John Roth presents “‘Bearing Witness’ as Peacemaking”

Goshen College Professor of History John D. Roth presented the 2013 C. Henry Smith Peace Lecture on Tuesday, March 5 at 7:30 p.m. at Goshen College. He spoke on “A New Martyr’s Mirror for the 21st Century?”

Roth discussed his new initiative, “The Global Anabaptist Profile and Suffering Church Project,” and proposed that a modern version of the Martyr’s Mirror, a book that collected stories of Anabaptist persecution until 1685, would allow for validation and healing of present-day suffering in the Mennonite church.

“Suffering continues in parts of the global Anabaptist church today,” Roth said, “especially in places like Indonesia, Zimbabwe, Congo and Columbia.”

Photo by Alex Pletcher

Roth sees potential of the project to “renew the Mennonite church in North America by systematically recovering stories of faithful witness in the face of adversity,” he said. His ultimate goal is to form “something like the next volume of the Martyr’s Mirror by collecting stories from churches in Indonesia and Columbia.

The C. Henry Smith Peace Lecture, named for a former history professor at both Bluffton University and Goshen College, includes a research grant for the lecturer. The grant is awarded each year to a professor at a Mennonite college, who then presents the lecture at both Bluffton University and Goshen College. (Content from Goshen College Communications and Marketing Office).

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