Brainwashing Mennonite Youth?

Moses, the Arab Spring, and Occupy Movement
August 2014
Shalom Mennonite Virginia

____________________

The above video presentation is called From Moses to the Arab Spring to Occupy & the 99% by Shalom Mennonite Church Youth. (This is the same church that made the labyrinth video posted on Menno-lite last week.) According to this video, after learning the stories of Moses in the Bible for 2 years, these youth had a hard time knowing which came first, the ten plagues or the ten commandments. So they put together a time line of the events that compares the way people in the Arab Spring and the Occupy 99% movement around the world are like modern day Moseses.

In the video, they hold up papers of the events of the life of Moses which they have organized into chronological order. A girl holds up the first paper and reads a chart that says:

Pharoah represented the 1% wealthy elite in Egypt.
The Hebrews at the bottom of the social pyramid and suffered under the economic and political system.

Then the story of Moses and the exodus out of Egypt is told in order. It is creatively done by these lovely kids – almost refreshing, were it not for what is added to the end of the story where these youth apply it to modern times. With the help of prompts they conclude that Moses freed the people from “an oppressive economical and political system that oppressed them.” Here is a transcript of their modern day application …

-In January 2011 the people living in Egypt again called for a change in the economic and political system affecting their lives.
-An Egyptian woman made a video of herself asking the people of her country to meet her in Tahrir Square in downtown Cairo to call for change.
-She was like a modern day Moses. Her name was Asmaa Mahfouz.
-picture of Asmaa Mahfouz is held up
-In the fall of 2011, people living in the US began to call for a change in their economic and political system. They held a sit -in to “occupy Wall Street.”
-Wall Street represents the 1% of Americans who are benefiting from the current policital and economic system. Occupy Wall Street says they want an economic and political system that works for all … for the 99%.
-Today there are people all over the world calling for change, just like Moses.
We are all Moses.

These youth are from the same Shalom Church congregation that heard a Palm Sunday sermon (with a quote from activist Shane Claiborne) in which the worshippers, who sang Hosanna to the Messiah as he rode into Jerusalem, were compared to mere protestors… “Looking like an Occupy Wall Street crowd with their sandals and loose-fitting clothes, and bodies marked with the dirt and grime of predominately pedestrian lifestyle. Jesus sits front and center on their borrowed low-emissions vehicles (sounds and smells notwithstanding).” (See: http://www.shalomcongregation.va.us.mennonite.net/Worship/Sermons:CB2=2014-04-13.html@CB4)

Are these adults and children being brainwashed with propaganda in the name of Jesus and Menno Simons? Read the following links to decide:

4TH-GRADERS BRAINWASHED WITH OCCUPY ‘PROPAGANDA’
Student’s dad complains to Scholastic News publisher
http://www.wnd.com/2011/12/376177/

The 99%: Official list of Occupy Wall Street’s supporters, sponsors and sympathizers
http://pjmedia.com/zombie/2011/10/31/the-99-official-list-of-ows/

Using Class Warfare To Divide America
http://www.crossroad.to/articles2/2012/economic-collapse/5-class_warfare.htm

The Spirit of Lawlessness
http://www.crossroad.to/articles2/011/lawlessness.htm

More Mennonites Licensing Same-Sex Pastor

Another conference to license gay pastor
Central District expects to join Mountain States in action that Mennonite Church USA’s leadership board has opposed
Oct 27, 2014 by Kelli Yoder, Mennonite World Review

A second Mennonite Church USA area conference intends to license a pastor in a same-sex relationship, potentially putting it at odds with an Executive Board directive.
Central District Conference plans to license Mark Rupp, who was installed Sept. 21 as pastor of Christian formation at Columbus (Ohio) Mennonite Church.
Lois Johns Kaufmann, the conference minister, said the Central District board and ministerial committee affirmed their readiness to license Rupp.
Then she, several board members and the ministerial committee chair asked almost two dozen church leaders and pastors to offer their counsel to help decide when to hold the licensing service.
“Most of the people expressed a hope that we could wait until after Kansas City [the MC USA convention in July],” she said. “We are committed to doing a licensing service in late July of next year.”
The MC USA Executive Board in June asked that no area conference grant a ministerial license to a pastor in a same-sex relationship and said the denomination would not recognize such licenses.

More here:

http://mennoworld.org/2014/10/27/another-conference-to-license-gay-pastor/

Related:

Goshen congregation leaves Mennonite Church USA
@ mennoworld.org

A Little Paganism and Hinduism at Mennonite U?

When searching for a Christian university or Bible college to attend, little clues can indicate some very big spiritual and theological issues.

For example, Eastern Mennonite University calls itself “a Christian university like no other, rooted in values of peacemaking, community and service.” Besides academics, this university also offers counselling services and fitness exercises for the wellbeing of its students. Two items pertaining to these, from EMU’s website, are indicative of how far off course a Christian institution can drift from its moorings and biblical roots when it is rooted in peace making, community and service instead of the Bible.

Item #1: Counseling services offered with a tiny quote from . . . who?

EMU Counseling Services

“A skilled listener can help people tap into their own wisdom.” ― Richard Rohr

SOURCE: http://www.emu.edu/studentlife/counseling/

It’s just a small quote, and aside from the fact that our own wisdom is not worth much (Isaiah 5:21), if one can estimate what a person is feeding their mind by the people they quote, how much more a school of learning? This is not the first time that Franciscan Priest Richard Rohr’s pagan teachings have been influential on a Mennonite institution of learning. See More Rohr Influence – this time at Inter-Mennonite Bible College and Brian McLaren’s good friend Richard Rohr.

Item #2: EMU Fitness Center classes are offering . . . what?

Fall Semester 2014 Exercise Classes

-Power Yoga
Get ready to get moving! This invigorating vinyasa (flow) based class is designed to spark your inner fire and empower you physically and mentally. This class moves continuously, all levels welcome.
Tuesdays 5:15 – 6:15 PM Sept. 2 – Nov. 25 excluding Oct. 21
Instructor: Jamie Morgan
Thursdays 5:15 – 6:15 PM Sept. 4 – Nov. 20
Instructor: Taylor Evans

-Flow Yoga
A practice that links movement with breath to create a continuity from one posture to the next. Accessible to all levels, expect basic standing and seated postures, strengthening and stretching poses.
Wednesdays noon – 1 pm Sept. 3 – Nov. 19 
Instructor: Donovan Seow

SOURCE: http://www.emu.edu/studentlife/fitnesscenter/classes/

Supporters of Eastern Mennonite University may want to ask why students are given the opportunity to learn to practice the Hindu religion at the Fitness Center in their Christian university, if according to the following, this is in fact what it is:

What is vinyasa? See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vinyāsa
What is inner fire? See: http://www.devanadiyoga.com/class/inner-fire-vinyasa/
What is Flow Yoga? See: http://yoga.about.com/od/typesofyoga/a/vinyasa.htm
Is YOGA Just Exercise or a Hindu Religion? See: http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/yoga.htm

A tiny quote, a small class… and soon a little spiritual compromise goes a long way. But then again, what can one expect from a Christian university that has its own labyrinth and is immersed in contemplative spiritual formation?

Children Experiencing Mennonite Labyrinth

And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea. Mark 9:42

Watch children experiencing the labyrinth, compliments of Shalom Mennonite Virginia . . .

_____

What is the labyrinth?

LABYRINTHS, Prayer Paths That Promote the Occult
http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/labyrinth.htm

The Labyrinth Journey:
Walking the Path to Fulfillment?

By Carl Teichrib
http://www.forcingchange.org/the_labyrinth_journey

Anti-Christian Zionist Event Organized by a ‘Mennodox’?

It recently came to the attention of Menno-lite administration that an upcoming anti-Israel, anti-Christian Zionist mini conference called Challenging Christian Zionism: Canadian Roots and Responses (Oct 24 & 25) is possibly being organized by a Mennonite. Further research has confirmed this… sort of.

Andrew Klager is on faculty at the University of the Fraser Valley (B.C., Canada) where he is a sessional instructor of Mennonite Studies. His research, which includes Anabaptist-Mennonite studies and interreligious peacebuilding, is widely published in a variety of journals, such as Mennonite Quarterly Review, Conrad Grebel Review, and Journal of Mennonite Studies, as well as some books (Stricken by God? Nonviolent Identification and the Victory of Christ and Canadian Christian Zionism: A Tangled Tale).

Klager is also a writer for the Huffington Post and Clarion Journal, where his bio is posted:

After growing up in a conservative Evangelical environment in BC and Ontario, Andrew began attending a Mennonite church when he was 15 years old and received his undergraduate education at a Mennonite institution (Columbia Bible College, Abbotsford, BC)… He is currently a member of Holy Nativity Orthodox Church in Langley, BC. Andrew is still strongly informed by the Mennonite peace tradition(s) and emphasis on social justice, simple living, peacebuilding, and conflict transformation—re-shaped and applied within an Orthodox theological, historical, and ascetic framework—resulting in his informal, somewhat tongue-in-cheek self-identification as ‘Mennodox.’

- http://www.clarion-journal.com/clarion_journal_of_spirit/our-authors.html

Klager’s upcoming book, From Suffering to Solidarity: The Historical Seeds of Mennonite Interreligious, Interethnic, and International Peacebuilding, will be released next year.

anti-Zionist lectures poster


This weekend, it appears that the Mennodox Klager has organized a conference sponsored by Friends of Sabeel called CHALLENGING CHRISTIAN ZIONISM
: CANADIAN ROOTS AND RESPONSES
 with
 Dr. Gary Burge and Dr. Ron Dart
. It is a project of Necef Sabeel Canada, hosted by Canadian Friends of Sabeel BC (see PDF).

This is a mini lecture series (in two locations) in place of the larger Friends of Sabeel conference that has been postponed until next spring.

To find out more about these Canadian Friends of Sabeel conferences, see the research at Olive Press:

Anti-Zionist Lectures in Canada
http://olivepress.wordpress.com/2014/10/15/anti-zionist-lectures-in-canada/

More on the upcoming anti-Zionist mini conference . . .
http://olivepress.wordpress.com/2014/10/16/more-on-the-upcoming-anti-zionist-mini-conference/

Stephen Sizer and Friends Are No Friends of Israel
http://olivepress.wordpress.com/2014/10/18/stephen-sizer-and-friends-are-no-friends-of-israel/

Canadian Friends of Sabeel or Enemies of Israel? (UPDATED)
http://olivepress.wordpress.com/2014/08/22/friends-of-sabeel-canada/

_______

***See related posts on Mennonites and Sabeel, here:

McLaren’s Palestinian Justice Speech, Part 1
http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/05/27/mclarens-palestinian-justice-speech-part-1/

McLaren’s Palestinian Justice Speech, Part 2
http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/mclarens-palestinian-justice-speech-part-2/

The Anti-Israel Movement and the Mennonites: Part 2 – In the Name of Christ
http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/the-anti-israel-movement-and-the-mennonites-part-2/

Sabeel, Merton, Mennonite Convergence
http://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/03/13/sabeel-merton-mennonite-convergence/

More Contemplative Spiritual Formation from Herald Press

Product Details

Herald Press, the book publishing imprint of MennoMedia (Mennonite Church Canada and Mennonite Church USA) which publishes books from ‘an Anabaptist perspective,’ brings you their newest title:

“A new book addressing the deepest questions of the soul, The Spacious Heart: Room for Spiritual Awakening, was released by Herald Press in early September. The authors, siblings Donald Clymer and Sharon Clymer Landis, offer 12 keys, or insights, for unlocking the heart for spiritual growth.

Don is a spiritual director and Spanish professor who has led cross-cultural semesters at Eastern Mennonite University, in Harrisonburg; younger sister Sharon is a writer, spiritual director, and retreat leader from eastern Pennsylvania…

…Don first became involved in spiritual direction as a mentee, and then took training to be a spiritual director. He has been giving spiritual direction since 2003. Both Don and Sharon also blog regularly at http://www.donrclymer.blogspot.com and http://www.spiritsongsl.blogspot.com, respectively.”

SOURCE: News
Herald Press publishes new book on spiritual formation

News release / September 4, 2014
HARRISONBURG, Va., and KITCHENER, Ont.
http://mennomedia.org/?Page=8046

On the back cover of The Spacious Heart: Room for Spiritual Awakening are endorsements by Franciscan priest Richard Rohr, Marva J Dawn and Nathan Foster (author of The Making of an Ordinary Saint and Richard Foster’s son).

Some of the contemplative terms (and links) mentioned in this book are centering prayer (www.centeringprayer.com), consciousness examen (www.ignatianspirituality.com), contemplative prayer, guided imagery, and lectio divina.

Is this an Anabaptist perspective? Or just another contemplative tool of many that the Mennonites have formed as they retrace the footsteps of their founder Menno (backwards) on the road back to Rome?

Mennonite children following in the Footsteps of Jesus . . . or Marx?

Previously on this blog, a light was shone on a new Mennonite Sunday School curriculum called Shine[1] which will be teaching contemplative spiritual practices to children beginning this fall. This new curriculum also teaches children that they are called to a ministry of reconciliation and peace. In every session of Shine there is a section called Peace Notes. The second of the three goals of these Peace Notes is as follows:

Goal: Follow in the footsteps of Jesus by . . .

- Providing an alternative to worldviews that emphasize individualism, power, and the accumulation of wealth [2]

Is this following what Jesus taught, or is this a Marxist view? It was Carl Marx who said that . . .

Accumulation of wealth at one pole is, therefore, at the same time accumulation of misery, agony of toil, slavery, ignorance, brutality, mental degradation, at the opposite pole… ”[3]

How can providing a Marxist alternative to North American capitalism and our God given right to individualism be a way to train children in the ministry of peace, when . . .

“In reality, however, the Marxist system itself is responsible for the destruction of millions of human beings at the hands of its political parties and dictators, making it the greatest killing machine of all time.”[4]

Is the Shine curriculum teaching a Christian worldview to the children? Do parents want their children to be taught a Marxist worldview in Sunday School? Where are the watchmen on the wall? Who is teaching the children? Who will stand of for the truth?

Endnotes:

[1] Contemplative Spiritual Formation in Mennonite Sunday School Curriculum
https://mennolite.wordpress.com/2014/09/04/contemplative-spiritual-formation-in-mennonite-sunday-school-curriculum/
[2] The Shalom Arc: The Shine Curriculum’s Approach to the Bible
www.youtube.com/watch?v=yxOo14k75j4
[3] Karl Marx, Capital (London, UK: Sonnenschein, 1982), 660–1. Cited in Harry W. Laidler, History of Socialism (New York, NY: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1968), 152–3.
[4] Marxist Economics – Introduction
http://www.allaboutworldview.org/marxist-economics.htm