Any reader of Mennonite Mission Network's materials knows that the organization — and the Mennonite church, as a whole — values peace and justice. Our writings often cite Missio Dei #18: What is an Anabaptist Christian? and specifically the third core value of the Anabaptist faith: "Reconciliation is the center of our work," when talking about this subject. Reconciliation is the meeting of peacebuilding and evangelism. As the church, we are called to help reconcile people to God, help reconcile people to one another and serve as God's ambassadors of reconciliation in the world. That is the center of our peacebuilding work.
Mission Network wanted a way to showcase this commitment to peacebuilding, a way to live out our faith and calling by wearing it on our sleeves — or lapel, in this case. That's where peace pins come in.
Shaped like the "Anabaptist dove" logo that heads up many Mennonite publications, the metal pins serve as a reminder to individuals to live out reconciliatory work in their day-to-day lives.
Waterford Mennonite Church in Goshen, Indiana, linked their batch of peace pins to the words of the prophet Micah, remembered in song as: "Do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God" (Micah 6:8). For their Nov 13, 2022, service, the church had planned for their members to take a paper cut-out of a dove and write down how they would live out the words of Micah 6:8. But when the congregation received a batch of peace pins, their plans changed. Instead, the church decided that they would invite the congregation to take a pin and wear it as a reminder and commitment to live out the words of the prophet Micah.
Pastor Matthew Bucher of Immanuel Mennonite Church (IMC) in Harrisonburg, Virginia, often gives walking tours of the church's neighborhood to new church members and others interested in the historical interactions between faith, racism, urban renewal and gentrification. In early April, Bucher gave one of these tours to the youth groups of two local Mennonite congregations, Zion Mennonite Church and Park View Mennonite Church.
As the learning tour returned to IMC — the historical site of the Black swimming pool in town — Bucher had one final ask for the participants. "I asked that they pray for us as a congregation," Bucher said. "That they lean into the stories of their own communities and congregations and that they trust the Spirit to guide them in those sometimes painful journeys."
Bucher concluded the tour by offering each participant a peace pin, as a reminder of where to draw strength during those journeys. "This was the first time I had ended one of the walks in [that] way," Bucher said. He said that he was grateful for the pins, as a visual reminder of the strength that can be found in God.
Peace pins can serve as a reminder of God's strength and our own calling to be ambassadors of reconciliation. To receive your peace pins, as well as other peacebuilding resources, visit MennoniteMission.net/Peace.