April 11, 2017

A weekly communication for:

WDC Churches and Pastors

WDC Executive Board, Commission, Committee and Task Force members

Any content may be used in bulletins and newsletters and

forwarded to congregational leaders and members.

WDC Sprouts is also available at:  www.mennowdc.org (Publications)


*Pastoral Openings

*News and Transitions


Pastoral Openings

First Mennonite Church, McPherson, KS – Pastor (Search Committee appointed)

News and Transitions

Sympathies to Weldon Martens, Pastor at Grace Hill Mennonite Church, Whitewater, KS, upon the death of his mother, Wilma Martens, on April 6.

Congratulations to Jenny (WDC Library Director) and Peter Wintermote, upon the birth of their daughter on March 30!  (The birth was several weeks earlier than anticipated, and they look forward to bringing her home in the next week or two.)

WDC announcements

  1. Share your congregation’s story! As part of WDC’s 125th anniversary in 2017, congregations are invited to share stories of their history to post on the WDC website.  Check out the stories already posted, at https://mennowdc.org/congregation-history-stories/.  To submit your congregation’s story, go to https://mennowdc.org/wdcs-125-year-anniversary-is-in-2017/ where you will find several questions to respond to. This ongoing project provides one way for us to learn more about each others’ congregations, and be inspired to live faithfully in the future.
  1. Jewish and Palestinian Voices for Peace KS Tour – In preparation for this summer’s Israel-Palestine resolution in Orlando, join in conversation exploring diverse views on Israel-Palestine and prospects for peace in the current political climate. Laura Tillem, a local representative of Jewish Voice for Peace, will dialogue with Jonathan Kuttab, a Mennonite Palestinian human rights lawyer.  This tour is sponsored by Mennonite Church USA and Western District, along with local funding.  Freewill offerings will be received at each public event:

Ap 17  – 7 pm, Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church, 655 S Lorraine Ave, Wichita, KS

Ap 18  – 7 pm, Bethel College Chapel, Administration Bldg, North Newton, KS

Ap 19  – 11 am, Bethel College Chapel

–   7 pm, Ecumenical Campus Ministry, 904 Sunset, Manhattan, KS

  1. Congregational Ministry in the Face of Sexual Abuse and Domestic Violence – On April 29, congregational leaders and pastors are invited to First Mennonite Church, Hutchinson, KS for a day-long workshop on how congregational leaders can respond when abuse takes place that affects the broader congregation. Sponsored by WDC, Kathryn Goering Reid, a credentialed minister and Executive Director of Family Abuse Center, Waco, TX, will be our seminar leader.  We will explore scenarios where the abuse takes place beyond or within the context of your congregation. We will consider how to respond when both the perpetrator and victim are members of the same congregation, and neither is a credentialed pastoral leader.  There will be other scenarios when only the victim or perpetrator is a church member, but the ministry implications are still complicated for all involved.  For example, what can a deacon do when he or she learns that a church member is abusing another adult? How can the church board respond if a board member’s spouse suddenly goes to a domestic violence shelter?   What can or can’t we say publicly in times of crisis?  How do we balance the needs of victims and survivors of abuse, and still be a place for sinners in need of repentance and restoration?  What if the abuser is not repentant?  We will look at theological responses and explore possible models and appropriate actions. Together we will look at models that have worked in some congregations and suggest actions that will help a congregation work through these complex situations.  Congregations can register your attendees together for the group rate of $100.  You may also register individually for $30 per person.  Online registration is available at:  www.mennowdc.org/congregational-ministry-in-the-face-of-sexual-abuse-and-domestic-violence/.  Please register by April 20.

4.  Kansas Leadership Center (KLC) Competencies Self Care Lunch and Mini Retreat: Please RSVP by April 12 if you plan to participate in this unique opportunity on Thursday, April 20 at the Dyck Arboretum Pavilion in Hesston, KS. Bierrock or vegan meals available. Please bring your lunch if you require gluten-free.  Thank you.

  1. Community Concert with Bryan Moyer Suderman! Come join us on Sunday, April 23 at 4 pm at Tabor Mennonite Church (891 N. Chisholm Trail, Newton, KS) for a community concert with Bryan Moyer Suderman! Bryan is an itinerant Bible teacher and musician who has an engaging presentation style and songs for all ages. The concert is free! Bring your friends and family! A freewill offering will be taken during the concert to support the ministries of the Goessel Ministerial Alliance. We hope to see you there! ~Phil Schmidt, Pastor at Tabor, on behalf of the Goessel Ministerial Alliance
  1. Shalom Mennonite Church (800 E First, Newton, KS) will host a Community Conversation on Immigration on Saturday, April 22 from 10 am-noon. It will be a moderated panel discussion with a question and answer time to follow. The discussion will focus on the panelists’ general perspectives on issues that affect refugees and immigrants in Kansas and Harvey County. The confirmed panel participants are Bob Myers (Newton City Manager) and Tim Hodge (State Representative). If you have questions about the event, contact Shalom at office@shalomnewton.org
  1. Going to the Orlando Mennonite Church USA Convention and want to share a room? If you’d like a roommate, let us know (wdc@mennowdc.org, 316-283-6300) and we can try to connect you with others looking for roommates!

Camp Mennoscah announcements

  1. Thank you to the many people who came to help put in the dam! We had spectators, we had helpers, and we had wonderful weather.  It was a great time to be in the river.
  1. Grab your friends and head to Camp Mennoscah this summer! Youth camps are open for all ages from third grade to seniors.  Our theme is Branching Out: Connecting with Christ.  Early registration discounts for summer youth camps end May 1!  Contact us at 620-297-3290 or register online at campmennoscah.org.  It’s going to be a blast!
  1. Stories of courage, stories of faith, stories of fun! Retirees of all ages are invited to join us for Retirees Relaxation Retreat at Camp Mennoscah from April 24-26.  We’ll hear stories from a number of different people, have Bible study, do some singing, and have coffee breaks.  Register online at www.campmennoscah.org or call us at 620-297-3290.  We’ll see you there!
  1. Men & Boys Retreat is at Camp Mennoscah on April 28-30! Gather together as friends and family for a weekend of spending time with friends, worshiping, fishing, sitting by the fire, or canoeing.  Registration begins on Saturday, but many arrive on Friday.  The first meal provided is Saturday supper.  Saturday evening will feature a performance by the Flannelbacks, a bluegrass band from the Bethel College area.  Michael Unruh will be our speaker for the weekend.  No pre-registration is necessary, but if you have questions contact Kevin Neufeld at kevinneufeld2@gmail.com or 316-322-5515.

Mennonite church announcements

  1. For an update on Bethel College presidential search process, https://www.bethelks.edu/news-events/news/post/5495/.  Conference Minister Heidi Regier Kreider serves on the search committee on behalf of Western District Conference.
  1. Attending the 2017 Convention in Orlando? The convention planning office has arranged discounts at Orlando-area attractions.  Visit:  http://mennolove.orlandomeetinginfo.com
  1. AMBS Webinar: Creation in Travail and Creation Renewed:  Thursday, April 20, 2-3:30 pm EDT.  Greg Boyd, scholar, author, pastor an leading Neo-Anabaptist, will engage Malinda Berry, AMBS assistant professor of theology and ethics, in this interactive webinar to discuss these major challenges facing the contemporary church.  This webinar is the second in a series of three Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary webinars led by Boyd.  Cost $20 by noon on April 19; $30 after.  Your first webinar is free!  ambs.edu/webinars

Western District Conference

2517 North Main, PO Box 306

North Newton KS  67117

316-283-6300; FAX:  316-283-0620

Email:  wdc@mennowdc.org

Website:  www.mennowdc.org