This Sunday at Rainbow we will observe and maybe even celebrate what is called Mennonite World Fellowship Sunday. Why? Each year Anabaptist-related churches around the world are encouraged by Mennonite World Conference to worship around a common theme on a Sunday close to January 21. On that date in 1525 the first Anabaptist baptism took place in Switzerland. (I really wish MWC would be renamed the Menno globetrotters.)
Last year when we observed World Fellowship Sunday, you may recall I shared this story from Barbara Chappell via Ben Chappell:
“A social work professor who travels to Darfur, Sudan, shared stories at a recent church gathering. In the midst of recounting the horrors of the genocide there, he related this amusing story. Mennonite Central Committee has been sending blankets and comforters to Darfur where they are greatly appreciated. There is no Arabic word for “comforter,” so the people just called them “Mennonites.” Until he figured this out, the traveler was totally perplexed to hear these very appreciative people talking about how they always like to have a Mennonite on top of them to keep them warm at night, and how they hang the Mennonite on the wall in the morning because, in the morning Mennonites look so nice hanging from a hook!”
I’m not sure what I will share this year, but I did spend some time getting my head around Team Mennonite, and what this looks like locally and globally. Consider this your chance to see Mennonites on top of Mennonites 🙂 Just click on each image to make them larger.
When I worked for the Historic Missouri Theatre in Columbia, MO, we had a fundraiser where we sold knit sofa throws featuring pictures of local historic sites, including our theatre. On the marquee we advertised “Afghans for Sale.” Two olive complected women came in to find out what we were about. They corrected us, “We were very worried what you were doing. These are blankets! We are Afghans.” They were from Afghanistan, of course. I was a little embarrassed, and impressed with their courage for confronting us.