As part of the Listen and Learn Initiative, whereby I sought to visit with each lead pastor in Virginia Mennonite Conference, I had a startling discovery: two-thirds of the 60 lead pastors whose birth date is on record in my office will turn 70 in the next 15 years. Broken down in five year increments,…

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And this is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help determine what is best, so that in the day of Christ you may be pure and blameless, having produced the harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God.…

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The Jerusalem Council described in Acts 15 is the second key leadership text for my work as Executive Conference Minister. This story highlights the activity of the leaders of the faith community discerning appropriate responses to the tension between “circumstances and conviction.” (1) The circumstance in the text is the awareness that Gentiles are coming…

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Jesus’ final words to his disciples, recorded in Matthew 28:18-20, was granting them authority to make disciples of all nations, to baptize them, and teach them the ways of God. Traditionally, this text is understood as the Great Commission. It stands as a witness to the resurrected Christ. The purposes of God begun in Jesus’…

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As a student at Eastern Mennonite Seminary (1986-1989), I was introduced to One Lord, One Church, One Hope and One God: Mennonite Confessions of Faith written by Howard John Loewen and published as a text-reader by the Institute of Mennonite Studies. It is compilation of numerous confessions produced by Anabaptist-Mennonite communities. Having participated in a…

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When Jesus was beginning his ministry, John was watching him with two disciples. After John said “Look, here is the Lamb of God,” the two disciples followed Jesus. When Jesus noticed them, he asked, “What are you looking for?” After a brief exchange of cordialities, Jesus says to them, “Come and see.” (John 1:35-39) As…

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