Newsline for June 24, 2022

1) Disaster staff monitor Afghanistan earthquake, alarming food insecurity in Africa

2) Bethany Seminary president Jeffrey Carter expresses sense of hope in ‘center that seeks unity above all else’

3) World Council of Churches Central Committee issues statements on the war in Ukraine, climate emergency

4) At the foundation of Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church is relationship-building

5) Gene Hagenberger retires as executive minister for Mid-Atlantic District

6) Brethren bits: Prayer request for Ecuador, latest shipment by Material Resources, personnel changes in the Brethren Historical Library and Archives (BHLA), webinar offered on the topic “Refugia and Resilience: Sanctuaries for Our Spirit, Climate, and Creation”

Photo by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford

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1) Disaster staff monitor Afghanistan earthquake, alarming food insecurity in Africa

By Roy Winter

Brethren Disaster Ministries is monitoring the deadly earthquake that struck in eastern Afghanistan on Wednesday, June 22. Currently, rescue efforts are still underway, with more than 1,000 deaths reported and many more people injured or missing. Since the country was taken over by the Taliban, many of Brethren Disaster Ministries’ typical partner organizations are not able to respond. Staff will continue to monitor the situation to identify a potential response, including identifying possible potential partners.

Staff are monitoring an expanding crisis in the horn of Africa (Ethiopia, Somalia, and Kenya) where an extreme drought, soaring food prices, and high fuel costs are adding to a massive humanitarian crisis. The United Nations reports 29.7 million people are going hungry and the number keeps increasing. This crisis is made more difficult as humanitarian aid is limited due to the war in Ukraine and other crises. Many countries in Africa rely on wheat imports from Ukraine, adding to the challenges.

Food crises also are developing at an alarming rate in western Africa and much of the Sahel region. The need is becoming so widespread that developing a response plan has been more difficult. Staff will continue to monitor these situations and develop a response in the near future.

– Roy Winter is executive director of Service Ministries for the Church of the Brethren. Find out more about Brethren Disaster Ministries at Give to the work of Brethren Disaster Ministries through the Emergency Disaster Fund at

USGS map showing the area affected by the massive earthquake in eastern Afghanistan on June 22. Image from USGS website

2) Bethany Seminary president Jeffrey Carter expresses sense of hope in ‘center that seeks unity above all else’

A release from the World Council of Churches

Bethany Seminary president Jeff Carter represents the Church of the Brethren on the World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee. His reflections below were drawn from an interview after a meeting with historic peace churches and the Moravians that occurred during the recent Central Committee meeting:

Q: What do you feel the historic peace churches can contribute to a meeting like this?

Carter: Clearly it is our theological starting point in seeking first an imitation of Jesus and then how that works in the world through the expression of our witness, which is praxis-oriented. And so to begin with that witness and to focus on reconciliation and peace—which is at the heart of the WCC—but for that to be the beginning point. The historic peace churches offer an organic voice that comes from not only our theology but also our lives together.

Bethany Theological Seminary president Jeff Carter. Photo by Ivars Kupcis/WCC

Q: As president of the Church of the Brethren’s theological seminary, have you seen any changes in interest in peace theology?

Carter: At the seminary the focus on training pastors for congregational ministry has always been a priority. Over the last decade, we’ve expanded our academic programmes. What we’ve found is that more ecumenical students are interested in programmes outside of the master of divinity, and so through these new programmes, they also not only find specialities like theopoetics—a matching of the arts and theology—but they find our peace theology, which is at the root of who we are. Ecumenical students enter focusing on one passion or maybe one perspective discover our peace theology, and it expands not only their view of the world but also their passion and interest. In some ways, we become a witness for our theology in the ecumenical movement through the education we offer, and we’re growing. From 20% ecumenical students five years ago, today we are 50% ecumenical students and our Brethren student numbers have stayed the same. We’ve seen this expansion not just because of new programmes but also, I think, because of this praxis-oriented theology which is not just in the head but in the heart and the life we live. Folks are drawn to it.

Q: When it comes to situations of conflict and war, such as the war in Ukraine, one could say a peace witness is more important than ever—and yet also we could say the peace witness has failed. What is the message that we need to bring as Christians, as peace churches, in tragic and real situations such as this?

Carter: The motto of Bethany seminary is “so that the world flourishes” and a recent critique of that, which was very fair is, “what happens if the world doesn’t flourish?” Because we live in a world that is very broken, yet God loves. So the critique is, “flourishing” may not be in the immediacy. People expect peace to happen now, or for there to be a direct correlation between an action and the conclusion, that because you do this then peace happens. We know peace is a process. In the “Ecumenical Call for a Just Peace,” what I found most valuable in that document is that it’s a systemic understanding of peacemaking. We need to be working at multiple levels at the same time, in multiple directions, knowing that there will be glimpses of peace as we are in this pilgrimage, to use that language. In the end, the eschatological reality is that peace will be found in the peaceable Kingdom but that we see it in glimpses through our work and faithfulness. In the current situation right now in Ukraine, we’ve been called to account that there have been failures prior to our call for peace today. We can’t go back and fix that—so then how do we emphasize the guiding light of reconciliation and peace, the guiding light of dialogue and accompaniment, the guiding light of maintaining basic human needs as we are in the midst of this war? How do we maintain those guiding lights and put those at the fore and say, in the midst of armed conflict, and these atrocities of war, we will continue to work at these higher values as we call for an end to armed conflict, maybe smaller pieces, but the smaller pieces then work at a sustainable peace. Another key piece that came out of this morning’s conversations on the war in the Ukraine is the question: “Are we listening to each other?” And I think that’s another part of our tradition. It’s the dialogue—Matthew 18—to be in conversation, to seek reconciliation. It’s not to censure, it’s not to divide, it’s not to separate – it’s always to reconcile which is always our peace theology, but it’s not immediate.

Q: What is your hope for your church’s ecumenical witness going forward?

Carter: Personally, I’ve had a heart for ecumenism—it’s just part of my very nature and DNA. I would love for the Church of the Brethren to invest more in our ecumenical relationships. I think when you’re under stress as an institution, you turn inward. In the Church of the Brethren, there is at the core – theologically, culturally, politically, however you want to frame it, a centre that seeks unity above all else, and that middle piece is for me the most hopeful. I would love for the Church of the Brethren, as we move through our denominational division, to really focus on the things that make for unity and on how we rediscover our theology and value its witness not just to the world but with and for the world, and that we are a needed partner on the national and world stage. I know that when you are stressed institutionally, your first response is not external, it is internal. But I would love for the church as we move through this time to be able to find the courage and the energy and the resources to do both—to take care of the house as we look to the world.

— Find out more about the WCC Central Committee meeting at Find a report on the peace churches’ gathering at the Central Committee, “Peace churches call for more creativity in our peacebuilding,” at

3) World Council of Churches Central Committee issues statements on the war in Ukraine, climate emergency

Following are the full text of two statements issued by the World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee meeting on June 15-18, 2022. The Church of the Brethren is a founding denomination of the WCC and is represented on the Central Committee by Bethany Seminary president Jeff Carter:

Statement on the war in Ukraine:

“Turn away from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.” Psalm 34:14
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.” Matthew 5:9

Member churches of the World Council of Churches have proclaimed together that Just Peace is a pilgrim journey into God’s purpose for humanity and all creation (Ecumenical Call for Just Peace). The way of Just Peace draws us to the example of Jesus of Nazareth, a collaborative search for the common good, and a holistic and systemic approach to reconciling conflict. For “the life and teachings, the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, point toward the peaceable kingdom of God.” Living in the greater hope given to us in the life, death, and violence-overcoming resurrection of Jesus Christ, we have committed ourselves to seek the common good of all.

Every human being is made in the Image of God. Women and men, children and elderly, civilians and soldiers, the wounded and dying, those who grieve and those who fear, those displaced and those who stay at home, all bear the Imago Dei. We are all called to become more Christ-like in this moment, to turn from lack of concern, from greed, from anger to be transformed more completely into a global human community who live in the fullness of life and recognize the dignity and respond to the needs of each.

We participants in the meeting of the World Council of Churches’ central committee in Geneva, Switzerland, on 15-18 June 2022, are all deeply affected by what has happened in Ukraine since our last meeting on 9-15 February 2022, for when one part of the body suffers, all parts suffer with it. We are in Christian solidarity with all those who suffer in this conflict. Our hearts grieve that, after eight years of unresolved crisis and conflict in the eastern regions of Ukraine, on 24 February 2022 the Russian Federation launched an illegal invasion of its neighbour, a sovereign state. This tragic development represents a terrible failure of diplomacy, responsibility and accountability to international law.

We lament that fact that, as a result, the people of Ukraine are enduring an appalling toll of death, destruction and displacement. Thousands of Ukrainian civilians have been killed, cities such as Mariupol have been laid in ruins, and more than 14 million people–over one-quarter of the entire population of Ukraine–have fled their homes. Moreover, there are many reports of atrocities which may constitute war crimes and crimes against humanity, including sexual and gender-based violence, as well as greatly heightened vulnerability to human trafficking. The conflict is accompanied by a massive proliferation of weapons in the region, but weapons cannot provide a solution to this crisis; the only real solution is to “seek peace and pursue it”.

The effects of this conflict also threaten to tip many millions of already food-insecure people into famine in several countries around the world, to provoke widespread social and political instability, to destroy the post-World War II international security architecture, to provoke a new global arms race, and to accelerate our trajectory towards climate catastrophe at a time when the nations of the world should finally be uniting to confront this common existential threat in order to limit global warming to 1.5°C.

The central committee appreciates and affirms the various initiatives taken by the WCC and its members and ecumenical partners with regard to the situation in Ukraine, dating back to before the initial crisis of 2014, and especially since the invasion on 24 February 2022. The central committee affirms the acting general secretary’s clear denunciation of the armed aggression launched on that date and his reiterated appeals to stop the war, and welcomes the other initiatives that have been undertaken, including the two ecumenical roundtable meetings convened by the WCC (30 March and 10 June 2022), and the visits jointly with ACT Alliance to local churches and related organizations receiving and caring for refugees from Ukraine, both in Hungary and Romania (14-18 March 2022), and in Russia (21-26 May 2022).

Grave concerns are being raised in the ecumenical fellowship about any misuse of religious language to justify or support armed aggression, in sharp contrast to the Christian calling to be peacemakers. A fresh and critical analysis of the Christian faith in its relation to politics, the nation and nationalism is urgently called for.

The central committee lifts up the outcome of the Inter-Orthodox Pre-Assembly Consultation (held in Cyprus on 10-15 May 2022) in which participants expressed their “grave concern over the armed conflict in Ukraine that has already claimed many people’s lives” and were “unanimous in condemning the wars and call upon all the parties involved in the conflicts to do everything within their power for the urgent establishment of peace and for ensuring safety in Ukraine, Russia, Europe, and the whole world.” They also condemned “systematic campaigns of disinformation that promote divisions and hatred.”

Especially from an ecumenical perspective, encounter and dialogue is of central importance in such a situation, and we underline the observation made by participants in the second roundtable meeting convened by the WCC on 10 June 2022, that “The calling to dialogue, encounter, and the pursuit of mutual understanding is the very essence of ecumenism. Division and exclusion is the antithesis of the purpose of our movement.” We acknowledge and welcome the commitment of the Moscow Patriarchate–representing the WCC’s constituency in both Russia and Ukraine – to engage in encounter and dialogue on the situation in Ukraine under the auspices of the WCC, though circumstances prevented them from taking part in either of the two ecumenical roundtable meetings so far convened. However, dialogue remains an obvious urgent necessity to address such a critical situation for the people of Ukraine, for the future of the world, and for the ecumenical movement.

The central committee:

Deplores the illegal and unjustifiable war inflicted on the people and sovereign state of Ukraine. We lament the awful and continuing toll of deaths, destruction and displacement, of destroyed relationships and ever more deeply entrenched antagonism between the people of the region, of escalating confrontation globally, of increased famine risk in food insecure regions of the world, of economic hardship and heightened social and political instability in many countries.

Declares that war, with the killing and all the other miserable consequences it entails, is incompatible with God’s very nature and will for humanity and against our fundamental Christian and ecumenical principles, and rejects any misuse of religious language and authority to justify armed aggression.

Reiterates the appeal of the global fellowship of churches represented in the WCC for an end to this tragic war, for an immediate ceasefire to halt the death and destruction, and for dialogue and negotiations to secure a sustainable peace.

Appeals urgently to all sides in the conflict to respect the principles of international humanitarian law, including especially with regard to the protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure, and for the humane treatment of prisoners of war; we urge the exchange of prisoners of war and of the bodies of deceased combatants between the two sides.

Calls for a much greater investment by the international community in searching for and promoting peace, rather than in escalating confrontation and division.

Affirms the mandate and special role of the World Council of Churches in accompanying its member churches in the region and as a platform and safe space for encounter and dialogue in order to address the many pressing issues for the world and for the ecumenical movement arising from this conflict, and the obligation of its members to seek unity and together serve the world, and therefore urges members of the ecumenical fellowship in Russia and Ukraine to make use of this platform.

Commends the local churches, specialized ministries and all humanitarian organizations that are supporting the suffering people in all parts of Ukraine and receiving and caring for refugees fleeing from the war, and stresses the critical importance of the principle of humanitarian neutrality in this context.

Prays for all the victims of this conflict, in Ukraine, in the region and throughout the world, that their suffering may cease and that they may be consoled and restored to lives in safety and dignity, and assures them of the love and sympathy of the WCC fellowship of churches for them in their plight.

Calls upon our Christian brothers and sisters of the Russian and Ukrainian churches to use their voices to oppose the continuing deaths, destruction, displacement and dispossession of the people of Ukraine including their fellow Christians.

Asks the Acting General Secretary to lead a ‘Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace’ delegation to Kiev and Moscow to meet with the leadership of the churches in both places to discern the things that make for peace and what is needed to urge their governments for an immediate ceasefire and peace negotiations.

Further asks the Acting General Secretary to do all in his power for the forthcoming 11th WCC Assembly in Karlsruhe (31 August-8 September 2022) to contribute meaningfully to the search for peace through dialogue, for justice, human dignity and human rights–including by ensuring representation from Ukraine at the Assembly–and for the reconciliation and unity to which we are called by our Lord and Saviour Christ Jesus.

(Find this statement posted online at

Statement on the imperative for effective response to the climate emergency:

Decades of scientific research have validated the reality of the accelerating climate emergency that now confronts us as an actual imminent catastrophe. Decades of advocacy by the World Council of Churches together with many faith and civil society partners have articulated the need for action, for a just transition to a sustainable future, and for accountability to the most vulnerable poorer communities and Indigenous Peoples, reflecting the historic responsibility of the most developed industrialized nations.

The latest reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) make it clear: to stay within the safer limit of 1.5°C global warming and to avoid much more serious consequences for life on earth, the global community has no more time to waste in reversing the trajectory of global greenhouse gas emissions. Our Christian faith impels us to act–not only to speak–to safeguard God’s Creation, to protect the most vulnerable, and to promote justice. The global community is now faced with an existential need to move and act immediately and effectively for the sake of the whole of Creation, of which all human beings are a part. It is a moral and spiritual imperative.

The final statement of the recently concluded Fifth Halki Summit–co-organized by the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Sophia University Institute on 8-11 June 2022–observed that that “we are at a decisive turning point for the future of the human family” in which the churches are called to play an essential role in developing a shared ecological ethos, in overcoming the culture of waste, and in “reinforcing connections between ourselves and all of God’s creation, between our faith and our action, between our theology and our spirituality, between what we say and what we do, between science and religion, between our beliefs and every discipline, between our sacramental communion and our social consciousness, between our generation and the generations to come”.

The global metanoia required to confront this challenge must, first and foremost, entail an urgent phase-out of fossil fuel extraction and use, and a just transition to renewable energy sources that protects the rights of Indigenous Peoples and other marginalized communities and takes into account gender justice. However, in stark contrast to this need, the world is currently on track to produce more than twice as much coal, oil and gas by 2030 than is consistent with limiting the rise in global temperature to below 1.5°C, and this negative trajectory is being accelerated as a consequence of the war in Ukraine.

The world’s wealthiest 20% are responsible for nearly 70% of all greenhouse gas emissions. This must be reflected in the global decisions to achieve climate neutrality, and the rich nations and communities of the world must recognize their duty to act first and furthest in reducing their emissions to sustainable levels, to address loss and damage and to support mitigation and adaptation in poorer countries and communities. This is a matter of justice and fundamental moral and ethical responsibility.

Indeed, continuing wilfully on our current destructive path is a crime–against the poor and vulnerable, against those least responsible for the crisis but bearing its heaviest impacts, against our children and future generations, and against the living world. New mechanisms of accountability should be considered in this regard, and the central committee recognizes with appreciation initiatives for the establishment of ’ecocide’ as an international crime, and for a Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty.

We recognize that Indigenous Peoples are both especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change while being among the least responsible for it, and sources of important wisdom and spirituality for a sustainable future. Indigenous communities occupy 20-25% of the Earth’s land surface, holding 80% of the world’s remaining biodiversity. To protect the ecosystems threatened by climate change and extractive industries, Indigenous People must be acknowledged, respected and supported. There can be no liveable future without them.

Noting that Kiribati has recently declared a state of natural disaster due to prolonged drought and that many islands are threatened by large ocean surges, we lift up the peril faced by low-lying island nations in the Pacific region and elsewhere. We stand with all the communities at greatest risk from rising sea levels, who face a future as ‘climate-induced displaced people’. We acknowledge that climate change is already becoming one of the major drivers of displacement and migration, presenting a major international humanitarian challenge.

We observe the mounting threat to biodiversity in God’s abundant creation that climate change represents, with so many species at increasing risk of extinction and with profound consequences for the whole web of life.

We recognize the leadership of children and young people in challenging the status quo that has brought us to this precipice. Such young people are holding governments, economic vested interests and all current authorities more effectively to account than the efforts of many others. They are powerfully making the case that climate inaction by the current generation of leaders is a matter of grave intergenerational injustice and of violence against children.

We are deeply disturbed and dismayed that at almost the very last moment for the world to finally come together to confront the common existential threat posed by the climate emergency, a new conflict in the heart of Europe is entrenching fresh and deeper divisions in the international community and driving us all even more rapidly towards climate catastrophe.

The central committee therefore:

Condemns the exploitation, degradation and the violation of Creation to satisfy the greed of humanity.

Urges all member churches and ecumenical partners around the world to give the climate emergency the priority attention that a crisis of such unprecedented and all-encompassing dimensions deserves, both in word and deed, and to amplify their efforts to demand the necessary action by their respective governments within the necessary timeframe to limit global warming to 1.5°C, and to meet historic responsibilities to poorer, more vulnerable nations and communities.

Appreciates the joint report of the WCC Ecumenical Indigenous Peoples Network Reference Group and Working Group on Climate Change that underlines the pivotal role of Indigenous Peoples in shaping an alternative path of being in right relationship with the whole of Creation.

Observes with dismay that the inter-sessional Climate Change Conference in Bonn has ended without adequate financial commitments on mitigation and adaptation or with regard to loss and damage, and calls once again upon the wealthier industrialized countries most responsible for climate change to fulfil their duty to poorer more vulnerable countries and regions that are suffering the heaviest impacts of this disaster, and to stop using climate action and financing as a trade-off or a tool for other political purposes.

Appeals to all members of the global ecumenical family–churches, organizations, communities, families and individuals–to ’walk the talk’ and to take such actions as they are able in their own contexts, noting in a global context that the action or inaction of one country disproportionately negatively impacts vulnerable countries. To help drive a just transition to a sustainable future member churches are encouraged to draw inspiration from the many resources made available by the WCC and other relevant sources.

Urges member churches and ecumenical partners to advocate with their national authorities for the introduction of legislation to ensure the implementation of measures in accordance with the global Paris Agreement and to achieve the relevant UN Sustainable Development Goals, and for reallocation of military spending budgets to the purposes of a just transition to renewable energy, sustainable development and the eradication of extreme poverty.

Encourages efforts to promote climate-responsible finance in the affairs of all members of the global ecumenical family, by ensuring that through our pension funds, banks and other financial service arrangements we are not complicit in financing climate-destroying fossil fuel industries but are supporting the accelerated development of an economy based on sustainable renewable energy and mutual solidarity.

Calls for the forthcoming 11th WCC Assembly, the last such global ecumenical assembly within the remaining window of opportunity for action to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, to be used appropriately as a platform for promoting the ecological metanoia we need in the ecumenical movement and in the wider world, through the encounter of churches from rich nations and poor, from the privileged and the imperilled. We invite all WCC member churches and ecumenical partners to come to the Assembly prepared to listen and learn from the stories of struggle and resilience from affected communities, to share their commitments and initiatives, and to match their words with deeds, to help ensure a sustainable future for the living world that God created in such abundance and complexity.

Invites consideration by the WCC Assembly and governing bodies of the establishment of a new Commission on Climate Change and Sustainable Development in order to bring the appropriate focus to this issue in this pivotal period.

(Find this statement posted online at

4) At the foundation of Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church is relationship-building

By Jen Jensen

The post-resurrection appearance of Jesus on the Emmaus Road in Luke’s gospel is powerful because it reminds us that Jesus’ presence is as important as his sermons and stories.

Jesus was present as the two men he met on the road confessed what was weighing deep within each of them. Not only did they share with one another, Jesus walked alongside them hoping to sense where they were on their journey. Jesus reminded them that their story was not yet complete, that God’s plan was unfolding before them. His reassurance was simple and profound, so much so they invited him to stay. Around the fellowship of the table that evening–in a place of mutual discovery and exploration–Jesus revealed himself. Following events that left them questioning nearly everything, they found themselves in a space of genuine care and companionship with Jesus himself. It was there they knew their journey was valued and that, without a doubt, God’s plan would continue to unfold. With renewed faith for their journey, the two shared the hope and joy of the evening with their companions.

Continuing the work of Jesus, the Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church program exists in the Church of the Brethren to walk with, listen to, and advocate for part-time, multi-vocational, and not-paid-to-scale pastors. The program empowers them to live and lead well by enriching their journey through intentional relationships and thoughtful wisdom sharing.

A survey of Church of the Brethren district executives in 2018 found that at least 75 percent of pastors serving congregations were part-time, multi-vocational, or not-paid-to-scale. In 2019, a subsequent study of Church of the Brethren part-time and multi-vocational pastors found that chief among their needs were support and resources, as well as opportunities to connect and learn. Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church is directly addressing those needs by providing intentional relationships and thoughtful wisdom sharing, while pastors retain agency to pick and choose the type of support they need depending on their schedule, their season of ministry, and their hopes for thriving in ministry.

At the foundation of Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church is relationship-building. “Circuit riders” are the heart of the program, providing clergy peer relationships that are mutually beneficial. Also offered this year are opportunities for spiritual direction and clergy coaching. Small group connections include webinars, book studies, and open group spiritual support that provides interactive participation on topics relevant to pastors’ work and well-being.

Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church believes wholeheartedly that ministry leaders need the gift to connect with peers who provide tangible grace, engage in intentional opportunities for rest and renewal of call, and time to rediscover their deeply held purpose.

Find a list of opportunities available through Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church at or by contacting program manager Jen Jensen, at You can also follow us on Facebook or Instagram at @ptpftcbrethren.

— Jen Jensen is program manager for Part-Time Pastor; Full-Time Church, a program within the Church of the Brethren’s Office of Ministry.


5) Gene Hagenberger retires as executive minister for Mid-Atlantic District

Gene Hagenberger retires as Mid-Atlantic District executive minister on July 15, with compensation continuing through Nov. 30. He has served in leadership of the district for more than 13 years, beginning in the role on Aug. 1, 2009.

During his tenure, Hagenberger served in various roles on the Council of District Executives related to gifts discernment and executive training and development. Most recently he has been the council’s representative to the Pastoral Compensation and Benefits Advisory Committee of the Church of the Brethren Annual Conference.

Licensed by Burnham Church of the Brethren in Middle Pennsylvania District in 1975, he was ordained by Pipe Creek Church of the Brethren in Mid-Atlantic District in 1985. Prior to his role as district executive, he pastored congregations in Virlina, Middle Pennsylvania, and Mid-Atlantic Districts, most recently at the Easton congregation.

He holds degrees from Elizabethtown (Pa.) College, Drew Theological Seminary, and Western Maryland College, and a certificate in Theology and Ministry from Princeton Theological Seminary. In addition, he holds an executive certificate in Religious Fundraising from the Lake Institute on Faith and Giving of the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

6) Brethren bits

— The Material Resource staff loaded two 40-foot containers headed to Liberia this week. Material Resources is a Church of the Brethren program that processes, warehouses, and ships relief goods out of the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md. The shipments made this week contained equipment and supplies to build an airplane hangar, including things like a roof access hatch, plain tail stand, grinder, vise, gantry crane, and sheet metal. “We have been receiving items for more than a year to complete this shipment,” said director Loretta Wolf.

— The Brethren Historical Library and Archives (BHLA) is saying goodbye to archive intern Allison Snyder, who is closing out two years in the job. An online, Facebook Live event in her honor will be held on Thursday, July 7, at 10 a.m. (central time). Go to

The Global Food Initiative has shared a prayer request from Fundacion Brethren y Unida (FBU) in Ecuador, which is an organization that grew out of the former Church of the Brethren mission in Ecuador. They asked for prayer as what had been largely peaceful protests seemed to be on the verge of taking a turn. Some staff and families had to leave the area where FBU has its farm in Picalqui, an hour from Quito. For some days their dairy farm has been unable to deliver any of its milk and the refrigerators are full of cheese and butter with nowhere else left to store it. Read about the concerns of indigenous groups in Ecuador in this report from Reuters:

— Ashley Scarr begins June 27 as the 2022-2023 intern in the Brethren Historical Library and Archives. She is a graduate of San Diego State University with a bachelor’s degree in English and has most recently been administrative assistant for San Diego (Calif.) First Church of the Brethren.

— “Refugia and Resilience: Sanctuaries for Our Spirit, Climate, and Creation” is the title of an upcoming webinar offered by Creation Justice Ministries on Thursday, June 30, starting at 6 (Eastern time). “Come soak in wisdom from Dr. Debra Rienstra, Dr. Tim Van Deelen, and Dr. Rick Lindroth,” said an announcement. “As the etymology of the term implies, refugia are places of refuge. They are places to find shelter–but only for a time. More importantly, refugia are places to begin, places where the tender and harrowing work of reconstruction and renewal takes root. Join us to explore how your congregation can be a place of refugia, creating space for healing spirit, climate, and creation.” Register for the online workshop find out more at

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 Shamek Cardona, Nancy Sollenberger Heishman, Jen Houser, Jen Jensen, Roy Winter, Loretta Wolf, 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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