Anabaptist Center for Religion and Society (ACRS)

Anabaptist Center for Religion and Society (ACRS)

Who We Are

The Anabaptist Center for Religion and Society (ACRS) is a community of elders bringing critical thinking and a prophetic voice to the engagement with local and world issues. Through the lens of Anabaptism, we strive to be a catalyst to provide leadership in practical ways to pursue responsibility and justice for the common good. (Approved by The Steering Committee, March 19, 2018)

The Steering Committee

ACRS Steering Committee
Seated: l to r—Nancy Heisey, Richard A. Yoder, Calvin Redekop, John Fairfield         
Standing: l to r—Lee M. Yoder, Vernon E. Jantzi, Susan W. Godshall, Pat H. Martin, Roman J. Miller, Harold F. Miller, Richard L. Bowman, Margaret J. Foth.  Photo by Howard Zehr.

Lee M. Yoder, Chair (2019)                                                       
Margaret Jantzi Foth (2019)
Vernon E. Jantzi, Vice Chair and Director (2021)
Roman J. Miller (2019)
John Fairfield, Secretary (2021)
Patricia Hostetter Martin (2021)
Richard A. Yoder, Treasurer (2019)
Harold F. Miller (2020)
Nancy R. Heisey (2020) 
Susan Weaver Godshall (2020)
Richard L. Bowman (2021)
Calvin W. Redekop, Founding Chair                                          

The Steering Committee meets the third Wednesday of the month, 2:30-4:30 PM in the Seminary Room 103 at EMU, September through April. Beginning and ending of mutually renewable terms of service for Steering Committee members is on September 1, according to action taken on December 3, 2013 by the Steering Committee.

  • January 16, 2019.
  • February 20
  • March 20

  • April 17
  • May 13 (Second Monday, as part of AGM)
  • ACRS Annual General Meeting: May 13, 2019, 7:30 AM, Park View Mennonite Church Fellowship Hall

Monday Morning Breakfast Committee

Terry Burkhalter, Margaret Foth, Pat Hostetter Martin, Vernon E. Jantzi

The Monday Breakfast Sessions are held the second Monday of the month, in the Park View Mennonite Church Fellowship Hall, 7:30 to 9:00 am:

  • January 14
  • February 11
  • March 11
  • March 25 (Special presentation on immigration)
  • April 8

Annual General Meeting:  May 13, 2019

Questions that drive us

As Anabaptists, we explore the relation between religion and society including changes at EMU, its community, and their relationship.

  • How do we engage in interfaith dialogue?
  • How does Anabaptism enhance our understanding of and engagement with pluralism? Can pluralism be a positive enforcer of our Anabaptist claims?
  • How should our church institutions relate to prophetic voices and change?
  • What insights and contributions can we offer in making church organizations and institutions more Anabaptist—more faithful to the way of Jesus?
  • How do we hold to some elements of our faith while letting go of others?
  • What do we learn from the life stories of church and community leaders?
  • How can we be more environmentally responsible to God’s creation?

What do we do?

  • interact and move forward with difficult and conflictive theological and social issues, overcoming polarization and avoidance
  • share “Monday Morning Stories,” transmitting the heritage to the next generation through the autobiographies of servants, leaders and heroes
  • hold forums on current issues of the church, university and community
  • sponsor conferences of interest to the Anabaptist constituency
  • dialogue in cyber space on selected core questions
  • critique and encourage writing/research by members
  • mentor scholars, and facilitate research, writing, and publication
  • facilitate the work of visiting scholars at EMU, especially Anabaptist research by post-professional or post-doctoral people
  • bridge the gaps between academia and community
  • serve as a think-tank for EMU administration and faculty
  • provide a social and institutional identity—a point of gathering for community and fellowship—for academic colleagues after leaving the classroom at EMU or one of its neighboring academic institutions

Contact Us

Call our office at (540) 560-0567 located upstairs in the Brunk House on the campus of EMU. Contact Vernon Jantzi, ACRS Director, at and get on our mailing list.