WESTERN DISTRICT CONFERENCE
March 23, 2021
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)
We invite your continuing support for WDC! Contributions may be made HERE.
IN THIS ISSUE:
*Signs of Hope
*WDC Ministerial and Credential Announcements
Signs of Hope
by Beth Yoder, WDC Business Manager
Around this time a year ago the pandemic was hitting and life as we knew it was changing. I’ve heard, seen, and been part of conversations recently recalling these events and the feelings it brought. From that point on, we have all faced challenges of some sort. Now as spring approaches, vaccines are rolling out, and COVID numbers seem to be going down, I feel as though I see signs of hope.
Romans 8:38-39 says, “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
I was reminded recently in a devotional that nothing on this earth can separate me from God’s love. I was challenged to be more aware of God’s love and how it is around me. The sunshine, a simple text from a friend, smiles and laughter from my children, daffodils in our backyard, and bright red cardinals seen on walks are ways I have been reminded of God’s hope and love recently.
It was also almost a year ago when WDC set up the Hope Fund. This fund was started to support congregations and ministers in direct response to the Coronavirus. We have seen love and hope through this fund. I don’t hear all the stories of those receiving the grants, but I know each congregation is grateful. With each contribution that comes in, I feel someone sending their love and offering hope to people they may not even know. This has been another sign of hope that I see.
May you all find hope and love around you in the midst of challenging times.
If you would like to contribute to our Hope Fund or WDC you can do that on the WDC website at www.mennowdc.org or mail a check to Western District Conference, PO Box 306, North Newton, KS 67117.
Señales de esperanza
Alrededor de esta época, hace un año, la pandemia golpeaba y la vida, tal como la conocíamos, estaba cambiando. He escuchado, he visto y he sido parte de conversaciones recientemente recordando estos eventos y los sentimientos que trajeron. A partir de ese momento, todos nos hemos enfrentado a desafíos de algún tipo. Ahora que se acerca la primavera, las vacunas se están implementando y los números de COVID parecen estar bajando, siento que veo señales de esperanza.
Romanos 8: 38-39 dice: “Por lo cual estoy seguro de que ni la muerte ni la vida, ni ángeles ni principados ni potestades, ni lo presente ni lo por venir, ni lo alto ni lo profundo, ni ninguna otra cosa creada nos podrá separar del amor de Dios, que es en Cristo Jesús, Señor nuestro.”
Recientemente, en un devocional me recordó que nada en esta tierra puede separarme del amor de Dios. Me desafió a ser más consciente del amor de Dios y de cómo está a mi alrededor. La luz del sol, un simple mensaje de texto de un amigo, las sonrisas y risas de mis hijos, los narcisos en nuestro patio trasero y los cardenales rojos brillantes que se ven en los paseos son formas en las que me han recordado la esperanza y el amor de Dios recientemente.
También fue hace casi un año cuando WDC creó el Hope Fund. Este fondo se inició para apoyar a las congregaciones y ministros en respuesta directa al coronavirus. Hemos visto amor y esperanza a través de este fondo. No escucho todas las historias de quienes recibieron las subvenciones, pero sé que cada congregación está agradecida. Con cada contribución que llega, siento que alguien envía su amor y ofrece esperanza a personas que tal vez ni siquiera conocen. Esta ha sido otra señal de esperanza que veo.
Que todos encuentren esperanza y amor a su alrededor en medio de tiempos difíciles.
Si desea contribuir a nuestro Hope Fund o WDC, puede hacerlo en el sitio web de WDC en www.mennowdc.org o enviar un cheque por correo a Western District Conference, PO Box 306, North Newton, KS 67117.
- KLC Leadership Lunch: Good leadership is important anytime. Right now it’s imperative. Please join us to practice the leadership competency, asking “Who’s Not at the Table?” March 25,12-1 pm. You’re welcome if you’re a Kansas Leadership Center alumni or if you want to learn more. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for the Zoom link.
- Pastors, Faith Formation Leaders, Church Offices–The WDC Resource Library is considering expanded digital options in order to better serve you. We’re exploring a partnership with RightNow Media which offers 20,000+ Bible Study videos, children’s programming, customizable online Bible study discussions, illustration clips, and more. RightNow Media includes both English and Spanish resources. Learn more in the 1 minute video hereor contact the library with any questions. If this is something you would be interested in for your congregation, please contact Jennie Wintermote at the Conference Resource Library by March 31. email@example.com
Pastores, líderes de formación de fe, oficinas de la iglesia: la biblioteca de recursos de WDC está considerando opciones digitales ampliadas para brindarle un mejor servicio. Estamos explorando una asociación con RightNow Media que ofrece más de 20,000 videos de estudios bíblicos, programación para niños, discusiones de estudios bíblicos en línea personalizables, clips de ilustraciones y más. RightNow Media incluye recursos en inglés y español. Obtenga más información en el video de 1 minuto aquí o comuníquese con la biblioteca si tiene alguna pregunta. Si esto es algo que le interesaría para su congregación, comuníquese con Jennie Wintermote en la Biblioteca de recursos de la conferencia antes del 31 de marzo. firstname.lastname@example.org
- Youth ministry support: Pastors and youth leaders – As you offer ministry with youth in your congregation, we encourage you to contact Dwight Regier, Youth Ministry Network Team Leader for WDC and South Central Mennonite Conference. He is available for consultation with youth pastors, as well as with youth sponsors and other ministry leaders from congregations without paid youth ministry staff. Dwight is happy to have conversations about vision and resources for youth faith formation, practical ways to involve youth in ministry leadership, and ideas for doing ministry safely in the continuing pandemic. To schedule a conversation via phone, zoom or in-person with Dwight, contact him at email@example.com, or 316-283-6672. God’s blessing and wisdom be with you as you nurture the faith of youth!
- All women and girls are invitedto the Western District Women in Mission 2021 Spring Soiree Thursday, April 8 at 7:00 pm. In lieu of attending our annual Spring Supper, gather with us for a virtual night of worship, music and a reflection on “Faith in Turbulent Times” offered by special guest speaker and freelance minister, Georgia Metz, M. Div. Special music will be provided by Erin Regier Graber and Addie Regier Kauffman. Email WDWM2021SpringSoiree@gmail.com to register by April 5. A zoom link will be sent to registered participants prior to the event.
- Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church, Goessel, KS, is pleased to host the Service of Ordination for Lead Pastor Caleb Yoderon Sunday, April 11, at 4:00 pm. COVID precautions will be followed, including social distancing, required masks, and no congregational singing. A quartet will sing from the stage. Guests are welcome to join by livestream; email firstname.lastname@example.org for the Zoom link.
WDC Ministerial and Credential announcements
Margaret Ediger, retired pastor, passed away on December 18, 2020. She and her husband George were founding Co-Pastors at Iglesia Menonita Comunidad de Esperanza in Dallas, TX.
Philip Schmidt’s credentials were transferred to Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference on March 22.
Camp Mennoscah announcements
- Thank you, thank youto all the volunteers who helped with Youth Volunteer projects and with putting in the dam! We are grateful you are willing to share your time and energy doing projects that make Camp Mennoscah safe and fun!
- Camp Mennoscah is seeking a full-time Director of Development, Marketing & Communications to lead our ongoing operational and advancement needs. This position reports directly to the Board of Directors while taking directive from the Executive Director when related to operational considerations. As a member of a small, very hands-on staff, the role is expected to be highly collaborative. This professional must embrace the mission of Camp Mennoscah, have an established background in coordinating nonprofit donation strategies, possess strong written, interpersonal, leadership and relationship building skills, and work as an independent contributor with good organization and follow-through. Most of the work will commence off campus, however some in-person time at camp is required.
This role involves organizing broad-based fundraising initiatives, advocating for Camp Mennoscah through speaking engagements, promotional materials, and social media, as well as recruiting volunteers, and building relationships with board members, donors and staff.
Our ideal candidate will have a bachelor’s degree, a minimum of five years of fund development experience, or equivalent experience in church relations, and a passion for Camp Mennoscah. They should also be familiar with office related applications, and other technology used for communication and social media. Experience with CampBrain and the associated donor database is a plus.
Applications will be accepted until the position is filled and early submission is encouraged. Please send application materials (resume, cover letter, references and salary requirements) to email@example.com.
- Men and Boys Retreat, April 16-18, at Camp Mennoscah! Come to Camp Mennoscah for this long-standing, guys-only retreat! Spend time fishing, canoeing, worshiping, sitting by the fire, or visiting with friends in fellowship. The official beginning to the weekend is Saturday morning, but many arrive on Friday. Meals can be purchased for Saturday night, Sunday morning and lunch. People are welcome Friday, but no meals or entertainment will be provided. Meals available for an additional cost. No pre-registration. Registration and payment will take place upon arrival. For more information contact Kevin Neufeld at 316-322-5515.
- Looking for HUGE tents! Camp Mennoscah is looking for at least 2 more tents that hold approx. 8-10 bunk beds for summer youth camps (18′ X 36′). These would be (similar) to the ones used for Senior High Camp (military tents repurposed for peace). The cost to purchase one is approximately $2600. If you have one stored away and are willing to lend it to Camp Mennoscah for the summer, please contact us at 620-297-3290.
- It’s time to finish the Campfire Amphitheater at Camp Mennoscah! We’d like to have this ready for the summer youth camps. Work days are scheduled for the following days: April 2 to 3, April 9 to 10, May 14-15. Come out for one or both days and part or all-day. Ask about lodging if you would like to stay overnight. A team of five volunteers will work from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm each day installing the new stone benches. There will be stone to cut, move, clean and set along with a whole lot of mortar to mix up. Bring a lunch and water bottle with you when you come, and plan to arrive at the North cabin area to check in around 9:00 am. Email firstname.lastname@example.org call 620-297-3290 to volunteer for this project. Let us know by the Tuesday before!
- Looking for kitchen staff and nurses! Camp Mennoscah is filling volunteer and stipend positions for kitchen staff and nurses for the upcoming 2021 summer. Contact Camp Mennoscah at email@example.com call 620-297-3290 for available weeks and details. Kitchen staff can receive a scholarship up to full camp fees for their camper.
Mennonite church announcements
- Wilma Ann Bailey, Ph.D., gave this spring’s Staley Lecture at Bethel College. “Reading Biblical Laments in the Age of COVID” can be viewed online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHVBcr4_djADr. Bailey is Minnie Vautrin Professor Emerita of Christian Witness, and professor emerita of Hebrew Bible and Aramaic Scripture, at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, where she attends Shalom Mennonite Church. Dr. Bailey’s lecture on Lamentations (for which she wrote the commentary in the Believer’s Church Bible Commentary series) supports one of this year’s common texts for Bethel’s senior capstone course Basic Issues of Faith and Life (BIFL). The Q&A with students and faculty is at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6AcnIQu1bM Bethel’s spring convocations are posted at https://www.bethelks.edu/academics/convocation-lectures/convocation as they become available.
- Mennonite Youth Census – The Youth Census connects your students with critical info about Mennonite education and service opportunities. Complete your Youth Census form today! Questions? Contact Mennonite Education Agency – firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The award winning traveling exhibit Voices of Conscience: Peace Witness in the Great Warhas returned to the Western District Conference region. It is currently on display at Stauth Memorial Museum in Montezuma, Kansas through Saturday May 1. The exhibit lifts up the prophetic insights and the personal courage of World War I peace protesters, and suggests parallels to the culture of war and violence in our world today. Developed and traveled by Kauffman Museum at Bethel College. To learn more visit VoicesOfConscienceExhibit.org
WDC Sprouts announcement guidelines: Announcements pertain to Western District Conference (WDC) ministries and churches, institutions with which WDC has formal relationships, and Mennonite Church USA agencies and ministries.