That concern for peacemaking indeed became central in the discussion of the 11 participants, particularly as statements coming before the central committee were addressing issues of conflict and war, and calls for divisions and censure are growing across the world.
“There is a complication between keeping dialogue open to have some sort of influence, and being prophetic,” said Rev. Prof. Dr Fernando Enns from the Association of Mennonite Congregations in Germany. “If censure and division is one way, what way is reconciliation?”
“From my church, we would like to see more creativity in our peacebuilding,” continued Enns. “We have letters and humanitarian aid. From our perspective, a peace church goes to where the fire is.”
“How do we put living letters behind our written letters?” asked Rev. Dr Jeffrey Carter, Church of the Brethren, as the group discussed the response to the war in Ukraine. “Peacebuilding is always built off of creativity.”
Scott highlighted the need to speak out in the upcoming sessions. “We are encouraging anyone who has the opportunity to be bold.”
Participants took the opportunity to share news from their churches and key issues—both concerns and joys—they are addressing. The meeting was opened with Quaker silent worship and finished with prayer in the Mennonite tradition.
Although short, the fellowship and sharing was appreciated.
“Now I don’t feel that I am the only one,” said Enns.