Reflecting on Mandela Day evokes a sense of grace unto justiceMandela Day reflection https://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Reflecting-on-Mandela-Day-evokes-a-sense-of-grace-unto-justiceReflecting on Mandela Day evokes a sense of grace unto justiceBy Joe Sawatzky

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Living out commitment to peaceMennoCon21 Impressionshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Living-out-commitment-to-peaceLiving out commitment to peaceBy Faith Bell
Roosting, or flying free?MennoCon21 impressionshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Roosting,-or-flying-free?Roosting, or flying free?By Laurie Oswald Robinson
Befriending those babiesMennoCon21 impressionshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Befriending-those-babiesBefriending those babiesBy Laurie Oswald Robinson
Entering the eye of the storm by touching the hem of his garmentMennoCon21 impressionshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/-Entering-the-eye-of-the-storm-by-touching-the-hem-of-his-garmentEntering the eye of the storm by touching the hem of his garmentBy Laurie Oswald Robinson
Transforming voicelessness into sharing voices togetherMennoCon21 impressionshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Transforming-voicelessness-into-sharing-voices-togetherTransforming voicelessness into sharing voices togetherBy Laurie Oswald Robinson
Breathing in the expanse of GodVirtual MennoCon21 Impressionshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Breathing-in-the-expanse-of-GodBreathing in the expanse of GodBy Laurie Oswald Robinson

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Lamenting, repenting, and naminghttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Lamenting,-repenting,-and-namingLamenting, repenting, and namingBy Laurie Oswald Robinson<p>When was the last time you remember someone portraying God as a divine warrior who is like a woman giving birth to something new?</p><p>Or, the last time you remember being encouraged to offer up your pain, rather than praise, to God in prayer?</p><p>If you are anything like me, a pastor or speaker may have come close a time or two, but it has been so rare that I cannot remember it.</p><p>That is precisely why Safwat Marzouk's Bible study on "Shalom Justice Amidst Pandemic and Racism" (based on Psalm 74 and Isaiah 59) was a refreshing blast of passionate relief. Finally, someone was giving me permission to lament, to repent, to name the bad in the world and myself, naked before God, unashamedly pleading for God to do something – in the world AND in me.</p><p>He helped me to see that without naming the bad, I cannot claim the good, either. That before the peace, there is pain; before the wonder, there is the wound; before the reconciliation and healing and hope, there is the division and despondency evoked by all the -isms in my own soul.</p><p>He reminded us that Psalms encourages us to lament our way into love; to repent our way into reconciliation. To know that God's covenant with us is forged by humble readiness to join God in God's work, not to forge our own ego-driven agendas.</p><p>Thank you, Safwat, for the holy permission to be a people who trust that God is not scared off by our cries but draws ever closer as we cooperate in the divine-human covenant-keeping. It is not a pristine desire to be immediately perfect and well-formed in that relationship. Rather, it is the openness to enter the messy birthing process of being born anew from God's womb.<br></p><p> <br> </p> <br>
Two evening concerts now available!https://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Two-evening-concerts-now-availableTwo evening concerts now available!By Laurie Oswald Robinson<p><strong>Note to virtual convention goers:</strong> Just in case you haven't realized all the goodies available to you in the virtual Pheedloop portal, don't forget two evening concerts!</p><p> <strong>A Girl Named Tom:</strong></p><p>This group presented live at 8 p.m. July 6, and the concert is now available for replay. Enjoy the music of Bekah Grace and her two brothers, Joshua and Caleb. Their sound is built on Bekah Grace's palatable voice and her two brothers' beautiful harmonies. While their original repertoire is full of variety, the sparse instrumentation and sweet vocal blend put them in the acoustic pop / singer-songwriter category. GNT's style combines the popular classics (Joni Mitchell; Crosby, Stills & Nash) with folk/pop artists of today (Taylor Swift, The Wailin' Jennys, Adrianne Lenker).</p><p> <strong>Sadie Gustafson-Zook:</strong><br></p><p>Sadie presented live at 8 p.m. July 7, and her concert is now available for replay. Sadie is a versatile singer, intricate guitar player, and contagious songwriter. Her pure voice and hummable melodies balance with witty lyrics to create charmingly honest and relatable music. Oregon-born, Indiana-grown and Boston-based, Sadie has brought her lovable stories and songs to audiences across the country, in homes, churches, and renowned folk venues and festivals.<br></p>
Convention worship connects through screen and stagehttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Convention-worship-connects-through-screen-and-stage-Convention worship connects through screen and stageBy Laurie Oswald Robinson<p><em>​The following is the first in a blog series detailing the virtual MennoCon21 experience.</em><br></p><p>A couple of lines from the song "Waymaker" sung during opening worship July 6 struck me as I joined virtually from the Kansas prairies in Newton: </p><p><strong><em>Waymaker, miracle worker, promise keeper, light in the darkness,</em></strong></p><p><strong><em>my God, that is who you are. … </em></strong></p><p>Indeed, that is who God is – the Waymaker for a first-ever dual convention that is unifying folks from home and folks in person. That takes a Miracle Worker, a Promise Keeper, a Light in the Darkness. A light that permeates every space where people are joining the experience. </p><p>Yes, light is emanating from the computer screens across the United States, as well as from the lights on stage in Cincinnati. These lights are but a symbol of the light of Christ, the Light in the Darkness and Promise Keeper in a world pulsating with pandemic, pain, and perplexity. </p><p>And yet, because of excellent planning, the giftedness of God's people, and the grit of trust in our Miracle Worker, MennoCon21 is happening. </p><p>May it help us all grow deeper roots of peace so that more abundant fruits of peace may flourish beyond the chats rooms and convention halls.<br></p>
God delights in uncut stoneshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/God-delights-in-uncut-stonesGod delights in uncut stonesBy Faith Bell<p>​<em style="font-size:1.4rem;background-color:transparent;color:inherit;">This blog post is adapted from a </em><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALePmI5AhOg" style="font-size:1.4rem;background-color:transparent;font-style:inherit;"><em>sermon</em></a><em style="font-size:1.4rem;background-color:transparent;color:inherit;"> Faith Bell gave at </em><a href="https://www.fairhavenmennonite.org/" style="font-size:1.4rem;background-color:transparent;font-style:inherit;"><em>Fairhaven Mennonite Church</em></a><em style="font-size:1.4rem;background-color:transparent;color:inherit;"> in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where she is a member.</em></p><p>In the beginning, God created everything. When God created humans, God described this creation as very good. </p><p>Despite God's beautiful declaration of goodness, I have often considered being called human as an insult. Phrases like "only human" imply deficiency. But the Exodus story reminds me that what God said about human goodness is true, and God will always find a way for creation to flourish.</p><p>In this Old Testament book, the people who encountered and followed God the Creator were enslaved in Egypt. God heard their cries and worked with Moses and Aaron, leading them on a journey of liberation. Through miracles and wonders of God's palpable presence, the people left the bondage of slavery for the freedom of journeying on to the place God had prepared for them. </p><p>Enslaved people are dehumanized. Something as simple as rest is not within the enslaved person's choice, since those in power dictate what is permissible for her. When the people were no longer in bondage, God gave commands, in Exodus 20, that reoriented the people to what it means to be human, a part of creation that is very good. </p><p>Most of the commands are ones I am familiar with, like having rest on the Sabbath and not stealing. But at the end of the chapter, there is a command that was unfamiliar to me.</p><p>"Build for me an altar made of earth. … If you use stones to build my altar, use only natural, uncut stones. Do not shape the stones with a tool, for that would make the altar unfit for holy use" (Exodus 20:24-25, NLT).</p><p>The kingdom God creates is one made of people who are uniquely and wonderfully made. I am here to be the human God created me to be. God could desire an altar that looks perfectly symmetrical with no distinguishing marks. Instead, God prefers something that showcases the very good nature of humanity that God created. </p><p>The uncut stones in the altar of God's kingdom are not stagnant. They are actively learning from each other. If we are building something together, our uncut sharp edges are going to rub off on each other in ways that make us stronger together. In our individual natural ways, we increasingly develop the characteristics of God's love.</p><p>I am encouraged to see, in modern times, the ways God's people support one in another in being the uncut stones God delights in. <a href="https://convention.mennoniteusa.org/">MennoCon21</a> is a hybrid convention this year. On the virtual platform, Joe Sawatzky, church relations representative for Mennonite Mission Network, is hosting a recorded seminar titled, "Breaking a Mission Mold in Africa." Sawatzky interviews James Krabill, Jonathan Larson and Thomas Oduro about the 60-plus year relationship between North American Mennonites and African Initiated Churches. </p><p>In the interview, Oduro talks about his experiences with mission-planted churches in Ghana. The leaders of those churches expected him and those he loved to leave their African identity at the door. The leaders expected that the way everyone worshiped, preached, dressed and interacted had to resemble European churches. Instead, however, in the African Initiated Churches, the music sounded like the music of the African people, and the worship style was their own. Oduro and his community did not have to leave their full God-given selves at the door or apologize for doing the work of God in the way God called them to.</p><p>This story resonated with me. As a Black American, I have tried to let go of and ignore my Blackness. All the theology books and commentaries I read as a young adult were authored by White people. When I moved away from my family after college, I chased friendships and networking circles made up of only White people. I acted as if I only had something to learn from them and nothing to give. I tried to be a smooth stone to fit in and make everyone else comfortable.</p><p>But like in the Exodus story, God is leading me on a journey to re-embrace my humanity. I appreciate the wisdom of my Black elders, as they describe how God has been with them through the joys and pains of life. Like in the African Initiated Churches, my ancestors learned how to connect with God in ways authentic to their experience.</p><p>Now, I better understand that I am here to be the human God created me to be. Which means my refinement cannot result in me looking exactly like someone I am not, or me requiring someone else to look exactly like me. That's not the kind of altar that pleases God.</p><p>I read widely and critically now. I see the beauty in my humanity, even if I encounter people who want me to be their version of saved — an altar made of cut, identical stones. </p><p>What edges are you attempting to cut away at the originality of you — the creation God says is very good? What are you leaving behind that would allow you to flourish in the ways you worship and love God, the ways that God would call very good?</p><p>Psalm 8 says humans were made a little lower than the angels. In the past I thought that was an insult. But that psalm also says God is mindful of us. God cares for us. We are crowned with glory and honor.</p><p>We are human and beloved. Let us rest in that knowledge.<br></p>
Sharing stories of healing, seminars of hopehttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Sharing-stories-of-healing,-seminars-of-hopeSharing stories of healing, seminars of hopeBy Laurie Oswald Robinson <p>​<strong style="font-size:1.4rem;background-color:transparent;color:inherit;font-style:inherit;"><em>Editor's Note:</em> <a href="https://convention.mennoniteusa.org/the-experience/worship-equipping-seminars/">Here</a> <strong>is a roster of times and places where you will find the in-person and virtual seminars listed below. </strong></strong></p><p>The first chapter of the Gospel of John warms our hearts with the reality of God's incarnational embodiment in our world: "And the Word became flesh and lived among us" John 1:14 (NRSV). God didn't write "I love you" in the lofty blue sky with cursive white clouds. Instead, God spelled "I love you" through a baby, born in a cow's stall, whose life would end with nail holes in his hands. Ours is a gritty — albeit grand — faith that brought God down to dust so that we could be raised up to our destiny as God's children. </p><p>Jesus, human and divine, modeled what it means to follow in his footsteps on paths, often muddy, on paths often steep, on paths often leading to seemingly dead ends. But the paths always lead us further on in faith, from death into life. </p><p>MennoCon21 planners are following these challenging pathways in creating a churchwide gathering, including virtual and in-person elements. Mennonite Church USA Executive Board staff members have trod many uphill pathways on the way to Cincinnati, Ohio, and out of the pandemic shutdown. </p><p>Mennonite Mission Network is joining the Executive Board's hybrid vision by providing both virtual and in-person seminars that reflect how the agency shares in God's global mission. Below are 10 expressions of the embodiment of the healing and hope of Jesus.  </p><p><br></p><p><strong>Note: <em>Seminars</em></strong><strong><em> labeled as "adult seminar" are open to everyone. They are geared towards adults, but youth are welcome to participate.</em> </strong></p><ul><li><strong>Adult, in-person seminar</strong></li></ul><p><strong>"Future Driven Partnership; Pursuing God's call at Mennonite Mission Network,"</strong><strong><em> </em></strong>by Mike Sherrill, executive director, Mission Network. <br></p><p>Sherrill says, "Mission Network is responding to the present and innovating for the future. We exist to equip and empower the church to be a holistic witness to Jesus Christ, across the street and around the world. 'For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline' (2 Timothy 1:7 NIV). This truth draws us toward inclusion and partnership, as we put God's love into action for people of all cultures. We are all pilgrims on a sacred journey. Together, let's discover God's urgent call on each of us and our church." <br></p><ul><li><strong>Adult, in-person seminar </strong><br><strong>"Stir Up Peace: How Nonviolent Direct Action Creates Change," </strong>hosted by Sharon Norton, Mission Network's co-director for Africa and Europe, with Jonathan (organizer and advocate) and Sarah Nahar (scholar and spiritual activist). <br><br>Following Jesus means seeking God's kingdom and righteousness. It takes deep love, creativity and faithfulness to commit to seeking change nonviolently. Nonviolent direct action is a strategic response to violence, oppression and injustice that uses tactics that don't depend on the threat of violence to achieve justice. Seminar participants will get a taste for how to directly seek change in their communities, using tactics that carefully consider timing, context and public perception. Mennonite Mission Network will also premier the video curriculum created with the Nahars, called "Stir Up Peace: How Nonviolent Direct Action Creates Change."<br><br></li><li><strong>Adult, in-person seminar </strong></li></ul><p><strong>"Peacemaking in Africa with Muslims and Christians," </strong>by Christy Harrison, a nurse midwife and Mission Network worker in Muslim-Christian relations; Peter Sensenig, a teacher and  Mission Network worker in Muslim-Christian relations; Nehemiah Chigoji, pastor of Upland Peace Church in Upland, California, and director of the Nigeria Anabaptist Resource Center in Jos, Nigeria; and Sharon Norton, Mission Network's co-director for Africa and Europe. </p><p>Come to hear stories of peacemaking, through sports, midwifery and day-to-day interactions between Muslims and Christians in Africa. Sensenig taught in Zanzibar and Tanzania, where students of both faiths talked about peacemaking in their own lives. Harrison interacted with Muslim women and babies in the maternity ward and in her neighborhood. Chigoji, an immigrant to the U.S. from Nigeria, travels back and forth between the two countries. He uses his intercultural skills wherever he preaches and models the gospel of peace.  The seminar leaders want to challenge people to envision themselves as active participants in God's mission of peace in their context.<br></p><ul><li><strong>Adult, in-person seminar</strong></li></ul><p><strong>"Two-Way Mission,"</strong> by Jane and Jerrell Ross Richer, Mission Network workers <br></p><p>Many of us have had eye-opening experiences, through living in other countries or relating to people whose contexts are different from our own. How can we integrate what we have learned from one setting into another? Jane and Jerrell Ross Richer migrate between the global south and global north each year, being in the Ecuadorian rain forest with Indigenous people, as well as doing life in Goshen, Indiana. Learn how our diverse experiences in varied contexts can help us see, hear and live with authenticity wherever we may be.</p><p><span style="font-size:1.4rem;background-color:transparent;color:inherit;font-style:inherit;">Jane Ross Richer shares her thoughts about the seminar: "Diverse experiences are the gifts we receive by stepping outside of what's comfortable. These gifts help us to see from another's point of view. … To be the gospel, we must go beyond thinking properly about Jesus to experiencing reality like Jesus. Jesus reveals humility, intimacy and union both in his relationship with the divine and in his relationships with people from all walks of life."</span></p><ul><li><strong>Adult, in-person seminar</strong></li></ul><p><strong>Adult, in-person seminar </strong></p><p><strong>"Becoming Carbon Positive," </strong>by Jerrell Ross Richer, professor of economics, Goshen (Indiana) College <br></p><p>We live in an interconnected world, one where the actions we take affect people all over the globe. How can those of us living in the industrialized nations of the global north become pro-active when it comes to climate change? Environmental economics students at Goshen (Indiana) College are developing mechanisms to do just this. Equip yourself to become carbon positive by learning how to offset greenhouse gas emissions and take better care of God's creation.<br></p><ul><li><strong>Youth, in-person seminar </strong></li></ul><p><strong>"Changing the Narrative: Climate What?" </strong>by Jane and Jerrell Ross Richer, Mission Network workers<br></p><p>"Fear not!" the angels still say. Come hear stories about Indigenous youth, who are leading the way with creative solutions in the Ecuadorian rain forest. The Cofán people in the village of Zábalo live off the land and take conservation into their own hands. Human impact on the climate has changed the current upon which the economy, human rights and the natural world rides, creating opportunities for collective action and community empowerment. Join a conversation with the Ross Richers, who serve in Ecuador, and hear how ordinary people like you are changing the world.<br></p><ul><li><strong>Youth, in-person seminar</strong><br><strong>"I Fight Authority, Authority Always Wins," </strong>by Eric Frey Martin, recruiter and Church Relations staff member, Mission Network<br><br>Many authority figures that we were brought up to respect — police, pastors, political leaders — sometimes turn out to be untrustworthy. Furthermore, as we dig into history, our economic systems, the lands that we live on, even the laws we must obey are fraught with injustices and often based on systems of white supremacy, classism and nationalism. What do we do with all of that? How do people of faith interact with the authorities in our lives, especially the ones that seem to be carrying out injustice? When we look at how Jesus approached power, authority and injustice in his own life, we can find hope and guidance.<br><br></li><li><strong>Youth in-person seminar</strong><br><strong>"What You Do Next Matters," </strong>by Eric Frey Martin and representatives from Mennonite colleges <br><br>This seminar will be for high schoolers contemplating what comes next, after graduation. We will talk about the different options youth have to connect their faith and vocation. For example, what are the advantages of a "gap year" and what could you do during that year? Our aim is to set up an inviting space where youth can hear about the many possibilities available to them through Mennonite programs and schools after high school.<br><br></li><li><strong>Youth in-person and virtual seminar</strong><br><strong>"Shaping our Stories: Sharing Our Stories," </strong>by Eric Frey Martin <br><br>During this seminar, we will look at how we tell stories — not just the verbal ones that we tell our friends — but the narratives we shape around who we are and how we  project ourselves to others. We will look at how these stories we tell and project shape who we are and how our stories can impact others. We will look at sharing our stories as a way of sharing God with others.<br><br></li><li><strong>Adult, virtual seminar</strong><br><strong>"Breaking a Mission Mold in Africa," </strong>by Joe Sawatzky, Church Relations representative for Mission Network, and panel <br><br>Listen in as Sawatzky interviews James Krabill, Jonathan Larson and Thomas Oduro, editors of a new book of testimonies on the more than 60-year relationship between North American Mennonites and African Initiated Churches (AICs). Learn firsthand from participants in this fascinating and path-breaking chapter in the story of Christian cross-cultural engagement.</li></ul><p> <br>Sawatzky says he hopes this seminar will help people see that "the Jesus-way of mission has always involved mutuality, the giving and receiving of gifts, the creation of a new humanity of justice, joy and peace in the Holy Spirit. There have been faithful approximations of this vision throughout time, of which the Mennonite/AIC history is one example. I hope that people will feel Christ's call to know and make him known, even to the ends of the earth."</p><p>Sawatzky notes that we live in a time in which more than two-thirdsof the Christian population lives outside of Europe and North America. "This dramatic growth in the so-called 'global south' occurred as people began to receive Christ in their own languages and cultures, and critique their cultures through the mind of Christ," he said. "Learning about this mission dynamic at work in other societies can help the church in North America to distinguish elements, in its own context, which lead toward Christ from those which deny Christ."<br></p>
God’s brilliance can’t be contained by a buildinghttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/God’s-brilliance-can’t-be-contained-by-a-buildingGod’s brilliance can’t be contained by a buildingBy Alisha Garber <p><em>In this excerpt from Alisha and Josh Garber's blog, </em><a href="http://worthwhileadventures.org/">Worthwhile Adventures</a>, <em>Alisha finds a kindred spirit in artist Vincent Van Gogh, who turned to art when the church rejected him. Read the unabridged version </em><a href="http://worthwhileadventures.org/blog/2021/3/19/missionary-artist-expressionist-for-christ"><em>here.</em></a> <br></p><p>From a very young age, when folks asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would naively respond, "An artist!" Art, like the work of <a href="https://www.vangoghmuseum.nl/en/art-and-stories/art/vincent-van-gogh">Vincent van Gogh</a>, has always impacted and inspired me deeply. </p><p>Many people think of Van Gogh as the dude who cut off his own ear and gave it, as a present, to his girlfriend. But his story is so much richer than that. He loved God so much that he wanted to become a pastor in the Dutch Reformed Church, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. When he failed the exam to become a pastor — many, many times, he became a missionary. Van Gogh felt so drawn to the plight of the poor that he gave away his missionary salary, paid by a small church in a Belgian coal-mining town. He slept in a haystack behind a bakery, eating the baker's bread for free. His parish, embarrassed by his behavior, raised money so he could live in a house. He repeatedly gave the money they raised to the needy. The congregation was so upset that they had Van Gogh removed from his position with the church for having <em>excess zeal</em>. Can you imagine? Van Gogh was being so Christ-like that he showed up to preach with hay sticking out of his hair ... and they fired him for it! </p><p>Embittered and impoverished, Van Gogh left the church at the end of 1879. "I wish they would only take me as I am," he wrote in a letter to his brother, Theo.  </p><p>Van Gogh, then, tried to earn a living as an art dealer. Seeing the way dealers treated art, like a commodity rather than as a celebration of creativity, completely broke him. In his grief of having failed as both a minister and an art dealer, he proceeded to paint <em>The Starry Night.</em>  </p><p>A church stands at the center of <em>The Starry Night</em>. All the buildings around the church have lights in the windows, but the church is dark.  And if you look at the night sky, there are swirls of color, light mixing with darkness, stars shining and illuminating the rich canvas. When I look at this painting, I wonder if it conveys what Van Gogh felt when he looked back on his journey as a religious worker. As David Paul Kirkpatrick puts it, <a href="https://www.davidpaulkirkpatrick.com/2013/01/20/vincent-van-gogh-rejected-by-the-church-he-does-not-reject-god/">Van Gogh was rejected by the church, but he did not reject God</a>.  </p><p>When Josh and I embarked on our missions' journey, over a decade ago, we quickly grew accustomed to leaving our earthly possessions behind. After many yard sales, we set off on a truly Worthwhile Adventure, serving first in the Czech Republic, then Lithuania, and now Barcelona.  </p><p>When Van Gogh tried to follow Christ's teaching in <a href="http://bible.oremus.org/?ql=481006951">Matthew 19:21</a>, he was ridiculed by the very church he tried to guide. It was as if his congregation said, "Sure, go ahead and help the poor, so long as you look like the rest of us, and we all can continue living our comfortable lives."  </p><p>For me, the idea of post-Christendom is represented in <em>The Starry Night</em>. God is too big to be contained by a building. The reality is that the church in Europe (and in many other parts of the world) has been steadily declining for some time — <a href="https://vimeo.com/185710139">check out this video</a> about our service in Barcelona to learn more. It's time that Christians realize that we must stop packing God into a little box with a steepled roof and learn to see God in the stars shining all around us (and illuminated in the windows of our neighbor's apartments). Too often confining rules, overbearing subcommittees<span style="text-decoration:line-through;">,</span> and the culture of "church" — things emerging out of our need for structure and identity — push folks away from their very faith.  </p><p>The artist in me tries to celebrate creativity in our ministry with the church in Barcelona. Whenever possible, I seek to inspire visual worship and creativity within the Sunday services. Not all parishioners worship the same way. I really want our community to seek out the light in its neighborhood, in the eyes of coworkers, as well as in the people begging on the street corner, and to stop looking <em>inside</em> the church for God, because God is all around us. God is swirling and whirling in rich blues and deep hues, just like on Van Gogh's canvas! We must have faith to know that God's plans are not our own, and it's OK to feel uncertain and uncomfortable.  </p><p>In some ways, my journey seems to be running opposite of that of Vincent Van Gogh. Vocationally, I've moved from artist to missionary (or, at least, I certainly had way more time to paint before becoming a full-time international church worker). However, in other ways, it's very similar. I've learned to see how God's brilliance cannot be contained inside a dark building. I now feel emboldened to live out Christ's teachings to be a beacon to others — church-going folks and non-believers alike.  </p><p>I'm hopeful for the future of our church community in Barcelona. As we move toward reopening after the pandemic, we have a new name, Barcelona Anabaptist Center, to symbolize the ways our congregation has shifted. <br></p>

 

 

Reflecting on Mandela Day evokes a sense of grace unto justicehttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Reflecting-on-Mandela-Day-evokes-a-sense-of-grace-unto-justiceReflecting on Mandela Day evokes a sense of grace unto justiceBy Joe Sawatzky
Living out commitment to peacehttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Living-out-commitment-to-peaceLiving out commitment to peaceBy Faith BellGP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Roosting, or flying free?https://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Roosting,-or-flying-free?Roosting, or flying free?By Laurie Oswald Robinson GP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Befriending those babieshttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Befriending-those-babiesBefriending those babiesBy Laurie Oswald Robinson GP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Entering the eye of the storm by touching the hem of his garmenthttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/-Entering-the-eye-of-the-storm-by-touching-the-hem-of-his-garmentEntering the eye of the storm by touching the hem of his garmentBy Laurie Oswald Robinson GP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Transforming voicelessness into sharing voices togetherhttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Transforming-voicelessness-into-sharing-voices-togetherTransforming voicelessness into sharing voices togetherBy Laurie Oswald Robinson GP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Breathing in the expanse of Godhttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Breathing-in-the-expanse-of-GodBreathing in the expanse of GodBy Laurie Oswald RobinsonGP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Lamenting, repenting, and naminghttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Lamenting,-repenting,-and-namingLamenting, repenting, and namingBy Laurie Oswald RobinsonGP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Two evening concerts now available!https://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Two-evening-concerts-now-availableTwo evening concerts now available!By Laurie Oswald RobinsonGP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf
Convention worship connects through screen and stagehttps://www.mennonitemission.net/blog/Convention-worship-connects-through-screen-and-stage-Convention worship connects through screen and stageBy Laurie Oswald RobinsonGP0|#2ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a;L0|#02ab17779-1e85-4ea3-bd7e-1348a1fb087a|United States;GTSet|#f1c3ac69-6cd4-4109-8ba8-137477ba8a7d;GPP|#89f1dfe2-8e50-4b9f-b81a-f3f6dcbc35fc;GPP|#62ebb633-b401-4243-a537-1a85230e4ebf