Brethren Bits for July 1, 2014


Robby May

— Robby May has been called by West Marva District and trustees of Camp Galilee as camp manager for Camp Galilee. This position was vacant following the retirement of Phyllis Marsh, long-time manager of over 30 years. Originally from Westernport, Md., May attends Westernport Church of the Brethren and has been involved at Camp Galilee since he was five years old. He has been at the camp as a camper, counselor, director, member of the Camp Planning and Promoting Committee, and a member of the Trustees. He also has served several summers on program staff at Camp Swatara in Pennsylvania. He holds a bachelor of science degree in Social Science Secondary Education from Frostburg State University and a master of science degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Drexel University, and is a Nationally Board Certified Social Studies Teacher. Additionally, he has been volunteering as an Emergency Medical Technician with LaVale Volunteer Rescue Squad for over 10 years. Find the camp website at .

Brethren Volunteer Service is announcing the start of the summer orientation to be held July 20-Aug. 8 at Camp Mardela in Denton, Md. This will be the 305th unit of BVS and will include 13 volunteers–7 Americans and 6 Germans. They will spend three weeks exploring project possibilities and topics of community building, peace and social justice, faith sharing, vocation, and more. Washington City Church of the Brethren will host the unit for their middle weekend of service. For more about BVS go to .

The online course “What Brethren Believe” will be offered by the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership and taught by Denise Kettering-Lane, beginning Aug. 4 through Sept. 26. Participating pastors will earn 2 continuing education credits. The registration deadline has been extended to July 14. The course fee is $275. This course is open to Brethren Academy students (TRIM and EFSM), lay persons, and pastors. Contact 800-287-8822 ext. 1824 or or .

On Earth Peace is offering a series of Agape-Satyagraha training webinars on topics including recruiting youth and mentors, an introduction to using the curriculum, understanding and using communication skills, and Kingian nonviolence. The first webinar, “Preparing for the School Year: Recruiting Youth and Mentors,” will be held on July 14, at 8 p.m. (eastern). Gerald Rhoades and Marie Benner-Rhoades will lead the session. For more information about this series, contact Marie Benner-Rhoades at .

 Enders (Neb.) Church of the Brethren has suffered heavy damage from wind and rain, in storms that hit the area beginning June 18. “The Imperial Republican” newspaper reported that the fate of the building is not yet known. “The fate of an Enders landmark rests in the balance after wind ripped the roof covering off the Enders Church of the Brethren Wednesday night, June 18,” the news report said. “High winds during a thunderstorm…tore all of the tar-based roof covering from the roof deck of the church. The rain that accompanied the storm left behind significant water damage to the upper floor of the building where the sanctuary was located.” After an attempt was made to cover the building with heavy plastic, another storm ripped that covering off the church, leaving standing water in the building. Read the news story at . Shown above: volunteers help out at the church. Below: a view of some of the water damage. Photo by Ken Frantz

A children’s garden at Middlebury (Ind.) Church of the Brethren has been covered by the Goshen (Ind.) News on June 27. “The children of the Middlebury Church of the Brethren’s garden are yielding vegetables that are being used for salads in a local outreach and at the local food bank,” the newspaper reported. “In the spring, the children planted a garden that contained a multitude of vegetables, including asparagus, carrots, lettuce, and cucumbers…. Once a month, the church takes a meal to a local retirement community as a way to share food and fellowship. The remainder of the lettuce is given to the local food bank.” Find the full article at .

Beacon Heights Church of the Brethren in Fort Wayne, Ind., on the evening of July 10 will be assembling hygiene kits for Iraqi citizens displaced by the conflict in their country. A note in the congregation’s newsletter listed items needed including adult-size toothbrushes, large bar bath soap, fingernail clippers, hand towels in dark colors, and bags sewn to fit the items. Monetary donations are also accepted.

On Saturday, July 12, from 9:30-11:30 a.m., Virlina District will hold an “Introduction to the Shine Curriculum” event at Peters Creek Church of the Brethren in Roanoke, Va. The Virlina District Resource Center has the Shine Start-Up Kit for congregations to review the new curriculum. Register for the “Introduction to the Shine Curriculum” by contacting Emma Jean Woodard at 800-847-5462 or .

Disaster relief coordinators in Illinois and Wisconsin District and Missouri and Arkansas District are offering Brethren a change to volunteer to rebuild Gifford, Ill., which was hit by a tornado on Nov. 17 last year. Gifford is located near Champaign. The tornado destroyed 80 homes and 40 more received damage, said an announcement from Gary Gahm, Missouri and Arkansas District disaster coordinator. He is seeking help to fill the week of July 14-18, with the week of July 21-25 also available for volunteers. Lodging is in a former retreat center at a cost of $5 per night. Contact Gahm at or 816-313-5065 or 816-315-7256.

A World Hunger Auction Benefit Recital on July 13 at 4 p.m. at Antioch Church of the Brethren in Rocky Mount, Va., will feature organist Jonathan Emmons performing some of the pieces he will be playing for Annual Conference. He will share standard organ pieces along with settings of familiar hymn tunes, according to an announcement. He also will share selections on the alto saxophone. “Don’t miss it!” said the announcement.

Craig Howard, pastor of Brake Church of the Brethren near Dorcas, W.Va., was awarded the Human Rights Award for 2014 by the Church Women United in Petersburg, W.Va. “This award recognizes persons who continually and faithfully work for the cause of human rights,” said an article in the West Marva District newsletter. Howard has been pastor of Brake Church of the Brethren for 33 years and has organized and led 13 youth mission trips taking youth and adults from his church to a number of sites around the world, as well as on disaster relief missions in the US, and with fellow mission trip leader Jerry Judy, also made a trip to Golmi, Niger, to minister to missionaries and help pro-cure textbooks for a local school, and to Niamey to work with the Sahel School for missionary children, and with a leper colony in West Niger.

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