Mennonite World Conference connects father and son

Aldine Musser

Alberto Othuon, a third generational Mennonite from Tanzania, currently worships at Stephens City Mennonite Church. The 16th Global Assembly of Anabaptists brought his father to Harrisburg, Pa., from Tanzania for international worship and fellowship with 7,500 Mennonites from 65 countries. His father, Bishop John Nyagwegwe, has been walking with God (the Mennonite World Conference theme)…

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Convention: facilitating difficult table conversations

Loren Swartzendruber

With the exception of two Mennonite Church USA Conventions, I have been present as a pastor or as an employee of a denominational agency or institution for the last 40 years. Kansas City 2015 was the first time I served as a delegate, in this case appointed by Virginia Mennonite Conference. I also served as…

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God met us at Table 80

Phil Kniss

The work we had to do weighed heavily on those of us around Table 80 at Mennonite Church USA Convention in Kansas City. We were carefully prepared for our work of “spiritual discernment,” and were reminded often throughout the delegate assembly to work in a spirit of prayerful openness to each other and to the…

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Intrigued and challenged by our ‘Jerusalem’ events

Elroy Miller photo by Lindsey Kolb, EMU

I left both Virginia Mennonite Conference (VMC) Assembly and Mennonite Church USA Convention in Kansas City feeling deeply moved by the worship experiences with emphasis on what it means to live like Jesus during challenging times. I was intrigued by the notion that holiness and unity aren’t just two dynamic concepts on a continuum, but…

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A God ‘bigger than our differences’

Mary Jo Lehman

Planners for the Mennonite Church USA Convention in Kansas City carefully assigned delegates to tables of eight or nine persons to reflect both geographical and viewpoint diversity. None of us at Table 22 knew each other beforehand, but the preliminary conversations around the table went at ping-pong speed as we quickly established commonalities and relationships.…

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Engaging possibilities and walking together in love

Clyde G. Kratz

Summer 2015 will be remembered for the gatherings of the body of Christ within our Anabaptist-Mennonite faith family. In mid-June Virginia Mennonite Conference held their annual Assembly on the theme “Built into a Spiritual House” (1 Peter 2) at Harrisonburg Mennonite Church. The first week of July, Mennonite Church USA held their biennial Convention in…

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Conference Archives seeks church records for preservation

Harold Huber

Congregations are busy with many activities that require their attention, but it is important for them to preserve the historical record of God’s work in and through their congregational life and ministries. Every congregation should have an historian who regularly collects, organizes and sends their records to the Virginia Mennonite Conference Archives for preservation and…

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Mara Chin connections culminate in Charlotte church

Our Conference demographic has just experienced a change of no small significance. The Tennessee Carolina Kentucky District has recently welcomed a vibrant group of young refugee families whose passionate Christian faith has enabled them to endure the throes of transition from Burma to Malaysia to the US. The Chin are a large minority people numbering…

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A common purpose: our witness and our with-ness

Jake Lee

Over the past couple of years, Harrisonburg Mennonite Church has sought become more, not less, religious. Religion gets a bad rap these days. We often hear people say, “I’m spiritual, but not religious”, or, “I’m for Jesus, but against religion.” But we believe that to be spiritual, to be “for” Jesus, is to embrace religion.…

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