Voices from around the globe
What do you appreciate about being Mennonite Brethren?
The MB Herald and Christian Leader posed the following questions to Mennonite Brethren leaders around the world: What do your members appreciate most about being Mennonite Brethren? What’s the most important thing your conference has to offer brothers and sisters around the globe? Here’s what they had to say.
Our members most appreciate our attachment to biblical teachings and interpretation, as well as the promotion of fellowship between the conferences on an international basis. We’re strong in the area of service and peaceful relationships within our conference and churches.
—Hermes Barrigon Bacorizo, Panama
What we appreciate most about the Mennonite Brethren is the possibility to enrich the rest of the body of Christ while living out and sharing our Anabaptist values of evangelism, peacemaking, holistic understanding of salvation, and leadership as service. What we can offer to other conferences is our fellowship – walking together in the midst of difficulties, praying one for the other, and where possible, constructing relationships which will allow us to mutually support each other.
—César García, Colombia
We have much appreciation for the fact that we’re a global worldwide family. We also appreciate the fact that we’re a Christ-centered community of faith based on biblical principles, and a missionary community dependent on the work of the Holy Spirit. As Paraguayans, we’re known for our cordiality, hospitality, and great and loving hearts. Our conference offers its infrastructure in order to provide bridges and contacts to other churches.
—Oscar Peralta, Paraguay (CEIPHM)
One thing our members appreciate is our long and rich church tradition, and past learning experiences that can guide us. We also appreciate the strong missionary work that’s been done and is still being done by the MB church. A third thing we appreciate is the fact that the Bible is still a very strong foundation. We offer the experience of stable and consistent work among our churches. Also, we live and work in a multicultural context, and have had many positive experiences we can share with our brothers and sisters around the world.
—Theodor Unruh, Paraguay (VMBGP)
The people in our family of churches deeply appreciate it when they’re unmistakably loved by pastors who teach God’s truths directly from the Bible with clarity and relevance. They also find joy and nourishment in the vibrant music/worship of corporate celebration. Perhaps the greatest gift we could give is to welcome and appreciate our brothers and sisters around the world as partners in the Great Commission. In recent decades, we’ve been more intentional about starting new churches and we’ve noted that it’s the most effective way to make a real kingdom growth difference. As we discover principles that can cross cultural barriers, it would be a joy to implement them together.
—Ed Boschman, United States
As Anabaptists, our worldview and theology uniquely position us to witness to the truth of Christ and share the gospel with our skeptical, burnt-out-on-church Canadian society. As evangelicals, we carry a strong sense of mission. Put together, we appreciate our evangelical Anabaptist heritage. What we have to offer is an entrepreneurial spirit and many successful business people who are interested in assisting various parts of the world. Many would love to create or build up programs or ministries to address the material needs in our faith family. We have many practical talents plus great aptitude for expanding a business or organization – capacity building – that might be helpful to others. Plus, many churches are interested in fellowship and involvement with others in our global family. We also have Bible scholars and other professionals with overseas experience who would love to teach or coach.
—David Wiebe, Canada