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The MCA Communiqué
News & Notes for our Alberta family
June 16, 2021

In this issue

Our E3 Prayer 
MCA Call to Prayer
An Anti-Muslim Attack: Reflections from NEM
Lamenting with MCBC
A Menno Minute --Debbie Baergen
Farewell to Donna
Camp news
Student Bursary Applications 
Employment Opportunity
and more... 

Plus... updates from MC Canada, ISR, International Witness, our schools, and CommonWord
(If this newsletter does not format properly as an email, please click the link above to view in your browser)
MCA Calendar
June 27 Farewell for Donna Entz
July 31 Deadline for Student Bursaries
September Heritage Retreat via ZOOM.  Date to be finalized.

E3 = MCA             Year 2  Christ in Community

Our E3 Prayer

Oh Father God, be with us and help us to heal

when we are hurt and to ask forgiveness when we have hurt others.
 



Please pray for our brothers and sisters from Bergthal Mennonite
as their building was vandalized this past week.



Some details: 

 On Saturday morning (June 12), the pastor at Bergthal Mennonite Church entered the church building and discovered it had been broken into. Several computers and related equipment were stolen and some damage was incurred, especially around door frames and locks.  The chances of finding these people are slim to none. But this doesn't stop us from praying for them. As someone said after the break in, they may have stolen our property but they didn't get what they really needed. 

MCA Call to Prayer:

Mennonite Church Alberta mourns together with the Muslim community after the recent attack on the Afzaal/Salman family of London, ON.

Mennonites in Alberta have a long history of working with people from different cultural and religious backgrounds. We have been enriched through working with and alongside people from around the world through refugee sponsorship, re-settlement agencies, language learning centres, cultural celebrations, and interfaith dialogue.

Through interfaith dialogue, we have discovered common ground, common goals and aspirations for living as neighbours. As we have shared our beliefs, we have grown in respect and understanding, seeking to build communities where respect and appreciation form the basis of our interactions.

Our prayers are with the Muslim community as they struggle to understand this attack. We pray that fears are quelled and that an outpouring of love provides comfort at this time. We pray that the peace and hope of our faiths draws us closer together as neighbours and as people of a common God.



Brenda Tiessen-Wiens, Moderator, MCA

An Anti-Muslim Attack: Reflections from North Edmonton Ministry 

It is with sadness and utter shock that we received the news of the murder of four members of a Muslim family in London Ontario. We call out to God for mercy on this whole city, on those grieving loss, those now living in fear and those walking in solidarity with them. I was reassured that the Valleyview Mennonite Church in London would be present at the Tuesday evening vigil.

In the face of great evil, the Psalms call us to name it and lament.

Here from Psalm 10 we read, "Their mouths are filled with cursing and deceit and oppression. Their eyes stealthily watch for the helpless. Rise up O Lord, O God, lift up your hand, do not forget the oppressed. Why do the wicked renounce God and say in their hearts, "You will not call us to account". But [God] you do see!  Indeed you note the trouble and grief that you may take it into your hands; the helpless commit themselves to you, you have been the helper of the orphan. The Lord is king forever and ever,... O Lord you will hear the desire of the meek; you will strengthen their heart, you will incline your ear to do justice for the orphan and the oppressed.”

Read more here. 

The National Council of Canadian Muslims has called for a national action summit on Islamophobia. Sign the petition.

Donna Entz, NEM

Mennonite Church Alberta joins MCBC and the rest of MC Canada in lament of children's remains discovered at residential school

We join our siblings in Mennonite Church British Columbia as they lament the discovery of the remains of 215 children buried at the site of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School.
We grieve together with all the families and all those who have been impacted by the news of these deaths. We pray for all those who have memories and scars from their time in residential schools and for those who have been re-traumatized by this discovery.  Read More.

Given the TRC 94 Calls to Action, we not only want to pray but also act in ways that can move in the direction of healing and reconciliation. We especially think of calls 48, 49, 59 and 61, which call for education, financial commitments and other meaningful ways in which practical help and reconciliation can be engaged.

MCBC has listed actions for its members to consider and invites our nationwide family to join them in action and prayer.

A Menno Minute

Deb Baergen, First Mennonite Edmonton
Member of the E2 Reference Group





Connecting while Distanced

Wednesday mornings some members of our congregation gather over Zoom for “Coffee with Craig.”  We each bring our own beverage and get together to visit.  Recently I was struck by the beauty of this diverse gathering. I don’t remember anything like this prior to the pandemic. There is no agenda, no parameters of age, geography, interest or ability. Whoever wants to come is welcome and there is no judgement for those who don’t. This has been one of the joys of this time of physical distancing.

Too often we focus on what we have lost by being separated for safety during this pandemic, but there have been gains as well.  We do miss those for whom the technology is unavailable or unappealing, but we have also been fortunate to have friends and family who live far away able to join us for weddings, funerals, and Sunday morning worship services. We miss the potlucks, handshakes, hugs and congregational singing, but relish the smiles and connections, and even having people’s names written by their faces so we can get to know those who used to be just another name or face. Even in this time of being pulled apart we have discovered new ways of coming together.

Sunday mornings have drawn people of all ages, from newborn babies all the way up to our very own centenarian. Weather is no longer a deciding factor in whether people can safely join in worship, and even health concerns don’t have to stop anyone from joining. Our services have included people from our congregation who have moved away, who are on vacation, and even on the road. The sharing of our joys and concerns has become an important time of real connection during our worship services as the person sharing is highlighted on our screens and we can look into their eyes as they share from the safety of their own home. We are wondering how to maintain that intimacy when we once again meet in person. People who do not feel up to getting up and dressed for church can join the service with their camera off. People who sometimes find church a difficult place, can find a peaceful anonymity in being able to be a part of the worshiping community, without having to interact with others if they do not feel up to it.

There have been many ways our community has grown during this time. We have enjoyed showers and social gatherings. We have cried together with friends and family from across Canada, the USA, Europe and even Kazakhstan at beautifully crafted funerals honoring those who have died. We were all able to witness the wedding of our pastor, even though it took place in Ontario during COVID. We have laughed and cried together. Having church on Zoom has allowed some new options for participation as people choose whether or not to be seen or heard, whether to speak live into the space or record a contribution. Yes, there have been some real joys and blessings during this time of separation

There is also a kind of intimacy as we enter each other’s homes and see each other close up when we do decide to turn on the cameras.  Even as we mourn the loss of physical proximity, we are getting to know each other in new ways. Isn’t it wonderful that God can bring us together even when other circumstances are pulling us apart? I thank God that we can encounter, embrace and embody Christ in Community, even when we can’t gather face to face.

REGISTER TODAY!

A Zoom gathering
to say farewell to 

Donna Entz

as she retires from her role with
North Edmonton Ministry



June 27, 2010

2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. 

Hosted by Mennonite Church Alberta 

To register 

Donations (and photos!) continue to be accepted toward the 2021 Camp Valaqua Hike-a-thon
Another 90 seconds of Nature from Jon at Camp Valaqua!

Camp Valaqua needs a cook!  


We need a cook.  We have a head cook lined up for the last 3 weeks of summer, but are looking for a head cook for the first 5 weeks for sure, and the whole 8 weeks if they prefer.  The head cook should have some food preparation experience and a willing spirit. 

We are also seeking an assistant cook for the entire 8 weeks.  The Assistant cook is typically a young and keen staffer with no real kitchen experience required.   Email director@campvalaqua.com to apply
DON'T MISS OUT!!! 
2021-2022 STUDENT BURSARIES

Bursaries are available for students attending Canadian Mennonite University or Columbia Bible College. 

Deadline July 31, 2021

Mennonite Church Alberta (MCA) Employment Opportunity

Church Engagement Minister,  .5 FTE

MCA is a caring community of twelve congregations joined by faith in Jesus Christ in a Mennonite perspective.  We are seeking a Church Engagement Minister who embodies that faith with demonstrated gifts and experience in engaging collaboratively with individuals, congregations, and financial supporters from diverse cultural contexts and theological perspectives.  Supported by MCA’s Executive Minister, the Church Engagement Minister engages with congregations and individuals to deepen their understanding and participation in three key ministry areas:

    1. The mission of the church at the local, national, and international levels;

    2. Relationship-building within MCA and between MCA congregations;

    3. Growing financial support for individual congregations, MCA, and MC Canada.

For a full job description, see mcab.ca/careers.  Inquiries and resumes may be directed to moderator@mcab.ca

Are you looking for ways that you and your congregation can connect with E3 Year 2?

Worship Leaders, are you looking for a pre-recorded sermon to use as part of your E3 Sunday? 

All E3 Y2 Resources are available HERE. 

Thank you to Common Word for again compiling E3 Resources for us!
 



 

Mennonite Church Canada AGM – 
Saturday, June 19, 2021, 1:00 -2:30 p.m. EDT
(11:00 a.m in Alberta)

Join our nationwide community of faith for Mennonite Church Canada's AGM. Along with our business agenda, we will hear updates from our program directors, enjoy worship and reflect together as joint council members share what God has showed them over the past year. All are welcome. Register here

Nationwide worship services coming this summer 

Mennonite Church Canada is once again coordinating worship services this summer. The services will be available at mennonitechurch.ca/worshipservices and on our YouTube channel

Thank you to Foothills, First Mennonite Edmonton, and Trinity Mennonite for volunteering to represent MCA!!

Fathers Day June 20:
Sherbrooke Mennonite Church in Vancouver, B.C., shares their service with our nationwide community of faith. 

“What I learned from the KDrama ‘My Mister’.”  Pastor Kevin Barkowsky reflects on his favourite KDrama, shedding new light upon Philippians 4:8-9.  Will Mr. Park continue to walk with integrity, even though Lee Ji-an, his boss, his wife and brothers all fall short? 





“What we have seen, what we have heard”
a six-week study guide for Gathering 2022 

Across the nationwide church, congregations are being invited to witness to what God has been doing among us. What have you seen? What have you heard God doing in your life and the life of your community? This six-weeks study series invite congregations to understand how they are living witnesses to the gospel. Consider using this study guide this fall for adult education, care groups or even as a worship series. Available through CommonWord this August 2021. 




Job opportunity with Mennonite Church Canada
Mennonite Church Canada invites applications for a Nationwide Youth Gathering Event Coordinator.  The Nationwide Youth Gathering will take place July 31- Aug 4, 2022, at Camp Valaqua near Calgary, Alta. This position is a one-year term/contract beginning August 16 2021 at .4 FTE.  Applicants from across Canada are invited to apply. Applications will be considered beginning July 6, 2021.  For the full job description go to: https://www.mennonitechurch.ca/get-involved#youth-coordinator-2022.

Indigenous Settler Relations

Mennonite Church Canada and ecumenical groups across Canada mobilize around Bill C-15 

Bill C-15, an Act respecting the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, is in its second reading by the Senate. Time is running out for it to reach royal assent and ensure that Canada takes a hard look at its laws to make sure they are in line with UN Declaration. Read our story on how why faith groups are mobilizing around the Bill.

For information on action you can take, visit www.faithinthedeclaration.ca
 

Mennonite Church Canada and Christian Peacemaker Teams form accompaniment team in Unist’ot’en Camp in Wet’suwet’en territory 

Mennonite Church Canada, together with Christian Peacemaker Teams, has responded to an invitation to accompany Unist’ot’en Camp in Wet’suwet’en Territory. A five-person team comprised of CPTers and members of Mennonite Church Canada arrived at the camp in northern B.C. on May 26. Read their statement here.  




ISR launches Be it Resolved Challeng

The Be it Resolved Challenge is a nationwide initiative encouraging Mennonite Church Canada members and congregations to create and commit to new resolutions for Indigenous justice. Learn more here.  

Faith Action Tool Kit: 1492 Land Back Lane 

Joint-intern for Indigenous-Settler Relations and Christian Peacemaker Teams Allegra Friesen Epp has put together a faith action toolkit to help churches engage with 1492 Land Back Lane, a site within the Haldimand Tract in southwestern Ontario where Haudenosaunee (Six Nations) Land Defenders are mobilizing to stop a new subdivision from being built on their lands. Free downloads of the kit available here.  

https://cptaction.org/faith-action-toolkit-1492-land-back-lane/?blm_aid=62157 

 

International Witness

SAVE THE DATE: Sunday, October 24, 2021, is International Witness Sunday 

Situation in Colombia still dire 

The Colombian Mennonite Church asks us to continue to stand with them in prayer. Churches supporting protesters have received death threats from paramilitary groups. Yalile Caballero, IMCOL president, says that youth feel hopeless because the protests and strikes do not bring change. Along with violence against protesters and illegal detentions, COVID-19 continues to spread, with more than 500 new cases daily and ICU beds at capacity. 

New faith siblings in Burkina Faso 

Please pray for the 28 newly-baptized believers in the Mennonite churches in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso, that their faith and witness continue to grow in life-giving ways. In the words of Siaka Traoré, founding church-planter and pastor of the churches in Bobo, "Thanks be to God who makes the church grow."  

Witness workers move to expand peace education 

Mennonite Church Canada Witness workers, Sook Kyoung Park and Bock Ki Kim have moved to a new community in Chuncheon, South Korea, this month to expand their children’s ministry in peace education.  Pray that their community will benefit from Sook Kyoung’s peace presence as she interacts with children and their families.   

RJC Musical: Disney's Freaky Friday! - June 18-24. Tickets for scheduled viewing times are on sale now at ShowTix4U.com! $20 per viewing device. 

RJC Graduation Exercises - June 25. Live-streamed for the public. Baccalaureate Service 10:00am (SK CST) and Graduation Ceremony  2:00pm (SK CST). Watch events online at rjc.sk.ca/grad2021

RJC Employment Opportunity - Head Caretaker. Full-time, permanent position. The Head Caretaker is responsible for providing a safe, clean environment in the school, dormitory and on campus; and for managing, ordering supplies and coordinating all aspects of school cleaning. View the full job description at rjc.sk.ca/about/employment-opportunities Send all resumes to the principal, Ryan Wood, at ryan@rjc.sk.ca.

 

 

Are there students from your church planning to attend CMU in the fall? Check out the Church Matching Grant partnership! Churches can contribute to a student’s CMU tuition and have CMU match the funds up to $500/year/student. Details and applications at cmu.ca/future/financial/church-matching.

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Summer Reading List 

Our 13th annual list of titles for the lawn chair, hammock or beach blanket – to buy, borrow or special order - www.commonword.ca/go/2447 

Worship Resources for Ordinary Time 

 

  




Spring/Summer CommonRead Title 

  • Our recommended title for Mennonite Church Canada congregations. 

  • Read individually or as a group.  Great title for a parenting group!   

  • Buy or Borrow book –   Bulk discount available when buying 5 or more copies. 

  • Free study guide and author interview available. 

 

Intercultural Church 

Resources that foster just diversity, different cultural articulations of faith, and an alternative to the politics of assimilation and segregation - 






Book Launch, June 17, 7:30 PM (CDT) 

The Church and the Coronavirus Pandemic

See the MCA website for up-to-date Covid-19 information as it impacts our worshiping together.

Have a story to tell?  Feedback on the MCA Communiqué?
Email communications@mcab.ca
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