Simplicity, good stewardship and concern for the well-being of the powerless are long-running themes in the Mennonite tradition. Below are some of the ways Mennonites have responded as environmental problems increasingly shape current events:
Mennonite Environmental Task Force (1991-2001)
Mennonite Creation Care Network was preceded by the Mennonite Environmental Task Force (ETF), which was created following a resolution at a churchwide convention in Normal, Illinois, in 1989. ETF worked for 10 years with the General Conference Mennonite Church and the Mennonite Church. Its mandate was to promote awareness within the church of how our Christian commitment necessarily encompasses a concern for God's creation. One of its major contributions was Creation and the Environment: An Anabaptist Perspective, a book on Anabaptist understandings of the environment and theology. The ETF dissolved in 2001 during the reorganization that created the Mennonite Church USA.
Mennonite Creation Care Planning Group (2004-2006)
In 2004, Mennonite Church Canada and Mennonite Church USA re-affirmed their commitment to support Creation Care. A planning group was formed which worked for several years to figure out what form this commitment would take.
Mennonite Creation Care Network (2006 to present)
The Mennonite Creation Care Network was formed out of the planning process in 2006. It is a mission of Mennonite Church Canada and Mennonite Church USA, and is coordinated by the Creation Care Council, consisting of two Canadian and six American Mennonites. About 85% of financial support is provided by Mennonite Mutual Aid, which is the stewardship arm of MC USA. Mennonite Church Canada and Mennonite Central Committee Canada also contribute. Technical and administrative support is provided by Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center, a nature center owned and operated by Goshen College, Goshen, Indiana.
Mennonite Church Resolutions and Statements on Creation Care
1977 – Christian Stewardship of Energy Resources. Adopted by the General Conference Mennonite Church.
1984 – Statement on the Christian and the Environment, adopted by Mennonite Central Committee Canada
1989 – Stewardship of the Earth Resolution on Environment and Faith Issues, adopted by Mennonite Church General Board and General Conference Mennonite Church General Board.
1995 – Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective See articles 5, 6, 21, 22, 24.
2007 – Mennonite Church Canada Faith and Life Committee Affirmation Statement
"Mennonite Church Canada believes that God longs for the well-being and health of the whole world, for all of creation is bound together and belongs to God, who has created and who preserves all things. Our concern for faithfulness and discipleship should also lead us to care for creation. Mennonite Church Canada believes that God is calling us to commit ourselves to discern the paths of faithfulness to be good stewards of the earth."
2007 – Green Assembly Resolution, Abbotsford 2007 (Mennonite Church Canada)
"Whereas the earth is an expression of God’s love and Christ calls us to be stewards of God’s precious handiwork, be it resolved that Mennonite Church Canada develop guidelines to reduce the consumption of energy and other resources when planning future assemblies." Moved by Dave Neufeld. Seconded by Stan Olson. Carried.
2013 – Creation Care Resolution, Mennonite Church USA A resolution calling all congregations to study creation care within their own context and act on their learnings.