Called to Bridge Building

Called to Bridge Building

I am honored and humbled to be writing to you as your new Bridge Building Facilitator. We have discerned together that the work of expanding our circle is important work that requires guidance, imagination, and courage to step into new spaces! I invite prayers as we embark on this work in all of our varied Mennonite communities as Mennonites in Alberta!

This work is not beginning from zero.  This work builds on the relationships, strategies and structures left by Donna Entz and continued in part by me in my interim work during the last year. It can expand into new faith and culture relationships, however, including Indigenous, as we build on what we experienced at our Mennonite Church Gathering in July. 

One structure developed by Donna is called “A Common Word Alberta”—a coalition of interfaith individuals, including church and mosque leaders committed to offering our communities an annual Interfaith Dialogue.   Donna’s vision was to see this coalition expand beyond leadership in Edmonton to develop working groups in other areas of the province.  And this vision fits well with the new goals of the MC Alberta Bridge Building work – to localize this interfaith work in our communities. 

And so, as a way to explore the spirit and approach of “A Common Word Alberta” Interfaith Dialogues, I warmly invite all of you to join this year’s dialogue on October 29, which will be offered as a participatory hybrid event.   Both in-person and on-line participants will have an opportunity to dialogue in facilitated small groups.  This is often the highlight of the event!

The topic we have chosen is “Drawing the Circle Bigger.” In the context of the recent visit by Pope Francis, we will focus on developing circles that can respectfully and mutually include our Indigenous brothers and sisters.  The in-person meeting will be hosted by the Catholic Sacred Heart First People’s Church, and will include elders and parishioners from this faith community.

Our Muslim speaker will be Sadique Patham from Al Rashid Mosque, and our Christian speaker will be  Christina Conroy, from Ambrose University in Calgary.    We ask for prayers as we all prepare to come together on this important topic that affects all of us living in what today we call Canada.

I look forward to welcoming many of you on October 29!
Here is how to register: