Guest Speakers

Matthew Bailey-Dick

“Mennonite 101” and “Wonder 498”

Consider inviting ALW Coordinator (Matthew Bailey-Dick) to your church for one or both of the following:

  1. “Mennonite 101” workshop – This 3-hour workshop introduces Mennonite theology, history, and practice in a very short format. Using quotations, maps, video excerpts, music, and participatory activities, the workshop will help participants appreciate the beauty and complexity of the Anabaptist-Mennonite faith tradition. The workshop can also be adapted for use as a Sunday School class.
  2. “Wonder 498” sermon – This sermon is about the role of wondering and learning in the life of the church. The sermon includes a tape measure (object lesson), a kindergarten class (metaphor), and the Book of Ephesians (scripture).

This initiative is part of the Anabaptist Learning Workshop (ALW).

Janet Bauman

Janet Bauman is currently serving part-time as the Eastern Canada Correspondent for the Canadian Mennonite, and enjoys the opportunity to share the stories of what is happening in Mennonite churches and organizations in the KW and surrounding area. She is a retired teacher, having spent 25 years in the profession, 23 of them at Rockway Mennonite Collegiate in Kitchener, where she was head of the Religious Studies department and gave leadership to the chapel program.

Before her teaching career, Janet completed a BTh at Canadian Mennonite Bible College (currently Canadian Mennonite University), and a BA in history and religious studies at the University of Waterloo. Part way through her teaching career she took a sabbatical to complete her MTS at Conrad Grebel University College. She recently completed the Ontario Jubilee program, which offers training in spiritual direction, and is a member of MSDEC.

Janet is active at St. Jacobs Mennonte Church where she is involved in planning and leading worship. She served as an interim pastor there for four months while one of the other pastors was on Sabbatical.

Janet is open to preaching, teaching, leading a bible study or facilitating a retreat.

She is married to Trevor Bauman and they have two young adult children. They enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, biking and cross-country skiing. Janet also finds gardening and writing to be creative and spiritual activities.

Palmer Becker

Available to you for conversations, sermons and discussion on Palestine-Israel concerns. Part of the MCEC Palestine-Israel Working Group.

Kathy Bergen

Available to you for conversations, sermons and discussion on Palestine-Israel concerns. Part of the MCEC Palestine-Israel Working Group.

Shelley Campagnola

Shelley Campagnola is the Executive Director of Mennonite Coalition for Refugee Support. “It is an incredible privilege to work with a team so committed to providing welcome and much needed assistance to people seeking refuge in Canada. I am humbled by the people who come to us from over 40 different countries, hoping to build new lives here, safe at last from the violence and threat to life and well-being they and their families faced.”

Shelley is a gifted speaker, and loves to unpack biblical truths about God and his homecoming heart for people. She also loves to do presentations and workshops designed to help people of all ages catch a vision and respond in uniquely personal and local ways to the ever-shifting practical, social and political realities that are a part of people being on the move.

Brent Charette

As MCEC Operations and Church Engagement Minister, Brent is pleased to preach, provide a presentation or lead a discussion on the vital role of the wider church. He enjoys sharing stories about MCEC ministries and congregations across Eastern Canada.

Conrad Grebel University College

Grebel's mission is to seek wisdom, nurture faith, and pursue justice and peace in service to church and society. An important part of this mission includes being a resource to the community in churches, schools, and civil society. 

This guide includes faculty and staff members who are willing to share in community and church settings through lectures, presentations, workshops, adult and youth education, sermons, and as conference speakers. Areas of expertise are listed. Please contact each person directly to inquire about availability.

Sean East

As MCEC Financial Manager, Sean is available to your congregation to share the MCEC story. He brings unique perspectives and expertise as a key leader in the ReLearning Community movement, a movement of individuals and congregations focusing intentionally on being disciples and making disciples. He is also working in the area of Informed Conversations, helping congregations to move into God's leading for the future.

Rachelle Friesen

Available to you for conversations, sermons and discussion on Palestine-Israel concerns. Part of the MCEC Palestine-Israel Working Group.

Lori Guenther Reesor

Lori is an enthusiastic speaker on church and money.  She tries not to get weighed down by her academic credentials.  She is commended for her ability to facilitate group discussions, and brings a wealth of experience to the topic.  Check out her blog and contact information.

Lydia and Gary Harder

Lydia Neufeld Harder has been a professor, scholar and interim pastor. Gary Harder has been a long term pastor and interim pastor. Together Lydia and Gary taught a course on “Church & Ministry” at Conrad Grebel University College for a number of years, and at AMBS several times. 

Lydia and Gary Harder are available for the following ministries: 

  • Guest preaching.
  • Leading workshops.
    • Marriage and sexuality
    • Diversity and conflict 
    • Leadership and change
    • Discernment and biblical interpretation

Peter Haresnape

Peter is on the preaching team for Toronto United Mennonite Church, and has often had the honour to preach at other churches through his work with Christian Peacemaker Teams. He preaches on the lectionary, or on specific topics, included but not limited to Indigenous-Settler Relations, Land Justice, Peacemaking & Nonviolence, the Social Gospel, Ecumenism, ministry with young adults/students. He also offers workshops tailored for adults or young adults on these topics, at events/retreats or as a Sunday School class.

Peter has worked with Christian Peacemaker Teams for 6 years in their Indigenous Peoples Solidarity team and currently works with the Student Christian Movement of Canada as the National Coordinator (General Secretary).

Alina Johnson

Available to you for conversations, sermons and discussion on Palestine-Israel concerns. Part of the MCEC Palestine-Israel Working Group.

Ester Kern

Available to you for conversations, sermons and discussion on Palestine-Israel concerns. Part of the MCEC Palestine-Israel Working Group.

Brandon Leis

Multi-instrumentalist and vocalist, Brandon Leis, a dynamic speaker, teacher, performer, and workshop facilitator who has a passion for church music. With a focus on gifts-centered music making and participant engagement, his workshops/sessions are designed to explore a broad range of topics as they relate to the music of our worship. Brandon teaches in the faculty of music at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, serves as music director at Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church in Kitchener and is the artistic director of the Menno Singers. 

Possible Workshop/session topics:

  • Musical skills: Song leading/conducting (especially unfamiliar songs/hymns and those with irregular meter), accompanying skills, learning/teaching new songs, incorporating instruments, re-framing or re-contextualizing hymns , hymn writing/arranging 
  • Identifying and incorporating our gifts: How to incorporate those with varying degrees of musical giftedness - especially children and youth - into the music-making of our worship 
  • Performance vs. Worship: Being aware of the boundary between when we worship God through our music-making and when we are worshiping the music we are creating or the creators of the music
  • Why do we do what we do in the way we do it? Adopting the spirit of asking both why and why not with our worship, our planning patterns and with our leadership-styles
  • The question of ‘Style’: Do we understand the ‘styles’ of music within our worship? What is at the core of our appreciation of some songs/hymns and not others? How can we present music in an ‘authentic’ way for the entire congregation? 
  • Balancing the new and old; Being open to the creative work of the Holy Spirit and the traditional roots that anchor us in worship.
  • Service Development: What role does music play within our worship? Coordinating our music with other elements of worship– within and between services 
  • The possibility of uncertainty, and ‘letting go’ to certain standards and metrics we apply to our music-making, to identify some that are more important
  • Identifying roles of individuals within worship - are there participants, observers, leaders and performers? 
  • Looking at the physical worship space and its strengths and/or limitations for our music making: Can I see you, can you see me? Are you within arm’s reach? Physical proximity and formation in congregational singing  
  • Our music and worship as a place of multi-valenced engagement: Music's ability to reach the ‘heart’, ‘head’ and 'body' 
  • Identifying the ‘right’ way to sing a hymn: Seldom is there a universal and identifiable 'right way' to sing a hymn, yet we are aware of many ‘wrong ways’. How do we know what we should do?
  • Utilizing our resources and worship materials (technological, paper, human, etc.): What resources are ‘open’ to us for church music? What can we appropriate for our usage and from where?  
  • The many roles music can play in our worship: From 'special music' to prelude, offertory, transitional, reflective pieces and actively engaging in song, music can transform elements of our worship
  • Participation and exclusion within the congregation; Are our musical choices excluding some participants, both new and old? 
  • Trusting your musical and theological instincts: Is it okay to not be a 'professional' and still participate in the development and implementation of our music and worship?

Lifted Voices

Lifted Voices is a singing group of six women from First Mennonite Church in Kitchener who have been singing and praising God together for over 25 years. They provide special music or a full worship service. Worship services consist of music, scripture, readings, prayer and drama.

They are open to singing for small groups or for the entire congregation for a Sunday morning worship service.

They would prefer to stay within a one hour drive of Kitchener/Waterloo, however, would consider further distances if there was compensation for travel. Due to vacations, they are typically not available during July and August.

Carrie Martens

Carrie is a pastor with a passion for the biblical story and for the continuation of God’s story in the lived experience of God’s diverse and quirky family today. She enjoys engaging scripture in study, teaching, preaching, storytelling, spiritual practices, and curriculum development as both a pastor and a curriculum writer/editor for Menno Media. She delights in exploring a wide variety of biblical texts, whether lectionary-based or thematic, and approaches preaching as the sharing of what she has seen and heard through listening to, and wrestling with, the text for today's world. Carrie is also a strong advocate for intergenerational and inclusive worship and is willing to share her gifts in both preaching and children’s time.  

Colin McCartney

Colin McCartney is the founder of UrbanPromise Toronto and current President and Founder of Connect Ministries (www.connectministries.org). Colin is also part of the MCEC family through his wife Judith who is church planting with the MCEC and is also training urban leaders in under - resourced neighbourhoods for the MCEC. Colin has appeared on Canadian television, radio and national newspapers regarding urban issues. He is an author of two best sellers (“The Beautiful Disappointment” and “Red Letter Revolution”, Castle Quay Publishers), mentor to pastors and business people and is in high demand as a ministry trainer and coach.

e Minister, David is available for speaking engagements. His presentations are usually focused on the mission and vision of MCEC and MC Canada and how we engage our common mission at the local congregation level as well as the Regional Church and NationWide levels. Sermons are biblically based and will challenge listeners to engage the call/mission of the church. David enjoys an interactive approach to small group presentations. Presentation options can include sermons, small group presentations and Sunday school class interactive engagement about the ministries of MCEC and MC Canada.

Michel Monette

Michel is a mission associate with MCEC.

  • Maried to Lyne in 1990
  • I have 3 children.  Bérangère 25 study to become worship pastor in Abbotsford, Thierry 23 study to become a personal trainer, Zachary 19 as cerebral paralysis still at home
  • Born again in 1991 as MB, I did a Bachelor (not yet finished, miss 3 or 4 class) in theology at ETEM (MB University in Montreal)
  • Started in ministry in 1998 as preacher for Conseil Mennonite du Quebec (CMQ)
  • Moved in France as a church planter in 2000
  • Planted two church in under resources neighbourhood in the Parisian area.  One in Eaubonne and one in Cergy-Pontoise.
  • Came back to Canada in 2004 to plant a non-traditional church as a pioneer in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve where I started Hochma with my wife.
  • I’ve been preaching about grace and love since 2000 after reading Philippe Yance’s “what so amazing about grace”.
  • Had help church and pastor to understand their neighbourhood to develop pertinent program align with there reality.
  • I work with the Haitian community in Montreal, Haiti and Aruba since 2011.

Brent Musser

Brent is Director of Facilities and Environmental Stewardship at Hidden Acres Mennonite Camp & Retreat Centre. He is available to preach or lead a Christian Education type class on topics related to the connection between faith and our relationship to creation. Specifically, he can help explore the ways the natural world is a community of which people are part, a gift from God, and a charge for which we are responsible. He is also happy to share about Hidden Acres, its ongoing ministry, and some of the ways the camp practices care for the environment. Brent has a Master of Divinity from Evangelical Theological Seminary and has served as a Mennonite pastor in Pennsylvania. He is also an aspiring naturalist who is seeking to learn more about the creatures with whom we share God’s world. 

Don Neufeld

Don is the Canadian Coordinator of Mennonite Men, a bi-national organization, and the initiator and co-editor of the 2019 publication, Peaceful at Heart: Anabaptist Reflections on Healthy Masculinity. With a passion for extending an invitation to males to seek healthy expressions of masculinity and to engage in positive conversations about gender, Don is available to lead men’s breakfasts or retreats, or for other speaking engagements including Sunday morning services.  As a social worker (Master of Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier, ’91) with 30 years of experience and theological interests back to the mid 80s (Bachelor of Theology, CMBC, ‘86) at Canadian Mennonite Bible College (now Canadian Mennonite University) Don brings a perspective of the intersection of understandings of social dynamics, mental well-being and Christian faith.

Chris & Amanda Pot

Chris and Amanda serve at Hidden Acres Mennonite Camp in the capacities of Program Director (Chris) and Single Mom’s Camp Coordinator (Amanda). Chris also serves on the board of the Mennonite Camping Association (a bi-national association of Mennonite and Anabaptist camps in Canada and the USA).

Both Chris and Amanda are available (individually or together) to share about the positive impact that camp has, and can have, on the lives of those that experience it. They can also bring along members of the summer camp staff team to lead a “Camp Sunday” service including staff sharing stories about their experiences at camp, a message/sermon, music, and children’s times.

Fred Redekop

Fred has been a pastor for many years. He preaches from the lectionary texts, in order to work/preach on difficult texts and was affirmed at the church for his style and content. 

He has travelled to Turkey and Greece, exploring the world of Paul and is willing to do a four-part bible study on the complex guy we call Paul of Tarsus.

Al Rempel

As MCEC Regional Minister, Al would be delighted to participate in your service of worship or adult education time. He welcomes the opportunity to speak on congregational vitality, Christian discipleship, stewardship and missional vocation. He is open to being a resource for interactive events.

Dave Rogalsky

Dave Rogalsky loves preaching and teaching!  Working with the biblical material to help folk draw nearer to God is his passion. He has pastored in various congregations for 36 years. He lives in Waterloo with his partner Annemarie, near to his adult children and grandchildren.

Elmer Thiessen

Elmer is a semi-retired philosopher, having moved to Waterloo in 2007. While living in Alberta for most of his teaching career, he was active in his home church as Moderator, Elder, Lay-minister and Sunday school teacher. He has also preached and given teaching seminars in other churches and church colleges. In 2001-2002 he did a year of pulpit supply in the Seven Persons Community Church in Alberta, while this church was without a pastor.

Elmer likes topical preaching, but will also follow the church’s lectionary. Some possible topics for seminars or a Sunday school series: the Ethics of Evangelism; Biblical Ethics for Today’s Postmodern Society; A Christian Worldview; A Biblical Approach to Knowledge; Doubt; Committed Openness; Christian Education in the Home and the Church.

He is available during most of the year. An honourarium and travel expenses as per church policy would be appreciated.

Devon Wagler

Devon is the pastor and founder of the Network Church in Kitchener, a multi-site house church founded on radical community and practical compassion as acts of worship. He has occasional Sunday availability and is excited to speak on any range of topics including mission, outreach, the Kingdom of God, compassion, spiritual gifting and Old Testament/New Testament theology. Devon loves delving into difficult topics, and finds that even in the 'easier' topics, there is value in striving to find the challenging and difficult message for God's people.

Devon has strong Anabaptist convictions and believes in God's presence and activity in the world, as well as His creativive work in different ways through different people. Devon has led the Network through various initiatives in the community over the years, and loves being able to tell the stories of our failures and successes.

Patricia Wagler

Patricia is a follower of Jesus, Ordained Minister, certified Spiritual Caregiver, and Labyrinth Facilitator, and simply enjoys planning and facilitating events with any age group, any topic. Patricia is available for speaking/preaching, leading retreats/workshops. 'We can have a conversation and develop an experience that will invite participants to encounter God.' 

She also has a canvas labyrinth that she travels with, as well as an outdoor labyrinth on my farm that she uses for events.

Special music can also be provided for worship or events.

Johnny Wideman

Theatre of the Beat is a Canadian touring theatre company working to catalyze conversations on social justice and its intersection with the beliefs of the communities it finds itself in. Their original plays Gadfly: Sam Steiner Dodges the Draft, A Bicycle Built for Two, Forgiven/Forgotten, This Will Lead to Dancing, and Yellow Bellies have toured churches, festivals, universities, and prisons across Canada. Theatre of the Beat also leads weekly theatre workshops for incarcerated women in Grand Valley Institute for Women, a federal penitentiary located in Kitchener, Ontario. 

If your congregation would be interested in learning more about Theatre of the Beat please contact Laura McCallum (General Manager) at info@theatreofthebeat.ca

Johnny Wideman (Artistic Director) would love to meet your community and share with your congregation the work and mission of Theatre of the Beat.

Amanda Zehr

Amanda has spent several years working in pastoral ministry in Mennonite churches around southwestern Ontario. 

Amanda has a BA in Recreation and Business and a Masters of Theological Studies, both from the University of Waterloo.