Walking towards risk

The Mennonite Church Canada annual assembly begins today in Waterloo, Ont. This assembly will continue work on a document on discernment and will also undertake a conversation on human sexuality.┬áThe latter will be “a risky and challenging conversation,” in the words of general secretary Willard Metzger in a May 30 Canadian Mennonite article (“Others are watching closely”).

I commend the denomination for taking the risk. The conversation is necessary and important. There was surely pressure to have it, but leaders can often find ways to avoid or postpone potentially divisive discussions. I’m grateful for Metzger’s words:

In MC Canada, our leadership, through deep Scripture study and prayer, has discerned that it is, in fact, the job of the church to walk towards risky and challenging matters with joy and confidence. Assured of God’s Spirit in our midst, discerning difficult topics is the responsibility of the church.

And he is also right when he says ┬áthat others will be watching how God’s people respond to the world around them and to one another.