Brethren bits

— Brethren Disaster Ministries is sharing a request from Mennonite Disaster Service seeking leads on possible furnished housing for a six-week period beginning in April or May located in Chicago, Ill., or neighboring communities of Oak Park, Cicero, or Berwyn. Mennonite Disaster Service is working at responding to the June 29 to July 2, 2023, flooding that happened in areas of Cook County, Ill. The housing “could be anything from a distinct guest space with kitchenette to an apartment, coach house, or four-bedroom home,” said the announcement. Here is some information on the disaster: Contact Ronn Frantz at or Matt Troyer-Miller at

— Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., has announced plans for its 146th Commencement Ceremony to be held on Saturday, May 11. The commencement speaker will be Angela (Montag) Jones, a 2001 graduate of Juniata, who works for Netflix as director of business and legal affairs (original series). Also receiving an honorary degree during the ceremony will be Dr. D. Holmes Morton, a Pennsylvania physician specializing in genetic disorders affecting Old Order Amish and Mennonite children who in 1989 founded the Clinic for Special Children in Strasburg, Pa., and then in 2017 founded the Central Pennsylvania Clinic in Belleville, Pa. Read the full release at

— The Womaen’s Caucus, a group connected with the Church of the Brethren, is announcing a series of online discussion sessions in preparation for an event with Heidi Ramer, author of the book Her Words, My Voice, during this summer’s Annual Conference. The book shares journal entries by Ramer’s mother about her experience of sexual abuse by a former denominational employee, alongside Ramer’s reflections on discovering this history as an adult, after her mother’s death (see Said an invitation from Womaen’s Caucus: “Join us. Recognize the abuse we’ve known. Reckon with it. Re-connect to one another and the gently powerful love of God, who is with us in pain and in healing.” The Womaen’s Caucus is encouraging those who want to attend the dinner event–to be held in Grand Rapids, Mich., on July 4–to consider reading the book and participating in the discussion sessions in advance. “This book and our Zoom sessions together will be challenging for most of us, and may be triggering to those with experiences of sexual trauma. Pray and discern for yourself whether attendance would foster harm or healing in your journey,” said the invitation. “We hope you can attend all the sessions, but welcome you to any of them!” The discussion sessions will be held online from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. (Eastern time) on four Wednesdays: April 17, April 24, May 1, and May 8. Registration will close on April 15. Go to

— This year’s Ecumenical Advocacy Days in Washington, D.C., will take place May 17-19 on the theme, “Faith in Action: Advancing Human Rights and Peace for All.” The schedule includes workshops, advocacy trainings, and more. Participants are encouraged to schedule lobbying visits to take place during the event. Ecumenical Advocacy Days (EAD) is an annual event focused on advocacy around the many federal policy priorities of the 50 sponsoring Washington, DC-based ecumenical and interfaith organizations including the Church of the Brethren’s Office of Peacebuilding and Policy. Find out more at

— The National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC) is preparing to celebrate its 75th anniversary in 2025 through a series of events that honors the past while creating a pathway to a future of “convening committed Christian Communions into an ecumenical community, which by working together, amplifies each member’s capacity to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God.” Included in the events will be publication of a 75th Anniversary Commemorative Bible, in partnership with Friendship Press, featuring the New Standard Revised Version Updated Edition (NRSVue) translation. The commemorative Bible will feature a brief history of all the NCC communions, which includes the Church of the Brethren as a founding member of the NCC, as well as a timeline highlighting the NCC’s “engagement in the public square.” More information about the commemorative Bible will be released soon.

— Kaitlyn Slate has been appointed by Growing Hope Globally as its new president and CEO, effective May 1. Growing Hope Globally has been a partner organization for the Church of the Brethren’s Global Food Initiative. Slate “is a visionary leader who is passionate about working to overcome material poverty by energizing others to work together to achieve success,” said an announcement from Growing Hope Globally. “Being born to missionary parents in Nigeria has inspired Kaitlyn’s commitment to international development, and her connection to farming has deep roots with both of her parents growing up on family farms. With nearly 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, Kaitlyn brings an extensive background in fundraising and financial management, including grant writing, donor cultivation, and diversification of revenue streams with a successful history of budget development, financial oversight and resource allocation.” Most recently, Slate was director of Program Excellence at World Renew, an organization related to the Christian Reformed Church. Previously, she was director of Corporate and Foundation Relations at Armstrong State University (now Georgia Southern University) in Savannah, Ga. Her doctoral work at Valdosta State University focused on public policy and nonprofit administration and the role of parental leave in positive economic outcomes for women.


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