Thursday, February 23, 2012

Rhoda Janzen on faith

I've been rereading Mennonite in a Little Black Dress, a memoir in which Rhoda Janzen writes about her religious upbringing and returning home to her parents during a time of need. Recalling a conversation she had with her fiercely religious brothers, who couldn't fathom their sister's unwillingness to take her husband's name, she wonders aloud to her mother, who is cheerily depicted throughout, how her brothers had ended up so much more conservative than her parents. Her mother, insisting that her sons will mellow, wisely observes:

"When you're young, faith is often a matter of rules. What you should do and shouldn't do, that kind of thing. But as you get older, you realize that faith is really a matter of relationship--with God, with the people around you, with the members of your community."

Hailing from a very rule oriented religious background and having mellowed with age (yes, this is me, mellow!) I thought this was a lovely sentiment about faith.

And because we're talking about Mennonites and I'm a ten-year-old boy inside, here's Weird Al's video for "Amish Paradise." (I know--Mennonites are not really Amish.)

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