Newsline for Oct. 20, 2011

“…But you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord” (Leviticus 19:18b).


Quote of the week:
“I cannot think of a better way to get to know somebody than to work side-by-side with them.”
–Zach Wolgemuth, associate director of Brethren Disaster Ministries, giving a report to the Mission and Ministry Board about how disaster ministries serve the church and the volunteers who work in them, in addition to serving clients who are affected by disasters.

1) Board decides to cease operation of New Windsor Conference Center, gives provisional approval to Ministerial Leadership Paper, makes grant to Haiti earthquake response.
2) On Earth Peace releases statement of inclusion.
3) Religious leaders arrested in Rotunda in July have their day in court.
4) Peace Witness Ministries takes up food stamp challenge.
5) GFCF grants go to work in Honduras, Niger, Kenya, and Rwanda.

6) Tracy Stoddart Primozich to oversee admissions at seminary.

7) Workcamps are announced for 2012.

8) Brethren bits: Remembrance, personnel, jobs, anniversaries, more.

1) Board decides to cease operation of New Windsor Conference Center, gives provisional approval to Ministerial Leadership Paper, makes grant to Haiti earthquake response.

Photo by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford
The Mission and Ministry Board met at the church’s General Offices in Elgin, Ill. Find a photo album at

The Mission and Ministry Board met at the church’s General Offices in Elgin, Ill. Find a photo album at

In addition to its decision to cease operation of the New Windsor (Md.) Conference Center (reported in Newsline on Sunday, Oct. 16), the Church of the Brethren Mission and Ministry Board in its Fall meeting appointed LeAnn Wine as treasurer, and Ed Woolf as assistant treasurer; gave provisional approval to a revision of the denomination’s Ministerial Leadership Paper; and approved a $300,000 grant from the Emergency Disaster Fund to continue disaster relief and rebuilding in Haiti following the earthquake of 2010.

The Executive Committee of the board also named chair-elect Becky Ball-Miller as Church of the Brethren representative to a National Council of Churches delegation to Cuba this November.

Ministerial Leadership Paper

The board gave provisional approval to the Ministerial Leadership Paper, which is a proposed revision of an existing polity document of the denomination. The action ensures a place for the paper on the Annual Conference business docket next year, where delegates will be asked to consider it as a study paper before it is brought back for final approval a year later.

In the meantime, the paper will undergo further development with leadership from associate general secretary Mary Jo Flory-Steury, who also supervises the Ministry Office. The document will go back to the Ministry Advisory Council and the Council of District Executives for continued refinements, and then return to the Mission and Ministry Board next March for recommendation to Annual Conference.

The document’s revision is aimed at more consistency and accountability in the credentialing and quality of ministerial leadership in the denomination, and enhancement of the calling process for ministers. The concepts of the priesthood of all believers and of circles of ministry are key for the paper. Ministry circles are conceived as offering both accompaniment and accountability for people discerning a call to ministry and for established ministers, helping ensure healthy connections in the congregation, among peers, with mentors, and with the wider community.

“No paper is perfect,” Flory-Steury commented, “but a paper can point us toward healthy practices for sustaining our ministers.”

Disaster relief in Haiti, Horn of Africa

Roy Winter of Brethren Disaster Ministries gave a 20-month report on the church’s work following the Haiti earthquake. With the $300,000 grant approved at this meeting, the program will have come close to spending all of the more than $1.3 million donations to the Emergency Disaster Fund that were earmarked for Haiti earthquake response.

Continuing aspects of the earthquake response include home reconstruction and repair, several agricultural development projects, capacity building for the Church of the Brethren in Haiti, volunteer housing combined with a denominational offices for the Haitian Brethren, a health care initiative in partnership with IMA World Health, and trauma recovery with STAR Haiti.

Winter described the drought in the Horn of Africa as “a real tragedy that nobody is talking about.” For example, Church World Service (CWS) has had only a meager response to its appeal for $1.2 million toward relief in areas of northeast Africa where 20 percent of people are without food and 30 percent of children are acutely malnourished. Of the $283,484 that CWS has received so far, the Church of the Brethren has given $65,000 to date–the most of any US denomination, Winter said. He plans further grants to aid the millions of Africans faced by starvation. Brethren grants to the Horn of Africa famine have come from both the Emergency Disaster Fund and the Global Food Crisis Fund.

In other business, departing employees were recognized following recent layoffs, and appreciation and thanks were expressed for their years of service. The meeting also included reports on the “remapping” process for staff as new strategic goals are implemented, finances, a denominational vision statement, Brethren Disaster Ministries domestic and international work, conferences for junior highs and older adults, the Outdoor Ministry Association, a Global Christian Forum in Indonesia, the Lybrook ministry of Western Plains District, digital communication and forthcoming Brethren Press books, and exploration of a mission relationship in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Church of the Brethren Mission and Ministry Board held its Fall meeting Oct. 15-17 at the General Offices in Elgin, Ill. The meeting was led by Ben Barlow, who started his term of service as chair with this meeting, and Becky Ball-Miller, who also started her term as chair-elect. In addition, the board welcomed six new members. The board worked with a consensus model of decision making.

As at every Mission and Ministry Board meeting, the group spent time in worship and devotions. Decisions such as that made about the Conference Center were marked by time for prayer, hymns, and silence.


2) On Earth Peace releases statement of inclusion.


Photo by Gimbiya Kettering
The On Earth Peace Board held its fall meeting in September. Members are (back row from left) Robbie Miller, Don Mitchell, Ken Wenger, Ben Leiter, Joel Gibbel, Madalyn Metzger (chair), and Laurie Hersch Meyer; (front from left) Phil Miller, Louise Knight, Carol Mason, Doris Abdullah, and David Miller.

During its fall meeting, the On Earth Peace board of directors issued a statement of inclusion, stating: “We are troubled by attitudes and actions in the church which exclude persons on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or any other aspect of human identity. We believe God calls the church to welcome all persons into full participation in the life of the faith community.”

The biannual gathering of the board of directors took place on Sept. 16-17 at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md. The statement of inclusion was specifically discussed and approved in light of events at the 2011 Church of the Brethren Annual Conference. The organization is committed to eliminating violence in all forms.

Other major items of business included approving the organization’s budget for the 2012 fiscal year and exploring new ways to enhance program services. The board also reorganized for 2012, calling Madalyn Metzger of Bristol, Ind., to continue as board chair; Robbie Miller of Bridgewater, Va., to continue as board vice chair; and Ben Leiter of Washington, D.C., to continue as secretary. On Earth Peace conducts discussion and decision-making by consensus.

During the meeting, the board thanked outgoing member Phil Miller of Warrensburg, Mo., for his service to the organization. In addition, the board welcomed new members Ken Wenger of Lorton, Va., Lauree Hersch Meyer of Durham, N.C., and Patricia Ann Ronk of Roanoke, Va.

— Madalyn Metzger is chair of the On Earth Peace board of directors.


3) Religious leaders arrested in Rotunda in July have their day in court.

The 11 religious leaders arrested on July 28 while praying in the Capitol Rotunda on behalf of the nation’s most vulnerable were in court on Oct. 11 to discuss the misdemeanor charge against them. In the group was Jordan Blevins, advocacy officer and peace coordinator for the Church of the Brethren and the National Council of Churches (NCC). Those arrested also included Michael Livingston, past president of the NCC and director of its Poverty Initiative, and Martin Shupack, director of advocacy for Church World Service, along with United Methodist, Presbyterian, and United Church of Christ leaders, among others.

The United States Attorney agreed to dismiss the charges of intention to disrupt Congress if each religious official stays out of the Capitol Building for the next six months.

The civil disobedience was the highlight of a “Faithful Budget Campaign” encouraging the administration and Congress to maintain commitment to domestic and international poverty programs by lifting up faithful voices on behalf of the nation’s most vulnerable. In July, the campaign organized high-level meetings with policymakers, a Washington fly-in of religious leaders, daily prayer vigils near the Capitol, culminating with the arrest of the 11 faith leaders after praying for 90 minutes and refusing to leave the Rotunda after repeated requests from police. The arrests came just days before Congress passed the debt ceiling compromise.

Since then the Faithful Budget Campaign has expanded into the hometowns of the Deficit “Super Committee” members. As a result, numerous churches, synagogues, mosques, and other houses of worship in the states and districts of members of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, as well as congressional leaders, are hosting prayer vigils and other demonstrations to encourage Super Committee members to recommend a fair deficit reduction plan that exempts programs from budget cuts that assist the most at-risk families and children in the US and abroad.

The faith community has worked alongside the US government for decades to protect those struggling to overcome poverty. Without a sustained federal commitment, houses of worship will not be able to solely support the country’s most vulnerable. More about the campaign is at

— Philip E. Jenks is communications staff for the National Council of Churches.


4) Peace Witness Ministries takes up food stamp challenge.

“Up to the challenge?” asks an Action Alert from the Church of the Brethren Peace Witness Ministries. “From Oct. 27-Nov. 3, this office will be taking the Food Stamp Challenge. Will you join us?” The Food Stamp Challenge is raising awareness of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program SNAP (formerly food stamp program) to make sure the 45 million people who depend on it aren’t left hungry. It is a focus of the ecumenical “Fighting Poverty with Faith” campaign.

SNAP “is one of the programs on tap to be cut in the current round of budget negotiations, along with many other programs that serve the most vulnerable in our society at home and around the world,” the Action Alert reported. “All of this happens while our military budget only continues to grow.”

Those who join the Food Stamp Challenge will attempt to eat for a day or series of days from Oct. 27-Nov. 3 on the amount of money that a SNAP participant receives–roughly $4.50 per day–donating the difference from what they typically spend on food to the Global Food Crisis Fund. Participants also are encouraged to call on their members of Congress to join in the challenge. (Find out more about the Global Food Crisis Fund (GFCF) at


5) GFCF grants go to work in Honduras, Niger, Kenya, and Rwanda.

The Global Food Crisis Fund, a fund of the Church of the Brethren that fights hunger by promoting sustainable development, has announced several recent grants. The four grants total $26,500.

In Honduras, $15,000 is supporting a new hunger program in cooperation with Proyecto Alden Global (PAG). This grant will support the micro-financing of impoverished Lenca families for the purchase and the raising of small livestock. A portion of the grant, $2,500, is a gift designated for PAG from the home district (Western Pennsylvania) of Chet Thomas, director of PAG. This is the district’s second gift of that amount; the first was remitted earlier this year. To complete the GFCF’s commitment to PAG, an additional grant of $12,500 will be proposed either late this year or early in 2012, as funds permit.

In Niger, an allocation of $5,000 has gone to to Water for Life. This is the third GFCF grant issued to Water for Life. The first for $10,000 was issued in 2010. A second $10,000 grant was issued early in 2011. This partial third grant is being accelerated to enable response to urgent needs. Funds are being used to dig community wells, plant trees, and diversify garden produce in villages across northeastern Niger.

A grant of $4,000 has been given tor Care for Creation Kenya (CCK). A previous grant of $4,000 in 2010 helped to establish an agricultural demonstration farm, expand an indigenous tree nursery, and conduct training events. Funds from this grant will support training for low-income farmers in agriculture and forestry. One key group of 40 farmers from the Ndeiya and Mai Mahai community in the Rift Valley will engage in continuing in-depth training.

In Rwanda, $2,500 is supporting a project promoting self-sustainability through agriculture among the Pygmie population. Funds from the grant will be used to cover cost of potato and maize seed, hand tools, sprayers and chemicals, and rental of land.


6) Tracy Stoddart Primozich to oversee admissions at seminary.

Tracy Stoddart Primozich begins Oct. 28 as director of admissions at Bethany Theological Seminary in Richmond, Ind. Her responsibilities will include designing and implementing a recruitment plan, and working with Church of the Brethren congregations and districts to identify and call prospective students.

She is a 2010 graduate of Bethany Seminary and a licensed minister, holding a master of divinity degree with emphases in youth and young adult studies and peace studies. In past work for the church she has been assistant to the coordinator of orientation and assistant for recruitment for Brethren Volunteer Service, and service opportunities coordinator at McPherson (Kan.) College, where she also was a resident director and advisor to the Student Government Association and Student Activities Board. Her volunteer positions in the denomination have included directing workcamps, serving on the planning committee for Powerhouse Regional Youth Conference and at Camp Colorado, and coordinating worship at National Youth Conference.


7) Workcamps are announced for 2012.

“Ready to Listen” (1 Samuel 3:10) is the theme for the Church of the Brethren workcamps in 2012. A list of workcamp sites , dates, and costs for next summer is available at  along with a downloadable flier that can be printed out for distribution to congregations and youth groups.

Workcamps are offered for junior high and senior high youth, young adults, and intergenerational groups. A “We Are Able” workcamp is offered for youth with intellectual disabilities.

Junior high workcamps are offered from late June through early August in seven US locations. Senior high workcamps are offered from mid June through mid August in 14 locations in the US and the Caribbean. One young adult workcamp will be held in Haiti on May 27-June 4. Two intergenerational workcamps will be held, in Haiti on June 17-25 in cooperation with the Brethren Revival Fellowship, and in Idaho on June 24-July 1. We Are Able is planned for July 17-20 in New Windsor, Md.

Young adults interested in serving as a workcamp coordinator through Brethren Volunteer Service are invited to apply. The fulltime volunteer position is based at the General Offices in Elgin, Ill. The job description is at . Applications are due Nov. 18.

Online registration for the 2012 workcamps will open Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. central time (8 p.m. eastern). For more information go to  or contact


8) Brethren bits: Remembrance, personnel, jobs, anniversaries, more.

— Remembrance: Brethren Disaster Ministries has learned that Glenn Kinsel passed away on Oct. 19, after suffering a stroke while caning a chair, one of his favorite hobbies. He was to turn 89 on Oct. 31. A retired Church of the Brethren pastor, Kinsel was an administrative volunteer in the BDM office for many years together with his wife, Helen. While a pastor in Virlina District he served as district disaster response coordinator. The Kinsels also were onsite disaster project leaders. He was an outspoken advocate not only for Brethren Disaster Ministries, but for the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., helping to greet guests and volunteers and making them feel welcome. “His friendship, his example, his wisdom, and his spiritual counsel will be missed immensely,” said a prayer request from Brethren Disaster Ministries. The Kinsels have been living at the Brethren Home Community in New Oxford, Pa.

— Ron Anders retires Nov. 4 from the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., where he has been maintenance mechanic since Sept. 1989. The challenges of maintaining aging buildings and their related infrastructure have offered many opportunities to utilize his wide variety of skills. He has served as a heating and cooling technician, plumber, electrician, painter, remodeler, wallpaper hanger, vehicle mechanic, and more. He has been a loyal and invaluable member of the Buildings and Grounds staff and has earned respect with his hard work and a dry sense of humor. He is active in Monocacy Church of the Brethren in Rocky Ridge, Md.


Photo by Marie Andremene Ridore
A new church building for Croix des Bouquets Church of the Brethren is adjacent to the new Brethren guesthouse and headquarters near Port-au-Prince. The church was built with significant financial contribution by the congregation, along with help from Union Bridge and Frederick Churches of the Brethren in Maryland. This photo was taken by church leader Marie Andremene Ridore during a celebration of the new building in mid October 2011.

— Ilexene Alphonse will serve in Haiti through Brethren Disaster Ministries as a Church of the Brethren program volunteer. He will manage the new guesthouse and church headquarters building in the Croix des Bouquets area near Port-au-Prince. One of the goals of his work will be to establish the finances, rates, and procedures for the guesthouse while training others to take over this leadership. He also will provide support to the Haitian Church of the Brethren and to the wider Global Mission and Service program in Haiti. Alphonse will begin his work in Haiti later this month. He is a member of the Haitian Brethren community in Miami, Fla., and has served the denomination previously on the Committee on Interchurch Relations. He and his wife, Michaela Camps-Alphonse, who is program director for Camp Ithiel in Gotha, Fla., also are founders of the church-related New Covenant School of St. Louis du Nord, Haiti.

— Denise Prystawik, a Brethren Volunteer Service worker from Kronberg, Germany, has joined the Congregational Life Ministries team at the General Offices in Elgin, Ill. She will assist the Youth/Young Adult Ministry and Congregational Life Ministries with administrative tasks.

— The following position openings have been announced by the Church of the Brethren. All are located at the General Offices in Elgin Ill.:
Data analyst and registration specialist, a fulltime hourly position with responsibility to ensure accurate and timely data flow between organizational databases; create online registration and donation forms; build, test, and support those forms; run routine processes related to databases including data synchronization; work with various organizational databases and reconcile discrepancies between them; assist in or manage other website-related projects as assigned. Skills should include database management, problem-solving, multi-tasking, attention to detail, teamwork, customer service orientation, and ability to maintain confidentiality. Computer experience required, with MPAct or other CRM solution experience helpful, and Convio or other web-building solution experience helpful. Associates or bachelor degree preferred.
Office support specialist, a fulltime hourly position to coordinate and provide the services of the Buildings and Grounds Department. No experience required. Responsibilities are to serve as event planner, including scheduling, coordination, catering services, tours, employee functions, and special events; receive and deliver incoming mail and provide support for outsourced mail processing; break room operations including ordering, stocking, and overall appearance; office supplies including purchasing following established guidelines; overseeing photocopier needs; receiving, loading, and coordinating trailer replacement; set up of conference rooms; support for office moves of employees within the building; operation of a vehicle; storage and organization of warehouse and dock; serve as back up for selected tasks when director is absent; visitor and delivery door monitoring. Occasional weekend or after hours work required. Other requirements include good oral and written communication, ability to maintain detailed records and to lift and move up to 75 pounds, valid driver’s license, high school diploma or equivalent preferred.
Program assistant, fulltime, to support the executive director and staff of Congregational Life Ministries. Requirements include excellent computer skills, strong interpersonal communication, and ability to prioritize and follow through on a diversity of simple clerical and more complex organizational responsibilities. The preferred candidate will be proficient in both verbal and written English; demonstrate accuracy with basic financial transactions; efficiently collect, organize, and manage data; work easily with e-mail and web-based applications; have experience coordinating meetings and events; and effectively manage multiple tasks. Sensitivity to other cultures is essential; fluency in Spanish is welcome.
Applications will be reviewed until Nov. 5. Request an application packet from Karin Krog, director of Human Resources, at

— The Annual Conference 2011 Minutes books have been mailed out to congregations that sent a delegate to the Conference. Others may order a copy through Brethren Press at . Cost is $5.95 plus shipping and handling.


Photo by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford
Shown here displaying the gift to the Church of the Brethren of one of the CWS “Shells into Bells” from Cambodia are (from left) CWS executive director and CEO John L. McCullough, Church of the Brethren general secretary Stan Noffsinger, and CWS board chair Bishop Johncy Itty.

— The Church of the Brethren General Offices hosted the fall meeting of the Church World Service Board of Directors, on Oct. 19-20. Board chair Johncy Itty, a bishop in the Episcopal Church, led the General Offices community in chapel. During its meeting, the CWS board adopted an important new strategic direction called “CWS 2020.” A lively celebration of “CWS 2020” was held in the General Offices cafeteria complete with cake, noisemakers, funny hats, and oversized glasses emblazoned with the 2020 logo. A parting gift to the Church of the Brethren was one of the CWS “Shells into Bells” from Cambodia, made out of recycled shell casings and landmines left from the reign of terror of the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s. The bell is a symbol of the transformation underway in Cambodia, and how CWS walks with the Cambodian people. Shown here displaying the gift of the bell are (from left) CWS executive director and CEO John L. McCullough, Church of the Brethren general secretary Stan Noffsinger, and Bishop Itty.

— The Material Resources program at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., has been working on several shipments of relief goods: IMA World Health hospital supplies and equipment shipped to New York for a container to Nigeria; a shipment of 525 cartons of School Kits to Iraq in a cooperative venture between Lutheran World Relief and International Relief and Development; a 40-foot container of solar equipment, computer equipment, and other items destined for Sudan on behalf of IMA; a container of solar equipment, sterilizers, exam tables, and other hospital supplies for the Congo; and 525 cartons of School Kits sent to Iraq on behalf of Lutheran World Relief. In addition, staff have picked up a trailer load of donations for CWS from the Missouri Festival of Sharing, including 5,220 School Kits, 5,150 Hygiene Kits, 1,095 Baby Care Kits, 605 Emergency Cleanup Buckets, 12 IMA World Health Medicine Boxes, and Lutheran World Relief kits.


Photo by
The Mission Alive 2012 planning group includes (from left) C. Earl Eby, Carol Mason, Bob Kettering, Anna Emrick, Carol Waggy, and Jay Wittmeyer, executive director of Global Mission and Service, who is not a member of the team but instrumental in the planning process.

— The Global Mission and Service program has announced dates for Mission Alive 2012: Nov. 16-18, 2012, at Lititz (Pa.) Church of the Brethren. The mission conference will focus on 2 Corinthians 5:19-20. The planning group includes (from left) C. Earl Eby, Carol Mason, Bob Kettering, Anna Emrick, Carol Waggy, and Jay Wittmeyer, executive director of Global Mission and Service, who is not a member of the team but instrumental in the planning process.

— Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann will speak for the 2012 Ministers’ Association event in advance of Annual Conference in St. Louis, Mo. The event is July 6-7 on the theme, “Truth Speaks to Power.” Discussion will focus on the question, How can the witness of the gospel be uttered and enacted in the midst of a public domain that now features immense concentrations of money, power, and control? Sessions will explore biblical models for witness today including the stories of Moses, Solomon, and Elisha. Registration and more information will be made available. For questions contact Chris Zepp at 540-828-3711 or

— Registration remains open for the 2011 Powerhouse regional youth conference on Nov. 12-13 at Manchester College in North Manchester, Ind., for youth grades 9-12 and advisors. Cost for the weekend, including three meals, is $50 for youth, $40 for advisors. There is no late fee for any registration postmarked by Nov. 7. Keynote speaker Jeff Carter, pastor of Manassas (Va.) Church of the Brethren, will share on the theme “Follow: If You Dare.” Details and registration forms are at

Doris Abdullah, Church of the Brethren representative to the United Nations, is sharing ways women may join in the “Road to Rio+20.” The UN Conference on Sustainable Development or “Rio+20” will take place June 4-6, 2012, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 20 years after the historic Earth Summit. “Women’s participation in the process and input on the themes and objective are crucial to a successful outcome,” said an announcement. Ways for women to connect include joining an online community at , completing a survey/questionnaire at , and following updates on Twitter and Facebook. Discussions and activity generated with these tools will inform the official input of the Women’s Major Group/Rio+20 Steering Committee.

— Happy Corner Church of the Brethren, Clayton, Ohio, celebrated its 200th anniversary on Oct. 16.

— Northern Plains District has recognized a number of ordained ministers: Cliff Ruff for 60 years of ministry, Charles Grove for 25 years, Tim Peter for 20 years, Lucy Basler for 15 years.

— Western Plains District has produced a “Plains People’s Cookbook,” available for purchase at the Gathering on Oct. 28-30. The hardcover book sells for $20, with proceeds going to the district’s Projects Unlimited program. Contact 620-241-4240 or

— The October “Brethren Voices” community television show from Portland (Ore.) Peace Church of the Brethren features David Sollenberger. For over 25 years, he has been the man behind the camera in videos produced for the Church of the Brethren. The show includes an interview and a look at some of his creations including “NOAC News” and the music video “I Want to See a New Day.” Copies are available from Portland Peace Church of the Brethren. A donation of $8 is requested for the program on DVD. Contact producer Ed Groff at

— The University of La Verne (Calif.) is inaugurating its new president, Devorah A. Lieberman, on Oct. 21. Events include an academic symposia at 9 a.m. following by a luncheon, with the inauguration ceremony at 4 p.m. Homecoming weekend continues on Oct. 22-23. A Recognition Day Service will be held on Sunday at La Verne Church of the Brethren.

— Bridgewater (Va.) College will hold a CROP Meal from 4:45-7 p.m. on Oct. 27 in the main dining hall. Faculty, staff, and community members may purchase meals surrendered by students ($6 for adults, $4 for children) and enjoy “dinner out” paid for on the student meal plan. Proceeds go to CROP’s hunger relief. The college community also is participating in the Bridgewater area CROP Hunger Walk on Oct. 30. CROP and its annual Hunger Walk are sponsored by Church World Service, and is the only US charity walk that raises funds to help feed people both in local communities and around the world. The 2011 walks are occurring in a heightened climate of need, according to CWS, following a 2010 US Census report that pegs poverty at a 52-year high. Last year, across the nation more than 172,400 people participated in some 1,500 CROP Walks, raising $14,189,341. For more go to

— Elizabethtown (Pa.) College’s Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies on Oct. 18 welcomed the 2011 Dale Brown Book Award winners: David L. McConnell, professor of anthropology at the College of Wooster (Ohio) and Charles E. Hurst, emeritus professor of sociology at the College of Wooster. The two are authors of “An Amish Paradox,” a study of Amish attempts to adapt and yet stay true to their heritage. Other upcoming events at the Young Center include a lecture by Steve Longenecker, professor of history at Bridgewater College, on “Civil War-Era Anabaptists and the Modern Nation-State,” at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 27.

— McPherson (Kan.) College is hosting Martin E. Marty on Oct. 30. He will give the Religious Heritage Lecture at 7 p.m. at McPherson Church of the Brethren on the topic “What If We Weren’t Polarized? Other Ways for Americans to Proceed.” Marty is the Fairfax M. Cone Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago, a columnist for “The Christian Century,” and author of “Righteous Empire,” which won the National Book Award.

— Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., has received $552,200 from the National Science Foundation’s Scholars in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics funding initiative to give students at junior colleges financial aid toward the completion of a bachelor’s at Juniata, with the ultimate aim of attaining a graduate degree. The five-year grant will provide $10,000 scholarships, renewable for a second year at Juniata for students who have associate degrees to pursue two additional years of undergraduate education.

— New Community Project has released a list of Learning Tours for 2012: Nepal on Jan. 5-17; Harrisonburg, Va., on April 19-23, where participants will learn about organic gardening, greenhouse construction, and more; the Ecuadorian Amazon on June 13-22; Guatemala or the Dominican Republic on July 12-21; Denali/Kenai Fjords, Alaska, on Aug. 2-9; the Arctic Village and Arctic National Wildlife Range, Alaska, on Aug. 9-17. David Radcliff or Tom Benevento, along with on-site partners, provide leadership. Costs run from $250 to $1,150. For more go to

— A new movement is building interest among Brethren, according to a release from one of the organizers. “Called Feast of Love, this movement emerged following the 2011 Church of the Brethren Annual Conference. Brethren came together via social media to grieve the brokenness within the denominational family of faith, and to find new ways to come together as brothers and sisters in Christ,” said the release. A group of 16 people held a meeting on Oct. 7 to determine next steps. “The 16 who gathered in northern Indiana met to discuss priorities for Brethren communities of faith: women in leadership, LGBTQ inclusion, calling and credentialing justice, building cultures of peace, creation care, and collaboration in all things,” the release said. The group will make a presentation at the Progressive Brethren Gathering on Nov. 11-13 at Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren in Elgin, Ill. For more about the Progressive Brethren Gathering go to

— Former Annual Conference executive director Lerry W. Fogle has written his second book, “Blueprint for the Kingdom: The Purpose of the Tabernacle in the Wilderness.” The book addresses how the tabernacle in the Old Testament was a blueprint or pattern for kingdom realities of the New Testament. Purchase at  or  or e-mail . Cost is $12.95 plus $4 shipping and handling.

Peggy Gish of Christian Peacemaker Teams is one of the religious peacemakers featured in “Waging Peace,” an ABC-TV documentary airing between Oct. 23 and Dec. 18. The film highlights Christian and Muslim efforts to reach out to one another for understanding and reconciliation. It was distributed to ABC stations by the Interfaith Broadcasting Commission in cooperation with the National Council of Churches, and produced by Third Way Media, a department of MennoMedia. A preview is at

— Eleanor and Gerald Roller of Roanoke (Va.) First Church of the Brethren have been presented with the 2011 Peacemaker of the Year award by the Plowshare Peace Center in Roanoke.

— Viola Nicholson of Nettle Creek Church of the Brethren in Hagerstown, Ind., is celebrating her 101st birthday this Sunday, according to the “Palladium-Item.” She was born Oct. 25, 1910.

Contributors to this issue of Newsline include Jordan Blevins, Carol Blouch, Lesley Crosson, Chris Douglas, Anna Emrick, Kendra Flory, Anna Lisa Gross, Elizabeth Harvey, Mary Kay Heatwole, Genna Welsh Kasun, Karin Krog, Nancy Miner, Howard Royer, John Wall, Jenny Williams, Walt Wiltschek, Roy Winter, Jane Yount, and editor Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, director of News Services for the Church of the Brethren. Look for the next issue on Nov. 2.

Newsline is produced by the News Services of the Church of the Brethren. Contact the editor at . Newsline appears every other week, with special issues as needed. Stories may be reprinted if Newsline is cited as the source.

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