Re-union of family & church

Stoner and Frances Krady – Rhoda’s parents

The weekend of August 5 the descendants of D. Stoner and Frances Krady gathered at MCC Headquarters, Akron, Pennsylvania for their biennial reunion to recall life and enjoy the memories.  The descendants who remember Stoner and Francis in life become fewer in number with each biennial reunion.  Rhoda’s two younger brothers and two younger sisters survive her and attended the reunion. According to my count there were 22 persons present.

One of the middle aged persons explained why he comes from his position on a university staff to attend Krady reunions.  He said simply that Kradys “think”, they “think  differently”, and they ‘”think that thinking differently is all right”.  I like his thinking and I believe it is what attracts me to several groups in Goshen. I attend weekly meetings of the Samhedrim, a meeting for retired professionals sponsored by Greencroft.  I also attend College Mennonite Church and its Sunday morning Borderlands group which identifies itself as “an open and affirming group exploring the integration of faith, life, and relationships.”  The church and these groups are composed of thinkers – who think differently and – who think that is all right.  I am drawn to this church and to these particular groups of thinkers.

A beautiful pollinator at work

These groups welcome and shelter a variety of believers and doubters, as did the groups who first learned from Jesus.  When a self-styled doubter was asked why he attends one of these groups he said, where else could I go, what other church would have me?  He attends not because he believes like others, but because he has the common need for a community that cares for him.

Good is happening through College Mennonite Church.  Testimonies were given in three consecutive Sundays.  The first testimony was given by a woman saved from addiction and prison, the second by a black-skinned Mexican scholar, and the third by a Native American musician serving on the Goshen College faculty. These testimonies can be seen and heard by going to CMC’s website and searching the worship services.

Yesterday a resigning pastor delivered her last sermon as a pastor.  It was prophetic, rooted in her life experience and marking a clear path for the future of the congregation and the denomination.  See and hear by clicking here.  Yes, I am 91 years old and have been an organic gardener, bee keeper, and preacher of the Gospel and as such I say “amen” to the truths in this sermon.  You need not think like me, but I invite you to think with me for the good of church and world. The church needs cross pollinators.

Pollinator flits
shaking pollen from stamen
to pistol and eggs 

About Martin Lehman

I was born 92 years ago, the son of a Mennonite pastor and organic gardener in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. At age 10 I was baptized as a member of the Marion Mennonite Church. I own the "Old Fool" moniker because I want to walk the Jesus Way even though the world and much of the church takes me as a fool for doing so. In my life I have moved from being a young conservative to an elderly radical. I tell that story in My Faith Journey posted on my website.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Re-union of family & church

  1. Betty Kelsey says:

    Thanks for the photo and comments, Martin.

  2. Mary Bew says:

    A remarkable family! Thanks, Martin. . .

  3. Alton Longenecker says:

    Yes, thanks for the memories. One of the unresolved memories in my life is whether Stoner baptized me or did his successor baptize him. I believe that Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society has Stoner’s Bible and I have looked at the end pages of his Bible hoping to find notes of baptisms, marriages, and funerals. Also, Stoner married my folks in 1938 (Stoner was my mother’s uncle). They were married on a Sunday morning at East Petersburg Mennonite Church. Now that is thinking differently. Rare is the wedding held on a Sunday morning, then or now.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.