All posts by emcmessenger

MDS Canada calling for volunteers to help with B.C. flood clean-up

Volunteers needed for December 6 in Princeton 

WINNIPEG, Man.
—Mennonite Disaster Service (MDS) Canada is calling for volunteers to help with cleaning out homes in Princeton, B.C. following the catastrophic flood that hit that town in mid-November. Around 20 volunteers are needed by December 6 to help people in that interior community clean out their flooded homes.

The call comes after a visit to Princeton on November 23 by Ross Penner, Director of Canadian Operations for MDS Canada, and Walter Wiebe of Abbotsford, who is serving as response coordinator on behalf of the MDS B.C. Unit.

The two met with emergency response officials, took a tour of the community with Princeton Mayor Spencer Coyne, and met other members of the community responding to the disaster. Initial reports indicate about 300 homes need to be cleaned out due to the flooding.

MDS Canada is doing its work in partnership with MCC B.C., an organization supported by Mennonite churches in B.C. that responds to people suffering from poverty, conflict, oppression and disaster internationally and at home.

“We see ourselves working in support of MDS Canada and local churches needing help in responding the flood,” said Wayne Bremner, Executive Director of MCC B.C.

People who want to volunteer with MDS Canada for a week or for a day can contact Kelsey Friesen at 204-261-1274, 1-866-261-1274, or kfriesen@mds.org. Volunteers should be 16 years of age and older. Accommodation and food will be provided for volunteers who go to Princeton.

All COVID-19 health and safety protocols will be followed by MDS Canada in the response, and all volunteers must be fully vaccinated.

While MDS Canada is responding in Princeton, Samaritan’s Purse is responding to needs in Abbotsford, Chilliwack and Merritt and other places.

Donations are welcome for B.C. fire and flood response at https://mds.mennonite.net/donate/

Living on the Word of God Alone

A testimony to the effectiveness of fasting

By Darcy Sproule

Have you ever seen a vehicle where the dash in front of the driver is full of papers or books? It has scraps of notes, receipts, work sheets from a project or any other such thing cluttering up the top of the dash. While it doesn’t interfere with the driver’s line of sight, it does interfere with looking through the window. The reflection in the windshield distracts from seeing clearly ahead. Similarly, our lives can get cluttered—with things both good and bad. Continue reading Living on the Word of God Alone

MWC General Secretary Says, ‘Politics Matters’

By MCC UN/MWC

What Is God’s Kingdom and What Does Citizenship Look Like? Mennonite World Conference general secretary César García explored these questions in a book in the “The Jesus Way: Small Books of Radical Faith” series by Herald Press in February 2021.
Mennonite Central Committee’s United Nations Office asked him questions about the subject. This is a shortened version of an interview originally published in the May 2021 UN Office Global Briefing. Continue reading MWC General Secretary Says, ‘Politics Matters’

Church Renewal: Can These Bones Live?

God calls for reform and renewal of churches in exile

By Terry Hiebert, Ph.D.

It started with a Bible study. Young families sensed God moving in revival. The good news of salvation in Jesus transformed their lives. Bible studies formed to discover the meaning of new life in Christ. Still, their church remained traditional and legalistic. Ministers resisted these new gospel songs and “born again” sermons. Eventually the young leaders started a church to proclaim Jesus for lost friends and family. Continue reading Church Renewal: Can These Bones Live?

Pray for God’s Peace, Power, Protection

By Rebecca Roman

By the time you’re reading this, International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church (November 7, 2021) will have passed. However, the need for prayer remains.

According to Open Doors USA, in the last year there have been:

  • 340 million Christians living in places where they experience high levels of persecution and discrimination;
  • 4,761 Christians killed for their faith;
  • 4,488 churches and other Christian buildings attacked;
  • 4,277 believers detained without trial, arrested, sentenced or imprisoned.

Continue reading Pray for God’s Peace, Power, Protection

Letters September 2021

A Mistake to Assume, Rather than Seek to Understand

By Jen Isaac, Morweena, Man.

I recognize the frustration of those who feel held back by EMC policies in regards to women in pastoral roles. However, I am saddened and disappointed by how quickly we assume the worst of our brothers and sisters in Christ who disagree with us.

I have heard it said that in the discussion of women in leadership we need to keep two things in mind. Egalitarians don’t have their beliefs because they are throwing out Scripture, and complementarians don’t have their beliefs because they want to “keep women down.”

If you believe women shouldn’t be pastors because you believe the Scriptures say this, that is not sexism. You just interpret Scripture differently than egalitarians. If you have this belief because you feel women are inferior, that is sexism. It’s about the heart. We damage the church when we attack each other instead of trying to understand each other’s hearts. Continue reading Letters September 2021

Old Testament Violence Condensed Show Notes

Editor’s Note: This is the condensed version of an interview with Dr. Lissa Wray Beal for the full video and text transcript click the link here

Have you also had to wrestle through these questions or even wrestle with your faith in God as a result of some of these things that the Old Testament bears witness to?

I would say yes and no to that. I mean because I was so captivated by the love of God and that has always been a pretty firm bedrock for me out of which I have been able to question. So, when I see things that are hard to understand or troubling in the text, I’ve felt I’ve been allowed to question. I think God invites us to question and to wrestle with that. Continue reading Old Testament Violence Condensed Show Notes

Application for Conversion

Abbeydale Christian Fellowship

by Ivy Plett

CALGARY, Alta.—“Conversion” must be one of the most versatile words in the English language. One can “convert” almost anything. A pile of old shirts can be beautifully converted into an heirloom quilt, or a seemingly useless piece of wood can be converted into a beautiful gift for a loved one. Continue reading Application for Conversion