Newsline for April 9, 2008

“Celebrating the Church of the Brethren’s 300th Anniversary in 2008”

“I will give thanks to the Lord…” (Psalm 9:1a).


1) Brethren Disaster Ministries opens new Hurricane Katrina site.
2) Church of the Brethren is lead sponsor of farm program in Nicaragua.
3) Seminar considers what it means to be a ‘real Samaritan.’
4) Submissions sought for deacon resource book.
5) Brethren bits: Corrections, personnel, jobs, and much more.


6) Thompson to be interim executive of Global Mission Partnerships.
7) Bethany announces teaching, administrative appointments.
8) Youth Peace Travel Team 2008 is announced.


9) Young preaches nonviolence at Bridgewater College.

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1) Brethren Disaster Ministries opens new Hurricane Katrina site.

Brethren Disaster Ministries has opened a new Hurricane Katrina rebuilding site in East New Orleans (Arabi), La. An allocation of $25,000 from the Church of the Brethren’s Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) helps fund the new project site, where volunteers will rebuild homes damaged or destroyed by Katrina.

The rebuilding site in Pearl River, La., will be moved to Arabi on the weekend of April 11-13. “The reason for this making this move is that there is little work left at the Pearl River site,” explained Brethren Disaster Ministries coordinator Jane Yount. “Volunteers have been traveling across Lake Pontchartrain down to East Orleans daily. It will be much more convenient and better stewardship for both the project directors and the volunteers to be housed closer to where they are working.”

The new project site has been dubbed “NOLA East.” Volunteer groups and project directors who had been scheduled to work at Pearl River will go instead to project headquarters in Arabi, and will continue to work on cases provided by the Southeast Louisiana Recovery Network. The work will be mainly in the Orleans and St. Bernard Parishes.

Both the NOLA East project and the current rebuilding project in Chalmette, La., will use volunteer housing based in Arabi. Meals will be prepared in the Carolyn Park Presbyterian Church kitchen for both project sites, and housing arrangements may require that district volunteer groups may be split and housed with volunteers working at the other project site, some in travel trailers and some in a bunk trailer.

“We now have two housing locations and capacity for 30 volunteers!” Yount said. The site “has been blessed with a 48-foot trailer that was transformed into three sleeping rooms by hardworking Shenandoah District volunteers.” The trailer worth about $5,000 was donated by IDM trucking and had previously been used to haul soft drink products. A new housing option for volunteers at both sites–the Madery house–may be completed by May.

The Brethren Disaster Ministries rebuilding site in Rushford, Minn., is now a longterm rebuilding project working with the local recovery organization, Lutheran Social Services/Lutheran Disaster Response. The project is scheduled to rebuild eight homes, and hopes to have at least one or two foundations completed by the first of May. The local recovery organization has hired a construction coordinator to help with the project. There are repair jobs to be done as well. “Project directors are needed!” said Yount.

For more information about volunteering at NOLA East, Chalmette, or Rushford, contact Brethren Disaster Ministries at 800-451-4407 or contact a district disaster coordinator.

2) Church of the Brethren is lead sponsor of farm program in Nicaragua.

The Church of the Brethren is to be the lead sponsor of the Rio Coco farm program in Nicaragua, through the Global Food Crisis Fund and its partnership with the Foods Resource Bank and Church World Service (CWS).

The denomination has had involvement in Nicaragua off and on over the last couple of decades. This newest project will allow the Brethren to work in concert with its partners in a new area and among the poorest of the poor.

The project will establish the Rio Coco Demonstration Farms in an area of Nicaragua that borders Honduras, with the help of a Global Food Crisis Fund grant of $35,000 for the first year of the program. The funding will come from the Global Food Crisis Fund ’s growing project accounts in the Foods Resource Bank.

The eight demonstration farms will heighten the food security and health of the populace, which is largely Meskito. Funding for one demonstration farm has been arranged by the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee; the Church of the Brethren will be the lead sponsor for three other demonstration centers.

Each of the demonstration farms will enlist 10 participating groups from surrounding communities. From each group, six workers will train at the demonstration centers, then return to their home communities to teach what they have learned to others. The demonstration center programs will deal with the production of grain, vegetables, trees, livestock, and vermiculture. Eventually, stores are to be opened at each center, operated by women from the participating communities.

Partnering with the Foods Resource Bank is Accion Medica Cristiana (AMC), which already has a central pharmacy in Waspan, the main municipality, and a hundred small “box” pharmacies in outlying villages. AMC has been aligned with Foods Resource Bank in the Farmer to Farmer program in Nicaragua.

–Howard Royer is manager of the Global Food Crisis Fund.

3) Seminar considers what it means to be a ‘real Samaritan.’

Framed by the scripture story of the good Samaritan, Church of the Brethren youth from across the nation explored the issue of genocide this week, at the Christian Citizenship Seminar. The youth were confronted with questions of a Christian and peace church response to the violent tragedies of Rwanda, the Holocaust, or the deliberate removal of indigenous people from their lands and their homes.

Seventy-four youth and advisors took part in this annual seminar sponsored by the General Board’s Youth and Young Adult Ministries and the Brethren Witness/Washington Office. Over three days spent in New York, followed by three days in Washington, D.C., the youth were given presentations and engaged in dialogue around the genocides that have occurred in the world’s history, and how people of faith have been involved or have responded. Terms such as “Never Again” and “Responsibility to Protect” were critiqued and examined in relation to how the United Nations or the global community has actually responded.

David Fraccarro, director of Young Adults for the World Council of Churches, USA, led the group in evaluating how their own social structures and peer group choices may implicate them in “leaving out others.” George Brent, a Holocaust survivor, recounted the formational story of his life, and that of his family, as they were put on trains and arbitrarily chosen for the death chambers of Germany. He gave the group hope in his story of survival and renewal in the midst of such tragedy. Jim Lehman drew the group in with the story of struggle and challenge between the “peace loving” Brethren in middle Pennsylvania in the 18th century, and the Native Americans of that region. Through viewing the film “Hotel Rwanda,” youth were reminded that genocide is not a historically distant event for their generation.

The focus of the seminar, however, was the ongoing genocide in Darfur, Sudan. Sharon Silber and Phil Anderson, both active with the organization Save Darfur, provided history, detail, and political understandings that surround the estimated 400,000 deaths in Darfur. More than two million people have been displaced from Darfur, as well. Native Sudanese youth Wilfred and Serena Lohitai participated in the seminar themselves, and brought a very real expression of the Sudanese suffering. Serena Lohitai shared about the importance of family and community to the people of Sudan. “All relatives are as parents, or sisters and brothers to one another,” she said. Such an understanding makes clear the absolute devastation as members of the community are murdered, raped, or displaced.

Tim McElwee, Plowshares Professor of Peace Studies at Manchester College, engaged the students in exploring the 1996 Annual Conference statement, “Nonviolence and Humanitarian Intervention.” He drew attention to the Peaceable Community section of the paper that reads in part, “The church is empowered to make visible the ways of Jesus…therefore the church shall…advocate for the things that make for peace…lay low the dividing walls of hostility…train and upon invitation deploy Christian conciliation and peacemaking teams and nonviolent monitors in zones of violence and physical abuse.” Youth challenged and embraced differing sections of this document. Some found their only voice to be that of nonviolence, others found hope in limited United Nations “peacekeeping forces” that may be allowed to intervene militarily as a means of last resort.

Following training for direct lobbying on pending legislation regarding Sudan, the youth visited with their senators and representatives. Points of advocacy included providing adequate funding in the 2008 Supplemental Funding Bill that would ensure funds for a UNAMID “peacekeeping mission” in Darfur, disaster and famine response, adequate diplomatic efforts, and support of a US Special Envoy. The senators and representatives also were encouraged to support HR 1011 or SR 470 that provide for a comprehensive strategy for addressing relationships between Chad, the Central African Republic, and Darfur, Sudan. Several of the groups of youth also chose to call for US pressure on China, related to the upcoming Olympics in that country.

The seminar also included times of worship and praise, small group reflection, and free-time activities in both cities. Rich Troyer, youth minister from Middlebury (Ind.) Church of the Brethren, reflected that the seminar, “teaches young people to get out of their comfort zones. It teaches them what it means to love their neighbors. It teaches them about issues they may not know anything about and helps them to see how the call of Jesus intersects the issue and encourages them to ‘not pass by on the other side.’ It is more than social action, it is faith in action.”

For more information about the Christian Citizenship Seminar contact the Youth and Young Adult Ministries or the Brethren Witness/Washington Office. Better yet, ask one of the 74 who attended.

–Phil Jones is the director of the Brethren Witness/Washington Office for the Church of the Brethren General Board.

4) Submissions sought for deacon resource book.

The Association of Brethren Caregivers is seeking submissions of worship and meditation resources for use in a new deacon resource book. Brethren are invited to submit original prayers to be considered for inclusion in this new resource, along with suggestions of hymns and scriptures for the deacon ministry.

“The role of deacon in the church has taken on new meaning in the last decade,” said the invitation. “In 1998, the ‘Deacon Manual for Caring Ministries’ was published and deacons were trained across the denomination…. Now deacons are asking for more resources to help them carry out their role.”

The denomination’s Caring Ministries has been commissioned to develop the anthology of prayers for many situations in which deacons are called to minister, such as celebrations and special life events (anniversaries, reunions, etc.); times of crisis of body, mind, or spirit (illness, surgery, domestic violence, a death, etc.); and transitions along the journey of life (divorce, a birth, etc.). David Doudt will be project manager. The anthology is scheduled to be available at Annual Conference 2009.

Entries should be submitted by May 30. Send submissions to Caring Ministries of the Church of the Brethren, Attn: David Doudt, 1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120; or e-mail

5) Brethren bits: Corrections, personnel, jobs, and much more.

  • Corrections: The full name and title of Ruthann Knechel Johansen as president of Bethany Theological Seminary was inadvertently left out of the announcement of webcasts from Bethany’s Inaugural Forum in the March 26 Newsline; the editor regrets this omission. Also, the start date of Eric Miller’s employment with Brethren Press was incorrect; it was Sept. 6, 2005.
  • The New Windsor Conference Center is thanking Lavonne Grubb and Myrna McLaughlin for serving as volunteer hosts for the month of March, and has welcomed Clarice Ott and Gloria Hall-Schimmel as hosts for April. Ed and Betty Runion are returning to serve as hosts for April, May, and June. The conference center is on the campus of the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md.
  • Bethany Theological Seminary’s Institutional Advancement Department on the campus in Richmond, Ind., seeks an administrative assistant. The department seeks a person who likes working with people, likes working with a computer, and likes being around a vibrant educational environment of a spiritual character. The position serves as the primary receptionist at Bethany’s front desk, maintains donor records systems, processes gifts, and supports advancement staff in correspondence, scheduling, and publications. Critical required skills include the abilities to multitask, meet the public in person and on the telephone, maintain confidentiality, and work with computerized record-keeping and communication systems. Knowledge and appreciation of the breadth of Church of the Brethren membership is desired. The starting date is negotiable, sometime this summer. The application review will begin May 5 and continue until the position is filled. To apply or seek additional information, contact Lowell Flory, Executive Director of Institutional Advancement, Bethany Theological Seminary, 615 National Rd. W., Richmond, IN 47374;; 800-287-8822.
  • Brethren Press seeks a customer service inventory specialist to fill a fulltime position at the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill. Responsibilities include providing professional customer service functions by telephone, fax, mail, and Internet, and maintaining a thorough knowledge of products offered through Brethren Press; specializing in providing resource information to congregations and individuals; accurate and timely maintenance of inventory levels; providing marketing support services; participating in year-end inventory; and assisting with coordinating and developing standardized procedures and maintaining written documentation. Qualifications include ability to become familiar with Church of the Brethren organization and beliefs and to operate out of the vision of the General Board; ability to relate with integrity and respect within and beyond the organization; strong interpersonal skills; understanding of accounting theory and practice; good listening and telephone skills and competence in oral and written communication; proficiency in typing and data entry; ability to work well in a team, juggling several tasks simultaneously; knowledge of Christian education and resourcing of congregations. Education and experience requirements include experience in customer service, computer literacy, experience with inventory management and reporting. Christian education experience is desirable. High school diploma is required, with some college education preferred. A position description and application form are available on request. Applications will be considered until the position is filled. To apply, complete the General Board application form, submit a resume and letter of application, and request three references to send letters of recommendation to the Office of Human Resources, Church of the Brethren General Board, 1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120-1694; 800-323-8039 ext. 258;
  • The Material Resources program of the Church of the Brethren General Board seeks an office assistant to fill a fulltime, hourly position at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md. The assistant will work closely with the office manager to ensure timely and accurate collection of information, and the transfer of information to various reports, people, and tracking systems related to shipping matters. This is a clerical position with responsibility for correspondence, telephone inquiries, stencils, shipping instructions, loading sheets, activity reports, invoices, and billing records. This position also handles all interaction by telephone with pier contacts, meetings with transportation related salespersons, and ensures that volunteer work groups are recognized and thanked. The position requires a high degree of accuracy, organizational skills, ability to provide excellent customer service, ability to multitask, meet deadlines, and work with minimal supervision. The candidate must demonstrate competence with Word, Excel, Quickbooks, and Access. Patience and perseverance are essential to coping with the many tasks and interactions. High school graduation or equivalent is required, with some college education preferred. The application period closes April 21. Contact Joan McGrath, Office of Human Resources, Brethren Service Center, P.O. Box 188, New Windsor, MD 21776;; 410-635-8780.
  • The Material Resources program also seeks a baler to fill a fulltime, hourly position at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md. The baler will operate a baling machine and a strapping machine, and must be attentive and compliant with safety restrictions in using the equipment. The position is responsible for preparing quilts, blankets, etc. for storage; baling; filling tables; removing cardboard crates; recording data; maintaining the work area; and keeping a cordial work climate with employees and volunteers. Candidates must be able to lift and move up to 130 pounds, be on their feet all day long, and be willing to assist in other positions as needed. High school graduation or equivalent experience is required. The application period closes April 21. Contact Joan McGrath, Office of Human Resources, Brethren Service Center, P.O. Box 188, New Windsor, MD 21776;; 410-635-8780.
  • The Annual Conference Office seeks a webmaster to make regular changes to its website. This is an excellent opportunity for a student or recent graduate who wants to gain more experience and build up a portfolio. Experienced webmasters are welcome as well. The time commitment is approximately two to four hours per month with responsibilities for updating the Annual Conference website at Contact Lerry Fogle, Annual Conference Executive Director, at 800-688-5186.
  • Additional housing has been announced for the 2008 Annual Conference in Richmond, Va. Due to high demand for housing, additional rooms at an overflow hotel–the Sheraton Richmond West–will soon be available from the Housing Bureau in Richmond. To make reservations online, go to Reservations also can be made by faxing or mailing housing reservation forms from the Annual Conference Information Packet to the Church of the Brethren Housing Bureau, c/o Richmond Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau, 401 N. 3rd St., Richmond, VA 23219. Register for the Conference by going to
  • Michael Hostetter will represent the Church of the Brethren at an ecumenical prayer service with Pope Benedict XVI during the Pope’s first official visit to the United States. The Pope is to be in the country from April 15-20. Hostetter chairs the Church of the Brethren’s Committee on Interchurch Relations, and pastors Salem Church of the Brethren in Englewood, Ohio. He will participate in the prayer service and reception with the Pope and leaders from the National Council of Churches (NCC) and other Christian denominations on the evening of April 18 at St. Joseph’s Church in New York. This will be Pope Benedict’s first apostolic visit to the US since he was elected the 265th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church in 2005.
  • Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS) is announcing an Older Adult Orientation on April 21-May 2 at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md. This will be the 279th orientation unit for BVS and will include six individuals and couples. The volunteers will spend two weeks exploring project possibilities and topics of community building, faith sharing, diversity training, and more. They also will work at SERRV International and at the Washington (D.C.) Soup Kitchen. Guest staff and speakers will include Larry and Alice Petry, Jim Lehman, Bev and Joel Eikenberry, Phil Jones, and Grace LeFever. For more information contact the BVS office at 800-323-8039.
  • The Brethren Witness/Washington Office was one of 16 national religious organizations that filed formal comments opposing a plan by the federal government to update the US nuclear arsenal. The proposal would cost $150 billion and is called the Nuclear Weapons Complex Transformation project. It would streamline the nation’s current atomic arsenal of some 10,000 warheads and build new nuclear weapons at various sites. “Today we have a historic opportunity to begin the journey out from under the shadow of nuclear weapons,” stated the comments submitted to the Department of Energy by a coalition of Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, and Protestant groups. “We hope and pray that all Americans will take advantage of this moment and join us as we work toward the total elimination of these weapons of mass destruction.”
  • The Church of the Brethren in the Dominican Republic held its annual assembly Feb. 28-March 2. The event drew 86 delegates among some 200 people in attendance at a church camp in Bani. Twenty churches were represented. Worship was held on the theme “Total Integrity,” with preaching by moderator Jose Juan Mendez, pastor of Fondo Negro Church; Tim Harvey, chair of the Church of the Brethren General Board; and Miguel Nunez, a well-known Baptist pastor from Santo Domingo. Much of the business and all sermons were translated from Spanish to Creole, reflecting the diversity of both Dominican and Haitian-immigrant members. Business items included reports from pastors and national leaders as well as Irvin and Nancy Heishman, General Board mission coordinators for the DR, and Beth Gunzel, General Board staff for a church microcredit project. The present Dominican Board leadership, called to serve in the recent Sept. 2007 Assembly, was re-affirmed for another year. Pastor Felix Arias Mateo from the Maranatha congregation was chosen as moderator-elect. “We sensed a positive spirit and a desire among the Dominican Brethren that the Spirit would bring wisdom and understanding out of difficulties of the past year, when the Dominican church has been struggling with a crisis related to leadership,” reported the Heishmans.
  • The Illinois and Wisconsin District Office is moving from Lombard, Ill., to Canton, Ill. The new address for the office is 269 E. Chestnut St., Canton, IL 61520; 309-649-6008. The district also has hired a new administrative assistant, Emily Cleer, who begins the week of April 14.
  • A member of the Church of the Brethren was one of two top presenters in the annual Student Research Symposium at Manchester College in N. Manchester, Ind., on April 4, according to a release from the college. Sarah Hall of First Church of the Brethren in Roaring Spring, Pa., presented research exploring the possibility of Germany prosecuting a former US Secretary of Defense for alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity during the war in Iraq. Georgi Chunev of Bulgaria, who spent a summer scrutinizing infrared data delivered by NASA’s $733 million orbiting Spitzer Space Telescope, also was a top presenter. The two each received $150 and the Jo Young Switzer Award for Excellence, named after Manchester’s president. For more go to
  • *For Earth Day this year–scheduled for April 22–the National Council of Churches (NCC) has released a new study and action resource recognizing the interconnectedness of poverty and climate change. “By focusing on the interconnectedness between climate and poverty we hope to empower congregations to take action to address climate,” said Cassandra Carmichael, director of the NCC Eco-Justice Programs. For a copy of the new resource, visit or contact the Eco-Justice Program office at or 202-481-6943.
  • The World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee celebrated the organization’s 60th anniversary at meetings Feb. 13-20 in Geneva, Switzerland. Among the many business items, the committee chose Kingston, Jamaica, as the venue for the 2011 International Ecumenical Peace Convocation, which will culminate the WCC’s Decade to Overcome Violence 2001-2010. The gathering will be held on the theme, “Glory to God and Peace on Earth.” For full reports from the meetings, go to “Messenger” editor Walt Wiltschek, who is staff of the Church of the Brethren General Board, served on the ecumenical news team for the meetings.
  • Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) has requested prayer for a team returning to northern Iraq after a short break. “The situation there is tense with continuing attacks by Turkey and the upcoming referendum on the status of the contested city of Kirkuk,” said the prayer request.

6) Thompson to be interim executive of Global Mission Partnerships.

R. Jan Thompson has been appointed interim executive director of Global Mission Partnerships for the Church of the Brethren General Board, as of April 1. He is an ordained minister, a former General Board member, and a former mission worker for the church. Thompson will work out of the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill.

As mission staff in Sudan, he and his wife, Roma Jo Thompson, worked on a Theological Education by Extension (TEE) program and with the Sudan Council of Churches. He was called to head the Church of the Brethren’s Disaster Response Program for a term of service beginning in 1978. He also has filled several volunteer positions in the church, most recently as moderator of Pacific Southwest District in 2005, and was part of a Faith Expedition to Sudan in 2002.

7) Bethany announces teaching, administrative appointments.

Bethany Theological Seminary has announced two teaching appointments for the 2008-09 academic year, and an administrative appointment.Bethany Seminary has called Joshua Brockway, a graduate of Manchester College (2001), Bethany Theological Seminary (M.A. 2004), and Candler School of Theology (M.Div. 2007) to a one-year half-time position in Brethren Studies during the 2008-09 school year. He has served the Church of the Brethren as a resource person for the recent Ministerial Leadership Consultation in May 2007. He will teach on the seminary’s campus in Richmond, Ind., and online courses. Brockway currently is a doctoral student in church history at Catholic University of America.

Thomas N. Finger has been called as Scholar-in-Residence for the 2008-09 school year. The position is offered to a person who has made significant contributions to academic study and to the church through scholarship and teaching. Finger earned his Ph.D. in Philosophy of Religion and Systematic Theology from Claremont Graduate School. In addition to numerous articles, his recent book “A Contemporary Anabaptist Theology” published by InterVarsity Press has received critical attention and acclaim. During his career he has taught at Eastern Mennonite University and Seminary, Northern Baptist Theological Seminary, Garrett-Evangelical Seminary, and Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminary. He currently is teaching at Meserete Kritos College in Ethiopia. At Bethany, he will teach four courses in the area of theological studies, and will reside in Richmond.

Scott Holland, Bethany’s associate professor of Theology and Culture and director of Peace Studies and Cross-Cultural Studies, has been named acting director of the Master of Arts program for the 2008-09 year. Holland will be the instructor for the M.A. Research Seminar, the M.A. Thesis Seminar, and thesis completion courses. He will continue as director of Peace Studies and Cross Cultural Studies, and also will direct the Peace Studies Forum and teach several courses as well as lead a travel seminar to Nigeria in partnership with the Church of the Brethren General Board.

8) Youth Peace Travel Team 2008 is announced.

Samantha Carwile, Gabriel Dodd, Melisa Grandison, and John-Michael Pickens will make up this year’s Church of the Brethren Youth Peace Travel Team. The group will give peace programs at a variety of camps and conferences this summer.

Carwile is a student at Manchester College in North Manchester, Ind., majoring in peace studies and sociology, and is a member of Anderson (Ind.) Church of the Brethren. Dodd is a student at Bridgewater (Va.) College majoring in communications and peace studies, and is a member of Bethany Church of the Brethren in Farmington, Del. Grandison is a student at McPherson (Kan.) College studying elementary education and Spanish, and is a member of Quinter (Kan.) Church of the Brethren. Pickens is a student at Messiah College in Grantham, Pa., currently studying in Thailand, and is a member of Mechanicsburg (Pa.) Church of the Brethren.

This summer the team will travel to camps around the denomination, as well as to Annual Conference in Richmond, Va., and National Young Adult Conference in Estes Park, Colo. The Youth Peace Travel Team is an annual program sponsored by the Outdoor Ministries Association, On Earth Peace, and the Church of the Brethren General Board.

9) Young preaches nonviolence at Bridgewater College.

The Brethren ideal of nonviolence has worked for decades to change the world, according to a civil rights activist and former United Nations ambassador. Some may view nonviolence as “old-fashioned or out-of-date,” Andrew Young told those gathered Monday night, March 31, at Bridgewater (Va.) College. “But your responsibility is to think that through and upgrade it,” he said.

A native of New Orleans, Young, now 76, earned a degree in divinity from Hartford Theological Seminary and became the pastor of Bethany Congregational Church in Thomasville, Ga. In 1961, Young left his church to work with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, a civil rights organization led by Martin Luther King Jr. Young worked closely with King, and was with King when he was killed in Memphis on April 4, 1968.

But, Young said, his first encounter with nonviolence came when someone at a Brethren camp handed him a book about Mohandas Gandhi, the Indian political and spiritual leader famous for his dogma of nonviolent resistance.

Just traveling can help change a person’s relationship with the world, something extremely helpful in an increasingly connected world, Young said. In 1979, President Jimmy Carter named Young the United States’ ambassador to the U.N., a post he held for two years. “If you travel the world, you see how other people are quite like us,” he said. “If we don’t learn to live as brothers and sisters, we will perish as fools.”

Young also addressed the economy. Traveling to Africa would also help buoy that continent’s economy, and with that, help the rest of the world, Young explained. “Africa is the missing link in the global economy,” Young said, adding that the continent is full of untapped resources. A “philosophy of development” will help bring private companies–the ones with the wealth and technology–into investing in poorer areas, Young said.

That’s what he accomplished as mayor of Atlanta, Young said, citing the 1 million jobs he brought during his tenure from 1981-89. He also helped bring the Centennial Olympics to the city in 1996.

“He is an articulate, passionate spokesman for liberty and human rights,” said Bridgewater College president Phil Stone. “And he continues that with focusing on economic development in Africa.”

“He is a very admirable man,” said Chris Houck, 20, a student from Carlisle, Pa. “I learned a lot more than I expected. He’s got a lot of wisdom.”

–Kate Prahlad writes for the “Daily News Record” of Harrisonburg, Va., where this article first appeared on April 1. The article is reprinted here with permission.

Newsline is produced by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, director of news services for the Church of the Brethren General Board, or 800-323-8039 ext. 260. Lerry Fogle, Cori Hahn, Nancy F. Knepper, Jon Kobel, Jeri S. Kornegay, Karin Krog, Joan McGrath, Marcia Shetler, Callie Surber, Walt Wiltschek, and Jane Yount contributed to this report. Newsline appears every other Wednesday, with other special issues sent as needed. The next regularly scheduled issue is set for April 23. Newsline stories may be reprinted if Newsline is cited as the source. For more Brethren news and features, subscribe to “Messenger” magazine, call 800-323-8039 ext. 247.

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