Lapp highlighted the significance of the global histories in his comments. "I believe these volumes, and the process that brought them together, represent the beginnings of new ways to think about the world Mennonite/Brethren in Christ movement," he said. "Semarang is now essential to Amsterdam. Shamshabad is now life-giving to Hillsboro and vice versa. Kinshasa now partners with Berne and Steinbach, and vice versa. Managua now addresses Ephrata and New Hamburg. Through these churches here, there and everywhere, the story goes on."John A. Lapp, who has shepherded the writing of the global histories since the project was launched some 16 years ago, explained the reasoning behind it. "With the release of these four volumes of history, by writers from each respective continent - Africa, Europe, Latin America and Asia, and the pending publication of Vol. 5, North America, in 2012 - a new Mennonite narrative has been created," he said. "These books accent survival, rather than triumph. They give a more diversified accounting of who we are as a church than we've ever had before."