Blog from Chris Pedersen

As many of you may know, my name is Chris Pedersen and I will be interning at Columbus Mennonite for the next year. I have been able to introduce myself to many of you but for those I haven’t yet met, hi! I was asked to write the blog for this week so then I could give the congregation another opportunity to get to know me more. I love talking about food. So, I decided to write my first blog about food.
This past summer I worked on MTSO’s (Methodist Theological School in Ohio) organic farm, called Seminary Hill Farm. I had never worked on a farm before but I loved what the farm was trying to do. Seminary Hill Farm has been around for three years and is striving to produce deliciously organic food for the MTSO students and faculty and those in the community. One day, it dawned on me that I had been around people with a similar mindset before.
I graduated from Bluffton University, a small Mennonite university in northwest Ohio, in 2014 with a Bachelor’s degree in Biblical and Theological Studies. Bluffton is one of the few towns in the U.S. that is considered a Fair Trade town. For those of you who don’t know what Fair Trade is, here is a link:  It is not easy to be a fair trade town or to be an organic farm, as both require a lot more work to achieve and maintain. Both of these communities had come to the decision that both the people working the land and the sustainability of the land was worth the extra cost and labor.
I am encouraged every time I drive through Clintonville by the number of Fair Trade, locally sourced, and organic signs that I see on the windows and signs of local shops. I never knew what Fair Trade was before I started at Bluffton, but it has now become an integral part of my life. I love being in communities that value the quality of food being consumed and the people that are growing it.
If you have never explored the local places around CMC, I encourage you to do so. If you would like some good places to visit, feel free to ask! Feel free to share your favorite local places with me too!