Third Way Archive

A messy journey from military service to pacifism

February 8, 2018 Third Way

By Austin Kocher I did not join the military out of a duty to America (whatever that means), or because military service ran in the family. I joined because I wanted out of Ohio, I wanted college money, and I wanted to challenge myself as much as I could. However, it is important to say that there was nothing in my social and religious world at the time that would have challenged my decision to enlist. In fact, enlisting is an easy way for working class people to earn instant social capital in the form of respect, admiration, and deference. […]

A lament for the children

A lament for the children Esther Epp-Tiessen Twenty-three years ago, my husband and I held our son Timothy as life ebbed from his cancer-ravaged body. Over his short eight years, he had struggled with cerebral palsy, hydrocephalus, and epilepsy, but it was medullablastoma (a form of childhood brain cancer) that ultimately killed him. Tim’s prolonged illness – and our journey with him – have made me especially sensitive to the suffering of children. Because of Tim, I cannot bear to see children suffer. I am especially enraged by the suffering inflicted on children by other humans. Consider these realities: According […]

Top Ten Films of 2017 – by Media Matters reviewers

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January 17, 2018 Third Way

Vic’s Top Ten Films of 2017 Counting down, in a year of great films made by and about women: 10. Their Finest – In a year when, for the first time, my top-ten list includes two films written and directed by women, as well as eight films with a female protagonist, it’s appropriate to begin with a film about the role of women in filmmaking (and in WWII Britain generally). Written by Gaby Chiappe and directed by Lone Scherfig, Their Finest stars Gemma Arterton as a screenwriter for a 1940 propaganda film about the retreat from Dunkirk. It’s much more […]

A prayer of response to Mary’s Magnificat

December 21, 2017 Third Way

A prayer of response to Mary’s Magnificat The Magnificat is often understood to be a song of praise. Recorded in Luke 1:47-55, it is Mary’s response to the prophecy that, through her, God’s fulfillment will come. I sometimes struggle to believe Mary’s strong and powerful affirmation of the coming of God’s “upside down kingdom.” Mary’s words are meant to comfort and give hope to those seeking justice, but injustice continues and at times even flourishes. Where is the mercy for those who fear the Lord? Did I miss the proud being scattered? When I look at the leaders of the […]

The day Paola taught her teacher a lesson in kindness

December 15, 2017 Third Way

By Trevor Scott Barton Nine out of ten students at my school in South Carolina come from families whose income level meets the federal guidelines for poverty. Paola, an immigrant kid from El Salvador, is one of them. She is a first-grader and she lives in a small apartment with her grandma, mom, sister and uncle. Her family’s low income means she is likely to suffer from poor nutrition, inadequate health care, an inferior education and a bad future. I’m struggling against her life-crushing poverty with all of the compassion, creativity and commitment that I can find inside of me. […]

What is Canada’s Persons Day?

October 27, 2017 Third Way

Persons Day By Monica Scheifele October 18 is Persons Day in Canada. It is a time to remember and celebrate the historic 1929 decision of what was then Canada’s highest court of appeal – the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council of Great Britain – to include women in the legal definition of “persons”. The idea that women would not be considered persons seems absurd today and even more ridiculous to think that this was the case less than 100 years ago. Aren’t all human beings persons? Apparently not in Canadian law before 1929 when the definition was still based […]

Wear an Orange Shirt on September 30

September 22, 2017 Third Way

Wear an Orange Shirt on September 30 By Miriam Sainnawap \Miriam is Co-coordinator of MCC Canada’s Indigenous Neighbours program. She is from Oji-Cree, from Kingfisher First Nation in northwestern Ontario. The fifth annual Orange Shirt Day takes place across Canada on September 30, 2017 — a day to commemorate the experiences of residential school survivors and their families. Wearing an orange shirt when we gather is way to raise awareness of the legacy of the Indian Residential School System and build solidarity with the survivors. The Indian Residential School System was established by the federal government of Canada and administered by church denominations from the 1880s […]

The power of presence

August 17, 2017 Third Way

The power of presence Krista Dutt, Program Coordinator for Chicago and Church Relations Associate, Mennonite Central Committee Great Lakes I have often heard the life of Job upheld as an example. However, my experience as an immigration court watcher has allowed me to enter into the perspective of Job’s friends. These friends heard that Job’s life was in a hard place and so they went to sit with him (Job 2:11-13). Scripture says they didn’t speak, waiting until Job broke seven days of silence, but the power of their presence during that time is clear. Sometimes the most we can […]

Strangers in their own land

August 10, 2017 Third Way

Strangers in their own land By Daniel Friesen Since the beginning of the civil war in 2011, instability has been the governing force in the lives of many Syrians. While local and international powers have compounded the civil war with their own interests and sectarian conflicts have sprung up around the fray, Syria’s people continue to be threatened by mortar attacks, missile strikes, chemical weapons, and violence from the so-called Islamic State. Media coverage often centers on U.S. coalition forces and defeating terrorism, but we must not forget the ever-increasing humanitarian crisis. Syrian civilians in great number have been caught […]

Growing peace in the Philippines—with coffee!

August 7, 2017 Third Way

Growing peace in the Philippines—with coffee! By Joji Pantoja People from Mindanao, Philippines, have been yearning for peace. Peacebuilders Community started working with people who have been in conflict for almost 30 years. Conflict disrupts any development in the country; conflict has caused the people of Mindanao to experience death, displacement, and starvation. As Peacebuilders Community slowly became involved in the dialogue, it was clear all groups shared one commonality: a love of coffee. So coffee became the vehicle for the peace message Peacebulders wanted to promote. “Coffee for Peace” was born in 2007. The goal was to promote high-quality […]