It’s difficult to attend all the different events and seminars during convention so when something unique happens being at the right place at the right time, it’s magical. I’m blessed to have been able to be present and serve my Spanish-speaking brothers and sisters in interpretation at the Friday morning delegate meeting. This was my first and only delegate session I had planned to attend.

I saw the Pink Mennos standing among the delegates table waiting for an opportunity to speak and communicate their statement, and I was amazed at the graciousness and care that was given to them giving them a space within the agenda that was remarkably brought to a halt for them.

We all sat and listened to their plead and urgent call for the church to consider the inclusion of all peoples into the Mennonite community.

The difference between all others and myself is that I was responsible in interpreting their words to a Latino community that has generally been in tension with GBLTQ. How heavy I felt as I did my best to not only speak their words in a way that they’d understand it, but also, the heaviness of the emotions expressed.

My hope is that I in a small way contributed to the healing in what is needed among us. Know that the conversation between people of color and the GBLTQ community seems to be a confusing one to navigate for myself and one that I can imagine much more difficult to interpret for my European Mennonites. As I was used to interpret the language disparity between peoples, may God raise up additional interpreters between our communities that can be servants of communication of peace and understanding.

Janet Treviño-Elizarraraz
Mennocon Commentator