My Scandalous Mennonite Diary #24

Kelvin Bueckert
3 min readApr 25, 2024


Well, here I am, standing at a wooden counter, surrounded by shelves of merchandise.

This is my new life as a storekeeper’s wife.

A life seasoned by the musty, wooden, smell of this room.

A life salted with the well-meaning advice of people who have never run a general store and never will.

A life surrounded by the sort of gossip that thrives in a village full of traditional-minded people.

Yesterday, someone came in and asked my husband why I was flirting with the men of the community. Thank God for Abe, he told the person in question that he knew me well enough that I would never do that.

I wish I had never come here. But, this store is my husband Abe’s dream, so, I have resolved that I will say nothing against it.

I will do my duty as a wife and support him in this.

What else can I do?

I’ve committed to him for life.

I am pregnant with his child.

Thankfully, we have been learning to communicate and our relationship is getting stronger every day.

Maybe we didn’t court each other long enough. I don’t know. Maybe this sort of adjustment phase is just something that every newlywed couple goes through.

I still wish that Abe would let some of his more traditional ways go. But, he’s still pretty committed to what he’s always been taught.

I do what I can though. I pray for him…and you know, it’s funny, he seems to sense it. Even if he doesn’t quite understand it…yet.

There is a slight creak as the front door opens and an overweight man lumbers in.

“Mary Elias?” His voice rasps out as he approaches me.

“Yes, that’s me.”

“I’ve been looking for you.”

“Well, here I am.”

“I just want to know one thing!”

“What is that?”

“Why are you always making trouble in the town?”

I can smell the onions he ate for lunch as he leans on the wooden counter before me.

“What do you mean, I’m making trouble?”

His mouth opens, emitting more stench. “You know very well what I mean.”

“No, I’m afraid I don’t.”

“Weren’t you at Gertie Braun’s yesterday?”

“Why, yes, I was.”

“What did you tell her?”

“She told me that she felt like she was carrying a heavy burden…so, I told her that it didn’t have to be that way…”

“That’s all?”

“And that she should let Jesus carry some of that burden.”

The smell of onions grows stronger as the man before me turns red. “Well, now I heard it myself.”

“What’s wrong with what I said?”

“I don’t have to explain myself to someone like you!”

With that, he stomps out as quickly as he came in.

“Who was that?” Abe asks as he walks in from the back room where he had been sorting stock.

“That was the Minister of the Reinlander Church.”

“What did you do to make him so angry?”

“Oh, he was angry about something I said to Gertie Braun.”

“Huh.” Abe stands still for a moment, obviously a bit confused. “What did you say to her?”

“I told her to let Jesus carry some of her burden.”

“And that set him off like that?”

“I guess he doesn’t like me.”

“It seems like a lot of people around here don’t.” Abe joins me behind the counter. “What are you doing to them?”

“I don’t know. I just wish that they wouldn’t say the things they do about me.”

Abe kisses me on the forehead. “Don’t worry about what they say, I love you.”

“Thank you.”

“And, by the sound of what just went on here, I need to go and pay the Reinlander Minister a visit.”

“Oh, that won’t be necessary.”

Abe looks into my eyes and smiles. “Oh but it is, I can’t have people talking to my wife like that.”

“Just be careful.”

“See you in a bit,” is all that Abe says as he moves toward the front door.

Why does life in this village have to be so hard? I look toward the dusty ceiling above me and breathe out a prayer for Jesus to carry some of my own burden…

…To be continued…



Kelvin Bueckert

Lives and writes on the plains of Manitoba, Canada…he is an actor, writer, and has also been known to peddle books on his website…