There’s an old story—it’s probably a legend—about an evangelist who travels to Indiana, to farm country, to share the gospel, to convert people to Christianity. […]
Here are five things worth paying attention to this week. These are designed to expose you to a perspective you may not normally come across in your daily lives.
1. The Lord is (almost) risen indeed
On Easter Sunday, some church members and I are going to try and make it though William Billings’ “The Lord is Risen Indeed.” While this is quite a popular tune, I first heard this Easter anthem when I was living near the East Coast. One might be so bold as to call it the Gilbert and Sullivan of hymnody. Have a listen here:
2. Colombia and immigration
I recently got back from a 10-day learning tour in Colombia with Mennonite Central Committee. While I can’t summarize the whole of what I learned in one blog post, one of the things that stood out to me was immigration. Hearing how some in Colombia view the influx of Venezuelan immigrants reminds me of some of the rhetoric we hear from politicians and special interest groups here in the United States. Some churches, however, choose to take a stance of welcoming. Rather than blaming incoming Venezuelans for their problems, they choose to be home and community for displaced people. Hearing about this trend with Anabaptist churches was very heartening.
3. White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism
This book by Robin DiAngelo is a must-read for white folks who struggle when talking about race, or for people who want to hold other white people accountable in the continuing dialogue on race. This book is written from an anti-racist educator standpoint. A fairly quick read, it leaves a lot of food for thought. Consider this book for your next book club, Sunday School class or small group.
4. Hitler’s Mennonite physicist
Harvard historian Ben Goossen tells the story of Abraham Esau, a Prussian-born Mennonite who later went on to head up the Third Reich’s nuclear campaign. Esau was one of many Mennonites to get caught up in nationalism during World War II. While eventually “brought to Jesus” by Mennonite Central Committee, Esau and others downplayed Mennonite involvement in Hitler’s Europe. These stories aren’t told often enough. You can find Goossen’s article here.
5. Spring means asparagus
Asparagus season is upon us, and one of my favorite parts of spring is wrapping prosciutto around asparagus and grilling it. While there are many ways to enjoy your spring asparagus, this has to be my favorite formulation. It’s rather self explanatory, but if you need a recipe, you can find one here.
Joanne Gallardo is pastor of faith formation at Berkey Avenue Mennonite Fellowship in Goshen, Indiana.
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