Special Response Resource Committee Is Named

223rd Annual Conference of the Church of the Brethren
San Diego, California — June 29, 2009

The Standing Committee of district delegates today named the members of a Special Response Resource Committee called for by the action of Annual Conference to accept two items of business as “special response” items to be dealt with using the process for strongly controversial issues.

Named to the committee are Karen Long Garrett, a recent Bethany Seminary graduate and manager editor for Brethren Life and Thought; James Myer, a minister at White Oak Church of the Brethren in Manheim, Pa., and a leader in the Brethren Revival Fellowship; Marie Rhoades, a staff member of On Earth Peace; John E. Wenger, a Church of the Brethren member and psychologist from Anderson, Ind.; and Carol Wise, executive director of the Brethren and Mennonite Council for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Interests.

The committee is charged with developing resources on the issues, in order to aid the church in the conversation process. The two items of business to be addressed in the special response conversation are “A Statement of Confession and Commitment” and “Query: Language on Same-Sex Covenantal Relationships.” The Annual Conference action has set in motion at least two years of intentional denomination-wide conversation on the two documents.

In other appointments, the Annual Conference officers have named a three-person Resource Team to develop resources to educate and inform the church on the topic of membership in secret oath-bound societies. Named to the team are former general secretary Judy Mills Reimer; Bethany Theological Seminary professor of New Testament studies Dan Ulrich; and Harold Martin, a leader in the Brethren Revival Fellowship.

–Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford is director of News Services for the Church of the Brethren.

The News Team for the 2009 Annual Conference includes writers Karen Garrett, Frank Ramirez, Frances Townsend, Melissa Troyer, Rich Troyer; photographers Kay Guyer, Justin Hollenberg, Keith Hollenberg, Glenn Riegel, Ken Wenger; staff Becky Ullom and Amy Heckert. Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, editor. Contact

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