Raised in the Presbyterian Church, I learned from the adults in my church community to express my faith through music, art, study and activism. My parents taught me to know that I am a beloved child of God. All of these mentors in faith encouraged me to ask meaningful questions about what it means to profess faith in Jesus Christ.
My brother grew up in this same environment. Having also been taught to value faith expression, about twelve years ago he chose to take vows as well, and be ordained as a Buddhist monk in the Theravada tradition. I value his commitments and the ways in which his lifestyle and faith expression challenge my own.
Fourteen years ago I also married my husband, who was raised and nurtured in the Mennonite Church. Our decision to commit our lives to one another meant a lot of long conversations about our differing traditions, and has led us to live a strange Menno-terian life that allows these two disparate traditions to complement and support each other.
Finally eleven years ago we were blessed with our son, who finds himself in the midst of all of these traditions and lifestyles. In all that we teach him about faith, community, scripture and simplicity we try our best to uphold the best of our traditions, that he might take them as his own, while also encouraging him to express his faith and experiences of God in his own way.