by Terry M. Smith
WORLD—Conference council delegates on June 27, 2020, met by Zoom, heard updates on boards’ activities, and discussed questions proposed by the boards.
Welcome and Devotional
Moderator Barry Plett welcomed delegates to the Zoom meeting and encouraged them to view any video reports previously posted to avoid “redundant” questions. Tim Dyck, executive director, outlined the electronic process. Continue reading Council Discusses Boards’ Questions
by Terry M. Smith
WORLD—The EMC’s ministerial on June 26, 2020, held its national meeting by Zoom, spending an afternoon where it listened to opening thoughts by the BLO chair and learned of coming events, heard five challenges based on Acts 2, met in small groups for discussion and prayer, and shared thoughts as an entire group.
Continue reading Ministerial Looks at ‘Pentecost, Pandemic, and Possibility’
A missionary and their sending church need a strong family bond, and yet, like a family, can suffer from misunderstood needs and expectations. Each needs to communicate expectations and serve their partner well. Even a supporting church should clarify its expectations and might need to assume a larger role. If your church is welcoming a missionary for home assignment (HA) or sending a new worker, be open about your expectations. Circulate your commitments. Perhaps these examples will help. Continue reading Expectations: What Do Missionaries and Churches Say to Each Other?
by Kevin Wiebe
Things were going just fine, or so you thought. Sure, it wasn’t perfect, but what is? Then out of nowhere what you thought was going well just turned out to have been naive optimism, and now you get to be the next person to take your turn going for a ride on the conflict carousel. You don’t know what to do and you could use some advice, but you truly love the people you are in conflict with and don’t want to be spreading gossip about them. And, yet, you feel that if there is any hope for things to get better you will need to talk to someone. So, what do you do? How do you involve someone without becoming a gossip? Continue reading Getting Help Without Being a Gossip
By Terry M. Smith
“I have much to write to you, but I do not want to use paper and ink. Instead, I hope to visit you and talk with you face to face, so that our joy may be complete. The children of our chosen sister send their greetings” (2 Jn 12-13). Continue reading Being Together Wasn’t Enough for Elder John
by Mary Ann Smith and Terry Smith
Ralph Friesen tells of how his father, Peter D. Friesen, grew up in the KG/EMC and served as a minister and, later, the lead pastor of Steinbach EMC for years while supporting his family as a businessman. His Dad suffered a stroke in his 50s and lived uncomfortably for several years before dying in his early 60s. As Friesen said in an interview elsewhere, the book intertwines two stories: his father’s and his own. Continue reading Review: Dad, God, and Me: Remembering a Mennonite Pastor and His Wayward Son
by Karla Hein
I used to think I was a calm, rational person. Then I met me, the mother of two preschoolers. My delusion shattered. I’m a nice person…the first time I have to wrestle dancing feet into a pair of jeans. Tell me to potty train a small human and my “good mommy” persona starts to slip. Most days my words are less than inspirational. Dirty dishes ferment on the counter; toys are scattered in every room. My husband comes home from a busy work day to hyper kids and a frazzled wife. Continue reading Musings from a Momma
Complaining About Restrictions?
by Bethany Matejka. Birch River, Man.
I have heard quite a few people, many of whom are Christians, complaining about the restrictions being put on us because of the COVID-19 pandemic. I am not here to discuss the necessity or effectiveness of any of those measures. I am also not here to draw a comparison between the Manitoban or Canadian government and the Roman government of New Testament times. Continue reading Letters June 2020
by Layton Friesen
There is a lot of discussion about hell in Christian circles today. A big difference is made when we decide whether hell is an arbitrary punishment that God designs to make bad people suffer, or the natural consequence of choices we make here in this life. Try this analogy. It helps me think about hell. Continue reading Hell and Highwater
Ministerial Retreat Nov. 30-Dec. 2, 2019
By Phil and Lydia Hamm
Every other year EMC ministers and deacons are treated to a retreat for spiritual, emotional, and social renewal. This is a great time to spend time connecting with new leaders, gaining wisdom from those who have been in ministry for a long time and getting the pulse of the conference. We get to know other leaders in new ways as we share our life experiences in a retreat setting. Continue reading The Three Rs: Relax, Rejuvenate and Enjoy Recreation