Committees & Task Forces

Executive Committee

This committee shall consist of the three elected officers plus the conference minister ex officio.  It shall meet as needed to transact such business and offer counsel as may be required for the orderly and timely conduct of WDC agenda.  The Executive Committee shall make decisions concerning projects and assignments authorized by the Executive Board, but in all cases these will be reported to the full Executive Board at its next meeting.

Members: 

  • (2016) Richard Gehring, Moderator, Manhattan Mennonite Church, Manhattan, KS
  • (2016) Anita Kehr, Moderator-Elect, First Mennonite Church, Newton, KS
  • (2016) Wendy Funk Schrag, Secretary, First Mennonite Church, Newton, KS

Gifts Discernment Committee

Six members shall be elected by the Delegate Assembly.  The Executive Board shall nominate persons for election to the committee.  Two committee members shall be elected each year at the annual Delegate Assembly.  The Gifts Discernment Committee shall nominate no fewer than one or more than two persons for each elective office to be filled.  Nominations, elections and appointments should be made with sensitivity and balance with regard to the makeup of the conference.  The Gifts Discernment Committee shall present the slate of nominees at the Delegate Assembly.

Members:

  • (2015) Eric Buller, Inman Mennonite Church, Inman, KS
  • (2015) Jane McNair, Houston Mennonite Church, Houston, TX
  • (2016) Roberta Harms, Grace Hill Mennonite Church, Whitewater, KS
  • (2016) Susan Jantzen, First Mennonite Church, Hillsboro, KS
  • (2017) Brian Stucky, Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church, Goessel, KS
  • (2017) Phyllis Goertzen, Tabor Mennonite Church, Newton, KS

Gifts Discernment Committee – Password Protected Content

Historical Committee

Develops policies about items of historical and cultural interest including the collection, preservation, and availability of official records and materials pertaining to the Western District Conference and its congregations via a relationship with Mennonite Library and Archives at Bethel College as the official depository of this material.

Members:

  • Roger Juhnke, Bethel College Mennonite Church, North Newton, KS

Staff Relations Committee

Oversees personnel matters and policies in consultation with the conference minister.

Members:

  • (2015) Sondra Bandy Koontz, Bethel College Mennonite Church, North Newton, KS
  • (2015) Stephen Hochstetler, Austin Mennonite Church, Austin, TX (Stewardship Commission liaison)
  • (2016) Janice Good, First Mennonite Church, Newton, KS
  • (2017) Christy Schunn-Sebes, New Creation Fellowship Church, Newton, KS

Youth Ministry Committee

Envisions and implements area conference youth ministries which engage congregations in reaching, resourcing, and reviving youth for an everlasting relationship with Christ.

Members:

  • Isaac Landis, Whitestone Mennonite Church, Hesston, KS
  • Caleb Regehr, Buhler, Hoffnungsau, and Inman Mennonite Churches (KS)
  • Hope Greiser Graber, Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church, Goessel, KS
  • Peter Wintermote, First Mennonite Church, Newton, KS

Task Forces

In response to special needs or interests, task forces may be created through an application process (Task Force Application) for the purpose of performing special duties and assignments.  Applications for the creation of a task force shall be processed initially by a commission before being forwarded to the Executive Board for action.  Funding for a task force is the responsibility of the commission to which the task force is accountable.  The Executive Board may also create task forces by the application process.  Task force assignments expire after three years unless renewed by the Executive Board.

END DEATH PENALTY TASK FORCE 
Purpose:  To work for the end of the death penalty in Kansas.

Members:

  • Stan Bohn
  • Duane Friesen
  • Peter Goerzen
  • Tim Huber
  • Jim Juhnke
  • Jeff Koller
  • Eric Massanari
  • Miles Reimer

HUMAN SEXUALITY DISCERNMENT TASK FORCE

Purpose:  To guide the churches and members of Western District Conference in a hermeneutical process of discerning God’s will in regard to sexual values and practices.  To develop our heart and skills in the practice of agreeing and disagreeing in love.  To help us understand our perceptions and practices in regard to human sexuality.  To pursue a process of conversation and discernment that fosters the unity and fellowship of our Western District Conference congregations in the pattern of Acts 15.

March 2012 – Report from the Human Sexuality Discernment Task Force:
The Western District Conference Executive Board announced the formation of a Human Sexuality Discernment Task Force at the Western District Annual Assembly held at Bethel College last year. The task force has been busy! The written responses from the delegates attending last year’s Western District Annual Assembly have been reviewed and tabulated.  Resources are being considered for possible recommendation to pastors and congregations.  Kirsten Zerger, Director of Education and Training with the Kansas Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution, led a training session designed to build group understanding and teach models to use with congregations. Members of the task force facilitated a session on “Developing Capacity for Difficult Discussion” at the Pastors’ Day Apart at Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church. Additional events for churches and at the next Western District Conference Annual Assembly are being planned.  All of the activities of the task force are guided by its mission:

In keeping with the teaching of Jesus Christ and his saving love for all persons,  the Human Discernment Task Force seeks to foster unity and discern God’s will by:

  • Providing a framework from which healthy discussion and discernment by
  • congregations can be facilitated.
  • Providing resources and support to congregations who are dealing with difficult
  • questions related to human sexuality and ministry.
  • Facilitating dialogue within congregations and Western District Conference on
  • issues related to human sexuality, values and practices.

The task force welcomes invitations from individual churches to participate in a listening session. For more information, contact the task force chair, Jim Stucky, at jnstucky@cox.net.

Members:

  • Brett Klingenberg
  • Jim Stucky
  • Marvin Zehr

IMMIGRATION TASK FORCE (disbanded February 27, 2014)
Purpose:  Through action, advocacy, education, worship and prayer, we invite congregations and members to embrace the directive of the MC USA Statement:  “We reject our country’s mistreatment of immigrants, repent of our silence, and commit ourselves to act with and on behalf of our immigrant brothers and sisters, regardless of their legal status.”

Websites for Immigration Resources:

Information about immigration:

Resources from Citizens of God’s Kingdom workshop, March 1-2, 2013

LOW GERMAN MENNONITES FROM MEXICO TASK FORCE
Purpose:  To identify the concerns and needs of the Low German Mennonites from Mexico in the area of WDC, especially in Kansas.

Members:

  • Lotti Boschmann
  • Milton Claassen
  • Mary Duerksen
  • Margaret Goering
  • David T. Harder
  • Lillian Quiring
  • Carola Ratzlaff
  • Amanda Rempel
  • Lici Roth
  • Harold D. Thieszen
  • Cyndi Treaster (Ex-Officio)

MUSIC & WORSHIP TASK FORCE
Purpose:  To provide resources and support to music leaders and worship planners in local churches.

Members:

  • Carol Klingenberg
  • Steve Miller
  • Kay Schroeder
  • Holly Swartzendruber

SKI TRIP TASK FORCE
Purpose:  To plan, promote and pull off the annual WDC Ski Retreat.

Members:

  • Ken Regier
  • Jane Schmidt
  • William Unruh

BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT TASK FORCE
Purpose:  To plan the annual basketball tournament.  The purpose of the tournament is:  1) To have a good time with other adults; 2) To become involved with your church members and fellow conference members; 3) To play with a fun, yet competitive, attitude.

Members:

  • Lynn Eichelberger

TRUSTEE TASK FORCE
Purpose:  To review loan applications for the Revolving Loan Fund.  To make recommendations as to the acceptance of property or disposal of property.  To evaluate and enter into legal contracts (real property).  To supervise and manage Conference property.

Members:

  • Eric Bruce
  • Rick Krehbiel
  • Gary Rediger

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