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Obituary: ‘Dan has left us’

Web First | By Donita Wiebe-Neufeld | Aug 02, 2017 | 2 comments

The four short words of this obituary’s title, sent to Mennonite Church Alberta’s area church minister Tim Wiebe-Neufeld, heralded a large impact for the province’s churchgoers, for the Jack family, and for the many friends of Dan and Marguerite Jack.

Jack, the moderator of MC Alberta, died peacefully on July 17 after a medical emergency precipitated by a 15-year struggle with Crohn’s disease.

MC USA acknowledges ‘suffering’ of Jews, Palestinians

Web First | Jul 15, 2017

Culminating a three-year process, delegates at the Mennonite Church USA assembly in Orlando earlier this month adopted a resolution entitled “Seeking peace in Israel and Palestine,” with approximately 98 percent voting in favor. The resolution addresses the injustices of military occupation as well as the suffering caused by antisemitism.

The resolution notes that “the suffering of [Palestinians and Jews] has too often been set against the other. We recognize, rather, that the legacy of Jewish suffering is intertwined with the suffering of Palestinians.”

A man worthy of his calling

Darrell W. Fast

Web First | By Ross W. Muir | Jul 15, 2017

Darrell W. Fast, born in Mountain Lake, Minn., passed away at the Leamington (Ont.) Mennonite Home, leaving Loretta Fast, his wife, his children Douglas (Michelle) Fast and Larissa Fast, two grandchildren, and many friends, relatives and former colleagues to mourn his passing.

After graduating from Mennonite Biblical Seminary (now Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary), Elkhart, Ind., in 1966, he began a life of service to the church on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border for the next 40 years.

MWC says farewell to a faithful servant

Glenn Fretz is pictured with the initial planning map and some of the hallway signage he designed for Assembly 16 in Harrisburg, Pa., in 2015. (Photo by Byron Rempel-Burkholder)

Web First | By Karla Braun | Jul 15, 2017

You may not have heard of one of the longest-serving workers for Mennonite World Conference (MWC) who is retiring this year, but many will be familiar with his work.

Glenn Fretz was at the beginning of his career as a designer when Paul Kraybill, a former MWC general secretary, contacted the resident of Waterloo, Ont., to do all the design work related to Assembly 10 in 1978. He designed the publications in multiple languages, created signage that features pictorial symbols to communicate across cultures without using words, and he created the organization’s logo.

Walking together for peace in Colombia

Colombians gather to demand peace in October 2016 after a plebiscite to ratify the peace agreement between the government and the country’s largest guerrilla group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, was narrowly defeated. MCC partners organized ecumenical services for peace and participated in marches in Bogotá. The group in front holds a sign that says (in Spanish): ‘They kill the walker, but not the path. What are the paths of liberation today?’ (MCC photo by Anna Vogt)

Web First | By Rachel Bergen | Jul 15, 2017

Months after a peace accord was signed between the government and the country’s largest rebel group, Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) partners in Colombia are walking with people affected by more than 50 years of violence.

Canada 150: Facing the long divide

Image courtesy of www.pixabay.com. CCO Public Domain. 

Web First | By Deborah Froese | Jun 30, 2017 | 1 comment

On July 1, 1867, the concerted efforts of 36 male, ethnic-European politicians came to fruition, and the Dominion of Canada was born. At the time, they celebrated, and for more than a century, Canadians continued to commemorate that day.

Working group tackles tasks of advocacy on Palestine and Israel

Star Street in the Old City of Bethlehem. The Mennonite Church Canada resolution on Israeli-Palestine calls for Mennonites to support nonviolent efforts for peace there. (Photo by Melita Rempel-Burkholder)

Web First | By Byron Rempel-Burkholder | Jun 14, 2017

When delegates to the July 2016 assembly of Mennonite Church Canada passed a resolution on Palestine and Israel with an almost unanimous vote, reactions varied widely from within the denomination and from outside. 

Three stories of throwing

Kathy Moorhead Thiessen tells stories from a recent visit to the city of Hebron. (Photo courtesy of Kathy Moorhead Thiessen) 

Web First | By Kathy Moorhead Thiessen | Jun 14, 2017

In March 2017, I spent 10 days in Hebron and observed three throwing situations that showed a microcosm of the occupation in that Palestinian city. Hebron, a major city in the southern West Bank, is where some 800 Jewish settlers, protected by hundreds of Israeli soldiers, have moved into the old city, among the Palestinian population.

Palestinian children face harsh realities

A poster in the Aida refugee camp in Bethlehem recalls the death of a teenager at the hands of the Israeli military. (Photo by Henry Krause)

Web First | By Edith and Henry Krause | Jun 14, 2017

On May 24, 2017, we returned from a two-week learning tour of the West Bank and Israel, sponsored by Mennonite Central Committee (MCC). We were two among eleven participants, mostly from Mennonite churches and MCC staff in British Columbia.

The tour included visits to holy sites, but it focused on visits to MCC’s partners working for peace in the West Bank and Israel. A recurrent theme for these groups is the needs of children.

A Jewish perspective on the Mennonite resolution on Palestine and Israel

Steve McDonald 

Web First | By Will Braun | Jun 14, 2017 | 1 comment

This is an expanded report on an hour-long phone interview I did for the article “Muddying the waters on Israeli divestment.” 

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