Past Programs

  • Miss a program? You can always request the CD of that program for $5 through Ray Gingerich, .
  • Questions about the events? Email Terry Burkhalter at .

April 2014

Restorative justice and the Mennonites – what were we thinking, anyway? This was our provocative question for our April gathering. Howard Zehr and Lorraine Stutzman Amstutz invited us along as they explored some possible answers to this question.

LORRAINE STUTZMAN AMSTUTZ,
•Co-Director of Mennonite Central Committee’s Office on Justice and Peacebuilding.
•Lorraine has written numerous articles, co-authoredand writtenseveral books. She has served on the international Victim Offender Mediation Association (VOMA) Board.

HOWARD ZEHR,
•Author, prolific writer, photographer and lecturer.
•Changing Lenses: A New Focus for Crime and Justice. This was the most formative and “seminal” book written in the field of justice.

•Howard has published highly recommended portrait/interview books; best known are The Little Book of Restorative Justice…

March 2014

In March our ACRS breakfast featured Darryl Byler. Daryl, currently Executive Director of the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding, reflected on his various roles as an advocate for peace, both nationally and internationally.


As a pastor in Mississippi he promoted Civil Rights, later in Washington DC he used his law degree to advocate for more just and peaceful national policies. For the five years prior to his coming to CJP and EMU, Daryl guided MCC’s efforts to promote peace in the Middle East. Daryl had recently returned from Iran and shared that experience as he reflected on advocacy for peace as a ministry of the church.

February 2014

In February our ACRS breakfast featured Burton Buller on the theme of media and mission.

When did your family first get a radio? A TV set? Go to see a movie? Within most of our lifetimes, the Mennonite Church we are part of went from a media taboo to embracing the possibility of media as mission. Buton Buller pioneered this new vision and will tell of his experience at the ACRS breakfast on Monday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 a.m.

Following is a very brief resumé on Burton:
p(. Burton Buller, a native of Henderson, Nebraska, now living in Massanutten, Virginia, began working with film in 1968 for the Mennonite Central Committee. His subsequent work has included being CEO of Family Life Network in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Director of Third Way Media, Harrisonburg, Virginia and now managing partner of Buller Films LLC. He formerly chaired the Electronic Programming Committee of the National Council of Churches and sat on the board of the National Interfaith Cable Coalition. While operating photography, film, video and printing businesses in Nebraska, he served as the chairman of the Central States MCC board, and sat on the MCC US and MCC binational boards. He worked to begin the Nebraska MCC sale, acting as the vice chair for the inaugural years. Currently he is on the executive committee of the North American Section of the World Association for Christian Communication where he serves as treasurer. His films have won numerous awards, including the Cine Golden Eagle, and have been broadcast on CBS (“Sixty Minutes”), ABC, NBC and on the Learning, Discovery and Hallmark channels. Burton is a graduate of Tabor College, Hillsboro, Kansas, and the University of Nebraska (M.A., Journalism). He attends Shalom Mennonite Church in Harrisonburg, Virginia. When he is not making videos, he enjoys motorcycling and wood working.

Like all of our other sessions, if you have missed this one, you can order a CD.

January 2014

In January our ACRS breakfast featured Carolyn Yoder and Elaine Zook Barge, the first two directors of STAR, to tell the story of this unique program which brings together the latest understanding of trauma with our vision of a peace that heals, a peace in which truth, justice and mercy meet.

September 11, 2001! While the President and his advisers planned a war of retaliation, Church World Service and EMU’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding planned a response of healing. How to cope with trauma? How to activate the vision of peacebuilding amid fear and angry anxiety?

Together they planned Seminars of Trauma Awareness and Resilience—STAR. These seminars have brought together religious and civil society leaders from around the world. Since 2002 STAR has offered this training and this vision to some 10,000 persons and has given a new focus to peace-building and doing justice. Where might STAR lead the Mennonite Church in the next decade and beyond? This was the question participants were asked. Be sure to order a CD if you were unable to attend.

STAR logo Strategies for Trauma Awareness and Resilience (STAR)

December 2013

On December 9 Norman Kraus examined Mennonite response to the civil rights movement of the ‘60s from his involvement in Goshen, IN, and southern states. As he revisits this period, Norman asks, “How did Mennonite’s ‘nonresistant nonconformity’ affect their race relations in the post-Civil War developments of Jim Crow society? Should we think of Martin Luther King as a modern Anabaptist martyr? How does the legacy of that response affect us today as we work with issues of race, immigration and other justice issues?”

November 2013

The year 2013 marks the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington and Martin Luther King Jr.’s memorable “I Have a Dream” speech. The ACRS breakfast programs of November and December feature the response of two Mennonite communities: Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Goshen, Indiana.

On November 11 Harold D. Lehman told the story of how Church of the Brethren and Mennonites of Harrisonburg, meeting on a January evening in 1963, took leadership in “breaking down barriers that separate us.” The title of his presentation was: A Community that Acted.

In a state where elected officials launched “Massive Resistance” and ordered public schools to close rather than desegregate, this modest beginning took the pacifist, “quiet in the land” into a new arena.

See December ACRS breakfast meeting with Norman Kraus who described the participation of the church community of Goshen, Indiana in this movement toward equality and desegregation.

October 2013

The African continent has been home for Harold and Annetta Miller for at least the past half century. The Millers bring a wealth of experience in Africa that we hope to draw upon to understand the current context better. Harold spent nearly three decades seconded by Mennonite organizations, particularly Mennonite Central Committee, to serve as a staff member to or within four different African ecumenical agencies.

In the last several decades or so, Harold and Annetta served within MCC as co-representatives in East Africa and more recently in Sudan. Over the years they have related to the African Mennonite church world but more distantly as Mennonite Anabaptists from their involvement in Protestant ecumenical organizations and MCC rather than part of the Mennonite missionary effort. With this perspective Harold helped us gain a glimpse of the movement from colonialism to independence and beyond in Africa.

Harold Miller’s presentation, “Ecumenical Engagement with an African Liberation Century,” helped us explore the secular roots of the liberation century and how Ecumenical Christianity, and to a lesser degree Mennonite Anabaptists, engaged the movement. Harold discussed how Mennonite Central Committee’s commitment to peace, justice and non-violence related to African liberation and how it should or can relate to the larger agenda/challenges in the African future? Harold’s presentation provided a rich background from which we can explore not only the agenda and challenges for the African future with him, but also how we can do the same for the United States/Western future.

September 2013

  • New ACRS series: “Experiences/events which generated significant change in the Mennonite Church.”
  • In the summer of 1967, 15 young riders including Terry Burkhalter went on a 10-day bicycle ride of 1,000 miles. Between 1967 and 1982 more than 10,000 riders (most of them Mennonite youth) participated in the program we learned to know as “Out-spokin’.”

Think back to the 1960s. What was happening in our Mennonite communities? Mistrust between east and west? How did the divisions in the United States affect us: the Vietnam war and protests, race protests, shooting deaths of prominent leaders?

“Out-spokin’” channeled the athletic vigor of youth and interest in travel into group bonding, developing leadership skills, and new perspectives on the world they met every day. Terry Burkhalter presented the beginning first three years of Out-spokin’, 1967-70. Ross Erb and other former Out-spokin’ riders shared their stories as part of the presentation.