Share your Voice

Hi! My name is Lisa Cornish. I am currently completing my Master in Ministry degree with Tabor College in Adelaide, South Australia’s School of Ministry, Theology and Culture department. My thesis supervisor is Dr Marlene Epp, Dean, Professor of History and Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.  I have a deep interest in Mennonite history as well as women’s studies and so I have taken the opportunity to combine both of those interests in my Masters thesis.

I am of Mennonite descent through my mother who was born in Chilliwack, British Columbia (Her maiden name was Warkentin). She married an Australian man in 1972 and has made her home in Australia ever since. I am married with three wonderful teen aged children. I began my ministry studies in 2008. I currently work as an Associate Pastor in a Baptist church but my studies have continued.

In the past, and today in traditional groups, Mennonite women’s primary role was that of homemaker and mother within the family. This role was considered to be a God-given position and so was honored but was also one that brought with it consistent hard work. Given that the Mennonite faith was a seven-day-a-week lived faith where every member of the community worked out their lives through their faith I am asking the question: how did Mennonite women show and share their faith through their specific gender roles? One aspect of their domestic activity was cooking/food production which provided an avenue for, and interest in, cookbook production. This study focuses specifically on the connection between church/community cookbooks produced by Mennonite women and their expression of faith.

The primary focus of the questionnaire is: Was the advent of the published cookbook a natural “voice” for Mennonite women to share their faith?

The questions in this questionnaire seek to understand whether there is a relationship between the traditional Mennonite woman’s role of homemaker and a sharing of her faith. I would very much appreciate your contribution to it through memories and stories.   

Feel free to download the questionnaire here. This study will be a fun one for those who have loved Mennonite Girls Can Cook, More with Less, or The Mennonite Treasury of Recipes over the year.

Mennonite Cookbook Research Participant’s Pack