Volume 22 Issue 03

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Peace is everyone’s business

Constructing a house of peace that is inclusive, containing a health and safe environment in which the human soul can thrive requires the involvement of all vocations and disciplines. (Photo © istock.com/danr13)

The political scientist Harold Lasswell once defined politics to be “who gets what, when and how.” If that is politics, peace studies in contrast can be seen as an attempt to answer the question “why” things are given to whom, when and how.

One word

A year ago, a friend issued a challenge. He urged me to select one word as the word for me in 2017. A word on which to focus and meditate. A word of (at least hoped for) transformation.

Bloodvein Reserve

Photo courtesy of the Canadian Mennonite / Mennonite Archives of Ontario

Many years ago, our archives first described this photograph as “School children at Bloodvein Reserve, ca. 1956.” The subject heading included the phrase, “Indians of North America,” correct for the time.

Wildwood Mennonite unplugged

Members of Wildwood Mennonite Church in Saskatoon go for a hike together along the South Saskatchewan River during one of the congregation’s Unplugged weekends. (Photo courtesy of Wildwood Mennonite Church)

Members of Wildwood Mennonite Church prepare to make pizzas for supper during one of their congregation’s Unplugged weekends. (Photo courtesy of Wildwood Mennonite Church)

Open space to enjoy a conversation or sit and work on a puzzle is an important feature of Wildwood Mennonite Church’s Unplugged weekends. (Photo courtesy of Wildwood Mennonite Church)

Children and adults enjoy a game of Skip-Bo together during a Wildwood Unplugged weekend. (Photo courtesy of Wildwood Mennonite Church)

In this age of hectic schedules, electronic device dependency and human isolation, how can a church provide meaning, purpose and belonging? Saskatoon’s Wildwood Mennonite Church may have found an answer to this perplexing question.

Family celebrates permanent residency

Karalynn Warkentin, 7, loves colouring, playing with her dogs and being outside. (Photo courtesy of the Warkentin family)

The Warkentin family, Christmas 2017. Pictured from left to right, back row: Jake, Shataya and Grace; and front row: Jon, Karalynn, Karissa and Gabriel. (Photo courtesy of the Warkentin family)

The Warkentins are ringing in 2018 as official Canadians, but the journey to reach permanent-resident status was anything but easy. Jon and Karissa Warkentin and their five children, who attend Nordheim Mennonite Church in Winnipegosis, Man., received the announcement they could stay in Canada on Dec. 5, 2017.

Grad takes the helm of his alma mater

Mark Whyte, Conrad Grebel University College’s student council president, left, and University of Waterloo president Feridun Hamdullahpur, centre, stand with Marcus Shantz, who was installed as Grebel’s eighth president on Nov 2, 2017. (Photo courtesy of Conrad Grebel University College)

Marcus Shantz laughs when it’s noted that the previous seven presidents of Conrad Grebel University College have all been pastors or academics, or both. “I guess the board sees that it takes a broad skill set to be the president,” he says.

A child’s world in the palm of their parents’ hands

Parents of students at Winnipeg Mennonite Elementary & Middle School can now download a school app to help them connect with their child’s school world.

When most parents send their elementary-and middle-school-aged children off to school, they rely on school websites and notes in their children’s backpack to keep them informed. But one Winnipeg school has changed all that. Now, Winnipeg Mennonite Elementary & Middle Schools (WMEMS) parents can download a school app to stay in the loop with their children’s world.

Drawing students ‘in’

During a chapel service, Grade 10 students from Rosthern Junior College present what they learned from their trip to Winnipeg. (Photo by Ryan Wood)

Grade 10 students at Rosthern Junior College debrief after a visit to the Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg. (Photo by Kenna Forrester)

In “Outwitted,” poet Edwin Markham writes: “He drew a circle that shut me out— / Heretic, a rebel, a thing to flout. / But love and I had the wit to win: / We drew a circle that took him in!”

Building bridges

Jessie Castello, a member of Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church in Kitchener, Ont., has just completed her master of peace and conflict studies degree at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ont. (Conrad Grebel University College photo)

In celebration of 40 years of leadership in peace education, the current Grebel Gallery exhibit, Beyond Essays: Approaching Peace Education Differently, showcases some of the creations of Conrad Grebel University College Peace and Conflict Studies students over the years. Submitted by PACS student Ambar Hernandez, this arpillera sheds light on the role that the Vicariate of Solidarity played in empowering and protecting individuals during the Chilean dictatorship (1973-90). It demonstrates the artist’s memories of the community coming together to fight for equality and dignity with hope as their shield. (Conrad Grebel University College photo)

In 1977, an academic concentration in Peace and Conflict Studies (PACS) was formally introduced at the University of Waterloo, launched by Conrad Grebel College, now Conrad Grebel University College. It was the first undergraduate peace studies program at a Canadian university.

‘I do believe in prayer because I believe in poetry’

Sarah Ens earned an honourable mention in CV2’s 2017 Young Buck Poetry Prize competition. (Photo by Nicolien Klassen-Wiebe)

Sarah Ens’s cat, Balto, is the inspiration behind her poetry that appears on Instagram @balto_thesleddog. (Photo courtesy of Sarah Ens)

Sarah Ens’s writing career started at the age of six with a story suspiciously similar to the children’s book, Julie and the Wolves. But since those early days, she has grown into an award-winning poet.

Many Voices, One Song

A B.C. congregation produced a video to tell its story and to highlight members’ connections to their church.

To celebrate its 30th anniversary, a Vancouver congregation produced a documentary featuring its church. Many Voices, One Song: The Story of Point Grey Inter-Mennonite Fellowship is a 27-minute video telling both the history of Point Grey and how it contributes to and enriches the faith of its members.

In the beginning

A new book tells the story of the United Mennonite Church of Black Creek.

Last November, the United Mennonite Church of Black Creek launched a new book, In the Beginning—Stories of our Founders, during an evening of speakers, images and history.

On the court and in the classroom

Growing up in Morris, Man., Jessica Edel played sports starting in elementary school. (Photo courtesy of Canadian Mennonite University)

Jessica Edel is a first-year student at Canadian Mennonite University. (Photo courtesy of Canadian Mennonite University)

‘Your team starts to act as a second family,’ writes Jessica Edel (No. 9). ‘They always have your back.’ (Photo courtesy of Canadian Mennonite University)

Growing up just south of Winnipeg in Morris, Man., I was involved in sports starting in elementary school. I participated in many school sports but invested most of my time in basketball, playing competitively from Grade 5 until Grade 11.

Caught in the tension between belief and fear

‘Praying hands at sea’ by Tinus Badenhorst. (publicdomainpictures.net photo)

Moses Falco is the pastor of Sterling Mennonite Fellowship in Winnipeg. (Photo courtesy of Moses Falco)

Time is a significantly gracious yet controlling dynamic. It’s a dimension from which we cannot escape, but our experience of it varies depending on our context. We move from day to day, month to month, year to year, growing older and hopefully wiser, sometimes caught off guard by the realization that time doesn’t wait for our approval.

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