Altona Mayor Shares the Impact of Church's "Peace Witness" with Town Council

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October 2009, Altona Manitoba – After a two week visit with the pastors from our sister Church, the Monte Santo Christian Community in Madrid Colombia, I did some reflecting in the weekly 'From the Pastor' in our Sunday morning bulletin. One of the Colombian pastors had commented that the local church must be doing a good job of teaching peace as we lived in such a peacefully community. While initially skeptical, I concluded the brief article with the following thoughts:

"While it is true that as a church, we are not “actively engaging our world” with a peace program, we can not be considered passive with our peace teaching either. As we teach our children to be disciples of Jesus, we teach gentleness, kindness, and compassion. We teach our children respect for others and tolerance of differences. These are values that lead to peace in our homes, our families and our community. As we engage scripture within our congregation through teaching and preaching, we embrace an Anabaptist understating of Jesus’ words to “love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you.” (Matt 5:44) This not only informs us but transforms us as a people of peace. And as one of the larger congregations in Altona our “peacefulness” as believers has an impact on our schools, our places of employment, our social gatherings, and our entire community as we seek to live out our desire for peace in every aspect of our lives. Perhaps we are more intentional about our peace witness than I initial thought."

The Mayor of Altona, who is also a member of our congregation, appreciated this insight and asked permission to share the 'From the Pastor' at the next Altona town council meeting to highlight the impact of the church’s “peace witness” in the community.

Bergthaler Mennonite Church of Altona

Altona Mayor Shares the Impact of Church's "Peace Witness" with

This is a great insight, Dan - and a nice way to celebrate ways of acting for peace that don't immediately rise to the surface. Thanks for sharing it here too...