The Canadian Church Today

Mennonite Children in Edmonton, 1998 (17 Kb): photo by Aiden Schlichting Enns
Chinese and Vietnamese Mennonite Children in Edmonton:  Canadian Mennonite Photo

The Mennonite church in Canada today remains linked to a rich history, while also embracing and inviting people of different cultures and backgrounds. This means it needs to find new ways to be faithful to this history in a changing world. People of diverse cultural backgrounds gather to worship, often in their own language.

!aaWorkinOnTheRailroad.JPG (10909 bytes)
Conscientious Objectors working on the Railroad during World War II

Just like their Anabaptist predecessors, Mennonites in Canada do not necessarily believe or practice all of the same things. In fact, there are literally dozens of distinct groups with their own organizations, structures, and perspectives. Nonetheless, there are several topics which are recognized as important and which most churches address in some way or another. Adult baptism,  the importance of community, and discipleship remain important emphases in Mennonite churches today.

Barn-raising (7 Kb): Used by permission of the Kitchener-Waterloo Record Photographic Negative Collection; Dana Porter Library, University of Waterloo; Waterloo, Ont. N2L 3G1 (CGC 1990 - 9.1)
Old-Order Mennonites' Barn-raising:  K-W Record photo

Although many issues arise out of these "traditional Mennonite beliefs," Service, Peace Perspectives, and Non-conformity reflect some of the areas where these convictions continue to have significant influence in our day. People of different cultural backgrounds have played an important role in challenging and redefining how Mennonite individuals, congregations, and conferences approach such issues.

The strength of the church remains the people who are committed to its continued presence and ministry.

Created 1998 by Derek Suderman