Michael J. Sharp, a 2001 Bethany grad known at that time as MJ, was killed while working for peace in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
A peaceworker with the United Nations, Michael went missing on March 12 from the Kasai Central Province of the Congo, along with another UN official from Sweden, their translator, and their three motorcycle taxi drivers. Congolese officials have called it a kidnapping. On Sunday, March 26, the bodies of the two workers were found in shallow graves.
MJ's father John Sharp, a history and Bible and ministry faculty member at Hesston (Kan.) College., says, “I have said on more than one occasion that we peacemakers should be willing to risk our lives as those who join the military do. Now it’s no longer theory.”
Following his capture, a picture of Michael and a lit candle were placed outside Bethany's cafeteria doors inviting prayers for Michael and his family, for those who are looking for him, and for his captors.
Read The Mennonite article on the life work of MJ: Love is a Verb: Remembering MJ Sharp
Listen to National Public Radio interview of MCC East Coast director Bruce Campbell-Janz on MJ Sharp and Mennonites: Mennonites Mourn Michael Sharp Whose Faith Guided His Work