News Archives February, 2016


CCEPI graduates first set of orphans and widows in skill acquisition (February 27, 2016)

Director of the Center for Caring and Peace Initiative (CCEPI) in Nigeria, Rebecca S. Dali, charged the first graduates of the Livelihood Skill Acquisition Center established by CCEPI to work hard by utilizing the materials such as knitting machines, sewing machines, and computers given to them to make them economically independent. Read more »


Brethren bits for Feb. 27, 2016 (February 27, 2016)

In this issue: SVMC personnel announcement, job openings at SVMC and the Church of the Brethren General Offices, BRF group serves in Haiti, theology session at 2016 Ecumenical Advocacy Days, Ventures features Dawn Ottoni-Wilhelm, Mutual Kumquat concert at Beavercreek Church benefits Nigerian family, Roundtable registration is open, spring candlelight dinners at John Kline Homestead, and more news by, for, and about Brethren. Read more »


Congregational Life Ministries and ADNet extend agreement to work together (February 27, 2016)

In January 2016, Anabaptist Disabilities Network (ADNet) and the Church of the Brethren Congregational Life Ministries extended an agreement to work together to advocate for persons with disabilities in the church. Since 2014, the Church of the Brethren has had a representative serving on the ADNet board of directors and has worked in cooperation with ADNet’s mission to “support Anabaptist congregations, families, and persons touched by disabilities to nurture inclusive communities.” Read more »


Newsline for Feb. 27, 2016 (February 27, 2016)

NEWS 1) Christian Churches Together holds 10th annual convocation 2) Office of Public Witness urges reduction of military spending in 2017 federal budget 3) Congregational Life Ministries and ADNet extend agreement to work together 4) CCEPI graduates first set of orphans and widows in skill acquisition PERSONNEL 5) Ronald Beachley to retire from leadership of W. Pennsylvania District UPCOMING EVENTS 6) Bethany Seminary holds second annual young adult event 7) Brethren bits Read more »


Ronald Beachley to retire from leadership of W. Pennsylvania District (February 27, 2016)

Ronald D. Beachley has announced his plans to retire as district executive of the Western Pennsylvania District effective Dec. 31, 2016. He began his ministry as district executive on Sept. 15, 1985. Read more »


Christian Churches Together holds 10th annual convocation (February 27, 2016)

At the 10th annual convocation of Christian Churches Together in the USA (CCT), held in early 2016 in Arlington, Va., member churches and organizations deepened their work on racism and other issues of common concern. Read more »


Newsline Special: Requests for prayer (February 22, 2016)

Over the weekend, a tragedy involving students at Manchester University, the sudden hospitalization of associate general secretary Mary Jo Flory-Steury, and a fire at Cross Keys Village-one of the Church of the Brethren-related retirement communities, have prompted calls for prayer. Read more »


Churches invited to take part in Bread for the World’s Offering of Letters (February 20, 2016)

As part of our call to work toward ending global hunger and poverty, the Office of Public Witness invites congregations to participate in Bread for the World’s 2016 Offering of Letters. This year’s theme, “Survive and Thrive,” focuses on the impact of malnutrition on women and children. Read more »


Lamps represent gifts shared between Brethren on two continents (February 20, 2016)

Dale Ziegler was one of the “Take 10/Tell 10" group from Elizabethtown (Pa.) Church of the Brethren who made a trip to Nigeria in January, accompanied by Nigeria Crisis Response co-directors Carl and Roxane Hill. Here he tells the story of the “Lamps for Nigeria” project: Read more »


Simple hand-sewn dolls and stuffed toys needed for Nigeria (February 20, 2016)

Later this spring representatives of Children’s Disaster Services (CDS) will be traveling to Nigeria to work on trauma healing with children, working with women theologians of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria). Read more »


Congregations are sought for Heifer fundraising  (February 20, 2016)

Recently the Church of the Brethren, Heifer International, and Ted & Co, a professional touring theater company, formed a partnership around a project to highlight and support the work of Heifer International. At the heart of this partnership is an event called “12 Baskets and a Goat,” a live theater show that includes an auction to raise funds for Heifer. Read more »


Newsline for Feb. 20, 2016 (February 20, 2016)

NEWS 1) Brethren leaders attend 25th Asamblea in Dominican Republic 2) Congregations are sought for Heifer fundraising 3) Churches invited to take part in Bread for the World’s Offering of Letters NIGERIA SPECIAL SECTION 4) Nigeria Crisis Response co-directors visit unstable areas of northeast Nigeria 5) Seeds and farming supplies are next step for Nigeria Crisis Response 6) Reflections on a distribution of relief good by CCEPI in Nigeria 7) Lamps represent gifts shared between Brethren on two continents 8) Simple hand-sewn dolls and stuffed toys needed for Nigeria 9) ‘We can recreate a new and better tomorrow’: An address by the EYN president 10) Brethren bits Read more »


Seeds and farming supplies are next step for Nigeria Crisis Response (February 20, 2016)

As the church’s Nigeria Crisis Response is in its second year, we are constantly seeking ways to help the church in Nigeria become more stable and help people recover from the violence and security issues they have had to endure over the last few years. As expected, there is no simple solution. But on our most recent visit to Nigeria one thing became apparent--the people of Nigeria are resilient and will only require a little assistance in certain areas to begin helping themselves. Read more »


‘We can recreate a new and better tomorrow’: An address by the EYN president (February 20, 2016)

The following is the text of an address by Samuel Dante Dali, president of Ekklesiyar Yan'uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria), to the EYN Ministers’ Council. The council met at the EYN Headquarters in Kwarhi on Feb. 17-20. Newsline was sent this address by the EYN communications staff, in order to share it with the wider Church of the Brethren: Read more »


Brethren bits for Feb. 20, 2016 (February 20, 2016)

In this issue: Personnel announcements from Bethany Seminary, job openings, reminder to register for the 2016 Clergy Tax Seminar, 2015 allocations from the Global Food Crisis Fund, Action Alert on Israeli settlement expansion, Ventures seminar and Illinois and Wisconsin District workshop are led by Dawn Ottoni-Wilhelm, two districts send leaders to Africa’s Great Lakes region, Michigan District holds love offering for Flint, and much more. Read more »


Nigeria Crisis Response co-directors visit unstable areas of northeast Nigeria (February 20, 2016)

On our recent trip to Nigeria to meet with and encourage the Disaster Team of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria), we took the opportunity to travel into unstable and potentially dangerous areas of the northeast. Read more »


Brethren leaders attend 25th Asamblea in Dominican Republic (February 20, 2016)

A delegation of the Mission Advisory Committee enjoyed a formal visit with Iglesia de los Hermandos Dominicano (Church of the Brethren in the Dominican Republic), visiting churches, touring outreach ministries, speaking with church members, and attending the 25th annual gathering, “Asamblea,” of the Dominican Brethren held Feb. 12-14. Read more »


Reflections on a distribution of relief good by CCEPI in Nigeria  (February 20, 2016)

Karen Hodges was one of the “Take 10/Tell 10" group from Elizabethtown (Pa.) Church of the Brethren who made a trip to Nigeria in January, accompanied by Nigeria Crisis Response co-directors Carl and Roxane Hill. Here is her reflection after participating in a food distribution: Read more »


Brethren Volunteer Service holds connection dinners in Pennsylvania, Kansas (February 12, 2016)

Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS) staff will be visiting and holding “Connection” meal events in McPherson, Kan., on Feb. 28, and in Elizabethtown, Pa., on March 13. These meal events are an opportunity for prospective volunteers, those interested in BVS, and BVS alumni and friends to enjoy food, fellowship, and stories about the volunteer experience. Read more »


Four members join the Youth Peace Travel Team for 2016 (February 12, 2016)

The members of the 2016 Youth Peace Travel Team have been announced. As the team spends time with youth this summer at camps across the denomination, they will teach about peace, justice, and reconciliation, all core values throughout the Church of the Brethren’s 300-plus year history. Read more »


Newsline for Feb. 12, 2016 (February 12, 2016)

1) Sarpiya and Wiltschek top Annual Conference ballot for 2016 2) Spiritual preparation for Annual Conference in Greensboro 3) Four members join the Youth Peace Travel Team for 2016 4) Church of the Brethren signs letter urging federal action to aid Flint 5) Brethren Volunteer Service holds connection dinners in Pennsylvania, Kansas 6) Brethren bits Read more »


Church of the Brethren signs letter urging federal action to aid Flint (February 12, 2016)

In response to the ongoing water crisis in Flint, Mich., the Church of the Brethren and a number of other Christian groups who represent Creation Justice Ministries, the former National Council of Churches Eco-Justice Program, have signed onto a letter praising the charitable actions of faith groups while also urging Congress and the Obama administration to take action to resolve the situation. Read more »


Spiritual preparation for Annual Conference in Greensboro (February 12, 2016)

In his Lenten devotional, “Let Us Also Go,” Chris Bowman summons us for a challenging journey that leads through the darkness of Good Friday to the Light of Easter Sunday. It is a good reminder that for Christians to “carry the light” we must also prepare ourselves with confession, prayer, and discipline that acknowledges the darkness that surrounds us and, at times, occupies us. Read more »


Brethren bits for Feb. 12, 2016 (February 12, 2016)

In this issue: Personnel news from Juniata College, a report from CODE and IAF meetings, prayer requests for an Asamblea in the DR and theological training and a special medical clinic in Haiti, Mutual Kumquat to record music for Shine, an honor for the founder of Circleville Church of the Brethren, Regional Youth Conferences, and more. Read more »


Sarpiya and Wiltschek top Annual Conference ballot for 2016 (February 10, 2016)

The Conference Office has released the ballot that will be presented to the delegate body at the 2016 Annual Conference of the Church of the Brethren this summer. Topping the ballot are two nominees for Annual Conference moderator-elect: Samuel Sarpiya and Walt Wiltschek. Other offices to be filled by election of the delegate body are positions on the Program and Arrangements Committee, Pastoral Compensation and Benefits Advisory Committee, Mission and Ministry Board, Bethany Seminary board of trustees, Brethren Benefit Trust board, and On Earth Peace board. Read more »


Brethren bits for Feb. 5, 2016 (February 5, 2016)

In this issue: Remembrances, personnel announcements from Bethany Seminary and BBT and Shepherd’s Spring, job openings at the Brethren Housing Association and Pinecrest Community, encouragement to “keep thinking long term” from BBT’s president, next webinar in the “Heart of Anabaptism” series, new members on the COBYS Board of Directors, a tour by Bittersweet Gospel Band, and more news by, for, and about Brethren. Read more »


Intercultural Ministries staff leads ‘Ministry in Two Americas’ at seminary (February 5, 2016)

On Feb. 11-12, the Church of the Brethren’s Intercultural Ministries staff Gimbiya Kettering will lead events at Bethany Theological Seminary on the theme “Ministry in Two Americas.” The campus of Bethany Seminary is located in Richmond, Ind. Read more »


Brethren Disaster Ministries works on new Disaster Recovery Support Initiative (February 5, 2016)

Brethren Disaster Ministries is partnering with the disaster ministries of the United Church of Christ and the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) to form a Disaster Recovery Support Initiative (DRSI). The new initiative is intended to help speed up the process of getting volunteers in place to begin repair and rebuilding work following a disaster. Read more »


SVMC continuing education events highlight memory care, Chronicles and the church (February 5, 2016)

The Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center (SVMC) is offering three upcoming continuing education events for ministers and others who are interested. Two address memory care, and one offers a study of the Old Testament book of Chronicles and its meaning for the church today. Read more »


Newsline for Feb. 5, 2016 (February 5, 2016)

NEWS: 1) Brethren Disaster Ministries works on new Disaster Recovery Support Initiative. 2) Flint Church of the Brethren is a water distribution center during crisis. 3) Disabilities ministry announces creation of Open Roof Fellowship. 4) Nursing students receive Church of the Brethren scholarships. 5) South Sudan church leaders request prayer for peace this Saturday. 6) Manchester University to offer new interfaith literacy certificate. 7) Marrakesh Declaration affirms rights of religious minorities in Muslim countries. UPCOMING EVENTS: 8) Intercultural Ministries staff leads ‘Ministry in Two Americas’ at seminary. 9) SVMC continuing education events highlight memory care, Chronicles and the church. RESOURCES: 10) Children’s book tells about seagoing cowboys who delivered livestock--and hope. 11) Brethren bits Read more »


Children’s book tells about seagoing cowboys who delivered livestock--and hope (February 5, 2016)

Beginning in 1945, while Europe struggled with the desolation left by years of war, more than 7,000 men and boys traveled by ship on missions of mercy. They were seagoing cowboys--farmhands and folks from all walks of life: teachers, students, bankers, preachers, carpenters--who were recruited to care for the thousands of horses and heifers sent for reparations. Read more »


South Sudan church leaders request prayer for peace this Saturday (February 5, 2016)

South Sudan church leaders have requested Christians around the world to join them in a time of prayer for peace in their nation on this Saturday, Feb. 6, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. The request is being shared with the Church of the Brethren by members of a delegation that recently visited South Sudan and met with church leaders there. Read more »


Flint Church of the Brethren is a water distribution center during crisis (February 3, 2016)

The following report from Bill Hammond of First Church of the Brethren in Flint, Mich., was received Feb. 2. He reports on the water crisis in Flint and the role the Brethren there are playing in helping to serve the community: Read more »


Disabilities ministry announces creation of Open Roof Fellowship (February 3, 2016)

Mark’s Gospel reminds us that we are called to reach out to persons of all needs and abilities and to go to extraordinary lengths to bring them to Jesus: “Then some people came, bringing to Jesus a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. And when they could not bring him to Jesus because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him” (Mark 2:3-4). Church of the Brethren congregations committed to and actively engaged in ministry to and with persons with disabilities are therefore recognized as Open Roof congregations. Read more »


Nursing students receive Church of the Brethren scholarships (February 3, 2016)

Five nursing students are recipients of Church of the Brethren Nursing Scholarships for 2015. This scholarship, made possible by the Health Education and Research Endowment, is available to members of the Church of the Brethren enrolled in LPN, RN, or nursing graduate programs. Read more »