Located in the town of Vineland, Ontario, we are a small, friendly, inter-generational church in the Anabaptist tradition that worships God and together seeks to follow Jesus’ example. We have a long history—we were the first Mennonite church in Canada. On this site you can learn about the people and the work of our church, find directions to our facility, and learn about our history. You are welcome to join us!
Worship Service at 11:00 Sunday mornings (10:30 a.m. 1st Sunday in July through Labour Day) Sunday School for all ages begins at 10:00, except in summer. Hope to see you there!
Pot-luck lunch usually on the first Sunday of the month (except in July/Aug)
3357 Rittenhouse Rd, Vineland (see directions page for details)
We look forward to meeting you!
Tomorrow I am performing a wedding ceremony for someone in my family. While weddings are joyful occasions, there is always a part of me that is amazed that we embark on such risky ventures. As someone who has been married over 25 years, part of me wants to grab these young people by the shoulders and speak very sharply to them, “Do you know how hard this will be?”
At the same time, I know that we are equipped by God to meet challenges; a lot of marriages do survive, even through very very hard times.
This week we are going to be looking at a text where Paul speaks sharply to us. He wants us to know that this is not going to be a Sunday school picnic. We are heading into battle when we get baptized. And in order to stand firm, we need to be equipped. We need to put on the full armour of God.
Armour! Hey, that’s not a very Mennonite image! Hope to see you Sunday!
This week’s prayer: We want to stand firm this week. Show us the way, open our eyes to the ways you are equipping us for this challenge. Amen,
Do you know who planted these lovely tulips in our front garden? (it was not me…)
Katie Penner, one of our young adults, is spending a year with Mennonite Voluntary Service. The Wall Street Journal recently blogged about Menno House, where she lives. You can read it here: http://blogs.wsj.com/metropolis/2013/04/25/manhattans-crash-pad-for-visiting-mennonites/ There’s a video at the bottom of the article (you can skip the ad that it begins with). Check it out!
You probably know someone that you don’t like very much. But you have to be around them. Maybe it’s a co-worker or someone in your family. You tolerate them, you grit your teeth, you try to be nice.Being with them is an exercise in patience.
But then one day something happens. You see another side of them. You see them being kind to someone in a way you never thought they could. Maybe they reach out and help you when you are down. Or maybe in conversation they reveal something about their past that sheds a whole new light on them for you.
I feel that’s what’s happening with me and the apostle Paul. Paul has been the writer of the New Testament that I’ve least liked to spend time with. I get frustrated with his arrogance, his big statements, his controversial writing about different topics that are dear to me.
But Paul is part of the New Testament family, and these past months while we’ve been studying the book of Ephesians. I’ve started to see a different side of Paul. The Paul who got knocked down by a blinding flash of light; a Paul who, because he was so wrong himself, is super eager to tell other people how they need to change.
Reading the Bible, and studying, and praying about this has changed my point of view! I encourage you to read through Ephesians before our service on Sunday, and get a feel for the letter he is writing. Maybe you want to come to church a few minutes early; there are booklets on your chairs with the whole letter in it.
This week`s prayer: God of grace, thank you for giving us Paul and his letters, help us to take to heart the counsel that he gives us.
Judas is so easy to hate.
The betrayer, the snitch, the bad seed,
his name synonymous with treason.
No one cries when we hear he’s hung himself.
We all think, “Finally he gets what he deserves.”
Cast into the darkness of disgrace for all time,
who mourns for Judas?
But Judas was there from the beginning,
called like every disciple,
leaving behind everything to follow Jesus.
He was there in the boat, watching Jesus walk on water.
His hands touching the five loaves and two fish
multiplied by Jesus to feed the crowds.
From Samaria to Caesaria, from Galilee to Jerusalem,
Judas walking with Jesus, talking with Jesus,
listening and learning.
Jesus trusted Judas.
Matthew the tax collector was the money man,
but it was not to him that Jesus entrusted the purse.
Did Judas siphon cash away?
Jesus was not worried about this, if he did,
although John in his gospel is scathing
in his condemnation.
When the woman anoints Jesus,
John points the finger at Judas,
saying it was Judas who complained,
Judas who stole money.
In his gospel,
John is eager to further ruin Judas’ reputation,
if that is even possible.
After Judas’ betrayal of Jesus,
Judas disappears from John’s gospel.
John will not spare one more word for him.
He could not care less.
It is in Matthew the tax-collector’s gospel
that the story is filled in.
Matthew says all the disciples complained
about the money wasted in the anointing.
In Matthew’s gospel we learn that in the garden,
Jesus greets Judas with the word “Friend”.
Many years later, as Matthew sits to write,
does he remember that night in the garden?
Does he see the look of love on Jesus’ face?
Did it remind him of the relief he felt
the first time he realized that Jesus loved him,
a tax-collector, friendless in Israel?
Matthew’s gospel tells us of Judas repenting,
returning the money, naming himself as sinner.
Can we know why Judas did what he did?
What is the motivation for any sinner?
We can only know that Jesus called him friend.
Greater love has no man than this,
than that he lay down his life for his friends.
It’s easy to hate Judas.
But joined together in repentance
we are friends forever with Judas
through Jesus Christ our Lord.