August 10, 2009

Church Experiment #32: Mennonite Fellowship

This week is going to be a little different. In a divine act of coincidence, Sunday’s visit to Cincinnati Mennonite Fellowship ( aligned perfectly with my experience the previous week at Willow Creek’s Leadership Summit. Because everything lined up so perfectly, I’m going to discuss both.

My only previous experience with Mennonites involved a home I lived in for almost three years. A different Mennonite Fellowship in Cincinnati sold that house to two of my friends. (In fact, when my friends purchased the property, they were given a sweet deal because the Mennonites were excited to see the home passed to a group of people wanting to positively impact their community.) The house was huge, so after we renovated it, a group of us moved in and split costs. The Mennonites called it the Peace House. We renamed it the Piece House.

To finish reading about this experience or any of the reflections from my 52 visits, please purchase the full book here.


DanThoms said...

Sounds like a high yielding investment to me.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'd say God is speaking to you in a BIG way.

What a wonderful program that sounds like. I can't wait to hear more about it. Might just have to go read about it myself!

Anonymous said...

This insight from your post:
"because churches are filled with crazy people" Made me think of a sign up near a church on the East Side of Cincy - Eastside Christian Church. It says "A church for people who do not like church."

I have been looking for a -- Church for people who do not like church people!

Keep up the great blog. I love it.


Micah said...

Build a man a fire, and he'll stay warm for a day.

Set a man on fire, and he'll stay warm for the rest of his life.

Betsy Madison said...

Thank you for the heads up on KIVA. I just lent $$ to a woman who bakes traditional breads (an endeavor near and dear to my heart). I'm so excited! Everyone's getting gift certifs for Christmas!!

Steve Fuller said...

Very cool, Betsy!

RA Cook said...

I wrote a book about this after college (the Kiva part, not the d-bag Christians part)
e-mail me

Lydia said...

Thanks so much for your post this week.

I have been part of a congregation for 10 years, but live about 40 miles away. This has helped me deal with the whole issue of getting entwined in the body. I can participate and not get wound up with the crazies. yes, we have them too... drives me nuts.... but I love them...

Oh and thanks for saying exactly how I feel about being part of the church body. It can be challenging.

Also, thank SO MUCH for sending information on about KIVA. I had heard about it a while ago and wanted to get involved then lost the information. God is really on the move this week!

Jen - Mom of 4 said...

I had never heard of KIVA, but my hubby and I have decided to join and invest. I know I have also felt the call recently to start stepping up more and helping my fellow citizens of Earth - big and small, local and far. KIVA will be one step of many.

Thanks for a great post!

Amanda said...

I've been reading your blog for a few months now, and I find it very interesting. I have gone through several periods of "church shopping" in the past few years (mainly because of moving several times) so I can sympathize with many of your posts.
Anyway, I have a church I thought you might find interesting.
The church I grew up attending (I now attend VCC), Norwood Wesleyan, is having an "Old Fashioned CampMeeting & Round Up Sunday"
Apparently an evangelist from NC will be speaking and everyone is supposed to come dressed in western style clothes.
It's not the first gimmick they have done during a Sunday service either - a few months ago they had an "old fashioned Sunday" where everyone came dressed in old-fashioned clothing and the mayor of Norwood spoke (I didn't go, but my parents told me about it - apparently it was incredibly cheesy, but they did get some visitors for the "event").
I think the idea is an odd way to lure new people to a church, but it might make for an interesting story in your book.
It's Aug 30th at 10:30am
5407 Warren Ave. in Norwood

Teresa said...

I lived at 453 Riddle for 4 years during college... is that the same address?!

Christina said...

"I would rather spend my time alone, with close friends, or with strangers outside of the church....."

Phew....I'm so glad to know that I'm not the only one!

Deano said...

Someone told me years ago, "If you ever need urgent help, go find a Mennonite." And he was a Baptist. He's right. You'll not find another group so other-centered, not even at the Vineyard.

Joel and Abbie said...

Hey Steve,
I hope it's alright that I found your blog. A couple days ago I remembered that I was going to search for it and it actually wasn't too hard to find.
I apologize that I passed on some misinformation to you, though. Our congregation did not own Peace House on Riddle, but a number of members volunteered at a day care that was hosted in its basement for a period of time. It was owned by a different Mennonite Church. Sorry about that. Need to get my history straight. I think the connectivity thing still stands though...
I like your blog by the way. I appreciate the honesty and transparency. It seems to be resonating with a lot of folks who are reading and commenting.
Best wishes as the experiment continues...