It seemed to me that people attending the MHV Auxiliary’s Film Night last week had rich experiences. The theme was “The Women’s Burden Under Stalin,” which was also the name of the Otto Klassen film presented that evening. Five adults who grew up in this era and experienced some of the horrors of the period told stories. In many cases, fathers had been sent to Siberia, never to return to their families. The Mothers had to work on the collective farms to sustain their families.

In addition to these stories of first hand experiences Roland Sawatzky delivered a brief lecture on the history of this time period. This information set the stage for an art exhibit coming to the Gerhard Ens Gallery in February of 2013 called Journey to Freedom: Women Refugees of the 1940s.

About the Author

Gary is responsible for the overall management of MHV. Guiding the staff, informing the board, and networking with officials, volunteers, corporate sponsors, individual donors and other guests. He has a business diploma and a MA in Global Studies from Providence Theological Seminary. With his family he did humanitarian work for 18 years in Asia, including being a CEO of a Compost Enterprise in China. He loves to discuss the Mennonite story and how it is relevant in our world. Learn more about the MHV. is Steinbach's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.