Blog posts

Treating the illness of Trumpism and ending white silence

6.23. 2017

Photo: Participants at the February 2017 Hope for the Future gatherings. From left to right: Rafael Barahona, Calenthia Dowdy, Ann Jacobs, Evelin Gonzalez and Colleen Whigham-Brockington. Photo by Jenny Perez Castro.  It’s been seven months since I last wrote in this space about the results of the U.S. presidential election. Since then the broader shape […]

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Lima Bean Eulogy: A poem for MJ

3.29. 2017

We planted lima beans the morning after villagers found MJ’s body. The rotund little green dumplings nestling to the damp earth He nestled in a shallow grave with Zaida and Betu along the road from from Bukonde to Tshimbulu in Kasai. In a few weeks those dumplings will bust up, burst out and wind their […]

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Responding to Trump and the 2017 Bartimeus Institute

11.20. 2016

Photo: Last year, at the 2016 Bartimeus Institute, Dr. Catherine Meeks shared about her work organizing a pilgrimage to the site of lynchings around the The Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta. Photo by Tim Nafziger.  After a week and a half of reading a wide variety of articles and social media posts responding to the election of […]

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What Mennonites can learn from Donald Trump

10.13. 2016

This week we’ve seen audio of Donald Trump’s bragging about sexual assault open up a nationwide conversation about rape culture, which is the set of beliefs and ideologies which blame victims of sexualized violence and normalize sexualized violence, often by men (for more, see this series of definitions). U.S. Presidential elections are like conversations around […]

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Dallas makes nonviolent direct action all the more important

7.10. 2016

In the wake of the shootings of police and civilians in Dallas, many voices are blaming the Black Lives Matter movement and the growing opposition to police violence and white supremacy. But now more than ever we need movements of committed, militant nonviolence. Shootings like the one in Dallas grow out of what scholar Ron […]

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Why Mennonite leaders need to stop complaining about social media

5.22. 2016

In his address to graduating students at Eastern Mennonite University (EMU) on May 2, President Loren Swartzendruber complained about social media. On May 2, the Daily News-Record quoted him: “Here’s the challenge we face,” he said, “namely the question of how we engage in meaningful, life-changing, civil conversations in a world that’s impatient for quick […]

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What Mennonites can learn about Jesus from a Delta Force veteran

3.13. 2016

Photo by Tim Nafziger.  On Sunday, March 6, 2016, Ruth Krall wrote “A Considered Response to Lambelet and Hamilton: Vis-à-vis the topic of being made invisible…one more time” on her repeated experience of invisibilization by male Mennonite colleagues who pigeonhole her as a “very angry woman who hates the church.” She outlines a series of […]

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