Blessed are the peacemakers… RIP Walter Wink.

We have lost a great theologian and peacemaker with the death of Walter Wink. His works on the nature of structural sin and evil in the world (“Naming the Powers”, “Unmasking the Powers” and “Engaging the Powers”) would by themselves be a significant contribution to Christian theology and ethics. But even more significant was the witness to the third way of Jesus Christ, opposing sin and evil across the world with active non-violence and prayer.

I was fortunate enough to have lunch with Walter and his wife once. I was honoured by the graciousness they both exhibited to an inquisitive doctoral student. He listened with interest to my area of research and thoughtfully suggested some specific resources he felt would enhance my work. This world will miss him.

I strongly encourage you to read this brief message on The Third Way by Dr. Wink. Coming from a tradition that understands the Sermon on the Mount as a type of canon within the canon, Wink’s interpretation of Matthew 5:38-42 has contributed to the movement by Mennonites from a passiveness in the face of evil to a promotion of active non-violence. An obituary, Walter Wink, Presente!, can be found on the Fellowship of Reconciliation website.