August 18, 2021
Reflections for the editor

By Bill Braun 

After reading MDS Executive Director Kevin King’s reflection on Luke 17:11-19, MDS volunteer Bill Braun penned the following thoughts.

Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!” When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed. One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.
Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.” (Luke 17:11-19)

Many years ago, Dr. Tim Geddert, who teaches New Testament at Fresno Pacific University, presented a devotional on this text, particularly drawing attention to the opening lines that Jesus was traveling “on the border between.” That recognition has stuck with me over the years.

It seems to me this is what MDS does quite well: walking the border between—between those with sufficient resources and those with few, between those with relative security and those with little security, many times between those of the dominant cultural group and those of any number of under-represented groups. It is often also between those of different geographic areas, or nearly always between denomination/conference groups. 

I’m sure each person can think of more “border” situations, and find in the example of Jesus a motivation to also walk in the border area, whether that’s very near our own homes or sometimes within our families. I give thanks that MDS is such a fine example of how we constructively bridge differences with a maximum of activity and a minimum of intentional conversation. Keep up the good work in the spirit of a Christ-centered thankfulness.

Bill Braun lives in Fresno, California.
Executive Director
Mennonite Disaster Service
In Florida, “we can continue the family heritage”
Shirley and Don Kent vividly remember Hurricane Michael, which churned through northwest Florida in October 2018.

Mennonite Disaster Service recruits, organizes, and empowers volunteers to repair and rebuild the homes of those impacted by disasters in the United States and Canada. Responding with Christian love, our goal is to restore hope as we bring people back home.
Engineers In Action, MDS builds bridges over creeks—and between people
As he watched the students construct the driveway bridge, Ethan Gingerich, director of the Engineers In Action Bridge Program, explained how the project is a collaboration between Engineers In Action, Mennonite Disaster Service (MDS), West Virginia Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (WV-VOAD), JZ Engineering, and corporate mentors and sponsors.

MDS monitoring wildfires in west and central U.S., British Columbia
MDS is monitoring the wildfire situation in the western and central U.S. and British Columbia. In California and 14 other states in the western and central U.S., MDS is reaching out in prayer for the thousands of people forced to evacuate, not knowing whether they’ll come back to find anything left.

Thank you for your support!
MDS has volunteer opportunities for Fall 2021 and Winter 2022.
Your continued support helps with recruiting volunteers, moving equipment, setting up accommodations, replenishing supplies, and many other things needed to get going.
MDS Binational Office
583 Airport Road,
Lititz, PA 17543 USA

T: (717) 735-3536
T (toll free): 1-800-241-8111
F: (717) 735-0809
MDS Canada Office
200-600 Shaftesbury Blvd
Winnipeg, MB Canada R3P 2J1

T: (204) 261-1274
F: (204) 261-1279