Brethren bits

– Remembrance: Gladys Naylor, 104, who was part of the Church of the Brethren mission in Ecuador and in Europe accompanied her late husband, Kurtis Naylor, at the World Council of Churches office in Geneva, Switzerland, has died on May 16 at the Cedars in McPherson, Kan. In Ecuador, she taught school and worked in the cultural center. In the US she was an executive on the national staff of Church Women United, was a director with the YWCA, and was corresponding secretary for the International Committee for the World Day of Prayer. She also was a high school teacher. The Naylors returned to Europe in 1959 to direct Church of the Brethren program, and also to represent the Brethren at the WCC in Geneva until 1963, according to a history published by Brethren Press. She was born on Feb. 5, 1918, in Navarre, Kan., the daughter of Benjamin Hoover and Margaret (Hoffmann) Shank. In 1942, she married Kurtis Friend Naylor, and they were married 58 years before his death in 2001. She was a graduate of McPherson College and a member of McPherson Church of the Brethren. Survivors include daughters Merylee Ortmayer of Lexington, Ky.; Cherylin Peniston (W.J.) of Thornton, Colo.; Mariza Naylor of Alta Loma, Calif.; and Illana Naylor (Richard Barrett) of Manassas, Va.; grandchildren and great-grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Memorial gifts are received to McPherson Church of the Brethren and McPherson College. Condolences may be sent to the family at Find an obituary online at

— “You are invited to join On Earth Peace for a Day of Celebration!” said an announcement of the special Zoom event on June 29 “to highlight our work as we appreciate and invite your ongoing support. The day-long celebration will include activities from each of our program areas. You are invited to come and go as your schedule allows using the same ZOOM link,” said the announcement from On Earth Peace. The events include (in Eastern time):
• 11:30 a.m. – Worship
• 12 noon – “Read Alouds” featuring children’s books promoting justice and peace
• 1:30 p.m. – Cooking class with a conversation
• 3 p.m. – Interns, fellows, staff meet and greet
• 4 p.m. – Kingian Nonviolence Intro Training
• 6 p.m. – Keynote on Anti-War and Anti-Militarism
Register at

— Community Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is joining calls for a Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty, as part of its work for climate justice. “People of all religions have been sounding the alarm for over a decade,” said an announcement. “But ineffective or corrupt governments, powerful extractive industries, financial institutions and fundamentalist cultural and religious forces have blocked the necessary steps. Throughout history, the only force that has overcome such inertia and resistance is courageous, public, values-based leadership for compassion, love and justice. That is why we are coming together now to call for a Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty. We are peacefully, respectfully, and firmly lifting our voices to call for the actions that the world urgently needs, now:
• An immediate end to new fossil fuel infrastructure projects
• A rapid decline in fossil fuel production with a corresponding surge in renewable energy
• A commitment to a just transition for impacted workers and climate-vulnerable communities and regions that have done little or nothing to cause this crisis. We’re gathering signatures ahead of the media launch during the G7 in June. Invite your faith leaders and communities to sign today!” Find out more at

Washington City (D.C.) Church of the Brethren hosted a faith-based “Wear Orange” event on June 3 for National Gun Violence Awareness Day. The event included prayer, lament, and action to turn guns into garden tools.

A Facebook post from Middlebury (Ind.) Church of the Brethren pastor Debbie Eisenbise, about a recent event in which the congregation lamented the deaths of children and teachers gunned down in Uvalde, Texas.

— An interfaith statement at Stockholm+50 is urging commitment “to become protectors of this earth,” reported the World Council of Churches (WCC) in a release. The statement titled “Faith Values and Reach – Contribution to Environmental Policy,” was signed by representatives of various faith-based organizations and indigenous cultures across the world, including the WCC, and directed to the governments, UN entities, civil society, and all stakeholders of the “Stockholm+50” processes. “The world is facing a triple ‘pandemic’ of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution,” reads an introduction to the message. “Those hardest hit are those who have caused the least damage.” Said the release: “The message notes that root causes of the triple planetary crises are deeply fueled by structural greed and apathy that underpin our current economic systems. ‘Amassing of obscene wealth by corporations and select individuals is directly related to global environmental problems and solutions, which is morally and ethically unacceptable,’ the message reads. ‘Without addressing these underlying causes, we are on a collision course to disaster.’ The message further notes that poor and marginalized people, especially women, children, older persons, Indigenous people and those with disabilities are most impacted by climate change.” Download the full message from

– Anabaptist World, a magazine that reports on Mennonite and other Anabaptist bodies, is offering a page of reporting out of the just-completed conference of the Mennonite Church USA at The conference made some key decisions affecting the life of the denomination.

— Enten Eller, pastor of Ambler Church of the Brethren in Pennsylvania and a member of the pastoral team for Living Stream Church of the Brethren, a fully online congregation, has had an opinion piece published in the Reporter Online titled “Saying ‘No’ to the Gun God.” His article cited Deuteronomy 6:4, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone,” and Habakkuk 1:2-4 (NRSVue), “O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not listen? Or cry to you ‘Violence!’ and you will not save? Why do you make me see wrongdoing and look at trouble? Destruction and violence are before me; strife and contention arise. So the law becomes slack, and justice never prevails. The wicked surround the righteous; therefore judgment comes forth perverted.” He wrote, in part: “God asks us to worship only him. Our safety, our security, comes not from guns, but from God. Prayers and moments of silence are insufficient right now, because without action, this assault on our children will end as before, with no meaningful change…. It is past time to act…with love, with compassion, working together for the good of this country. And act we must. No more sacrifices. Our children’s lives depend upon it. Our God calls us to nothing less than to choose life.” Read the full opinion piece at


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