News Archives February, 2017


Brethren bits for Feb. 25, 2017 (February 25, 2017)

CDS completes work in Oroville, BDM winter newsletter, prayer request for gatherings in DR and Venezuela, Shine spring curriculum, On Earth Peace plans Palestine delegation, Ventures course explores Lent, Holmesville returns to Founders Day tradition, more Read more »


Church of the Brethren members invited to Oregon Senate for key vote (February 25, 2017)

Florence Daté Smith and her daughter Barbara Daté on Feb. 16 were among at least 17 Japanese-Americans invited to sit on the chamber floor of the Oregon State Senate for a vote unanimously approving Senate Concurrent Resolution (SCR) 14. The resolution recognizes the historical significance of Feb. 19, 1942, the date President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed executive order 9066 setting in motion the internment of some 120,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II. Read more »


Newsline for Feb. 25, 2017 (February 25, 2017)

NEWS 1) Intercultural Ministry seeks to connect with churches in ‘sanctuary’ jurisdictions 2) Nursing scholarships announced for 2016, applications are received for 2017 3) Church of the Brethren members invited to Oregon Senate for key vote UPCOMING EVENTS 4) Big Rapids Song and Story Fest to be in Michigan following Annual Conference REMEMBER WHEN 5) From Gimbiya’s desk: Those who came before me 6) Remembering internment: Days of infamy 7) Brethren bits Read more »


Intercultural Ministry seeks to connect with churches in ‘sanctuary’ jurisdictions (February 25, 2017)

A letter from the Church of the Brethren Intercultural Ministry, signed by director Gimbiya Kettering, is part of a new effort to connect with congregations located in areas considered to be “sanctuary” jurisdictions across the country. Read more »


Nursing scholarships announced for 2016, applications are received for 2017 (February 24, 2017)

Six nursing students were named as recipients of Church of the Brethren Nursing Scholarships for 2016. 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 »


Global Mission and Service offers more Nigeria workcamps (February 18, 2017)

More Nigeria workcamp opportunities have been announced by the Global Mission and Service office of the Church of the Brethren. American Brethren and others who are interested in joining in a workcamp with members of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) are invited to consider one of two workcamps to be held in April and August. Read more »


EYN disaster ministry conducts Hepatitis B screening, aids Bdagu refugees (February 18, 2017)

Following the EYN president’s statement declaring a state of emergency on health, the Disaster Relief Ministry of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) moved to conduct Hepatitis B screening starting with staff and students of Kulp Bible College in Kwarhi. Read more »


Nigeria Crisis Response volunteers visit rebuilt church, IDP camp in Maiduguri (February 18, 2017)

On Feb. 9, John and I visited the Wulari EYN Maiduguri church of Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) in the large northeastern Nigerian city of Maiduguri. We met the EYN HIV/AIDS Project staff, and met the new pastor Joseph T. Kwaha. The church was rebuilt in 2015 after it was bombed by Boko Haram and totally destroyed in June 2009. We also visited the EYN IDP camp of 8,000 displaced persons located nearby on an old church compound. Read more »


Global Food Initiative supports soybean consultation in Africa, community garden in Illinois (February 18, 2017)

With a grant of $2,500, the Church of the Brethren Global Food Initiative (GFI) is supporting a soybean consultation and exchange visit between Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) and Church Aid Inc. in Liberia. Another recent grant of $1,000 supports a community gardening initiative of Rockford (Ill.) Community Church of the Brethren. Read more »


Values of retirement community cooperative group live on (February 18, 2017)

The Peace Church Risk Retention Group and the Peace Church Health Insurance Program hold two annual meetings, in which the Fellowship of Brethren Homes participates. In a recent meeting of the Peace Church Retention Group, which is served by Phil Leaman as COO and Russ Shaner as executive director, we were reminded of the group’s mission and values statements. Read more »


Children’s Disaster Services sends team to aid evacuees in northern California (February 18, 2017)

A team of eight volunteers with Children’s Disaster Services (CDS) are serving in Oroville, Calif., at the request of the American Red Cross. The team is offering child care for families affected by the evacuation of the area under threat from the emergency at the Oroville Dam. Read more »


General secretary continues to hold listening sessions (February 18, 2017)

David Steele, general secretary of the Church of the Brethren, is holding listening sessions in church districts around the denomination. The meetings are a way for him to listen closely to people within the church, and an opportunity for church members to meet the general secretary. Last fall, several listening sessions were held--mostly in conjunction with district conferences. Read more »


Newsline for Feb. 18, 2017 (February 18, 2017)

NEWS 1) Children’s Disaster Services sends team to aid evacuees in northern California 2) Global Food Initiative supports soybean consultation in Africa, community garden in Illinois 3) Nigeria Crisis Response volunteers visit rebuilt church, IDP camp in Maiduguri 4) EYN disaster ministry conducts Hepatitis B screening, aids Bdagu refugees UPCOMING EVENTS 5) General secretary continues to hold listening sessions 6) Global Mission and Service offers more Nigeria workcamps PERSONNEL 7) Brethren Benefit Trust announces staffing changes REFLECTION 8) Values of retirement community cooperative group live on REMEMBER WHEN 9) Resolution on Justice for Japanese-American World War II Internees: An action of the former General Board of the Church of the Brethren 10) Brethren bits Read more »


Brethren Benefit Trust announces staffing changes (February 18, 2017)

Brethren Benefit Trust (BBT) has announced staffing changes, including a resignation and a new hire at its offices located at the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill. Eric Thompson has tendered his resignation as director of operations for Information Technology. Jeremiah Thompson has accepted the position of director of BBT’s Insurance Operations. Read more »


Brethren bits for Feb. 18, 2017 (February 18, 2017)

In this issue: ACT Alliance names new general secretary, job opening, news from congregations and camps, ULV class on leadership and culture gains attention, Bread for the World reports decreases in poverty and hunger among African Americans, and more news by, for, and about Brethren. Read more »


Christianity was on trial: The Smeltzers stand with Japanese-Americans (February 11, 2017)

The following is an excerpt of the late Mary Blocher Smeltzer’s story about how she and her husband, Ralph Smeltzer, aided Japanese-American families who were interned by the US government during World War II. The Smeltzers began teaching at the Manzanar internment camp and then worked to relocate Japanese-American families to Chicago and New York with help from the Church of the Brethren and Bethany Seminary. This story was included in the chapter titled “Japanese-American Resettlement Work” in the book “To Serve the Present Age: The Brethren Service Story,” edited by Donald F. Durnbaugh and published by Brethren Press in 1975: Read more »


Chiques members work for the Kingdom in Haiti (February 11, 2017)

Sixteen members of Chiques Church of the Brethren spent a week in Haiti in January. Their primary goal was to work on upgrades to the Brethren guesthouse in Croix des Bouquets. The group served with l’Eglise des Freres Haitiens (Church of the Brethren in Haiti). Read more »


Brethren bits for Feb. 11, 2017 (February 11, 2017)

In this issue: Emma Jean Woodard resigns from Virlina District and other personnel and job announcements, Capstone founder reports from New Orleans after tornado, Ministers’ Association pre-Conference event features Lillian Daniel, mission worker in Vietnam aids children who need eye care, BBT offers webinar on long-term care, and more. Read more »


Remember when: The Brethren Service Committee finds its charter (February 4, 2017)

This week’s Newsline "remember when" moment from Brethren history is the decision that created the Brethren Service Committee, the forerunner of the Brethren Service Commission. The BSC went on to become the main implement for the Church of the Brethren’s extensive service activities and witness for peace in Europe and elsewhere following World War II. From the minutes of the 1941 Annual Conference: Read more »


Nigerian Brethren in Lassa help shelter people displaced by renewed attacks (February 3, 2017)

Following the recent attacks on Bdagu village, Lassa is hosting another hundreds of refugees fleeing the village. Bdagu was attacked last week. Six men and four women were taken away by the Boko Haram, and four people were killed including one old woman burnt in her house. Read more »


Brethren bits for Feb. 3, 2017 (February 3, 2017)

Brethren bits for Feb. 3, 2017 Read more »


Brethren Press offers Lenten devotional focused on mercy (February 3, 2017)

“Medicine of Mercy” is the title of the Lenten devotional from Brethren Press. The Lenten devotional is one of two annual devotional booklets published by Brethren Press, along with the Advent devotional. This year’s Lenten devotional is written by Theresa Eshbach. Read more »


Children’s Disaster Services serves people affected by tornado in Georgia (February 3, 2017)

A team of volunteers from Children’s Disaster Services (CDS) set up yesterday morning at a MARC (Multi Agency Resource Center) in Albany, Ga. CDS provides child care for families affected by disasters, often offering care for children while parents apply for aid or take care of other necessary tasks in the wake of disasters. Read more »


A call for prayer in our troubled times (February 3, 2017)

Shenandoah District executive minister John Jantzi invites us to prayer as our country struggles with issues relating to immigration and refugee resettlement. He writes: Read more »


Brethren Disaster Ministries completes its work in Detroit (February 1, 2017)

FEMA stated that the six-inch rain event of August 2014 in Detroit, Mich., was the major disaster of that year for FEMA. But our US government disaster program did not allocate funds for that disaster, which had its most negative impact on African-American families. Read more »