A Steering Committee provides basic oversight and administration of MennoPIN. Meet the members.
Bob Atchison is a forester with Kansas State University and a member of Manhattan Mennonite Church, Manhattan Kansas. He has been engaged in the Israeli-Palestine conflict off and on since 1998 when he served as a delegate on a Christian Peacemaker tour of Israel – Palestine. He currently chairs the Western District Conference, Israel-Palestine Task Force.
Jonathan Brenneman comes from a long line of Mennonites on his father’s side and a prominent Palestinian Christian family on his mother’s side. He grew up attending Lima Mennonite Church. After graduating high school, he participated in the Mennonite Mission Network’s Radical Journey program in Northern Ireland before attended Huntington University, where he studied History and Philosophy. He then worked with Christian Peacemaker Teams Palestine Project in Hebron, where they built partnerships with Palestinian and Israeli peacemakers to transform violence and oppression. Jonathan was a Rotary Peace Fellow studying at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok Thailand and holds a master’s degree in International Peace Studies at Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute. That program included a six-month internship with Ndifuna Ukwazi in Cape Town South Africa, an organization which advocates for more just land policies. Most recently, he participated in the Mennonite Voluntary Service program, volunteering with MC USA to facilitate the writing, passing, and implementation of the Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine Resolution. He currently resides in Syracuse, New York with his partner Sarah.
Lydia Brenneman was born in Bethlehem to a Christian Palestinian family. As a youth she witnessed the devastation of the 1967 war, and massive community emigration, she arrived with her family in the United States at the age of 11. In the United States the family quickly connected with Mennonite communities. A lifelong learner Lydia attended Eastern Mennonite College and received a bachelor’s degree in Biology and from Bowling Green State University, she received MAs in Psychology and School Psychology from Dayton University respectively. She also holds an M in Family Ministry from Winebrenner theological Seminary. In 1990 Lydia, her husband Brice, and two young sons Jonathan and Jameel moved to Beit Jala (near Bethlehem) to serve with MCC. She and Brice were co-director of Hope Secondary School, a boarding school for Palestinian youth, for two years. Upon return to Ohio, their third son Joseph was born. She has made numerous trips to Palestine for family visits. Lydia and Brice have now led three “Holy Land Trips” with an emphasis on the living stones as well as the historic aspects of the area. The trips exposing life under military occupation and celebrate resilience of peacemaking communities. These trips include visits to Tent of Nations, Christian Peacemaker Teams in Hebron, and visits in Palestinian homes. Lydia is an active member of Lima Mennonite Church. She serves on the spiritual council and teaches a youth Sunday School class. She is an ordained minister in the Mennonite Church, and works as a chaplain at St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima, Ohio.
Jonathan Kuttab is a Palestinian attorney, and human rights activist. He grew up in Jerusalem, studied in the US, graduating from University of Virginia law School, and worked a couple of years at the Wall Street Law firm of Mudge Rose Guthrie & Alexander. He is a member of the Bar Association in New York, Israel, and Palestine. Mr. Kuttab founded a number of human rights organizations including Al Haq, and the Mandela Institute for Palestinian Prisoners and is the Chairman of the Board of Bethlehem Bible College, and of Holy Land Trust, and is active in many other civil society organizations in Palestine and internationally. He was the Head of the Legal Committee negotiating the Cairo Agreement of 1994 between Israel and the PLO and has been active in Peace and justice issues for many years. He is a recognized authority on international law, human rights and Palestinian and Israeli affairs.
Anita Rediger: I am a retired pastor and chaplain in Mennonite Church USA, a part of the Emmaus Road Mennonite Fellowship in Berne, Indiana. My awareness of the realities of life in Israel/Palestine has grown through listening to reports from Bluffton University students and MCC workers. Yet, I didn’t have a personal connection to this occupation. However, prior to Kansas City 2015, our Fellowship studied the Karios document; the resources of the Indiana Center for Middle East Peace connected us with “living stones” from Palestine. In March 2017 and again in September 2018, I traveled to Israel/Palestine with the ICMEP. Visits with Sahar Vardi, Sam Bahour, George & Najwa Saadeh, Rami Elhanan, the CPTers in Hebron, Abuna Chacour and others in Ramallah and Bethlehem gripped me. American Christians bear a great responsibility for the sufferings of the Palestinian people. I am committed to speaking about Christian Zionism and its effects on the people of Palestine from my place in rural USA.
Joe Roos: I am a retired pastor in the Mennonite Church USA and was one of the founders of Sojourners magazine and served as its Publisher for 27 years. My first exposure to the suffering of the Palestinian people came with our reporting on the first Intifada and my awareness grew as we continued to cover the occupation. When I went on a Witness Tour with Sabeel in November 2015, I had my first direct exposure to what was happening to Palestinians on the ground. It is an honor to serve on the MennoPIN Steering Committee with so many others dedicated to peace and justice in Palestine. I also serve on the FOSNA Board and Co-Chair the Steering Committee of FOSNA Los Angeles/Orange County.
Rod Stafford is the Lead Pastor of Portland Mennonite Church (Oregon). On a sabbatical in 2013, he spent six weeks in Israel and Palestine where he learned some of the names and stories of what had been to that point only distant political issues. Since then Rod has served on the Education Committee of MennoPIN, where he worked on adapting a study guide for the Kairos Palestine letter. He also served on the writing team for the resolution ‘Seeing Peace in Israel and Palestine’ which was overwhelmingly affirmed by the delegates of Mennonite Church USA in July 2017.