Brethren Bits for Oct. 14, 2014

“McPherson College overhauls its four-year Automotive Restoration Program” is the title of a blogpost by Kurt Ernst for Hemmings Daily, a news source on classic cars. The post reviewed the McPherson (Kan.) College four-year degree program in automotive restoration, the only school in the US offering such a degree. “McPherson’s program combines the hands-on approach of shorter programs with the benefit of a comprehensive liberal arts education,” the blog said. “Recognizing that its sole-source advantage may not last forever, and in an effort to maintain its appeal to the next generation of restorers, the college has undertaken an effort to improve and upgrade the Automotive Restoration Program with new hardware and a sharpened focus from its faculty.” The report follows on a first-ever strategic planning meeting that included outside participants such as Paul Russell of European restoration specialist Paul Russell and Company, and Adam Bank of Rad Rides by Troy. Also, “to experience what world-class shops collections do differently, the college sent a team of seven faculty, two students and two advisers…to tour a series of facilities and collections in California…where the team got to experience everything from brass-era cars through contemporary race cars.” Updates planned for this fall, according to the blogpost, include a Pullmax P5 power hammer, “and judging from the school’s Facebook feeds, it’s been all hands on deck this summer in an attempt to get labs and work benches refurbished in time for the fall semester.” McPherson also is “examining the possibility of short-term paid internships, where faculty would be given the opportunity to work for shops, collections, or even museums to gain real-world experience.” Read the blogpost at . For more about McPherson College visit .

 — The Church of the Brethren seek candidates for the full-time salaried position of coordinator of orientation for Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS).Major responsibilities include organizing orientation, securing facilities and resource leaders, providing leadership, reviewing volunteer applications, counseling volunteers, facilitating community building, and evaluating orientation upon conclusion. The coordinator also oversees social media connections for BVS including Facebook, Twitter, and the BVS webpage. Additional responsibilities include co-supervision of BVS staff volunteers and providing administrative back up in the absence of the BVS director. This position requires significant travel that can take up to a month at a time. Required skills and knowledge include knowledge of Church of the Brethren heritage, theology, and polity; ability to articulate and operate out of the vision of the Mission and Ministry Board; and demonstrated ability to perform administrative and management tasks. Candidate must enjoy working in a team environment and must be flexible with evolving program needs. Training or experience in group building and dynamics, training of groups and individuals, and recruiting and assessment of individuals is required for this position. A bachelor’s degree is required. Application of relevant philosophies learned through course work and seminars is helpful. This position is based at the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill. Applications will be received beginning immediately and will be reviewed on an ongoing basis until the position is filled. Request the application form by contacting the Office of Human Resources, Church of the Brethren, 1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120; 800-323-8039 ext. 367; The Church of the Brethren is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

— The Southeastern District Camping Program has an opening for a permanent Outdoor Ministry Director (OMD) at Camp Placid in Blountville, Tenn. The district seeks someone with a passion for Christian outdoor ministry to children and adults. Camp Placid covers 50-plus acres of land that includes several cabins, a kitchen/dining area, and outdoor swimming pool, two ponds, and other ministry buildings. The person called to this position will be responsible for directing and maintaining a camp that can be used year round, will understand that in the eyes of a child it is the small things that make the biggest difference, will go beyond the call of duty to help make a camper feel welcome. The manager of Camp Placid will be a member of the Outdoor Ministries Association and will hold a critical position for making Camp Placid a success. The Southeastern District and the OMA are dedicated to making our camps more than just your typical summer camp, and are determined to make an everlasting impact on a child’s life. The camp manager will be the ambassador for the camp, its campers, and the district, and will represent the camp at OMA meetings, Camp Board Meetings, and District Conference. A strong sense of communication between the District Camp Board and the manager is key for effective operations. The camp manager will be involved deeply in every camp aspect, from office management/bookkeeping, to all maintenance of the facility, to being the shoulder for a camper to cry on. Camp promotion is an aspect where the manager has the ability to use his/her creativity to show the district and community all we have to offer. This position should be considered with great prayer and discernment. Resumes and letters of intent will be accepted through Oct. 31. To apply send resume and letter of intent to the Southeastern District Office at or to Southeastern District, P.O. Box 8366, Gray, TN  37615.

— New Fairview Church of the Brethren in York, Pa., hosts a Deacon Training on Saturday, Nov. 15, from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Kim Witkovsky will lead the training, which is offered by the Deacon Ministry of the Church of the Brethren. Workshops will address the topics, “What Are Deacons Supposed to Do, Anyway?” “The Art of Listening,” and “Beyond Casseroles: Offering Support Creatively.” Cost is $15 per person or $25 for a couple. Cost for .45 continuing education credit for ministers is an additional $10. The registration deadline is Nov. 10. Contact Southern Pennsylvania District, P.O. Box 218, New Oxford, PA 17350; 717-624-8636.

— Briery Branch Church of the Brethren in Dayton, Va., has partnered with area businesses and individuals to restore the interior of a house that is home to a family with three young children. The family faces medical issues and other challenges, reports the district newsletter. More information is available from the church office, 540-828-7139.

— Shenandoah District Pastors for Peace will sponsor “Peace and Mental Health–A Mental Health First Aid Training Event” on Nov. 21-22 at Linville Creek Church of the Brethren in Broadway, Va. “Mental Health First Aid is aimed to help attendees understand the signs and symptoms of a variety of mental health conditions and provide the skills and knowledge to be able to help if present when someone is experiencing a mental health crisis,” said an announcement. The presenter will be Rebekah Brubaker of the Harrisonburg Rockingham Community Services Board. Cost is $40 and includes dinner on Friday and lunch on Saturday. Ordained clergy can earn 0.8 continuing education credit. Overnight accommodations and breakfast at the nearby John Kline Homestead are available for an additional fee. The registration deadline is by noon on Nov. 10. Space is limited to the first 30 registrants. For registration information go to . For questions contact David R. Miller at or 540-578-0241.

— Western Pennsylvania District holds its district conference at Camp Harmony in Hooversville, Pa., on Oct. 18.

— Fahrney-Keedy Home and Village has issued an invitation to an Autumn Social from 1-4 p.m. on Oct. 24. “Folks attending will have an opportunity to tour available independent-living apartments and cottages. As well, guests can encounter the Fahrney-Keedy lifestyle, in the fall, tour the campus, enjoy autumn-themed refreshments, and learn about plans for growth over the next several years,” said a release from the retirement community located near Boonsboro, Md. During the event, two seminars will be presented with topics related to dealing with a move, on the topics “Selling Your Home in Today’s Market,” and “Stress-Free Moving Solutions.” Two fall discount specials for new contracts are in effect during the event: those paying a new entrance fee in full by Dec. 31 will receive a 20 percent discount, and those paying a new entrance fee in full by Feb. 28, 2015, will receive a 10 percent discount. For more information about the Autumn Social, call 301-671-5038.

— Bridgewater (Va.) College holds a CROP Meal from 5-7 p.m. on Oct. 30 in the main dining hall in the Kline Campus Center, when faculty, staff, and members of the community may purchase CROP Meals surrendered by students and enjoy “dinner out,” said a college release. “The meals have been paid for on the student meal plan, and all proceeds go directly to CROP’s hunger relief, education, and development programs in 80 countries around the world,” the release said. Cost of the meal is $7 for adults, and $5 for children 12 and under. The Bridgewater/Dayton area CROP Hunger Walk begins at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 2, at the Bridgewater Community Center. Bridgewater College students will join members of the community in getting sponsors for every kilometer of the 10 kilometer (6.2 mile) or 5 kilometer (3.1 mile) route they walk, with the money going toward stopping hunger. “While the world’s poverty and pain can be overwhelming, the CROP Meal and CROP Hunger Walk are simple yet significant steps anyone can take to make a very real difference in the lives of others,” said college chaplain Robbie Miller.

— Juniata College has received a $100,000, three-year grant from the Andrew J. Mellon Foundation to assess and redefine its general education curriculum, said a release from the school in Huntingdon, Pa. The grant will “ultimately reshape the college’s liberal arts education model to better reflect the needs and values of students in the 21st century,” the release said. “This grant is important not just because of what it will enable us to do in assessing general education and ensuring the salience and primacy of the liberal arts throughout the curriculum, but because recognition by Mellon–because of its reputation for recognizing excellence in liberal arts education–affirms that Juniata belongs among the top liberal arts colleges nationally,” said Lauren Bowen, provost, in the release. The grant will provide funds to help the college organize and implement an assessment of the courses that comprise general education, and will engage faculty in conversation about the optimal design and content of a contemporary liberal arts education. This focus will strengthen Juniata’s intentional commitment to define the content, skills and courses that every Juniata student must experience to ensure they graduate with a fully rounded education, said the release. Find out more about Juniata at .

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