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Fraternal visit affirms reconciliation process

   
 


Janet Plenert, Executive Secretary, Mennonite Church Canada Witness, and Rev. Dr. Ishmael Noko.

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October 1, 2010
-Deborah Froese

Winnipeg, Man. — On Friday, Sept. 17, Rev. Dr. Ishmael Noko, General Secretary of the Lutheran World Federation visited the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada office in Winnipeg.  He met with representatives from four Mennonite denominations, Mennonite Central Committee Canada, Lutheran World Relief and Bishop Susan Johnson, Presiding Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada.  

This visit was Noko’s first to Canada since the historic service in Stuttgart, Germany on July 22, 2010, which marked reconciliation and unity between Lutherans and Mennonites, following centuries of official condemnation of Anabaptists by Lutherans and misrepresentation of the history by both sides.

Noko described his visit to Canada as a “fraternal visit” and said he feels at home and relaxed when he is here. 

“He is clearly very personally invested in the Mennonite reconciliation with Lutherans, and has committed great energy to seeing this entire process come to fruition,” says Janet Plenert, Executive Secretary, Mennonite Church Canada Witness, and vice president of Mennonite World Conference. “His encouragement now is that we all seek ways to make this global process real in local congregations.”

Mennonite Church Canada and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada are jointly preparing a study guide scheduled to be released at the end of October. The guide will stimulate congregational involvement and awareness of the process as well as our calling to live, work and witness together as reconciled people.