Two employees’ service with Brethren Press ends

Because of financial difficulties in budgets for this year and next, including the significant drop in Brethren Press sales due to the pandemic, Steve Bickler and Margaret Drafall conclude their work with the Church of the Brethren on Aug. 28.

Steve Bickler and Margaret Drafall

Brethren Faith in Action Fund announces grants to congregations and camps

The Brethren Faith in Action Fund has announced recent grants awarded to eight Church of the Brethren congregations and camps. The fund supports outreach ministry projects that serve their communities, strengthen the congregation or camp, and expand the reign of God, using monies generated by sale of the upper campus of the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md.

‘The Church in Black and White’ symposium is planned for Sept. 12

The Brethren and Mennonite Heritage Center in Harrisonburg, Va., announces “The Church in Black and White,” a one-day symposium on the racial history and future of the Brethren and Mennonite churches, Saturday, Sept. 12, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Eastern Mennonite University in Harrisonburg, and virtually via Zoom.

Brethren bits for Aug. 22, 2020

In this issue: Remembering Phyllis Kingery Ruff, personnel notes, district conferences, a round-up of news from international partners, Camp Bethel’s “safe and in-person” 5K, the August episode of “Brethren Voices,” MAA receives award, Partners for Sacred Places study of the effects of the pandemic on houses of worship, and more.

Newsline for Aug. 22, 2020

NEWS
1) Church of the Brethren Annual Report ‘Living Letters’ is available in three formats
2) ‘A Fall Sunday Off from Preaching’ offered by Annual Conference moderator
3) Disaster ministry cancels Nebraska flood response, monitors needs after Derecho and earthquake
4) Children’s Disaster Services invites parents to new Facebook group

PERSONNEL
5) Kevin Kessler resigns from leadership of Illinois and Wisconsin District

RESOURCES
6) ‘We Bear It in Tears’ shares voices of Nigerian Brethren affected by Boko Haram violence

UPCOMING EVENTS
7) Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center to postpone or hold fall events virtually
8) ‘The Church in Black and White’ symposium is planned for Sept. 12

9) Brethren bits: Remembering Phyllis Kingery Ruff, personnel and jobs, district conferences, news from international partners, Camp Bethel’s “safe and in-person” 5K, the August “Brethren Voices,” MAA receives award, Partners for Sacred Places study, more

Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center to postpone or hold fall events virtually

Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center (SVMC) has announced that its continuing education events this fall will be postponed or held virtually via Zoom. SVMC is a Church of the Brethren ministry education partner with Bethany Seminary, the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership, and the districts of Atlantic Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Middle Pennsylvania, Southern Pennsylvania, and Western Pennsylvania. “The pandemic continues to push us to be as wise as possible in our health management and interactions with others,” said executive director Donna Rhodes.

Kevin Kessler resigns from leadership of Illinois and Wisconsin District

Kevin Kessler has resigned as district executive minister of the Church of the Brethren’s Illinois and Wisconsin District, effective Dec. 31. He has filled the half-time role for 14 years while also serving as pastor of Canton (Ill.) Church of the Brethren, a role he will continue to maintain.