February 20, 2018

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)


*Dwelling in your community, dwelling in their story


Dwelling in your community, dwelling in their story

     by Byron Pellecer, Associate Conference Minister (Texas-Based)

While having a conversation with a fellow church planter, we agreed on the importance of dwelling in the word of God either individually or corporately or both. Our discussion and sharing were around those biblical narratives that shed light when establishing new communities of faith.  For example, Luke 10 that speaks about the proclamation of the kingdom of God and where the challenge at hand is to become local missionaries.

The context of this text is about radical discipleship, which means not only evangelism or service projects but rather disciple making.

The idea of dwelling in the word is to live inside of the story presented before us so that we may hear Christ’s Spirit reorienting life through Scripture  for a healthy theological identity (in my case from an Anabaptist perspective). Once the connection with the text is made, the challenge is to interpret the text in contemporary context, whether it is establishing a new congregation or for church growth.

Our conversation took us in so many directions that are crucial in church planting and church growth. Some of the themes that emerged were formulated in questions like: What does it mean to be incarnated in your community? What does it mean to be Christian today? What does it mean to be Mennonite-Anabaptist? Theorist versus practitioner? And the list goes on and on.

The common ground to our conversation was the fact that the only way to find out what God is up to in our neighborhood is by being present in it. Alan Roxburgh in “Missional, Joining God in the Neighborhood” quotes Lesslie Newbigin who calls it “becoming cross-cultural missionaries in our own culture.” Furthermore, this practice is relevant and important for both the new and the established community of faith and where the voice of the church and of the community matters greatly. As church, whether as an emerging or as an established congregation, we are faced with the urgency to enter and dwell in the “culture” we attempt to reach to invite in the way of Jesus.

Vivir en tu comunidad, vivir en su historia
Byron Pellecer

Mientras sostenía una conversación con otro colega en la Plantación de Nuevas Iglesias, concordamos en la importancia de habitar o permanecer en la Palabra de Dios ya sea individual o corporativamente, o ambos. Nuestra discusión e intercambio se dieron en torno a aquellas narraciones bíblicas que arrojan luz cuando se pretende establecer nuevas comunidades de fe tal y como lo muestra Lucas 10 en la cual se habla sobre la proclamación del reino de Dios y donde el desafío inmediato es a convertirse en misioneros locales.

Por cierto, el contexto de este texto es sobre el discipulado radical. Lo que significa que no se trata solo sobre evangelismo o de un proyecto de servicio comunitario, sino que más bien tiene que ver con el hacer discípulos.

La idea de habitar o permanecer en la Palabra de Dios, es vivir dentro de la historia que se nos presenta y para que podamos escuchar al Espíritu de Cristo reorientando la vida a través de las Escrituras. También tiene que ver con una identidad teológica sana, en mi caso desde una perspectiva Anabautista. Una vez que se hace la reflexión y la conexión con el texto, el desafío es para que la hermenéutica contemporánea se dé antes de implementar tal entendimiento, ya sea para establecer una nueva congregación o para el crecimiento de la iglesia.

Nuestra conversación nos llevó en tantas direcciones las cuales son cruciales en la plantación de iglesias y en el crecimiento de las iglesias locales. Algunos de los temas que surgieron se formularon a través de preguntas como: ¿Qué significa encarnarse en la comunidad? ¿Qué significa ser cristiano hoy? ¿Qué significa ser menonita-Anabautista? ¿Teórico versus practicante? Y la lista de preguntas se hizo interminable.

Nuestro punto de partida y en común en nuestra conversación, fue el hecho de que la única forma de descubrir qué es lo que Dios está haciendo en nuestro vecindario se logra a través de la presencia misma de la iglesia en ese vecindario. Roxburgh en “Misional, uniéndose a Dios en el vecindario” afirma que Lesslie Newbigin lo llama “convertirse en misioneros interculturales en nuestra propia cultura”. Además, esta práctica es relevante e importante tanto para la comunidad de fe emergente, así como para la establecida y donde la voz de la iglesia y de la comunidad es de gran importancia. Como iglesia, ya sea como congregación emergente o establecida, nos enfrentamos con la urgencia de entrar y vivir en la “cultura” que intentamos alcanzar para invitarles a caminar con Jesús.

WDC Announcements

The next Leadership Lunch will be on Thursday (Feb 22) from 12-1:30 pm at the WDC office.  The topic is:  “Make conscious choices (intervene skillfully)”.  All are welcome to attend this conversation on Kansas Leadership Center concepts, even if you haven’t attended a KLC training.  Bring your own lunch.  (Instructions to connect by Zoom video conference:  Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://zoom.us/j/659139163.  Or iPhone one-tap :  US: +16699006833,,659139163##  or +14086380968,,659139163##.  Or Telephone: Dial (for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):  US: +1 669 900 6833  or +1 408 638 0968  or +1 646 876 9923.  Meeting ID: 659 139 163.)   

Camp Mennoscah announcements

  1. We feel the need to thank you all for your help as work continues at Camp, whether you’ve been out to volunteer with the kitchen and entrance work or held Camp Mennoscah in your thoughts and prayers in these past weeks. The roof construction on the new entrance is about to be finished!  We are again in need of your help to shingle the roof if the elements allow. The next day for work will be SATURDAY FEBRUARY 24 starting 8:30 am Bring your favorite left-handed hammer and lunch! Other tools will be provided. If you’re interested in helping, please call camp (620-297-3290) or Jim Yoder by phone/text at 316-284-3890or e-mail jdyoder@cox.net. If there is a doubt regarding weather and you have not heard from us, please call to check whether or not we have canceled.
  1. Just a few left!  There are only a few spaces left at the March 2-4 Scrapbook and Crafts Retreat.  We’d love to have you join us for this weekend of memories, crafty-ness, fellowship, and devotions!  Register online at campmennoscah.orgor call 620-297-3290 for assistance.  The Scrapbook and Crafts Retreat is amazing!
  2. We’ve got a place for youth!  The Youth Volunteer Weekend at Camp Mennoscah is March 16-17 and youth in grades 7-12 are heartily welcomed.  There will be singing, worship, s’mores, service projects, and likely some silliness.  Rachel Miller and Isaac Entz will lead the frivolities.  This is your chance to stay in the Retreat Center because of the kitchen renovations!  Parents and sponsors do not need to attend.  Register online at campmennoscah.orgor call 620-297-3290 for assistance.
  1. Best opportunities now!  Camp Mennoscah is searching for those delightful kitchen staff and volunteers to be part of our summer youth camp ministry.  Some weeks fill up quickly.  Kitchen helpers can receive a camper discount up to full camp fees (limited number per week).  Contact us at 620-297-3290or olivia.bartel@campmennoscah.org with questions or to sign up!  Fun times and a free tee shirt!

Mennonite Church Announcements
Join us at the 2018 annual Comforter Blitz to help in making comforters for MCC to distribute to our brothers and sisters around the world!
March 5th from 10 am – 5 pm
March 6th from 9 am – 5 pm
March 7th from 9 am – 4 pm
Location: Journey at Yoder, 3605 E. Longview Road, Yoder
Everyone is welcome! Lunch is available each day by donation. Please bring a snack to share. We hope to see you there!


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