Mennonite Central Committee is closing the book sales activities of Die Mennonitische Post, effective March 31. This includes the closure of the brick-and-mortar bookstores in Steinbach and Winkler, Man. It also signals the end of book orders and shipping to locations across North America.
Die Mennonitische Post is a newspaper published by MCC to connect readers in German-speaking communities across several countries and promote literacy and education. The Post and Das Blatt magazine for children and teachers will continue. The paper is printed and distributed biweekly; the magazine is monthly.
The book ministry has been part of MCC’s education work since the early 1980s. It has promoted literacy and learning by selling and shipping books, Bibles and other reading materials to Low German-speaking communities in Canada, the U.S. and South and Central America.
Over the last number of years, the book sales’ customer base has changed, serving fewer people with no other access to books. Retail downturns have impacted the Post’s brick-and-mortar stores, making the current sales model unsustainable.
“A long-held and very unique element of MCC’s ministry comes to an end after serving its purpose with excellence for decades,” said MCC Canada executive director Rick Cober Bauman.
The impact of the book ministry has been significant, with tens of thousands of people gaining access to books and information who would otherwise be without.