If you were expecting a photo of a woman in a bonnet or a man with a long beard and straw hat, you’re certainly not alone. I suspect that when most people think of Mennonites, the first thing to come to mind is the cover of a Beverly Lewis novel or an intricate patchwork quilt.
But the fact of the matter is that the Mennonites are an incredibly diverse group. They range from horse-and-buggy conservatives to modern, theologically-liberal progressives, and everything in between. What appears to unite them is an emphasis on the teachings of Jesus, a commitment to nonviolence, and an allegiance to Christ’s Kingdom over any other kingdom of the world.
As I’ve participated in conferences and events over the past couple years, I’ve noticed that some of the wisest and warmest people I’ve met have been Mennonites, so I’ve been trying to learn more about their theology and practice. I figured that a Mennonite would be a perfect candidate for our summer interview series.
Kurt Willems is an Anabaptist writer and pastor who is preparing for church planting by finishing work towards a Master of Divinity degree at Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary. He’s a contributing writer for Red Letter Christians, and has also written for The Ooze, Emergent Village, and Sojourners. You can catch up with Kurt at the Pangea Blog, Twitter, and Facebook.
You know the drill. If you have questions for Kurt, leave them in the comment section. Remember that the point is not to debate or challenge, but to ask the sort of questions that will help us understand one another better. Please take advantage of the “like” feature so that we can get a sense of what questions are of most interest to readers. At the end of the day, I’ll pick the top seven or eight questions and send them to Kurt. Look for his responses next Tuesday.
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