Members of Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS) Unit 270 have begun their terms of service. The Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., hosted the orientation unit from July 30 – Aug. 8.
“As always your prayer support is greatly appreciated,” said Becky Snavely, of the BVS office staff. “Please pray for the unit, and the people they will touch during their year of service through BVS.”
The unit consisted of 21 volunteers. Their home congregations or home towns and volunteer placements follow:
- Phil Bohannon of Lampeter (Pa.) Church of the Brethren is working at Camp Alexander Mack in Milford, Ind.
- Nathan Fishman of New Brunswick, N.J., is serving Jubilee USA Network in Washington, D.C.
- Reike Flesch of Recklinghause, Germany, serves Step 2 in Reno, Nev.
- Paula Hoffert of Lewiston (Minn.) Church of the Brethren is working at Boys Hope Girls Hope in Lenexa, Kan.
- Hanae Ikehata of Alzey, Germany, is working at Su Casa Catholic Worker House in Chicago, Ill.
- Anand Lehmann of Eppelheim, Germany, serves at Tri-City Homeless Coalition in Fremont, Calif.
- Meredith Morckel of Springfield Church of the Brethren in Akron, Ohio, also went to Tri-City Homeless Coalition.
- Stan Morris of Sacramento, Calif., works for AHEAD Energy Project in Rochester, N.Y.
- Will Morris of Charlottesville (Va.) Church of the Brethren went to the Brethren Nutrition Program in Washington, D.C.
- Trevor Myers of Oakland Church of the Brethren in Bradford, Ohio, serves with Emergency Response/Service Ministries of the Church of the Brethren General Board, at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md.
- Emily O’Donnell of Green Tree Church of the Brethren in Oaks, Pa., is serving at the Brethren Witness / Washington Office in Washington, D.C.
- Katie O’Donnell, also of Green Tree, will serve the Church of the Brethren in Brazil.
- Joe Parkinson of Collinsville, Ill., is going to San Antonio (Texas) Catholic Worker House.
- Benedikt Reinke of Ahnatal, Germany, went to Lancaster (Pa.) Area Habitat for Humanity.
- Britta Schwab of Faith Community of the Brethren Home Church of the Brethren in New Oxford, Pa., works at Gould Farm in Monterey, Mass.
- Tim Stauffer of Polo (Ill.) Church of the Brethren is working for the Information Services department of the Church of the Brethren General Board in Elgin, Ill.
- Barbara Tello of Minneapolis, Minn., is working for Chiapas Peace House in Chiapas, Mexico.
- Amy Waldron of Bloomington, Ind., is exploring an assignment in Nigeria with Global Mission Partnerships of the Church of the Brethren General Board; in the meantime is filling an interim assignment at Camp Courageous in Monticello, Iowa.
- Rachael Weber of Mountain View Church of the Brethren in McGaheysville, Va., went to the World Student Christian Federation in Budapest, Hungary.
- Leah Yingling of Clover Creek Church of the Brethren in Fredericksburg, Pa., went to Emanuel Children’s Home in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.
During the orientation in Maryland, the volunteers had several days to serve the community including a workday at the Brethren Service Center and at SERRV/A Greater Gift. The group also worked at a local daycare, donation pantry, and resource center for those with mental disabilities. During a weekend immersion in Baltimore, the volunteers stayed at a homeless men’s shelter and participated in workdays at Jonah House, soup kitchens, and resource centers for the homeless population.
The group also hosted a potluck for current and past volunteers and honored Don Vermilyea for his time served in the Walk Across America. Vermilyea recently ended the walk after more than four years, walking to congregations of the Church of the Brethren across the country. He shared several reflections from the walk, and the group also enjoyed sharing food and stories.
For more information about BVS call the office at 800-323-8039, or visit http://www.brethrenvolunteerservice.org/.