Committees & Task Forces

COMMITTEES

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: 

  • (2018) Ray Reimer, Moderator, Zion Mennonite Church, Elbing, KS
  • (2020) Lois Barrett, Moderator-Elect, Mennonite Church of the Servant, Wichita, KS
  • (2020) June Krehbiel, Secretary, Eden Mennonite Church, Moundridge, 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:

  • (2019) Roberta Harms, Grace Hill Mennonite Church, Whitewater, KS
  • (2019) Susan Jantzen, First Mennonite Church, Hillsboro, KS
  • (2020) Stan Bartel, Manhattan Mennonite Church, Manhattan, KS
  • (2020) Ardie Goering, Goessel Mennonite Church, Goessel, KS
  • (2021) Alberto Parchmont, Iglesia Menonita Casa del Alfarero, Pasadena, TX
  • (2021) OPEN POSITION

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:

  • Raylene Hinz Penner, Southern Hills Mennonite Church, Topeka, KS
  • James Juhnke, Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church, Wichita, KS
  • Roger Juhnke, Bethel College Mennonite Church, North Newton, KS
  • Brett Klingenberg, First Mennonite Church, Beatrice, NE
  • Dale Schrag, Facilitator, Bethel College Mennonite Church, North Newton, KS
  • John Thiesen, Bethel College Mennonite Church, North Newton, KS

Staff Relations Committee

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

Members:

  • (2019) Jill Schlabach, New Creation Fellowship Church, Newton, KS
  • (2020) Delon Martens, First Mennonite Church, Hutchinson, KS
  • (2021) Kent Dick, First Mennonite Church, Halstead, KS
  • (2021) Pauline Buller, (Stewardship Commission liaison) First Mennonite Church, Hutchinson, 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
  • Clayton Gladdish, Hesston Mennonite Church, Hesston, KS
  • Derek King, Eden Mennonite Church, Moundridge, KS
  • Marshall Anderson, Faith 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.

Immigration Task Force

Purpose:  To coordinate a network of WDC congregations involved or interested in ministries related to immigrants and refugees.  In order to accomplish this mission, the task force will 1) maintain a database of congregations, including contact information and the nature of the congregations’ interests and involvement related to immigrants/refugees; 2) connect congregations with similar levels and types of interest and involvement for mutual support and resourcing; 3) networking, encouraging, and posting information from and to congregations about legislative developments, conferences, direct actions, speakers etc; and 4) facilitate periodic face-to-face gatherings of immigration/refugee congregations (for example, at Reference Council meetings, WDC Assemblies), and other like-minded organizations in the broader church and in our communities.

Members:

  • Kendra Alison
  • Pat Cameron
  • Ryan Goertzen-Regier
  • Karin Kaufman Wall

Immigration Task Force encourages WDC congregations and individuals to take action on behalf of our refugee neighbors.  Here are a few possibilities to consider:

Pray!    Loving God, in your infinite compassion, we seek your Divine protection for refugee children who are often alone and afraid.  Provide comfort and healing to those who have witnessed violence and destruction, who have lost parents, family, friends, home, and all they cherish due to war or persecution.  Comfort them in their sorrow, and bring help in their time of need.  Show mercy to migrant children who travel without parents or others who care about them.  Reunite them with their loved ones.  Guide these children who are strangers in a foreign land to places of peace and safety.  Bring them comfort, healing, and hope, too.  Show us how we might reach out as your hands of help and hope to them.Open our hearts to migrant and refugee children, so we might see in them your own migrant Son, Jesus.  Give us courage to stand with them against those who would do them harm. May we truly love our neighbors as ourselves.  In the name of Jesus.  Amen.

Call your representatives in Congress.

Stop funding immigrant detention today

Tell Congress to support no fewer than 75,000 refugees to rebuild their lives in the US

Why should the US take in more refugees?  Learn more about the refugee cap.

Support WDC congregations who are assisting refugees and immigrants in a variety of ways.  Contact Kathy Neufeld Dunn, the WDC Staff Liason for the Immigration Task Force for more information.  316-283-6300 or kathynd@mennowdc.org

Refugee Resettlement Numbers

Websites for Immigration Resources:

Information about immigration:

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

Israel-Palestine Relations Task Force

Purpose:  To promote educational resources and events related to the conflict in Israel-Palestine conflict with particular focus on peacemaking, to congregations of the Western District Conference (including, but not limited to, resources to understand the resolution which will be presented to MC USA delegates at the Biennial Convention in Orlando in July 2017).  We hope Mennonites in our area will become more involved in peace and justice advocacy work related to the on-going crisis in the Middle East through this task force’s efforts.

Resources:

Mennonite Church USA Resources

  • Resolution:  “Seeking Peace in Israel-Palestine”
  • Summary of the process of how this resolution came to be
  • Endorsements by Church Leaders
  • Listing of further resources for study

MennoPIN – “The Mennonite Palestine-Israel Network” – This volunteer group of Mennonites has extensive resources for study and reflection.

Facebook:  WDC Israel Palestine Task Force – Keep up-to-date on events in our conference that will help resource our delegates and others before the Orlando convention.

Mennonite Central Committee Palestine and Israel – MCC has been working with Israeli and Palestinian partners for so many years, they have deep understandings of the situation theologically, spiritually, politically and economically.

Jewish Voice for Peace

Members:

  • Bob Atchison
  • Jonathan Brenneman (MC USA)
  • Tom Harder
  • Katie Mitchell-Koch
  • Esther Koontz
  • Elizabeth Raid
  • Jakob Whitson

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
  • Margaret Goering
  • Carola Ratzlaff
  • Lici Roth (Health Care Promoter)
  • Harold D. Thieszen
  • Kendra Baldridge (Ex-Officio)

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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