July/August 2015 CommonWord Curator:
Newsletter of CommonWord, distributed 10 times/year to our subscribers and in Mennonite Church Canada's congregational "Equipping" package.
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Anabaptist Faith Formation Network
At the Anabaptist Faith Formation Network (Western District Mennonite Conference, MC USA) you'll find . . .
- Resources to equip, inspire and empower people to live as disciples of Jesus in the Anabaptist tradition.
- Opportunities to connect with the wisdom of the larger community and a network of practitioners in discipleship and faith formation.
In Search of Promised Lands:
A Religious History of Mennonites in Ontario
The wide-ranging story of Mennonite migration, theological diversity, and interaction with other Christian streams is distilled in this engaging volume, which tracks the history of Ontario Mennonites.Author Samuel J. Steiner writes that Ontario Mennonites and Amish are among the most diverse in the world--in their historical migrations and cultural roots, in their theological responses to the world around them, and in the various ways they have pursued their personal and communal salvation.In Search of Promised Lands describes the emergence and evolution of today's thirty-plus streams of Ontarians who have identified themselves as Mennonite or Amish from their arrival in Canada to the last decade. In Search of Promised Lands also considers how various Mennonite groups have adapted to or resisted evangelical fundamentalism and mainline Protestantism, and it identifies the nineteenth- and twentieth-century shifts toward personal salvation and away from submission to the church community.Volume 48 in the Studies of Anabaptist and Mennonite History series.
Purchased titles will ship in 2-3 weeks.
The Gathering Place
The Gathering Place is an interactive website for Anabaptist youth leaders to find connection, resourcing, networking, mentoring, and spiritual formation. In essence, the Gathering Place is…YOU!
As Denominational Minister of Youth and Young Adults for Mennonite Church USA, I have noticed two trends in our churches and conferences. One is a common sentiment from youth workers, “I feel alone in ministry. I want to be connected and talk with others about what works/best practices, but don’t know how to find them.” Even our conferences have limited time, energy, and financial resources.
The second trend is seen in the advances in the digital age which now allow access and opportunities for people from all around the world to virtually connect over the internet.
The Gathering Place intersects these trends to create an online platform where Anabaptist youth leaders gather for spiritual formation and resourcing! No one goes at it alone!
The Gathering Place is an interactive website created by youth workers for youth workers. It is a place for learning, formation, and connection. Unlike other webpages that simply have information to absorb, The Gathering Place is a site where we connect people with people to learn together, support one another, and to network.
The Gathering Place offers perspectives on youth ministry in a variety of ways that fits any schedule. You can connect by reading our best practices blog, live-talk with others in a learning circle hangout on a current youth ministry topic, join a webinar, listen to a podcast, or virtually gather in a short-term cohort group of youth workers for peer support and mentoring. There is also space for a virtual retreat to deepen spiritual practices or connect with a spiritual director.
Of course there is no substitution for real-life gatherings and The Gathering Place: LIVE is just that! These events are gatherings for faith formation people for resourcing, connection, and fun.
The Gathering Place brings faith formation into the 21st century!
Come Lord Jesus, be our Host
Come Lord Jesus be our Host helps us stop and take a good look at what we really believe about communion. It guides congregations as they navigate the waters of change that surround the Lord’s Table by providing reflections and tools such as summarized research, sample litanies, and discernment processes. Each chapter includes doodle graphics as well as stimulating discussion questions.
Engaging this six-session study guide will help congregations celebrate communion faithfully in ways that respect Christian tradition, honour Jesus as host, and help form and celebrate faith for all ages and stages. Come Lord Jesus be our Host engages statements from Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective alongside of current denominational discernment practices to guide the adaptive changes we are making to our beliefs and practices about children, adolescents, and communion.
Also see the separate adult Doodling Pages.
Voices of Harmony and Dissent:
How Peacebuilders are Transforming their Worlds
An informative and thought-provoking resource from the world-renowned Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSoP). Each chapter, authored by a different peace leader, explores three dimensions of peacebuilding:
- stories of inspiring peace work
- tools and strategies for peacebuilding in a variety of settings
- resources that have helped shape the author's views
Helping Youth Grieve:
The Good News of Biblical Lament
Suicide, depressions, eating disorders, and other mental health illnesses have dramatically increased among adolescents in recent decades. Our American culture demands high levels of success and propagates a "feel good" attitude that denies pain, loss, and failure. Churches contribute to these distressing realities among youth. Our theology associates "being happy" with "true faithfulness" to God, overemphasizing praise and thanksgiving while neglecting lament, even though lament comprises the largest number of Psalms.
There is much good in the lives of today's adolescents, but there is also much grief and woundedness. Helping Youth Grieve exposes the warped view of God modeled and taught to our young people. This book portrays a God who yearns to hear the honest cries of our youth, even when that involves blaming God! Spiritual caregivers will discover good news in biblical lament for its role in pastoral care and faith formation of adolescents.
Igniting Your God-Given Creativity
Rediscover the joys of being created in God’s image, and nurture your own creative spirit! Spark: Igniting Your God-Given Creativity thoughtfully takes you deep into the Bible and unpacks stories of God’s creative Spirit at work.
Twelve easy-to-use sessions help you connect with God—the source of our creativity. The sessions artfully bring biblical texts to life, encouraging you to uncover, develop, and embrace the gift of your own creativity.
Spark, commissioned by Mennonite Women Canada and Mennonite Women USA, is the perfect resource for women’s gatherings, Sunday school groups, or individual reading and inspiration.
Monday - Friday - 9:00-5:00
Saturday - 10:00-3:00
Sunday - closed