On April 27, Bock Ki Kim and Sook Kyoung Park, along with members of Mennonite Church South Korea, other denominations, and non-faith people participated in a nationwide peace event. Kim and Park joined others to form a human peace chain near the de-militarized zone between North and South Korea. The event was held on the first anniversary of the peace summit between Kim Jung Un, the Supreme Leader of North Korea, and Moon Jae In, the president of South Korea. Kim estimated that there were 200,000 participants. The April 27 peace event is seen as a grassroots movement among all people seeking peace on the Korean peninsula. Bock Ki said, “It became the event that all people could join. There was no difference between men and women, old and young, ethnicity, religions etc. Many people have hope for the peace movement here in the future.”
New Hamburg Mennonite Relief Sale ~ Friday May 24th, 5-9 pm; Saturday May 25th, 6:45 am – afternoon.
The Relief Sale was started in 1967 by individuals from Mennonite churches in southwestern-Ontario in response to the ever-growing world-wide need for relief from hunger, poverty and natural disaster and for development and peace-building activities. The net proceeds from the New Hamburg Mennonite Relief Sale are forwarded to Mennonite Central Committee Ontario (MCCO), a not-for-profit relief, service and development and peace agency of the Mennonite and Brethren in Christ churches in North America. MCC seeks to demonstrate God’s love by working among people around the world suffering from poverty, conflict, oppression and natural disaster. Started in 1920 in response to hunger in the Ukraine, MCC strives for peace, justice and dignity of all people.
Make Coints Count! Week of May 5, 2019
The annual MCC New Hamburg Relief Sale is now in sight on our calendars at the end of this month and our coin collection will be delivered to the site as in the past. Our coin jug has again been cleared and counted. Our year-to-date count now stands at $186.15. My calculator tells me that we need only $13.85 to reach that nice round number of $200. Grace can do it! p.s.: An anonymous donor has agreed to match $13.85 if we can otherwise raise $13.85.
Remember to Pray for ... Week of April 28, 2019
… those facing health challenges and those experiencing recent and continued grief.
… each week MCEC staff pray for the faith communities within our MCEC community of congregations. Join MCEC in praying for Hunta Mennonite Church in Cochrane, ON.
… the remote First Nation community of Kashechewan who have, once again, been forced into evacuation centres due to flooding. Please pray for the Canadian government to meet their 2005 commitment to move this community to safe ground and off a flood plain.
… those in the correctional system who are sick or need medical care. Many on parole don't have resources to buy medication and lack a consistent health care provider.
… the more than 2 million people affected by Cyclone Idai that swept over the eastern part of Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe in what the UN is calling possibly the worst disaster to hit the region. Flood waters continued to rise days after landfall, causing increasing numbers of deaths, displaced people and spread of disease. “We thank God the church all around has risen in the midst of the emergency and is doing all it can to collect needed items for survival of the victims,” says Mennonite World Conference Southern Africa regional representative Barbara Nkala.
… praise God for drawing together Anabaptist-related churches into a communion (koinonia) linked to one another in a worldwide community of faith for fellowship, worship, service and witness. Leaders of the Mennonite World Conference Executive Committee met in Costa Rica to discern how we can continue to operate well together as churches in the world.
Across the Street and Around the World - Week of April 21, 2019
Another Anabaptist Heritage Concert is planned for Sunday, May 26 at St. Catharines United Mennonite Church. John and Kathy Rempel invite singers to join them for rehearsals at SCUMC on Tuesday, May 7, 14, 21, at 7:30 pm.
♫ Niagara Area Mennonite Hymn Sing ~ April 28th at 6:30 pm at Vineland United Mennonite Church.
MEDA Breakfast Tuesday April 30 7:30 – 8:30 am at Sweets Café, 600 Ontario St. Speaker: Nick Hamm. $15 at the door. RSVP by April 27 by emailing Maria at email@example.com.
Anabaptism and the Challenge of Masculinity" - May 3, 7 pm at Grace Mennonite Church
Don Neufeld will present on the topic of "Anabaptism and the Challenge of Masculinity" on May 3, 7pm at Grace Mennonite Church in St Catharines.
Melissa Bollinger Seiling will respond. Both are social workers with perspectives on the struggle of modern men to come to terms with changing expectations of gender. Don Neufeld is the co-editor with Steve Thomas of the book, "Peaceful at Heart: Anabaptist Reflections on Healthy Masculinity" to be released this Spring by Wipf&Stock press.
A very manly dessert will be served afterward! No cost, open to all.
Some Thoughts on Living and Dying (a mini-essay by Pastor Doug)
Recently a friend of mine said, "We will all die of heart failure." By which he simply meant that someday, for every one of us, our heart will stop beating. Knowing that this is true is not exactly comforting, but admitting it is a potential source of real strength. It allows us to look at life day by day as an opportunity to make the most of our 'heartbeat health'. We can maintain heartbeat health physically and spiritually. Physically, by doing a bit of whatever kind of exercise we can practice at our age and stage of life. We may have limitations to how much exercise we can do. But if we do whatever we can, we reduce weakness and build strength - often including strength of mind. Spiritually, our heartbeat health is kept up by regular disciplines such as Bible and devotional book reading, church participation (worship and community times), prayer (whether alone or in groups, and spoken or silent), and thinking about things 'beyond' our comfort zone. Thinking about death is not exactly a comfortable activity, but it is healthy if we consider the idea, as put forth by author Kathleen Dowling Singh, that death is "our final stage of growth" [The Grace of Dying]. She says that dying has "transformative and transcendent power". There is an answer to the question "Why do we die?" and that is "Because we are alive." [This applies to natural or accidental or self-chosen death.] If you are reading this, you are alive. Singh says that as long as we are alive, "creation is unfolding". Therefore, we can welcome the final stage because it is taking us toward "radical transformation". This is precisely what the Bible teaches. It is what Jesus embraced even as he moved toward the cross. "Into God's hands I give my spirit," he said. So can we.
Across the Street and Around the World for March 31
MCC is responding in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe: On March 15, Cyclone Idai destroyed 90 percent of Beira, one of Mozambique’s largest cities, and affected nearly 3 million people with widespread flooding up to six metres high. Bridges, roads, fields, farms and millions of homes were violently washed away. Your gift will help MCC provide emergency assistance to those in dire need. You can donate online at mcco.ca/cyclone-idai or by calling 1-800-313-6226.
MCC News – Elmira Meat Canning and Sale - Posted March 24, 2019
The announcement is a bit late this year, but this annual event is being held in Elmira during the week of April 22 – 26. Our Grace volunteers headed up by George Janzen intend to work the afternoon shift on April 24th and will bring our orders back early that evening. There are some order forms available on the MCC table in the lobby or see Ted S. Cheques should be made payable to MCCO, dated April 26th, and given to Ted S. with your order form by April 1.
Remember to pray for...Week of March 17, 2019
Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash
… those facing health challenges and those experiencing recent and continued grief.
… the New Zealandcommunities affected by the shooting rampage in two mosques this week. Pray for healing of the wounded and for hope of safety and strength in community life and throughout the nation.
… each week MCEC staff pray for the faith communities within our MCEC community of congregations. Join MCEC in praying for Hamilton Mennonite Church.
… adequate resources and leadership to provide over a third of First Nations in Ontario with access to clean potable water.
… individuals in the correctional system who have experienced childhood trauma. Pray for healing and hope. Please also pray for the understanding and compassion of the staff members and correctional officers who work so closely with traumatized individuals.
… the families of those affected by the Ethiopian Airlines tragedy
…theMCEC Mission Minister search team as they seek to discern God's leading in fulfilling this position. Please pray for the individual who will lead our church family in this important ministry.
Kathy Bergen of Kitchener has been in Israel/Palestine many times in her work with MCC assignments and with other organizations that seek to educate North Americans about human rights issues and about the struggle for freedom and equality. We will have Kathy as a speaker at Grace in Fall.
For more information, talk to Pastor Doug to pick up an excellent one-page (2-sided) handout called "What We Can Do".
Indigenous-Settler Relations Christian Peacemaker Team (CPT) Colombia Delegation What does practicing Christ’s way of peace look like in a conflict zone? Mennonite Church Canada wants to introduce a group of sisters and brothers to the nonviolent accompaniment work of Christian Peacemaker Teams by sponsoring four persons in a delegation to Colombia, from June 26 to July 6, 2019. Meet human rights defenders who are working for a just peace in the Magdalena Medio region; learn how CPT supports those who are undoing violent structures that threaten their ability to live on their lands; and explore questions of faith and discipleship. If you’re interested in joining, please email Steve Heinrichs (firstname.lastname@example.org), director of Indigenous-Settler Relations, for more details.
This Week of March 3, 2019...
Ernie Janzen Celebration of Life – A Celebration of Life Service for Ernie Janzen will be on Saturday, March 9 at 11 a.m. followed by a luncheon. Visitation will be on Friday, March 8, 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. in the Church Hall.
Soup Supper on Thursday March 7 – Cancelled Please let friends know that this event is cancelled.
Daylight Saving Time – A reminder to put your clocks ahead 1 hour on Saturday night, March 9.
♫ Women’s Chorus Practice ~ Sunday March 10th, 11:00 am; Thursday March 21st, 6:30 pm; Sunday March 24th, 9:00 am, Sunday March 31, 9:00 am
Gatherings - Posted for February 24, 2019
Soup Supper on Thursday March 7th, 5:30 – 7:00 pm Please sign up on the bulletin board if you can bring donations of soups, bread or desserts. Soup Supper donations will be directed to the Brock University Indigenous Students Emergency Fund.
MCEC Annual Church Gathering ~ April 26 & 27, 2019 Deepening Our Relationship With God with April Yamasaki Steinmann Mennonite Church, Baden, ON
Mennonite Church Canada Gathering 2019 - June 28 – July 1 Abbotsford, B.C. Theme: Igniting the Imagination of the Church Guest speaker Dr. Elaine Heath
Across the Street and Around the World - Week of February 17, 2019
Peace of Cake, Friday March 1st, 7:00 pm at Grace Mennonite Church “Mennonite Revolutionaries: An Oxymoron? Examples from the Dutch Republic, 1780-1820” by Michael Driedger, PhD, Professor of History, Brock University. Response by Christina Moss, PhD Candidate, University of Waterloo.
MEDA Niagara Special Event, $15 at the door Saturday March 9, 8:00 – 9:00 am Sweets Café, 600 Ontario Street, St. Catharines Speaker: Catherine Sobrevega, Myanmar Country Project Manager RSVP by March 6 to MARIA.H.KLASSEN@GMAIL.COM
The Toronto Mennonite Theological Centre (TMTC) is excited to announce that our public lecturer this year is Dr. John D. Rempel. Thursday March 14th at 7:00 pm. John's lecture is drawn from his current work and is entitled "An Impossible Task: Trinitarian Theology for a Radical Church?" Dr. P. Travis Kroeker of McMaster University will be responding to the lecture. Rides will be available.
Outreach and Insight - Week of February 10, 2019
Make a Painting with a Pre-Schooler! - Joanne Janzen (Supervisor of the PreSchool downstairs) invites Grace folks to join the children on Tuesday, February 19 at 10 am to help them make abstract paintings, and perhaps make a painting of our own! Enjoy the creative process with a child - bring back your childhood, beautiful (and maybe wild!).
A Taste of Syria at Niagara United Mennonite Church on Saturday February 16th, 6:30 pm. Authentic Syrian dishes will be served, proceeds to the Mission Fund. Tickets are $30 per person, they are limited and sales close today February 10th. Contact the church office at 905-468-3313 or email Rachael email@example.com to purchase tickets.
Let There Be Food - Week of February 3, 2019
Perishky (Meat Buns) Baking ~ Monday February 11th at 9 am. All women are welcome, soup lunch will be provided. Orders will be taken – a limit of 2 dozen per family, $10 per dozen.
Soup Supper on Thursday February 7th, 5:30 – 7:00 pm Please sign up on the bulletin board if you can bring donations of soups, bread or desserts. Soup Supper donations will be directed to Pastor Accilien’s work in Haiti.
Across the Street and Around the World - Jan 27, 2019
Vineland United Mennonite Church is in need of a part time office administrator to begin immediately. Please forward resumes to the VUMC office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
St. Catharines United Mennonite Church is looking for a part time office administrator to begin in May 2019. Interested applicants should apply by no later than February 19, 2019. Only those who will be interviewed will receive a call back. For further information and job description visit our website at www.scumc.ca or contact Kevin Ens at 905-397-4865.
Radiant Care Tabor Manor recently opened a Fitness and Wellness Centre and is offering seniors living in the north end of St. Catharines who are affiliated with Radiant Care the opportunity to join as members, for a nominal fee, to pursue your health and fitness goals. Please see the bulletin board notice or call 905-934-2548 for more information.
MCC Ontario - January 20, 2019
A portion of a letter received from MCC Ontario under the date of January 2, 2019 reads....MCC is a ministry of the church - of your church. We commit to carry out that ministry with the highest standards of effectiveness andgood stewardship. We are deeply grateful for your role in this ministry and your incredible generosity again this year.
Make Coins Count – The second quarterly count of coins in the jug has provided MCC with another $40.20, bringing us up to $77.75 since the last New Hamburg Relief Sale. Last year we raised just over $241. We have some catching up to do, but MCC thanks Grace for its continued support for this project.
"Peace of Cake": A Series of Discussions starting February 1 - 7 pm
"Probing the Potential for Peace" - Mark your calendar to come to Grace on Friday, February 1 at 7 pm, which will be the launch of a series of seminars exploring peace-making. Presentation by Max Kennel and response by Carol Penner on "A Peace Church in A Cultural War". Followed by discussion and refreshments. Bring your friends!
Quilting and Soup! January 6, 2019
Grace Women will begin quilting (tying) on Thursday, January 10th at 9 am. Everyone is welcome, no experience required. We will be happy to teach you. We usually end with a communal lunch, so please bring a packed lunch. For more information call Irene Seager.
Soup Supper on Thursday January 10th, 5:30 – 7:00 pm Please sign up on the bulletin board if you can bring donations of soups, bread or desserts. Soup Supper donations will be directed to the Westview Centre4Women.
Shining a Light in Our Community - January 1, 2019
Niagara folks are invited to join as community on January 1st at 6 pm at Montebello Park to turn on the light we each have brought at 6:15pm. Bring your phone, a flashlight, a candle, lantern, etc. This initiative comes from Silver Spires United Church who say: "Come have conversation and stand in light together and be a community safety net. Together our hope is to spark a change for the New Year. Please understand that this is not a rally, a vigil or a protest. Our hope is for our community to come together and be together."