Canadian Mennonite
Volume 12, No. 15
July 28, 2008



The winners are…

“Love Summer” by Jon Janzen: First Place / Young Adult. Taken with a Nikon D80 with a Nikkor 18–70 mm lens.
“Recycling Station” by Todd Hanson. First Place / Caring for Creation. Taken with a Canon S3 IS; F4.0 at 1/250 of a second.
“Dancing with Menno Simons” by Jonathan Hines. Honourable Mention / Young Adult.
“Young Woman Carrying Food” by Yvonne Martin. Honourable Mention / Young Adult.
“Abby Exploring” by Christa Yost. Honourable Mention / Caring for Creation.
“Logan with Butterfly” by Jenn Friesen. Honourable Mention / Caring for Creation.

Mennonite photographers ‘frame’ examples of creation care, young adults

By Ross W. Muir

Managing Editor

Waterloo, Ont.

Reviewed by Author

It was unanimous. Jon Janzen’s photo entitled “Love Summer” (at left) was chosen by all three Canadian Mennonite 10th Anniversary Photo Contest judges as the top entry in the Young Adult category. Janzen is a member of Sherbrooke Mennonite Church, Vancouver, B.C. “Just be passionate!” stated his short note accompanying his black-and-white photograph of an exuberant young man reaching for the sky at Spanish Banks in Vancouver.

“This image captures the free-spiritedness of this phase of life,” commented judge Dan Dyck, director of communications for Mennonite Church Canada. “O to be in my 20s again!”

The winning entry in the Caring for Creation category came all the way from China (see top of next page). Photographer Todd Hanson, who has been teaching at China West Normal University in Nanchong with Mennonite Partners in China/MC Canada Witness since 1994, entitled his photograph “Recycling Station,” adding by way of explanation, “one hammer plus one pair of pliers plus one brick plus one hand-woven wicker basket equals one light bulb recycling station (wooden stool optional).” He is a member of Peace Mennonite Church in Prince Albert, Sask.

“In Nanchong, some people spend all day wandering from garbage can to garbage can, looking for what they can salvage,” Hanson wrote in an e-mail. “Some specialize: plastic bottles, cardboard boxes, pieces of styrofoam. Others take whatever they can get. Several old women work pretty much full-time at the garbage collection point here on campus. When someone new comes in with a load of trash, whichever woman sees the person first gets to go through that person’s garbage.

“In May, after dropping off some bags of garbage, I noticed that someone had been working at recycling these light bulbs, and it struck me that even brand new, environmentally friendly products still produce garbage, and still provide a livelihood for some of our neighbours.

“Photographically speaking, the lesson here is that you should take your camera with you everywhere—even when you take out the trash.”

Each of the winners will receive framed prints of their photographs and Canadian Mennonite will make a $100 donation to each of their churches.

Two honourable mentions were also named in each category:
• Young Adult: Jonathan Hines of Hawkesville (Ont.) Mennonite Church for his photograph of a skit called “Dancing with Menno Simons” performed by the young adults from the Gathering Church in Kitchener, Ont., during the 2008 MC Eastern Canada winter retreat; and Yvonne Martin of Floradale (Ont.) Mennonite Church, whose picture of a young woman carrying food supplies on a mountain road in Tajikistan provided a stark contrast to the Young Adult entries depicting Canadian subjects.

• Caring for Creation: Christa Yost, a member of Hillcrest Mennonite, New Hamburg, Ont., whose “Abby Exploring” photo depicts her daughter looking at all of the places she would like to travel to and discover what the children there are like; and Jenn Friesen of Niagara United Mennonite Church, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont., who photographed her daughter Logan at the Niagara Falls Butterfly Conservatory when she was only four months old. “A lovely image that, to me, suggests the ‘least of these’ caring for ‘the least of these,’?” wrote Dyck in his judge’s comments.

The other judges were Ray Dirks, professional photographer and curator of the Mennonite Heritage Centre Gallery in Winnipeg, and Canadian Mennonite managing editor Ross W. Muir.

In total, there were 28 entries from Canadian Mennonite subscribers across Canada and around the world.

Back to Canadian Mennonite home page