News Archives November, 2014


Musa Mambula speaking tour to extend into mid-January (November 25, 2014)

Nigerian Brethren church leader Musa Mambula has begun a speaking tour in the Pennsylvania area, giving presentations at a variety of Church of the Brethren congregations. His list of speaking engagements extends through December and into January. His presentations focus on the persecution of Christians by Boko Haram terrorists in northern Nigeria and the church’s response. Read more »


Newsline for Nov. 25, 2014 (November 25, 2014)

1) Brethren Disaster Ministries surpasses goal of Sandy recovery grant from Red Cross 2) EYN Compassion Fund has distributed more than $200,000 to aid Nigerian Brethren 3) Musa Mambula speaking tour to extend into mid-January 4) Global Food Crisis Fund grant supports agriculture training in east Africa RESOURCES 5) Advent worship resources are online for the 2014 Advent offering 6) Brethren bits Read more »


Brethren bits for Nov. 25, 2014 (November 25, 2014)

BDM trains ecumenical partners, DC briefing on Nigeria, first mission point in Nigeria suffers attack, selection of Advent and Christmas events, Indiana Court of Appeals ruling, ecumenical and interfaith statements on immigration and Ferguson, more Read more »


Advent worship resources are online for the 2014 Advent offering (November 25, 2014)

This quote from an invocation prayer written by Tim Harvey for the 2014 Advent offering in the Church of the Brethren provides a sample of the free Advent worship materials that are now available online. Read more »


EYN Compassion Fund has distributed more than $200,000 to aid Nigerian Brethren (November 25, 2014)

Since a special appeal for the Nigeria crisis at the 2014 Annual Conference in early July, giving to the EYN Compassion Fund topped $168,459, according to the Church of the Brethren finance office. That amount is in addition to the $120,210.45 collected in the first half of this year. Read more »


Global Food Crisis Fund grant supports agriculture training in east Africa (November 25, 2014)

An allocation of $4,300 from the Global Food Crisis Fund (GFCF) has been given to support the attendance of six people at an agriculture training event in Kenya. The training is being provided by Care of Creation, Kenya (CCK), a former GFCF grant recipient. Read more »


Brethren Disaster Ministries surpasses goal of Sandy recovery grant from Red Cross (November 25, 2014)

A Hurricane Sandy recovery grant that Brethren Disaster Ministries was awarded last year from the American Red Cross (ARC) provided the financial backing needed to expand Brethren Disaster Ministries’ efforts in New Jersey from one project in Toms River to a second project based in Spotswood. Read more »


Washington, D.C., briefing on Nigeria features interfaith delegation connected with EYN (November 21, 2014)

A briefing on the crisis in Nigeria planned for Tuesday, Nov. 25, at 1 p.m. in the Methodist Building (100 Maryland Ave, NE) in Washington, D.C., is co-sponsored by the Church of the Brethren Office of Public Witness, the Islamic Society of North America, and the National Council of Churches, USA. Read more »


Communication informs about new IRS rule on pre-tax health insurance premium contributions for pastors, church workers (November 18, 2014)

A communication with important information about how churches report their pastors’ (and lay employees’) income with regard to health insurance premiums is being sent to each Church of the Brethren congregation. The joint letter is from Mary Jo Flory-Steury, associate general secretary of the Church of the Brethren and executive of the Ministry Office, and Scott W. Douglas, BBT director of Employee Benefits. An additional letter from Douglas gives information about IRS rules for Section 105 HRA pre-tax insurance contributions. Read more »


Brethren bits for Nov. 18, 2014 (November 18, 2014)

In this issue: Church of the Brethren seeks chief financial officer, ADNet seeks half-time director, registration opens Dec. 1 for Christian Citizenship Seminar, youth group starts a Dunker Punks Café, dates for 2015 Meat Canning Project are set, E’town School of Continuing and Professional Studies offers new Health Care Administration degree program, UNHCR release numbers Nigerians in the thousands fleeing into neighboring countries, and more news from and for Brethren. Read more »


National Council of Churches governing board issues statement from Ferguson (November 18, 2014)

As Missouri governor Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency yesterday in anticipation of the imminent indictment, or lack thereof, of officer Darren Wilson, the National Council of Churches (NCC) gathered in St. Louis for a meeting of its governing board. The atmosphere was tense in the room as the governor's order to ready the National Guard came during a panel discussion featuring four pastors and community leaders from Ferguson, Mo. Read more »


Newsline for Nov. 18, 2014 (November 18, 2014)

NEWS: 1) National Council of Churches governing board issues statement from Ferguson 2) In addition to constant prayer, funds are needed in Nigeria 3) Court rules to ‘vacate’ clergy housing allowance case 4) Communication informs about new IRS rule on pre-tax health insurance premium contributions for pastors, church workers UPCOMING EVENTS: 5) Congregational Life Ministries offers webinars on ‘Just Friendship’ and ‘Youth Work after Christendom’ 6) On Earth Peace to host informational webinar on Anti-Racism Transformation Team FEATURE REFLECTION: 7) How a concern becomes a value 8) Brethren bits Read more »


On Earth Peace to host informational webinar on Anti-Racism Transformation Team (November 18, 2014)

On Earth Peace invites interested individuals to participate in an informational webinar to learn more about the organization’s Anti-Racism Transformation Team. Read more »


Court rules to ‘vacate’ clergy housing allowance case (November 18, 2014)

“We have good news to share!” said an update from Brethren Benefit Trust (BBT) about a court case that had the potential to seriously affect the tax status of clergy housing allowances. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the clergy housing allowance case brought by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc. is to be vacated (eliminated) and remanded (sent back) to the US District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin with instructions to dismiss the case. The court ruled that the plaintiffs have no standing to bring a complaint. Read more »


In addition to constant prayer, funds are needed in Nigeria (November 18, 2014)

The following is the script from a short video report on the Nigeria crisis by Church of the Brethren videographer David Sollenberger. He returned last week from a reporting trip to Nigeria on behalf of Brethren Disaster Ministries and Global Mission and Service. In the video, this script is interspersed with brief interviews not quoted here. View the video at www.brethren.org or on YouTube at http://youtu.be/T_Y9hlxuBfo : Read more »


Congregational Life Ministries offers webinars on ‘Just Friendship’ and ‘Youth Work after Christendom’ (November 18, 2014)

Congregational Life Ministries is a co-sponsor of two webinars scheduled for this week: on Wednesday, Nov. 19, Anthony Grinnell will present a webinar related to ministry and evangelism and justice titled “Just Friendship”; and on Thursday, Nov. 20, Nigel Pimlott is the presenter of a webinar on the topic “Youth Work after Christendom-Revisited.” Both webinars start at 2:30 p.m. (eastern time). Read more »


Office of Public Witness helps plan conference on drone warfare (November 12, 2014)

The Church of the Brethren Office of Public Witness is helping to plan an upcoming conference on drone warfare. The event is scheduled for Jan. 23-25 at Princeton (N.J.) Theological Seminary. “We want to reach out to see if any Brethren would be interested in attending and also let Brethren know that the conference is happening to raise awareness about the issue,” reported Bryan Hanger, advocacy assistant at the Office of Public Witness. Read more »


Brethren Press offers Advent devotional, winter Guide for Biblical Studies, Yearbook on CD (November 12, 2014)

Brethren Press has a number of new resources available including “Awake: Devotions for Advent Through Epiphany,” “Church of the Brethren Yearbook: 2014 Directory, 2013 Statistics” in CD format, and the winter quarter of “A Guide for Biblical Studies” on the theme “Acts of Worship.” Purchase from Brethren Press at www.brethrenpress.com or order by calling 800-441-3712. Read more »


Brethren bits for Nov. 12, 2014 (November 12, 2014)

Retirement party honors Rex Miller, BDM interim staffing, jobs with the Church of the Brethren, EYN leader to speak at Young Center, W. Pennsylvania challenged to pray daily for Nigeria, Illinois/Wisconsin returns query, and more. Read more »


Newsline for Nov. 12, 2014 (November 12, 2014)

NEWS: 1) Global Food Crisis-funded project in Nigeria is lost along with EYN headquarters compound 2) WCC general secretary: Dismay over attacks on churches in Nigeria 3) Reflections on the destruction of the Armenian church in Deir Zor PERSONNEL: 4) LeAnn Harnist resigns as treasurer of the Church of the Brethren UPCOMING EVENTS: 5) Office of Public Witness helps plan conference on drone warfare RESOURCES: 6) Brethren Press offers Advent devotional, winter Guide for Biblical Studies, Yearbook on CD 7) Brethren bits Read more »


Global Food Crisis-funded project in Nigeria is lost along with EYN headquarters compound (November 12, 2014)

An agriculture project of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) which has received funding from the Global Food Crisis Fund (GFCF), has been lost in the overtaking of EYN headquarters by Boko Haram insurgents. Read more »


LeAnn Harnist resigns as treasurer of the Church of the Brethren (November 12, 2014)

LeAnn Harnist has resigned as executive director of Organizational Resources and treasurer of the Church of the Brethren, effective Jan. 16, 2015. She has served on the denominational staff for more than 10 years, since March 2004. Read more »


Brethren bits for Nov. 4, 2014 (November 4, 2014)

Bethany seeks faculty in theological studies, Workcamp Ministry seeks 2016 coordinators, Manchester inaugurates new president, how to get your church online, Anabaptist Response to WWI, and much more. Read more »


‘We need urgent help from the international community’ writes EYN president, Church of the Brethren calls for international attention to crisis in Nigeria (November 4, 2014)

EYN president Samuel Dante Dali is calling for urgent help from the international community for the people affected by violence in northeast Nigeria. In a letter he sent to the Church of the Brethren in the US this weekend, he also called for the Nigerian government to give serious attention to the suffering of the people. Read more »


Newsline for Nov. 4, 2014 (November 4, 2014)

NEWS 1) ‘We need urgent help from the international community’ writes EYN president, Church of the Brethren calls for international attention to crisis in Nigeria 2) New Church Development Advisory Committee reorganizes 3) Polo Growing Project reaches market UPCOMING EVENTS 4) Youth and young adult ministries director leads evening webinar on ‘Grieving’ 5) International scholar to speak at Bethany Seminary 6) Musa Mambula of EYN to speak on Nigeria persecution at Chiques Church of the Brethren 7) Brethren bits Read more »


Polo Growing Project reaches market (November 4, 2014)

The 2014 Polo (Ill.) Growing Project has completed harvest of 40 acres of soybeans with a yield averaging 60 bushels per acre, reports Jim Schmidt, grower and project coordinator. With a portion of the grain contracted for in advance, the sale averaged roughly $11 a bushel, well above the current market price of $8.85 for out-of-the-field transactions. The Polo Growing Project is a joint project of the Dixon, Highland Avenue, and Polo Church of the Brethren congregations in Illinois, and Tinley Park Presbyterian Church. Read more »


Musa Mambula of EYN to speak at Chiques Church of the Brethren about Nigeria persecution (November 4, 2014)

Chiques Church of the Brethren in Manheim, Pa., will host a presentation by Nigerian Brethren leader Musa Mambula on Sunday, Nov. 9, at 7 p.m. Mambula is a writer, educator, and current National Spiritual Advisor for Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria). He will speak about the persecution of Christians by Boko Haram terrorists in northern Nigeria and the church’s response. The evening will conclude with a time of prayer. Read more »


New Church Development Advisory Committee reorganizes (November 4, 2014)

The National New Church Development Advisory Committee of the Church of the Brethren recently went through reorganization as it continues to give input and direction to denominational support for church planting. Read more »


Youth and young adult ministries director leads evening webinar on ‘Grieving’ (November 3, 2014)

The first webinar in a series on Christian practices for teens, offered for adult leaders of youth, will be on the topic “Grieving” led by Becky Ullom Naugle, director of the Church of the Brethren Youth and Young Adult Ministry. The webinar is this evening, Nov. 4, at 8 p.m. (eastern time). Read more »