Newsline for Sept. 24, 2021

Give counsel, grant justice; make your shade like night at the height of noon; hide the outcasts, do not betray the fugitive” (Isaiah 16:3).

1) Mission and Ministry Board approves grant for new collaboration to aid Afghanistan evacuees
2) CDS volunteers help welcome Afghan children and families evacuated to the US
3) Disaster grant supports home rebuilding by Congolese Brethren following eruption of Nyiragongo volcano
4) Global Food Initiative grants go to Haiti, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Honduras, New Orleans
5) Haitians at the border: A Brethren response
6) National Council of Churches laments the treatment of Haitians at the US border
7) Manchester to name building in honor of first Black students

8) Lee-Lani Wright to serve, Debbie Roberts to retire from Pacific Northwest District executive team

9) National Youth Conference 2022 registration opens Dec. 1
10) Annual Clergy Tax Seminar is scheduled for Jan. 29 as an online event
11) Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center announces upcoming continuing education events

12) Brethren Press’s Advent devotional for 2021, Hoosier Prophet, Maria’s Kit of Comfort among new resources for Brethren

13) Franklin Grove Church collaborates with Dixon congregation to celebrate the International Day of Peace
14) Ephrata Church encourages families to host block parties
15) Mountville Church provides ‘re-leaf’ and school kits
16) West Goshen Church honors retiring pastor’s ministry
17) First Chicago holds Zoom conversations with BVSers

18) Brethren and the National Farm Worker Ministry: 50 years of service

19) Brethren bits: Correction, building the Gisenyi Church in Rwanda, personnel, jobs, advocacy against military support for Saudi Arabia, Brethren in Spain contribute to volcano fund, and district, camp, and college news

Nominations for openings on the Annual Conference ballot are due by Dec. 1. “You can help shape the future of the church!” said an invitation for nominations from the Annual Conference office. “Each member of the Church of the Brethren is invited to recommend possible nominees for the 2022 Annual Conference ballot. As you pray about this, who comes to mind? Whom will the Lord prompt you to nominate?” For a list of open positions, nomination forms, and more information go to

1) Mission and Ministry Board approves grant for new collaboration to aid Afghanistan evacuees

A new joint Church of the Brethren and Church World Service (CWS) effort supporting the resettlement of Afghan evacuees in the US has received support from the Mission and Ministry Board and a grant of $52,000 from the Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF).

In a special action last week, the Church of the Brethren board approved a staff request from Brethren Disaster Ministries to engage in the new collaboration with CWS and to approve the grant request.

In related news

A webpage of resources about how to help Afghanistan evacuees and refugees has been provided for Church of the Brethren congregations and members. Staff of Brethren Disaster Ministries and the Office of Peacebuilding and Policy worked together to gather information about resources as, with many thousands of Afghan evacuees arriving in the US, churches are challenged to welcome these strangers that flee persecution in their homeland. Go to

Church of the Brethren general secretary David Steele is one of the leaders of member denominations of Church World Service and the National Council of Churches who have signed the following “Ecumenical Statement: Support of Afghans Seeking Refuge”:

Since the United States began its withdrawal from Afghanistan, many Afghans are in grave danger. Those who face imminent harm must be evacuated to safety immediately. We have a moral obligation to welcome Afghans seeking refuge. This profound humanitarian emergency must be met with compassion. Church World Service, the National Council of Churches, and our 37 member denominations reaffirm the commitments established in our ‘Ecumenical Declaration: to Expand Welcome’ and invite all people of faith to join together in prayer, love, and action to protect vulnerable Afghans fleeing violence and persecution. We call upon people of faith to provide humanitarian protection for Afghans in harm’s way and to do everything in their power to show solidarity, support, and welcome to our Afghan neighbors. Together, we will have a significant impact on the lives of those in need through assistance with housing, nourishment, legal services, advocacy, donations, and case management. These critical services will establish the foundations of a new life for those fleeing persecution. We implore the Biden administration, US Congress, state lawmakers, and local officials to embrace their important roles in the evacuation and protection of Afghans seeking refuge. It is urgent that leaders at all levels recognize the opportunity of this moment. Together, we must ensure the provision of services and invest the resources needed to help our new neighbors thrive in their new communities–our communities. In this critical moment, let us covenant to work together and fulfill our commitments to love and welcome our Afghan neighbors.”

New initiative with CWS

This new Church of the Brethren initiative will appeal to congregations to help support and/or resettle Afghan evacuees, and may include a variety of resources to assist congregations in this work including a webpage sharing details about how to support Afghan families, advocate for Afghan families, apply for Brethren Faith in Action grants for qualifying congregations, and more.

CWS has asked its member denominations, including the Church of the Brethren–which is a founding member–to issue joint appeals challenging congregations and members to help resettle Afghan evacuees and is requesting at least $2 million to help resettle Afghan evacuees by helping them with health insurance, housing, food assistance, mental health support, school enrollment and, hopefully, community sponsorship.

“The United States government is estimating 75,000 Afghanistan nationals are fleeing to the US amid fears of persecution and retribution from the Taliban as the US troops withdraw from their country,” said the grant request. “Many are entering the US with a Humanitarian Parole status rather than being admitted as refugees; others have been given a special visa; and other Afghans already have an immigrant status in the US.

“The Humanitarian Parolee status allows people fleeing a compelling emergency (e.g., being targeted by the Taliban for supporting US troops) admission to the US, but they don’t qualify for many of the resettlement services the US government provides to immigrants with regular refugee status. These government services are mostly provided through nine refugee resettlement agencies, including Church World Service, meaning that many of the 75,000 Afghan evacuees won’t have access to health insurance, food programs, housing assistance, or cash assistance during part of their first year in the US.”

CWS already has been approved to resettle at least 3,410 Afghans who received humanitarian parole for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, and will receive more evacuees in the 2022 fiscal year.

To contribute financially to this work give online at Please write “Afghan resettlement” in the box for “Additional Gift Notes.”

2) CDS volunteers help welcome Afghan children and families evacuated to the US

By Lisa Crouch

The month of September has been a busy one for Children’s Disaster Services (CDS). With pandemic protocols in place, CDS volunteer teams have been responding to many requests to serve.

As part of a historic airlift, CDS volunteers were a valuable asset in welcoming Afghan evacuees into the United States at Dulles International Airport (Virginia) and nearby expo center for eight days earlier this month. Through a partnership with Save the Children, the Dulles CDS team worked with 100 to 200 children at a time in the small play area while they awaited transportation information to their next stop.

Upon returning from this deployment, one CDS volunteer wrote how much she enjoyed working with the wonderful and resilient Afghani children, noting that even with the challenges, they were sweet, kind, funny, and mostly full of hope for the future. Another CDS team member said, “It is a rewarding time being able to see the smiles and laughter.”

Two CDS teams have deployed to Fort Bliss, Texas, to support “Operation Allies Welcome,” the US government program to welcome Afghans as they resettle in the US. Nearly 10,000 Afghan evacuees are being housed at the base while awaiting resettlement. Of this number, more than 3,000 are children. CDS teams there have been seeing between 100 to 300 child contacts per day. CDS plans to continue providing support at Fort Bliss through October.

In other CDS news, two teams responded to Hurricane Ida serving in both Baton Rouge and New Orleans, La. The initial CDS team completed its 14-day assignment and the second team returned home this week after seeing numbers of children in the shelters diminishing. Over the course of about 21 days, CDS served 262 children affected by the hurricane.

Give financial support to the work of CDS at

– Lisa Crouch is associate director of Children’s Disaster Services, a ministry within Brethren Disaster Ministries.

3) Disaster grant supports home rebuilding by Congolese Brethren following eruption of Nyiragongo volcano

Brethren Disaster Ministries staff have directed an additional grant of $25,000 from the Church of the Brethren’s Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) to support repair or rebuilding of 54 homes damaged in the eruption of Mount Nyiragongo. The volcano erupted near the city of Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on May 22.

Previous EDF grants for this appeal include an initial grant of $5,000 on May 26 that supported Eglise des Freres au Congo (the Church of the Brethren in the DRC) in providing food relief to at-risk families, and a grant of $25,000 given on July 1 that was used for continued food aid.

With this grant, the Goma congregation plans to repair 23 homes damaged in the eruption and build 31 new homes to replace houses that were destroyed, providing shelter for 432 people including 240 children.

To contribute financially to this work, give online at

4) Global Food Initiative grants go to Haiti, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Honduras, New Orleans

A number of grants have been announced by the Church of the Brethren’s Global Food Initiative (GFI). Recently, allocations have been made in support of an agricultural initiative of L’Eglise des Freres d’Haiti, a pig project of Eglise des Freres au Congo (the Church of the Brethren in the Democratic Republic of Congo or DRC), an urban poultry and vegetable garden project in Honduras, and a goat herd at Capstone 118 in New Orleans.


An allocation of $15,000 will help L’Eglise des Freres d’Haiti (the Church of the Brethren in Haiti) establish an agriculture supply store. Church leaders are seeking to build on past agricultural work, shifting to an agribusiness model as part of a longterm goal of greater financial self-sufficiency. An agriculture supply store will be established in St. Raphael in the Central Plateau region, where there already are two existing components: a tree nursery and a fishpond. Both were developed as part of a three-year soil conservation and animal production project in partnership with Growing Hope Globally. The tree nursery currently has both fruit and lumber seedlings including coffee, citrus, avocado, coconut, and moringa tree. Sales will not be limited to the immediate community but will be available to Haitian Brethren farmers and their neighbors across the country. Grant funds will be used to construct a small store and to purchase agricultural supplies such as seeds, chemical and natural fertilizers, veterinary medicines, and tools, with a portion of the budget covering transportation and administrative start-up costs.


An allocation of $11,000 goes to an urban poultry and vegetable garden project in the community of Flor del Campo in the capital city Tegucigalpa. The Viviendo en Amor y Fe (VAF) church is located in the capital and has experience working with neighbors in the area. Participants will be required to donate labor and some material costs for the construction of chicken coops. Eight families will be selected for year 1. Year 2 will be a “passing the gift” year, with eight new families receiving chickens. VAF will be provided technical support by agronomists from Proyecto Aldea Global (PAG, Project Global Village). The GFI has worked closely with PAG on poultry projects with a similar model in other parts of Honduras. Grant funds will cover costs of materials, poultry feeders and waterers, laying hens and one rooster per family, medicines, transportation, technical assistance, vegetable seeds, training workshops, and construction of used-tire gardens.

Democratic Republic of Congo

A grant of $6,262 supports a pig project of Eglise des Freres au Congo. Flooding in May 2020 caused loss of materials, property, and human lives, accentuating the poverty in the territory of Fizi, in particular. Eglise des Freres au Congo plans a pig breeding project at the Lusenda congregation in Fizi. Offspring from the pigs would be provided to families in need, focusing on widows, orphans, people with disabilities, and the elderly. The goal over several years is to reach 150 households, totaling 1,200 people. Grant funds will cover the purchase of 12 pigs, pig feed, materials to build a piggery, stipend for a caretaker, and fees for a veterinarian to make regular visits.

New Orleans

A grant of $1,000 helps the goat enterprise of Capstone 118 in New Orleans’ Lower 9th Ward, following damage caused by Hurricane Ida. This one-time emergency grant will be used to purchase movable fencing panels allowing Capstone’s goats to be transferred to vacant lots in the neighborhood. Presently it is difficult to purchase hay for the goats and there is abundant grass available; portable fencing is the limiting factor. Capstone 118 is a regular GFI partner, dating back to 2014, and an outreach ministry of the Church of the Brethren’s Southern Plains District.

Contribute financially to these GFI grants by giving online at

St. Raphael tree nursery in Haiti.

5) Haitians at the border: A Brethren response

By Galen Fitzkee

Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, is currently facing the compounding crises of political unrest following the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, the effects of a destructive 7.2 magnitude earthquake, and the aftermath of Tropical Storm Grace. These events, as terrible as they are individually, also exacerbate existing problems like gang violence and food insecurity throughout the region.

A close examination of the history of Haiti reveals that these terrible living conditions were originally spawned within a context of colonialization and failed United States policy. Despite a significant slave revolt and formal declaration of independence in 1804, the US refused to recognize Haiti as a country for the next 60 years, fearing similar slave uprisings in southern states (“A History of United States Policy Towards Haiti” by Ann Crawford-Roberts, Brown University Library,

After finally acknowledging the nation, the US intervened militarily, politically, and economically seeking to further our own interests. Coups, US-backed oppressive dictatorships, and unbalanced trade policies destabilized and impoverished Haiti, leaving leadership unable to respond to the needs of their citizens.

Following the 2010 earthquake, an unprecedented number of NGOs (nongovernmental organizations) flooded the island, circumventing the government yet again and failing to empower Haitians to guide their own recovery. Themes of corruption and injustice are present throughout this timeline.

As a result, the situation in Haiti today is truly miserable and it should come as no surprise that upwards of 12,000 migrants, mostly Haitian, have decided to flee their homeland in search of jobs and safety. Pushed by lack of opportunities elsewhere and potentially pulled by promises of a more humane immigration system under the current administration, many Haitians made the dangerous trek to the US border in Del Rio, Texas to claim asylum and seek a better life (“How Thousands of Haitian Migrants Ended up at the Texas Border” by Joe Parkin Daniels and Tom Phillips, The Guardian, Sept. 18, 2021,

When they arrived at the border, however, it was announced that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) would begin expelling Haitians back to where their arduous journey began, potentially putting their lives at risk.

The Biden administration has largely relied on a policy known as Title 42 to justify expulsions in the name of public health, against the better judgements of many public health officials (“Q&A: US Title 42 Policy to Expel Migrants at the Border,” Human Rights Watch, The policy has the unique distinction of being both immoral and illegal because it denies migrants the opportunity to claim asylum and transports them back to a country reeling from political and social crises.

Striking images of border patrol agents on horseback violently mistreating Haitians went viral earlier this week, prompting further questions about accountability and oversight of our immigration process as a whole and reminding us that our immigration policy is often used to discriminate against people of color.

When addressing these issues as a church, we first must recognize that the founding members of the Church of the Brethren were immigrants themselves, seeking religious, political, and economic freedom. As noted by a 1983 Annual Conference statement about this topic, this history often has framed our response to immigrants and refugees from around the world. In practice, Brethren have called on the federal government “to efficiently process immigrants’ claims for status by standards of fair procedure, to adequately fund the agency to assure its proper operation, and to seek staff who will be sensitive to cultural differences” (“Undocumented Persons and Refugees in the United States,” 1982 Church of the Brethren Annual Conference statement,

Brethren take seriously the biblical calls to welcome the stranger and alien (Leviticus 19:34, Matthew 25:35), especially those fleeing violence and oppression. Brethren even have taken the critical step of addressing the root causes of mass migration, which do not get nearly enough attention on the government level. In partnership with L’Eglise des Freres d’Haiti (the Church of the Brethren in Haiti), we have implemented programs like the Haiti Medical Project and have provided grants through the Global Food Initiative (GFI) and Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) seeking to improve the physical and spiritual lives of many Haitians.

Recently, Brethren Disaster Ministries directed an EDF grant of $75,000 to relief and recovery efforts of the Haitian Brethren following the recent earthquake in southwest Haiti. In the long run, this type of effort will surely be the most effective way to reduce immigration and ultimately prevent abuses on our southern border. (Contribute financial support to the EDF at Contribute financial support to the GFI at

In the present context, our emotional and spiritual reaction to the crisis at the border, our past Annual Conference statements, and our partners in Haiti spur us to speak out against our immigration system. It is clear, first of all, that the illegal and immoral expulsion of Haitian asylum seekers must halt immediately. Haitians at the border deserve to be welcomed with dignity and given the chance to make their case for asylum. Title 42, the flawed policy used to circumvent due process for desperate immigrants, should be repealed to prevent future abuses. Alternatively, structures for accountability must be set in place so that immigrants are protected from harm, as suggested years ago by Church of the Brethren statements. At the bare minimum, our immigration policies must recognize the humanity of Haitian immigrants and have compassion for their plight.

Today’s Action Alert from the Office of Peacebuilding and Policy offers ways to get involved, go to

— Galen Fitzkee is a Brethren Volunteer Service worker serving at the Church of the Brethren’s Office of Peacebuilding and Policy in Washington, D.C.

6) National Council of Churches laments the treatment of Haitians at the US border

A statement from the NCC posted Sept. 24, 2021

The National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC) stands in witness to the compounding tragedies that have led to a years-long exodus of the Haitian people from their country, culminating this week in 17,000 asylum-seekers at the US border in Texas. We cry in anguish when we see film and photos of their treatment at the hands of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officers on horseback. The images are a throwback to another turbulent time of racial violence and have caused trauma in Black communities throughout our country. We support the investigation into this tragic situation and expect accountability from any findings.

As Christians we believe every person is created in the image of God and we cannot stand idly by while immigration policies are implemented with cruelty instead of compassion. When US immigration policies refuse access or eject people fleeing catastrophic situations, we have a moral obligation to speak up. We urge the US government to do all it can to assist those requesting asylum.

Further, we call on President Biden and DHS Secretary Mayorkas to stop deporting Haitians seeking refuge and end the Trump-era Title 42 policy prohibiting the entry of persons who potentially pose a health risk. In addition to obstructing the US law giving asylum seekers the right to seek asylum, the Title 42 expulsions are discriminatory because they are only used against asylum seekers crossing at land borders and therefore disproportionately effect Black, Indigenous, and Latinx people from Central America, Africa, and Haiti.

In addition, we support humanitarian protections such as a Temporary Protected Status (TPS) redesignation or Deferred Enforced Departure (DED), and the use of humanitarian parole to allow Haitians to temporarily enter the United States due to the compelling emergency situation in Haiti and the urgent humanitarian needs that exist.

Although President Biden has nearly doubled the number of refugees that will be admitted to the United States to 125,000 for the next year starting on Oct. 1, more must be done regarding asylum and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). We pray that Congress will find the moral courage to address our failing immigration system and pass legislation that demonstrates our love for our neighbors.

We also continue to pray for the Haitian people during this tumultuous and devastating time for a nation that has experienced so much tragedy.

God, in your mercy, hear our prayers.

— Find this NCC statement posted online at

7) Manchester to name building in honor of first Black students

A release from Manchester University

Manchester University in North Manchester, Ind., will name its Academic Center in honor of Manchester’s first African-American students, Martha and Joseph Cunningham. “I can think of no better way for Manchester to honor the Cunninghams than to name a hall of learning for them,” said Manchester president Dave McFadden.

Siblings who grew up near Kokomo, Ind., the Cunninghams graduated in 1903. Martha “Mattie” Cunningham Dolby spent the early part of her career working to improve the lives of impoverished Black families in the segregated South. Having spent much of her childhood in the Church of the Brethren, she worked to establish several congregations in the South and Midwest. In 1911, she became the first woman to be installed as a Brethren minister.

Her brother moved to Chicago after graduating from Manchester and became a physician.

The Cunninghams arrived at Manchester in an era of intense racial violence in the United States, according to historian Nicholas Patler. A number of Manchester students did not accept the Cunninghams and made them feel unwelcome. At first, the two prepared and ate their meals off campus.

That changed in their second year, when fellow student and future Manchester president Otho Winger organized a student support group in solidarity with the Cunninghams, which included eating together in the dining hall.

Gender dictated very different college experiences for the siblings.

Joe received financial support from his father and was active on campus, joining the Lincoln Society literary group, and honing his skills at debate and elocution. He also played on the men’s basketball team and managed the baseball team.

Mattie’s father was quoted as saying that the role of women was “to wash and cook and have babies,” and he did not financially support her efforts. She paid for her education by working many hours in the college kitchen. That she graduated was an impressive achievement at the turn of the century, according to Patler. At the time, there were just 252 Black female college graduates in the nation.

“More than 100 years later, the Cunninghams leave a legacy of tenacity, courage, and achievement in the face of adversity,” McFadden said. “Their story reflects the challenges of their time and Manchester’s own journey through that time. Their story is our story – where we have been and the work that remains. Shining a light on the Cunninghams can help inspire all of us to discover our best selves.”

The Board of Trustees voted unanimously on Tuesday, Sept. 21, to change the name of the building. A formal dedication for the Martha Cunningham and Joseph Cunningham Academic Center is in the works for the spring semester.

— Anne Gregory works in media relations for Manchester University. Find this release online at


8) Lee-Lani Wright to serve, Debbie Roberts to retire from Pacific Northwest District executive team

The Pacific Northwest District of the Church of the Brethren has called Lee‐Lani Wright, a member of the Springfield, Ore., congregation, to replace Debbie Roberts on the district’s executive team. Roberts is retiring from the team after serving in the role since 2019.

Wright began her service on Sept. 19, 2021. She will serve as contact for the denomination’s Office of Ministry and will maintain district files and records including pastoral and congregational documents.

Continuing on the executive team are Glenn Brumbaugh, district representative to the Council of District Executives, and Carol Mason, who cares for pastoral placement with congregations, congregational property issues, and coordination of clergy and congregational ethics.


9) National Youth Conference 2022 registration opens Dec. 1

By Erika Clary

Registration for National Youth Conference (NYC) 2022 will open Dec. 1 at Those who register in December will receive a free NYC t-shirt. Start making plans now to attend this weeklong extravaganza full of worship, small groups, workshops, hiking, service projects, and more!

National Youth Conference will take place July 23-28, 2022, at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo. Youth who have completed their first year of high school through first year of college (or age equivalent) and their adult advisors are eligible to attend. Registration, which includes lodging, programing, and meals, costs $550; a $225 non-refundable deposit is due within two weeks of registration.

The 2022 NYC theme is “Foundational,” based on scripture from Colossians 2:5-7. Please consider attending this mountaintop, faith-deepening experience!

If you have any questions, contact NYC coordinator Erika Clary by email at or by phone at 847-429-4376, and be sure to follow NYC on social media (Facebook: National Youth Conference, Instagram: @cobnyc2022).

— Erika Clary is coordinator of National Youth Conference 2022, working for the Church of the Brethren Youth and Young Adult Ministry through Brethren Volunteer Service.

10) Annual Clergy Tax Seminar is scheduled for Jan. 29 as an online event

From the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership

Join us for this informational and instructive seminar! Clergy Tax Seminar, Jan. 29, 2022. Students, clergy, and anyone who deals with clergy finances are invited to participate in this online Zoom seminar.
— Learn how to prepare clergy taxes correctly and legally.
— Comply with regulations while maximizing tax deductions.
— Earn 0.3 continuing education units (CEUs)–for the morning session only.

The annual Clergy Tax Seminar will consist of two sessions:

— Morning session, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Eastern time), will focus on the rules surrounding clergy tax returns, including who is subject to these rules, what income is subject to tax, and how to reduce total tax liability using various methods, including housing allowance, business expenses, and medical reimbursement plans. Credit for 0.3 CEUs will be available for attending Session 1 only. According to the new webinar policy, CEUs may also be earned by viewing the recording and filling out the report form. (Registration is required to receive the recording.)

— Afternoon Session, from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. EST, participants will complete a clergy tax return using H&R Block’s highest tier (Premium and Business) downloadable software.

This seminar is highly recommended for all clergy and anyone who deals with clergy finances who wish to understand clergy taxes, including treasurers, steward commission chairs, and church board chairs.

Sponsors: The Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership, the Church of the Brethren Office of Ministry, and Bethany Theological Seminary.

Seminar schedule
— 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (Eastern time): Morning session
— 2-2:30 p.m. (Eastern time): Lunch on your own
— 2:30-4:30 p.m. (Eastern time): Afternoon session

Registration and cost

Registration is $40 per person (generally nonrefundable to keep fees and overhead low). Current Brethren Academy, Bethany Theological Seminary, and Earlham School of Religion students may attend the seminar at no cost, although registration is still required to allow us to provide you with web access to the seminar. Instructions and handouts will be sent a few days prior to the event. Registrations are not complete until payment is received. For quality reasons, registrations may be capped at 85 people. Prompt registration is advised. The registration deadline is Jan. 19, 2022. A Zoom link will be sent prior to the seminar.


Deb Oskin has been doing clergy tax returns since 1989, when her husband left seminary to pastor a small, rural Church of the Brethren congregation. As a pastor’s wife and later as a tax professional, she learned the tax problems and pitfalls associated with the IRS’s identification of clergy as “hybrid employees.” In 2011, after 12 years with H&R Block, Oskin left to start her own tax practice, specializing in clergy taxes. Clergy clients now make up 75 percent of her client base.

Oskin was ordained in 2004 when she was called by Living Peace Church of the Brethren in Columbus, Ohio, to be their peace minister to the wider community. She served as Southern Ohio District’s board chair 2007-2011 and served as Southern Ohio-Kentucky District 2018 moderator. She is currently serving on the denomination’s Pastoral Compensation and Benefits Advisory Committee.

She has been teaching and presenting nationally on clergy taxation to clergy, treasurers and administrators, and tax pros since 2004. Other than the fact that she really likes to talk, she does this because of her deep belief that clergy can devote more of their energy to ministry if they aren’t stressed by tax debt.

Deb Oskin is an experienced presenter, and despite the complexity of the material, you’ll find yourself laughing. Learn and enjoy!

Register now at

11) Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center announces upcoming continuing education events

A release from the SVMC

As the seasons of the year turn, we also turn to our upcoming continuing education offerings. While we certainly hoped the pandemic would be greatly diminished by now, we still find ourselves watching carefully and planning with caution. Please note the method of delivery for each event: one is in person, one is via Zoom, and one is hybrid giving both options (attending in person or via Zoom). Registration is open for all the events described below. To register, please follow the links provided or contact the Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center (SVMC) at

Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center

Pastoral Care and Crisis Intervention, Part IV
Saturday, Oct. 9, at Huntsdale Church of the Brethren in Carlisle, Pa.
Leader: Dale Leverknight

Pastoral Care and Crisis Intervention, Part IV will draw upon the skills learned during the first three classes. However, if this is your first time to join us, don’t worry. We’ll catch participants up as we begin the day. PCCI IV will assist congregational leaders in preparing the church to be one part of the overall community response efforts in the event of large-scale disasters such as storms, floods, etc. The class will teach you how to look closely at the resources any congregation has (you may be surprised at what you already have) and offer them to the community in the event of such catastrophes as well as networking and communicating with the overall emergency response personnel in your respective areas. We will also spend time reviewing the local congregation’s safety and security measures. Looking forward to having you join us.

Registration link:

Kingdom Building in Worship
Postponed until Spring 2022 (TBD), hybrid at Stone Church of the Brethren in Huntingdon, Pa.
Leaders: Cindy Laprade Lattimer, Marty Keeney, and Loren Rhodes

This event is postponed due to concern of gathering in-person amidst the COVID surge we are experiencing. We will reschedule for the Spring of 2022 and the date will be established and announced very soon.

Sundays are relentless. Worship happens every…single…week. It is a spiritual, cognitive, emotional, and sensory experience. But without careful planning, worship can easily become stale, unimaginative, and bland. This seminar is designed for anyone who has a role in planning worship: pastors, music leaders, lay ministers. We will use both presentations and workshop components to support attendees in developing a process for planning worship that is meaningful, Christ-centered, cohesive, thoughtful, and sensitive.

Registration link:

Brethren and Race
Nov. 4, online via Zoom
Leader: Denise Kettering-Lane

With the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement and concerns about racial inequity in recent years, Brethren have been asking many questions about our past history with slavery, segregation, and racial inequality in America. We will examine common Brethren narratives around rejecting slavery and working towards Civil Rights in light of current concerns, take into account the influence of Brethren German-ethnic identity, and consider significant Annual Conference statements related to race. Finally, we will consider how Brethren history might inform more recent conversations in our congregations, communities, and countries related to race.

Registration link:

SVMC is a Church of the Brethren ministry education partner with the districts of Atlantic Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Middle Pennsylvania, Southern Pennsylvania, and Western Pennsylvania, as well as Bethany Theological Seminary and the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership. Our mission is to equip leaders for ministry in a regionally based, Christ centered, culturally relevant context in ways that bear witness to the beliefs, heritage, and practices of the Church of the Brethren. Contact: 717-361-1450,,


12) Brethren Press’s Advent devotional for 2021, Hoosier Prophet, Maria’s Kit of Comfort among new resources for Brethren

New resources from Brethren Press include the 2021 Advent devotional booklet, this year titled Do Not Be Afraid and written by Angela Finet. Also new from the Church of the Brethren publishing house is Hoosier Prophet: Selected Writings of Dan West, a collection of the writings of the founder of Heifer Project, now Heifer International. Now available to pre-order is a new children’s book about the ministry of Children’s Disaster Services, titled Maria’s Kit of Comfort.

Advent devotional

In the Gospel of Luke, angels proclaimed, “Do not be afraid,” to Zechariah, Mary, and the shepherds keeping watch over their flocks by night. This Advent devotional by Angela Finet, pastor of Mountville (Pa.) Church of the Brethren, revisits the timeless texts and the words that envelope the holy story of Advent to reassure us in times of anxiety and darkness. Emmanuel, God with us.

Individuals and congregations may order by Sept. 28 to receive a discounted price of $4 per copy. Go to

Seasonal subscribers to the devotional series published twice a year in anticipation of Advent and Lent receive the promotional price with no ordering deadlines, spending only $8 a year for both regular-print booklets or $15.90 a year for large print. Subscriptions are renewed automatically each year at the discounted rate, congregations may adjust bulk quantity orders at any time, and subscribers can cancel their enrollment at any time. Call 800-441-3712 and ask about the seasonal devotional standing order program.

Hoosier Prophet

Two former denominational staff–William Kostlevy, recently retired as director of the Brethren Historical Library and Archives, and Jay Wittmeyer, former executive of Global Mission and Service for the Church of the Brethren–present a selection of the writings of Dan West, who was a prolific writer of essays, letters, and speeches.

In addition to being known as the Heifer founder, West was one of the principal architects of mid-twentieth-century Brethren identity. As found in these writings, his witness extends across time and challenges us today. The book offers a glimpse of his prophetic vision for Brethren and for the world, inviting all to a life of peacemaking, living simply, and caring for the least of these, or “the little people,” in his words.

The book includes a foreword by Denise Kettering-Lane, associate professor of Brethren Studies at Bethany Theological Seminary.

$18.99. Order online at

Maria’s Kit of Comfort

Written by Kathy Fry-Miller, a former associate director of Children’s Disaster Services (CDS), with co-author David Doudt and illustrator Kate Cosgrove, this children’s story tells about the Kit of Comfort, “a childcare center in a suitcase.” The Kit of Comfort suitcase assists CDS volunteers in caring for children who have experienced trauma following disasters such as floods, hurricanes, wildfires, or tornados. Volunteer teams arrive at disaster sites with a Kit of Comfort full of carefully selected toys and craft supplies that promote healing through creative, expressive play.

Since 1980, CDS has been meeting the needs of children by setting up play spaces in shelters and assistance centers across the country. CDS is a program of Brethren Disaster Ministries.

Internet price $15.20. Order online at


13) Franklin Grove Church collaborates with Dixon congregation to celebrate the International Day of Peace

By Diana Verhulst

Franklin Grove (Ill.) Church of the Brethren honored the International Day of Peace through a special Sunday service and by giving away grant-funded, custom-made peace bookmarks and Dove-brand mini ice cream bars.

Peace Day this year was Tuesday, Sept. 21, and on that day members of the church were stationed at Casey’s General Store in Franklin Grove, on the Lincoln Highway, to give away ice cream and bookmarks featuring scriptures of peace and church contact information.

Dixon (Ill.) Church of the Brethren collaborated with Franklin Grove. Their giveaway was the same day at Oliver’s Corner Market in Dixon.

Thrivent provided grant funds for the events’ expenses. This year, the day had special meaning; church member and Dixon businessman Ken Novak, who died in July, had asked as one of his last wishes to the church that they do more to promote peace this year than ever before.

In addition, the Franklin Grove congregation held a special Peace Service on Sept. 19, which featured music and messages about nonviolence and the larger church’s overall work toward peace worldwide. (Find the Peace Sunday sermon on YouTube at

Finally, the members planted lily-of-the-valley seeds to represent how disciples of Jesus spread among the nations in ancient times, and created a peace sign formation with pinwheels in the church’s front yard.

Franklin Grove Church of the Brethren established itself in 1845; Dixon Church of the Brethren opened its doors in 1908.

The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by the United Nations. The 2021 theme for this year’s International Day of Peace was “Recovering better for an equitable and sustainable world.”

For more information, call lay pastor Diana Verhulst at 815-456-2422.

14) Ephrata Church encourages families to host block parties

By Stacey Coldiron

In July, we encouraged our congregation at Ephrata (Pa.) Church of the Brethren to go out and be “Jesus in the neighborhood.” It can be challenging to meet and get to know your neighbors when many families stay to themselves and are so busy. Being Jesus to a neighbor can be as simple as helping them carry in their groceries, or mowing someone’s yard when they’re going through a hard time, or just asking how they really are doing.

Doing these things are much easier if you’ve met your neighbors, so we encouraged our families to host block parties. We designed invitations that could be used and offered $100 gift cards for groceries to offset the cost. We had 11 families participate and 8 block parties were held. More than 400 people attended these parties and made connections to their neighbors. Most of those who attended were not church members and many do not attend any church.

At one party, the age span that gathered was 2 months to 80! What a blessing to have multiple generations together and getting to know one another. Neighbors enjoyed it so much that they suggested to their hosts that they would like to do these gatherings more often. One older neighbor told a younger family that if they ever needed an egg or baking soda to come to her and ask. One 9-year-old was asked, “What blessings has God given you?” and her response was, “The block party.”

New connections have been made all over our community, which we pray will continue to grow. We as believers at Ephrata Church of the Brethren are learning how to be innovative, adaptable, and fearless disciples of Jesus so that we can lead more people to him.

Photo by Allen Kevorkov

15) Mountville Church provides ‘re-leaf’ and school kits

By Angela Finet

Mountville Church of the Brethren in Atlantic Northeast District has done a couple of things recently to be “Jesus in the Neighborhood.”

Providing re-leaf: In August, the Mountville Church focused worship services on what the Bible had to say about trees, and how the church is called to care for God’s great creation. Each week, a special collection was taken to support New Community Project’s mission to plant one million trees during the next decade. Trees help eliminate carbon dioxide and prevent erosion. They also create a habitat for birds and animals.

To track their progress, the congregation added a leaf to a bare tree for each $5 raised. At the end of the month, the tree was overwhelmed with leaves! Including an anonymous donor partial match from New Community Project, the congregation contributed enough money to plant 78,790 trees, primarily for our neighbors in Myanmar, South Sudan, and the Congo.

School kits: On Sunday, Aug. 6, Mountville members gathered to create 300-plus school kits under the guidance of Church World Service. Each kit was packaged in a bag that was handmade and unique. These kits, currently warehoused at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., will be shared throughout the country and the world as needs are made known.

16) West Goshen Church honors retiring pastor’s ministry

By Marcia Hall

A recognition and retirement celebration to honor pastor Norman Replogle and his wife, Melissa, was held on Sunday, Sept. 19, at West Goshen (Ind.) Church of the Brethren. One of his favorite Christian musicians, Honeytree, was invited as a special treat for this service, which was followed by a traditional Brethren carry-in meal.

Pastor Replogle was licensed to the ministry at Bremen Church of the Brethren in 1977. He served short-term pastoral posts at New Paris (Ind.) Church of the Brethren, Bethel Church of the Brethren in Carleton, Neb., and Mount Joy (Pa.) Church of the Brethren, as he continued his studies earning a master of divinity degree in 1983. He served as pastor of Pleasant Dale Church of the Brethren in Decatur, Ind., for 12 years from 1983-1995, Pine Creek Church of the Brethren in North Liberty, Ind., for 12 years from 1983-2007, and West Goshen for 13 years from 2007-May 13, 2020.

He and his wife, Melissa, were married in 1979 and raised four children together: Aaron, Jonathon, David, and Rebekah. They enjoy traveling and camping in our many national and state parks. He is an avid outdoorsman and talented woodworker. They are especially enjoying being able to spend a little more time with their children and grandchildren.

After spending all his years growing, learning, and serving in the Church of the Brethren, we wish both pastor Norman and Melissa Replogle many more years relaxing, enjoying, and serving as the Lord guides them.

17) First Chicago holds Zoom conversations with BVSers

By Heidi Gross

Building on conversations between First Church of the Brethren in Chicago, Ill., and Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS) after the re-release of BVS’s statement on racism, the congregation is planning a series of events with current and former BVSers to hear more about their experiences as volunteers.

All are welcome to join. The events will be held on Zoom at 8 p.m (Eastern time) on the second Wednesday of the month through the end of the year: Oct. 13, Nov. 10, and Dec. 8. Each session will include at least one current or former BVSer and a time of sharing and conversation. If you are interested in attending, email to receive Zoom details.


18) Brethren and the National Farm Worker Ministry: 50 years of service

By Galen Fitzkee

In the early 1900s, a group known simply as the Migrant Ministry began their work as a small charity by providing clothing, food, and other necessities to migrant farm workers throughout the country. During the 1960s, however, Migrant Ministry leaders noticed that the needs of their constituents were broader and deeper than before, since migrant workers had begun to publicly campaign for equality, justice, and freedom.

In 1971, the coalition officially rebranded as the National Farm Worker Ministry (NFWM) in order to expand their mission to include supporting farm worker movements and attracting other communities of faith to their cause.

The Church of the Brethren proved to be one such faith community that walked alongside the NFWM following its establishment, and it is in the spirit of celebration that we recognize 50 years of good work by the NFWM and their partners.

In a 1972 issue of Messenger, the Church of the Brethren magazine, contributor John G. Fike was one of the first Brethren to call attention to the struggles facing migrant workers including constant travel, social exclusion, low wages, and racial prejudice (Messenger, Fike, 1972, In Darke County, Ohio, Fike described Brethren communities waking up to the reality of these conditions and taking action to provide day care, education, medical services, and legal aid to migrant workers in ways consistent with the mission of the NFWM.

Other historical examples of Brethren outreach include the Shenandoah County Inter-Church Planning Service (SCIPS) hosting picnics for migrant workers in Virginia, members of Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS) aiding farm workers in the fields, and church member support for boycotts and unionization efforts, which are important goals for the NFWM even today.

The debate over unionization became controversial in Brethren circles since it pitted the financial interest of some Brethren farmers against the farm worker movement’s calls for a more just balance of power, but thanks to staunch Brethren leadership the denomination eventually formally recognized the need for the church to actively improve the conditions facing their migrant worker neighbors.

Ralph Smeltzer was one Church of the Brethren leader in the struggle for farm workers’ rights who took on an important role as a liaison between farm workers, growers, congregations, and NFWM movement leader Cesar Chavez. His work on the ground in California was instrumental in binding the Church of the Brethren to the plight of farm workers and led to an official church statement addressing “The Farm Issue” in 1974. The resolution included commitments to acquaint members with farm worker issues, support government legislation to protect workers, and provide qualified volunteers and grants to help in the meantime.

In the years that followed, Brethren made good on these commitments in the form of BVS placements and the SHARE program for financial support. In a 1978 issue of Messenger, for example, it was reported that a grant for $2,000 was allotted to a Farm Workers Association at a food processing plant in Princeville, Ill. The money helped the workers confront the plant management about poor working conditions, unsanitary living arrangements, and unfair breaches of contract. SHARE director Wil Nolen wrote, “The people have gained a new vision of justice and power to address their needs” (Messenger, Royer, 1978,

In 1999, BVS trainees participated in educational sessions dealing with farm worker issues and got first-hand experience picking fruit alongside workers in the Florida orchards near Camp Ithiel that year (Messenger, Farrar, 1999,

This simple timeline speaks to the depth, breadth, and endurance of the Brethren commitment to support the NFWM and make a difference for farm workers.

As we reflect on 50 years of the NFWM, we celebrate their many accomplishments and yet recognize that work is ongoing. Currently, the NFWM is actively advocating for immigration reforms like the Agricultural Workers Program Act and changes to the H-2A guest worker program in order to better protect workers from abuse, fear of deportation, and the horrible working conditions that they often endure.

Through the Office of Peacebuilding and Policy, the Church of the Brethren carries on its legacy of supporting migrant farm workers through education and advocacy. Office director Nathan Hosler sits on the NFWM board and former BVSer Susu Lassa also contributed to projects that enhanced the partnership between the two organizations. Office staff have previously taken leadership roles in event planning and participated in acts of solidarity, such as marches and vigils, in that capacity. More recently, representatives of the office tuned in to the online “Pathways Prayers for Citizenship” series that allowed faith communities to hear testimonies directly from farm workers as well as learn about ways to advocate for policy change.

Finally, as we all go about our personal lives, it is our hope that Brethren will remain mindful of the grueling and often dangerous toil of many migrant farm workers who give us access to good food in our stores and on our tables. May we use each of our voices to advocate for their safety, security, just treatment, and humanity as the NFWM has done for the past 50 years.

Galen Fitzkee is a Brethren Volunteer Service worker serving at the Church of the Brethren’s Office of Peacebuilding and Policy in Washington, D.C.

19) Brethren bits

– Correction: The last issue of Newsline omitted the link to find the full text of that issue in one document online. Find the Newsline for Sept. 20, 2021, at

— David Vasquez has been hired by Atlantic Northeast District as church video streaming specialist. He will be assisting with technical support for the upcoming online District Conference, working alongside Enten Eller, current interim staff for the position. Vasquez has more than 20 years of experience in the electrical and electronics field and is enrolled at Northampton Community College seeking a certification in instrumentation and controls. His wife, Betzaida, is part of the interim ministry team at Nuevo Amanecer Church of the Brethren, and he teaches Bible school to the youth at the church.

— Linetta Ballew has been hired as acting director of Brethren Woods and Retreat Center, a camp and outdoor ministry center in Shenandoah District. The acting director position will run from Dec. 1, 2021, through Aug. 31, 2022. During this time a search committee will seek to fill the permanent position of executive director of Brethren Woods. Ballew brings 18 years of leadership experience with outdoor ministries. She served as program director of Brethren Woods from 2003-2013 and since 2019 has been assistant director. From 2013-2018 she was co-executive director of Camp Swatara, another Church of the Brethren-related camp. She graduated from Eastern Mennonite Seminary in 2009 with a master of divinity degree and has been ordained in the Church of the Brethren since 2013.

The Gisenyi Church is currently being built in Rwanda. Said a note from the Global Mission executives: “This church will serve as the headquarters of the Rwanda Church of the Brethren and replaces a temporary building that could not pass government inspection.” Photos are by Rwanda church leader Etienne Nsanzimana.

– Bethany Theological Seminary in Richmond, Ind., invites applications for a fulltime, tenure-track faculty position in Peace Studies, beginning Fall 2022. Rank: open. PhD preferred; ABD considered. The appointee will be expected to develop and teach an average of five graduate courses per year, including at least one online course per year, and offer one nongraduate course for the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership biennially. While the primary focus will be courses in Peace Studies, the successful candidate will be able to offer courses in another area of expertise that complements and expands the seminary’s degree and certificate programs. Various fields of study that could supplement Bethany’s Peace Studies curriculum include theology and culture, theopoetics, social justice work, spirituality, history of Christianity, intercultural theology, intersectional theology, and ecological theology. Other duties may include student advising, supervision of MA theses in the area of Peace Studies, serving on at least one major institutional committee annually, participating in the recruitment of new students, participation in faculty meetings and other campus events, and opportunities for speaking engagements. Commitment to the mission and values of the seminary is essential. Applications are specifically encouraged from women, African Americans, Latinx, and other ethnic groups traditionally underrepresented in the seminary professorate. Bethany Theological Seminary’s policy prohibits discrimination in employment opportunities or practices with regard to race, gender, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, or religion. The application deadline is Nov. 15. Interviews will begin in December and continue into early 2022. The appointment will begin on July 1, 2022. To apply, send a letter of application, CV, and names and contact information for three references to Peace Studies Search, Attn: Dean’s Office, Bethany Theological Seminary, 615 National Road West, Richmond, IN 47374; Find the position opening announcement at

— The Church of the Brethren Office of Peacebuilding and Policy is among the 56 peace groups that are urging lawmakers to use the annual defense policy bill, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), to end all US support for the Saudi Arabia-led coalition fighting in Yemen’s civil war. In a joint letter, the organizations wrote, in part: “By suspending the sale of arms and ending US participation in the Saudi coalition’s war and blockade, Congress can prevent a humanitarian catastrophe from spiraling further out of control as it reasserts its constitutional authority on matters of war and peace.”

— The Church of the Brethren in Spain will be contributing to a national fund that has been set up to help people on the Canary Island of La Palma, reported pastor Santos Terrero to Global Food Initiative manager Jeff Boshart. The island is the site of a large, destructive volcanic eruption. The Church of the Brethren congregation in the Canary Islands is not located on La Palma but on an island to the east of there called Lanzarote.

– The Southern Ohio and Kentucky District Conference will be online via Zoom on Oct. 8-9. Included on the schedule are Friday workshops offering continuing education credit led by the District Racial Justice Commission, the District Climate Justice Commission, Zach Spidel and Susan Liller about Jesus in the Neighborhood, and a session on how the Holy Spirit is “moving in our midst” through these ministries. In business sessions, delegates will receive reports and will consider a proposed district budget and a proposed query on racial justice that–if adopted–would be sent on to Annual Conference, among other business. More information is at

— Illinois and Wisconsin District has announced its own “Calling the Called Event.” Said an announcement: “The Calling the Called Committee invites all who may be sensing a call from God to ministry to join us for a morning event on Oct. 23 on Zoom. We will explore call stories from the scripture and from the lives of Church of the Brethren leaders, share in some reflection time, and hear some presentations on how to discern God’s call and what some next steps may be.” For more information, contact the district office.

— Virlina District has announced a special online event titled “Necessary Conversations: Stories that Need to Be Told” with leadership from Curtis and Kathleen Claytor. Curtis Claytor is author of The Ultimate Black History Trivia Book. Kathleen Claytor is a member of Church Women United in Roanoke, Va. The event is scheduled for Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. (Eastern time). “We will sit together to learn their stories and to explore the importance of establishing relationships across racial lines,” said the announcement. A flier is available on

— Camp Bethel, located near Fincastle, Va., has canceled the in-person Heritage Day Festival that had been planned for Oct. 2, according to a district announcement. “COVID concerns continue, and regional ‘breakthrough’ cases and hospitalizations are rising,” said the announcement. “Several congregations are unable to participate because there are not enough available helpers, there are concerns about gathering for preparations and eating, and some actual positive COVID cases within their ranks. It is safe to be outdoors at Camp Bethel, but it’s more challenging to spend hours and hours together in preparation. The Virginia Department of Health currently allows such events (with caution), but the VDH also discourages large public gatherings from ‘mixed households.’ We regret such a late announcement.” The event is rescheduled for next year, on Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022.

Also postponed is “Pilgrimage: A FaithQuest for Adults,” planned by Virlina District to be hosted at Camp Bethel. The event was scheduled for Oct. 8-10.

— The Brethren Heritage Festival at the Young Center at Elizabethtown (Pa.) College is planned during the college’s homecoming festivities on Oct. 16, 1-4 p.m. “Bring the family for children’s crafts, pedal the bicycle to churn ice cream, enjoy popcorn, home-baked bread with apple butter, and ice cream,” said an announcement. “Learn to quilt with experienced quilters. All the while you listen to gospel music and enjoy a magic show! Take a tour of the newly completed Interpretive Gallery and participate in an acapella hymn sing. We eagerly welcome participants and volunteers.” Contact Janice Holsinger at or 717-821-2650.

– “The arrival of rankings season has given Juniata even more reasons to celebrate,” announced this week’s newsletter from James A. Troha, president of Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa. “The college earned its highest-ever ranking, 75th in national liberal arts colleges, in the recently-released U.S. News Top Colleges ( In just a few short years, Juniata has risen 33 places in this U.S. News ranking, which is widely considered one of the most important and visible college rankings in the United States.” In addition, the college “saw a considerable rise” in its ranking from Washington Monthly’s Best Liberal Arts Colleges, ranked 36 in the nation, up from 73 in 2020. “Within that same publication’s community and national service category, Juniata ranked 23rd in recognition of what our students are doing for their communities as a result of the education they are receiving,” wrote Troha.

Newsline is the email news service of the Church of the Brethren. Inclusion in Newsline does not necessarily convey endorsement by the Church of the Brethren. All submissions are subject to editing. Newsline stories may be reprinted if Newsline is cited as the source. Contributors to this issue include Jeff Boshart, Stacey Coldiron, Galen Fitzkee, Jonathan Graham, Anne Gregory, Heidi Gross, Marcia Hall, Nancy Sollenberger Heishman, Janice Holsinger, Nathan Hosler, Allen Kevorkov, Jeff Lennard, Brian Messler, Nancy Miner, Etienne Nsanzimana, David Steele, Santos Terrero, James A. Troha, Diana Verhulst, Roy Winter, and editor Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, director of News Services for the Church of the Brethren. Please send news tips and submissions to . Find the Newsline archive at . Sign up for Newsline and other Church of the Brethren email newsletters and make subscription changes at . Unsubscribe by using the link at the top of any Newsline email.

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