Brethren bits

— On Giving Tuesday, Nov. 29, 58 donors gave a total of $11,499 to the Church of the Brethren’s denominational ministries. These gifts help us to continue the work of Jesus and be a caring presence around the world. Faithful support empowers opportunities to nurture faith for people of all ages, to accompany communities through recovery from disaster or violence, and build relationships to navigate life in community. Thank you to all who participated in the celebration on Giving Tuesday! If you missed the opportunity, you can still make a gift today at

— The Office of Ministry of the Church of the Brethren is welcoming the executive committee of the Council of District Executives to a meeting at the denomination’s General Offices in Elgin, Ill., next Monday and Tuesday. Hosting the meeting is Nancy Heishman, director of the Office of Ministry. District executive ministers who are attending include Timothy Button-Harrison of Northern Plains District, Pete Kontra of Atlantic Northeast District, Russ Matteson of Pacific Southwest District, and Bill Waugh of Southern Pennsylvania District (via Zoom).

Messenger magazine’s latest playlist is online, selected by Emily Bowdle, Brethren Volunteer Service orientation assistant and a BVS volunteer. Bowdle has selected music inspired by the December issue of Messenger. Find links to the list on Spotify and YouTube at

Did you miss a past playlist? You can find them all at

In more news from Messenger, the editorial team will be meeting in person for the first time since 2019 on Monday, Dec. 5, at the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill.

Please pray… For inspiration and wisdom for the Messenger editorial team as the group imagines, dreams, and plans for the future of the Church of the Brethren magazine.

— In more news from the Office of Ministry, a survey of ministers on the topic of “Sabbath rest” has been sent out by email to Church of the Brethren credentialed ministers. This survey, created by the Pastoral Compensation and Benefits Advisory Committee, is intended for active pastors and retired pastors.

— “Tis the season for nominating leaders in the Church of the Brethren!” said an announcement from the Womaen’s Caucus. “Whether you’ve been elected to a denominational leadership position, or have no idea how to even nominate someone, join the Womaen’s Caucus of the Church of the Brethren and others on Zoom for an informative, active session.” The online event is Tuesday, Dec. 6, at 8 p.m. (Eastern time). The intent is “to expand the pool of Annual Conference nominees. Nominations are made online, with or without consulting your nominee first. But, the nomination can only move forward if the person you nominated fills out the nominee information form–and over half of the nominees never do!” Attend the online “Nominations Party” via Zoom at Find out more about the open offices and the nomination process on the Annual Conference website at

— Ivan Patterson, a staunch supporter of Bethany Seminary and Brethren Disaster Ministries among other church ministries, at age 95 has made his 567th blood donation. The achievement was reported as part of the Daily Advocate’s story on Buckeye fans at the 29th annual Darke County OSU Alumni Club Tailgate Blood Drive hosted by Greenville (Ohio) Church of the Brethren. “Superfans Larry Lokai and Denny Singleton…wanted Ivan to know he was the spitting image of venerable Game Day host Lee Corso,” said the article. “Ivan didn’t recall Corso, but he recognized Larry in his trademark red face paint and wild scarlet-and-gray wig. ‘Do you ever wash your face?’ he asked. ‘Once a month!’ Larry replied.” Find the article at


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