Germany — In the city infamous as the site of an attempt to establish an Ana­bap­tist kingdom by force in 1535, more than 100 people participated in a conference on “Mennonites in the Era of...

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The price of privilege

Aug 31, 2015 by

Ben Goossen, a scholar examining the relationship of Mennonite identity and German nationalism, said at Mennonite World Conference, “It is important to understand that playing ‘The Mennonite Game’ [and...

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Moral failures of the ‘good war’

Aug 17, 2015 by

In The Good War That Wasn’t — And Why It Matters: World War II’s Moral Legacy, Ted Grimsrud attempts to prove that American involvement in the war was unnecessary and unjust, that tactics employed were...

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Still friends of Ukraine

Aug 3, 2015 by

In March 2014, troops from Russia occupied and annexed Crimea, escalating a civil war in Ukraine that has left thousands homeless and thousands more facing extreme shortages of food, fuel and medical supplies....

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Opinion: Intrusion of dissenters

Jul 6, 2015 by

Seventy-four years ago, I was part of a national experiment unlikely to be repeated. On June 5, 1941, a camp for conscientious objectors to war opened at Templeton Gap on the northwest edge of Colorado...

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Opinion: Building an alternative

May 11, 2015 by

I remember walking down the street in Hesston, Kan., in 1946 toward Aden Holdeman’s machine shop. In the lead was my father, Jess Kauffman, then 35 years old and pastor of Hesston Mennonite Church. With him...

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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...

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Can a pacifist wear a poppy?

Nov 10, 2014 by

The answer is yes — I’m a pacifist, and I wear one. A few others I know do, too. But many people who oppose war have ambivalent feelings about poppies. I think they’re afraid wearing one will...

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Movie review: The Railway Man

May 30, 2014 by

As I become more and more convinced that a film’s moral compass should be a primary criterion for film criticism, many film critics seem to be moving in the opposite direction. Belle is a case in point....

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