I hadn’t seen this plaque about my Mom till I spoke at Grace Mennonite Church in Steinbach one Sunday morning. After the service I did a little tour of the church I called home for some thirty years. I found this photo and story posted in the church’s nursery room where families can go during the service or other church events so little children can play with the toys, have a nap or socialize with other toddlers. The nursery is a great place to pay tribute to my mother who was very involved for many years with the Cradle Roll program at Grace Mennonite.
The Cradle Roll was run by a group of older women from the church who visited young parents after their babies were born to express interest and support. They continued to make visits till the children were of school age. They planned and hosted parties a number of times each year so young parents and their children could socialize with one another. After Mom died our family made a donation to the women’s group at Grace Mennonite that Mom had belonged to for many decades. They decided to use the money to make improvements to the nursery as a way to recognize Mom’s love and care for the smallest members of the church family.
It is a fitting way to recognize Mom’s love of children.
My Mom Starts School
You Never Say Goodbye
This terrific sign is displayed in front of the church I attended for some forty years- Grace Mennonite in Steinbach. With its message in both English and Arabic it lets everyone know that God’s people of every faith and background are considered friends of the congregation.
I thought of the Grace Church sign when I read an article about the Pope’s Lenten message. This year he wants people to give up indifference for Lent, indifference towards neighbours and God. He says indifference is becoming a global phenomenon.
I am in the United States right now and the media here carries reports each week about at least one new executive order from the country’s current government that shows a marked indifference and lack of sensitivity towards the concerns of neighbours. One week it was refugee neighbours, the next immigrant neighbours and just this week transgender neighbours lost some of their freedoms.
In the face of government indifference and lack of compassion it is even more important for people of faith and faith communties to display their caring and acceptance. I happen to know Grace Mennonite reaches out to their neighbours in many ways. They recently sponsored a Syrian refugee family and have housed a soup kitchen in their building for over a decade. They haven’t only put up a sign they have taken action as well. Their example is an inspiration.
Saying Hello to People
Those Who Went to War and Those Who Didn’t