Recent comments

  • On gender and genderlessness   5 years 45 weeks ago

    When I read about the family in Toronto, I felt the same unease expressed here. There are definitely restrictive stereotypes out there, but I'm proud to be a woman, with everything that comes with it. We should focus on ways to work with the gender and personality we have, instead of trying to pretend gender isn't important.

  • On gender and genderlessness   5 years 48 weeks ago

    Thank you so much for this post. These questions are ones that are often playing around in my head and it is wonderful to read such an eloquent and respectful analysis of them.

  • Despite Egypt’s turmoil, I am optimistic   5 years 48 weeks ago

    Will done my dear sister,
    You have done a great Job, God bless you.

  • Technological difficulties   5 years 49 weeks ago

    Thanks for your reply.

    Your last question is the most challenging one for me, and one that I'm trying to work out - both theoretically and experimentally in the way that I live. The way I see it, the first step to answering that question is to become aware of the effects of technology on our lives - especially the unintended ones and those that advertisers aren't constantly telling us about. So, for example, we hear a lot about "staying connected" and we assume that this is a good thing, but we rarely stop to question why connection is good, and what we might be missing out on.

    In his book, Amusing Ourselves to Death Neil Postman talks about how various media enable communication but also restrict the content of that communication. For example, television is unable to transmit sustained rational argument because of certain restrictions (the need for advertisement, which demands ratings, which tends toward the sensational and the amusing rather than the meaningful). I don't know of anyone who's done a similar study of cell phones, but I can imagine some of the effects. Postman also talks about the Information-Action ratio, which I think is extremely relevant as I look around at my friends and those who are younger than me. Has our incredible access to information actually desensitized us, made us more apathetic, less likely to take action?

    Technology can indeed make communication easier, but it might be the difficulty of communication that makes it worthwhile. Communication is different from information sharing (IS), yet the success of our IS technologies can trick us into believing that IS is communication. When that happens, we not only lose out on opportunities for genuine communication, we also may forget how to communicate in a way that involves a true meeting of hearts and minds. For me, working out a balanced spiritual life means remembering that these things are tools, and knowing what they are good for, and what they are not. After all, a hammer is also a really good tool, but not every problem needs to be solved with one.

    Kevin G.T.

  • Technological difficulties   5 years 50 weeks ago

    Yikes... some challenging reflections there.

    I agree that we need to think about and be intentional about our use of technology in church, especially if we're using it in the name of connecting to youth and young adults. However, because we spend so much time online and using social media, that's one of the places we're likely to minister to the younger generation(s). As a youth minister, text messaging and Facebook are among the most effective tools to keep in touch with my flock. They may not be effective tools for meeting many spiritual needs, but they are the communications media we use now more than phonecalls, newsletters, and even email.

    ...and I'm addicted to the internet as much as any of the kids I pastor. Should we reject all that if we're to be healthy Christians? Is there some better way out there? Or can we have this online stuff and learn how it fits in with a balanced spiritual life too?

    M Turman

  • How involved should we be in politics?   5 years 51 weeks ago

    These are great articles, but why do the names of the authors not appear next to their titles?

  • Political dialogue 101 for Mennonites   5 years 51 weeks ago

    There needs to be a like button if this is a young voice website.

  • Footloose and fancy free   5 years 51 weeks ago

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this aspect of our embodied nature. I feel like you really "get" what's wonderful about dancing, and also what's wrong with what we have made of dancing in our culture.

    I read this aloud with my husband. He notes that you refer to bodies as something that we have, or walk around in. We suggest that perhaps it's helpful to think of bodies as what we ARE on a more fundamental level. After all, Jesus came to us in flesh even though he was deity. He put on a body perhaps as part of showing us how important our bodiliness is -- not just an afterthought in which our essential spirit is conveniently cloaked.

  • How involved should we be in politics?   6 years 5 days ago

    Good article Emily!

  • The leadership stalemate   6 years 6 days ago

    Oh, by the way, the comment above is from Melanie.

  • The leadership stalemate   6 years 6 days ago

    Great piece Emily. I hope some of these conversations will pick up at the Assembly too. See you there!

  • Political dialogue 101 for Mennonites   6 years 1 week ago

    Excellent ideas! I like the way you bring the political realm into our Churches and living rooms! Keep writing Susie!

  • How involved should we be in politics?   6 years 2 weeks ago

    I enjoyed reading your article, Emily. It clearly reflects some deep thought and an expanded notion of politics.

    Your article got me thinking about the content of citizen activism. Is it limited to lobbying, or are there other ways we can be engaged in extra-electoral politics? Could citizen activism include lifestyle choices, or the way we chose to represent people and places through the stories we tell and the art we create?

    I'm interested to hear your thoughts on the content of citizen activism?