From the Editor: Christian Spirituality
When questioned, Jesus replied that the primary commandment is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30 NRSV). While the term spirituality suggests different things to different people, it typically includes cultivating a relationship with God. This issue of Direction is devoted to Christian spirituality in the Anabaptist tradition. We solicited authors who would write concerning corporate, historical, pastoral, and personal dimensions of the subject. It is hoped that their diverse offerings will provide both challenge and encouragement.
Beginning with corporate spirituality, Gay Lynn Voth describes the efforts of a contemporary congregation to listen to one another while being informed by important elements of tradition in their quest to strengthen the spirituality of their time together. With more focused historical concern, Gerald Ediger takes first steps toward a description of early Mennonite Brethren spirituality. Garry Schmidt studies the early Anabaptists and considers how they might inform a personal spirituality. Leadership is the special concern of Wendy Miller who urges for a recovery of traditional disciplines in pastoral training. Vange Willms Thiessen, likewise concerned with leadership formation, highlights specific spiritual disciplines gathered around the image of cocreation. In a provocative article, Erwin Klassen offers the metaphor of theft to guide our employment of spiritual disciplines from other Christian traditions.
We are pleased to offer the conclusions of Victor Wiens’ doctoral dissertation, a study of Mennonite missions in Brazil during the twentieth century. In Ministry Compass, Judy Harder reflects on the challenges and revelations of her ministry as a director of college drama. Irma Fast Dueck has helpfully solicited suggested reading in the area of Christian spirituality from several contributors. Book Reviews and Current Research among us fill out this issue.