Thursday, December 27, 2012

National Youth Cabinet is announced for 2013-14.

2013 Nat Youth Sunday logo
"In God's Image" is the theme for the next National Youth Sunday in 2013.
The Church of the Brethren's National Youth Cabinet for 2013-14 has been announced by the Youth and Young Adult Ministry office.

Youth members of the new cabinet include:
  • Emmett Eldred from Middle Pennsylvania District
  • Brittany Fourman from Southern Ohio District
  • Sarandon Smith from Atlantic Northeast District
  • Sarah Ullom-Minnich from Western Plains District
  • Kerrick van Asselt from Western Plains District
  • Zander Willoughby from Michigan District
Adult advisors to the cabinet are:
  • Rhonda Pittman Gingrich of Northern Plains District
  • Dennis Lohr of Atlantic Northeast District.
Becky Ullom Naugle, director of the denomination's Youth and Young Adult Ministry, will work with the cabinet to plan National Youth Conference 2014.

Source: 12/27/2012 Newsline

Online registration has Opened

Online registration has opened or will open soon for church events in 2013. Unless otherwise noted, find registration links at . Registration is open now for the Christian Citizenship Seminar for high schoolers and adult advisors on March 23-28 in New York City and Washington, D.C. Registration for congregational and district delegates to the 2013 Annual Conference on June 29-July 3 in Charlotte, N.C., opens Jan. 2 at (non-delegate registration will open Feb. 20). Registration opens Jan. 4 for the National Junior High Conference set for June 14-16 at Elizabethtown (Pa.) College (please note that an online parental consent form is required to register). Registration opens Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. (central time) for summer workcamps (find out more at ). On Jan. 25 young adults may begin registering for the Young Adult Conference on May 25-27 at Camp Pine Lake in Eldora, Iowa.

Source: 12/27/2012 Newsline

“Why Young People Leave the Church and What to Do about It”

“Why Young People Leave the Church and What to Do about It” is the title of a two-part workshop in Southern Ohio District on Jan. 12, 2013, at New Carlisle Church of the Brethren and Feb. 9 at Eversole Church of the Brethren. Each workshop begins at 9 a.m. and ends at noon. “Most young adults are striving for financial and emotional independence, and the energy they pour into this activity often draws them away from practicing faith,” said an announcement. “The percentage of young adults who leave the church has stayed pretty steady since the 1970s. But one thing has definitely declined: The hope that if we do nothing they will soon come marching back (along with spouses and kids). If we build a church, they may not come. But if they leave, what should we do about it?” The workshops will review proposals for how the church should change, and explain terms such as “missional” and “emergent.” Participants will look at ways churches can connect with young adults and help them connect with God. The workshop is offered in conjunction with a “Focus on Finance” workshop. Bekah Houff and Russell Haitch, staff and faculty of Bethany Seminary, respectively, are presenters.  Go to for more information and to register.

Source: 12/27/2012 Newsline

Brethren Woods' “Caving Adventure Day”

Brethren Woods is holding a “Caving Adventure Day” on Feb. 10, 2013. The half-day underground adventure will visit natural subterranean features in a cave near Bridgewater, Va. Participants will gather at 12:30 to 1 p.m. at Bridgewater Church of the Brethren and travel to a cave site together, returning to the church by 6 p.m. Lester Zook of WildGuyde Adventures and EMU’s Outdoor Ministry and Adventure Leadership Department will be the guide. Cost is $45 and includes a bag lunch, transportation, headlamp, caving helmet, and some additional gear. For more information and permission slips/waivers, as well as registration (due by Jan. 25) go to or call 540-269-2741.

Source: 12/27/2012 Newsline

NCC Grants for Young Adults

The National Council of Churches (NCC) is inviting young adults to apply for seed grants to start ecumenical projects. The NCC’s New Fire Task Force, in partnership with the Ecumenical Young Adult Ministries Team, invites young adults to apply for seed grants of up to $500 to support local ecumenical young adult-initiated projects, a release said. The New Fire Network is a network of young adult Christians who are connecting and organizing young adult ecumenical leadership to re-invigorate and re-envision cooperative Christian community. Through the Seed Grant Program, New Fire seeks to support ecumenical projects that connect young adults to an experience of Christian unity in a concrete and meaningful way. The grant program aims to break down divisions among those age 18-35; renew the relationship between the church and young adults; equip young adults to be agents of love, justice, and peace; and facilitate capacity-building opportunities for young adults to expand knowledge and skills so they can better serve churches and the ecumenical movement. Find the application form online at or contact for a copy. Applications are due by Feb. 28, 2013, and can be submitted to the New Fire Task Force at . Award decisions will be announced by March 31.

Source: 12/27/2012 Newsline

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Workcamp office highlights ‘We Are Able’ event.

The Church of the Brethren’s Workcamp Office is highlighting a special workcamp to take place next summer: the “We Are Able” workcamp for intellectually and physically disabled young adults.

The workcamp “is a wonderful opportunity for intellectually and physically disabled young adults,” reports Tricia Ziegler, assistant workcamp coordinator. “The workcamp is going to take place in New Windsor, Md., and will be accompanied by a Young Adult Assistant Workcamp. This workcamp is provided as an opportunity for disabled young adults (ages 16-23) to have a chance to serve others and be successful at the same time.”

The workcamp is four days long, from June 10-13, 2013. Participants will have opportunities to meet new people, have fun, and work and worship together.

“Spread the word about this awesome ministry, and together let us make this a great summer for workcamps,” Ziegler said.

Go to for more information and a full list of next summer’s workcamps for young adults, senior high and junior high youth, and intergenerational groups. Workcamp registration opens online on Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. (central time). Please note that a parental consent form must be filled out prior to registration for junior high events.

Source: 12/13/2012 Newsline

Online registration has opened

Online registration has opened or will open soon for church events in 2013. Unless otherwise noted, find registration links at Registration is open now for the Christian Citizenship Seminar for high schoolers and their adult advisors on March 23-28 in New York City and Washington, D.C. Registration opens Jan. 4, 2013, for the National Junior High Conference to take place June 14-16 at Elizabethtown (Pa.) College (online parental consent form required to register). Registration opens Jan. 9, at 7 p.m. (central), for the summer’s workcamps. For 2013 workcamp sites, cost, and more information see

Source: 12/13/2012 Newsline

Camp Bethel Winter Camp Retreat

Camp Bethel near Fincastle, Va., has announced a Winter Camp Retreat for children and youth on Dec. 29-30. “Give yourself a Christmas gift and send the kids to Winter Camp,” said the announcement. The event is for campers in first through twelfth grades led by a reunited summer staff. Cost is $60 and includes four meals, lodging, and all programing. Go to

Source: 12/13/2012 Newsline

WCC Assembly Stewards Program

Apply now for the WCC Assembly Stewards Program in 2013. Young Christians from around the world are invited to apply for a three week hands-on volunteer learning experience at the WCC 10th Assembly on Oct. 23-Nov. 10, 2013, in Busan, Republic of Korea (South Korea). Applicants must be between 18 and 30 years old. Before the assembly begins, stewards will follow an online and onsite ecumenical learning program, exposing them to the key issues of the worldwide ecumenical movement. During the assembly they will assist in the areas of worship, plenary productions, documentation, communications, and other administrative and support tasks. Following the meeting, they will design ecumenical projects to implement in their churches and communities upon their return home. The WCC Assembly is the "supreme legislative body" of the WCC and meets every seven years. Some 150 volunteer stewards help to make this event happen. Completed application forms are due to the WCC youth program no later than Feb. 7, 2013. More information and the application form may be downloaded from .

Source: 12/13/2012 Newsline

WCC 10th Assembly Communications Team

The World Council of Churches (WCC) is seeking young communications professionals from its member churches to join the 10th Assembly communications team. A release said the goal is to offer a unique opportunity to work with a diverse team of communication professionals from around the world during the most significant event in the life of the WCC and the ecumenical movement. By inviting young professionals, the WCC would like to add their unique perspective in sharing the story of the assembly to audiences across the globe. The young professionals will work side-by-side with seasoned communicators. In addition to gaining valuable experience, these positions also offer an opportunity for ecumenical formation. Requirements include 3-5 years or more of professional media and communications experience either for the church or public media; age between 22 and 30; involvement in church, youth, or ecumenical activities in the local community; speaking and writing English fluently unless a member of a specific language team, then knowledge and ability to speak English preferred; available to work at the assembly in Busan, Republic of Korea (South Korea), from Oct. 27-Nov. 10, 2013. To apply, review the job profiles online and submit a letter of intention and curriculum vitae. In the letter, explain why you would like to join the WCC communication team and attend the assembly, and write about your work experience and involvement in youth and ecumenical work. In the CV list education, training, and work experience. Those interested in writing, photography, and videographer positions must be prepared to submit writing samples, photos, and video, if requested. The application process ends Jan. 31, 2013. Selection of candidates will be completed Feb. 28. Send letter of intention and CV to the WCC Communication Dept., c/o Linda Hanna, at Only those sending a letter of intention and CV will be considered and responded to. In the letter clearly state the position you are interested in. Find more information and job profiles at .

Source: 12/13/2012 Newsline

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Christian Citizenship Seminar 2013 to address child poverty.

CCS 2013 logo“Childhood Poverty: Nutrition, Housing, and Education” is the theme for the 2013 Christian Citizenship Seminar planned for March 23-28 in New York City and Washington, D.C. Registration opens Dec. 1 at .

Poverty affects millions of people in the US and around the world. Many of the people hurt most by poverty are children. CCS will focus on how poverty not only limits children’s access to proper nutrition, housing, and education, but also how a lack of these basic resources has repercussions throughout the child’s life. Participants will seek to understand how political and economic systems not only cause harm but can be used to create change in children’s access to basic human necessities, and will learn how our faith, expressed in theology and action, can inform and shape our responses to childhood poverty.

High school youth and adult advisors are eligible to attend. Churches sending over four youth are required to send at least one adult advisor to insure an adequate number of adults. Registration is limited to the first 100 participants.

The registration fee of $375 covers lodging for five nights, one dinner in New York and one in Washington, and transportation from New York to Washington. Participants provide their own transportation to the seminar and additional money for meals, sightseeing, personal expenses, and a few subway/taxi fares.

For more information go to or contact the Youth and Young Adult Ministries Office, 1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120; ; 800-323-8039 ext. 385.

Source: 11/29/2012 Newsline

Powerhouse Regional Youth Conference

The group at the 2012 Powerhouse regional youth conference at Manchester UniversityAbout 85 youth and advisors from five Midwest districts took part in the third annual Powerhouse regional youth conference, held Nov. 10-11 at Manchester University, N. Manchester, Ind. Josh Brockway, director of Spiritual Life and Discipleship for the Church of the Brethren, provided keynote leadership on the theme “Hello, My Name Is…: Getting to Know God.” Using a variety of names for God in scripture, Brockway centered three worship services on the ways that people encounter God, and what that means for those who seek God today. The weekend also included a variety of workshops, an “Amazing Name Race,” recreation and campus tours, and opportunities for fellowship. Next year’s conference will tentatively take place Nov. 16-17, 2013.

Source: 11/29/2012 Newsline

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Workcamp office alerts parents of junior highs to new requirement.

As the Church of the Brethren Workcamp office prepares for registration opening on Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. (central), the staff would like junior high youth and their parents and advisors to be aware of a new privacy policy that is being put in place. The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) requires any website to get parental permission before collecting personal information from children online.

In order for junior high youth to register for a Church of the Brethren denominational activity (workcamps, National Junior High Conference, etc.), parents must give permission for their child’s information to be collected.

This permission form is already available on online at . By creating an account, parents will be able to log in and see what information is collected from their child. Parents also will be sent a record number that they will need to have available when their youth is registering for a workcamp in January.

Junior high youth will not be able to register without this number, so parents should be sure to save it. Parents may request that their child’s information be removed after their workcamp is over by e-mailing or calling 800-323-8039.

The Workcamp Ministry hopes that by getting the word out about this new policy as early as possible, most of the confusion at registration time will be eliminated. Please share this information with any junior high students, advisors, parents, or others who may be affected by this new step in the registration process. As always, if there are any questions don’t hesitate to call the Workcamp office at 800-323-8039 or e-mail

-- Emily Tyler is coordinator of Workcamps and Brethren Volunteer Service Recruitment.

Source: 10/31/2012 Newsline

Workcamp Ministry is now Accepting Applications

The Workcamp Ministry is now accepting applications for a 2014 assistant workcamp coordinator who will serve through Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS). Applications are due by Dec. 21. Contact Emily Tyler, coordinator of Workcamps and BVS Recruitment, to request a position description and application. Contact or 800-323-8039 ext. 396.

Source: 10/31/2012 Newsline

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

National Junior High Sunday

2012 Jr High logoNational Junior High Sunday will be held Nov. 4 on the theme, “Put on love,” based on Colossians 3:12-15. A logo, poster, and bulletin cover are available now at More worship resources will be posted in September.
As God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves in love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. ~ Colossians 3:12-15 (NRSV)

Friday, September 21, 2012

Christian Citizenship Seminar Theme Announced

Dates and a theme have been announced for the next Christian Citizenship Seminar for high school age youth and their adult advisors. The 2013 CCS will be held March 23-28 on the theme, “Childhood Poverty: Nutrition, Housing, and Education,” according to an announcement from the Advocacy and Peace Witness Office. CCS will be held in New York City and Washington, D.C. Registration costs $375, and opens online on Dec. 1 at 10 a.m. (central time). More information and registration details will be made available at

Source:9/20/2012 Newsline

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Workcamp dates and locations are announced for 2013.

Updated logo for 2013 WorkcampsThe denomination’s Workcamp Ministry has announced dates and locations for next summer’s workcamps. Fees and more information may be found at as it becomes available.

Week-long workcamps are offered for junior and senior high youth, young adults, an intergenerational group, and youth and young adults living with disabilities and their adult assistants. This year workcamps are held at locations across the United States and Puerto Rico.

Senior high youth who have completed ninth grade through age 19 are invited to the following workcamps:

June 8-14 at Innisfree-Crozet, Va.
June 9-16 at Idaho Mountain Camp, Idaho
June 15-21 at Caimito, P.R.
June 16-23 at Brooklyn, N.Y., in cooperation with the Brethren Revival Fellowship (BRF)
June 22-28 at Bayamon, P.R.
June 23-29 at Concord/Charlotte, N.C.
July 7-13, at a disaster response site (TBA)
July 15-21 at Koinonia Partners in Americus, Ga.
July 15-21 at Pine Ridge Reservation in Kyle, S.D.
July 22-28 in Peoria, Ariz.
July 22-28 in Washington, D.C.
July 22-28 in Lombard, Ill.
July 29-Aug. 4 at ECHO in North Fort Meyers, Fla.
Aug. 5-11 in Los Angeles, Calif.
Aug. 5-11 at Camp Eder in Fairfield, Pa.

Junior high workcamps are for youth who have completed sixth through eighth grades:

June 16-30 at New Community Project in Harrisonburg, Va.
June 17-21 at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md.
July 3-7 at the John Kline Homestead in Broadway, Va.
July 10-14 in Harrisburg, Pa.
July 17-21 in Springfield, Ill.
July 24-28 in Indianapolis, Ind.
July 29-Aug. 2 in Greenville, Ohio

Two workcamp experiences are offered for young adults, ages 18-35:

May 28-June 2 in Seattle, Wash.
June 10-13 at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., assisting with the “We Are Able” experience for youth and young adults living with disabilities

One intergenerational workcamp is open to those who have completed sixth grade and older:

July 29-Aug. 4 at Camp Colorado near Sedalia, Colo.

The “We Are Able” workcamp is for youth and young adults living with disabilities, ages 16-23, and adult assistants:

June 10-13 at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md.

Registration for the 2013 workcamps opens online on Jan. 9, 2013, at 7 p.m. (central), 8 p.m. (eastern). The website for registration and more information is

Source:9/20/2012 Newsline

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Workcamp ministry announces theme for 2013, new coordinators.

Logo for the 2013 summer workcampsThe Workcamp Ministry has announced a theme and released a logo for the 2013 workcamps to be held next summer.

In other news, the new set of coordinators have begun their work. Katie Cummings of Summit Church of the Brethren in Bridgewater, Va., and Tricia Ziegler of Sebring (Fla.) Church of the Brethren, are serving as workcamp coordinators through Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS). Their official start date was Aug. 20, and they will complete BVS orientation later this fall.

Emily Tyler, the new denominational staff person overseeing workcamps as well as BVS recruitment, also recently started her work with the ministry.

For 2013, the ministry has announced the theme “Deeply Rooted,” with the additional tagline, “Let your living spill over into thanksgiving.” The logo for 2013 was designed by Debbie Noffsinger.

The theme is based on Colossians 2:6-7 (The Message): "My counsel for you is simple and straightforward: Just go ahead with what you've been given. You received Christ Jesus, the Master; now live him. You're deeply rooted in him. You're well constructed upon him. You know your way around the faith. Now do what you've been taught. School's out; quit studying the subject and start living it! And let your living spill over into thanksgiving."

Source: 9/6/2012 Newsline

Bethany Seminary hosts annual Exploring Your Call event.

“I loved my time at Exploring Your Call and speak of it constantly. If it were possible for me to go again, I would--in a heartbeat,” says Laura Brown, a 2012 participant in this annual discernment event held by Bethany Theological Seminary.

Brown, from Happy Corner Church of the Brethren in Clayton, Ohio, was joined by Issac Brunk and Autumn Ehrig from Ivester Church of the Brethren, Grundy Center, Iowa; Michael Himlie, Root River Church of the Brethren, Preston, Minn.; and Sarandon Smith from Palmyra (Pa.) Church of the Brethren. From June 14-24, these high school students gathered to consider what God’s call might mean in their own lives and faith journeys.

The Bethany campus in Richmond, Ind., served as the central space for learning sessions, group discussion and reflection, and worship. The group also had some hands-on experience in assisting with Vacation Bible School at the local First Christian Church in Richmond.

Russell Haitch, director of the program, was joined by current faculty and students in leading the group sessions. Haitch is associate professor of Christian education and director of the Institute for Ministry with Youth and Young Adults. Marla Abe, a 2008 Bethany graduate and copastor of Carlisle (Pa.) Church of the Brethren, assisted in directing the week’s activities.

Beyond Richmond, the group was introduced to ministry at the Brethren Retirement Community in Greenville, Ohio. They also traveled to Reba Place, an intentional Christian community in Chicago, Ill., and visited the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill.

Each participant also spent time shadowing regional Church of the Brethren pastors and being hosted by their congregations. Brown highlights her connection with copastors Charles Bell and Mike Cassidy at Buck Creek Church of the Brethren in Mooreland, Ind. “The experience I had with them--including talking with and being hosted by church members, Sunday school, etc.--made the most impact on me.”

Michael Himlie says that EYC gave him additional insight into what he feels led to do in his faith journey. “My favorite part of EYC was the opportunity to experience all types of ministry. Some may not have fit with our interests, but we all took a lot away from each and every setting.”

The EYC program was reinstated in 2011 after a hiatus of several years. "With smaller groups these past two years, we've been able to travel more, and it has meant that wonderful family-like friendships could develop,” says Haitch. “Our goal is to expand enrollment while keeping the quality of the program and closeness of relationships."

Registration for EYC 2013 opens Sept. 1 for rising high school juniors and seniors. Through a generous grant from Barnabas, Ltd., in New South Wales, Australia, all expenses for participants are covered except for transportation to and from the event. Bekah Houff, coordinator of outreach programs at Bethany and former EYC participant, is organizing EYC 2013. “It is my hope that next year’s EYC will be an eye-opening experience as young people discern God's call in their lives while exploring different kinds of ministry."

Information is available by contacting or on the Bethany website at

In more news from Bethany, the seminary held Opening Convocation Aug 23 in a joint service with neighboring Earlham School of Religion (ESR). The service was in Nicarry Chapel, in the Bethany Seminary building. All were invited, and especially welcomed were new and returning students in theological and religious studies. ESR professor Nancy Bowen offered the message. The convocation was webcast, as will be other services throughout the year, so that distance learning students and anyone else who might wish to worship with the seminary could also participate. Find a link at

-- Jenny Williams is director of communications and alumni/ae relations for Bethany Seminary.

Source: 9/6/2012 Newsline

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Powerhouse Regional Youth Conference at Manchester University

Mark your calendars: This year’s Powerhouse regional youth conference at Manchester University (North Manchester, Ind.) will be Nov. 10-11. The theme “Hello, My Name Is…: Getting to Know God” will explore the names and nature of God, with keynote messages by Josh Brockway, director of spiritual formation for the Church of the Brethren. Registration will be $50 for youth, $40 for advisors. Registration materials and other details will come out in early September at

Source:8/22/2012 Newsline

Manchester University’s College of Pharmacy

The 64 first students of Manchester University’s brand-new College of Pharmacy received their clinical white coats in a ceremony Aug. 9, according to a release. In her welcome, president Jo Young Switzer spoke of the Manchester heritage. The ceremony was on the North Manchester, Ind., campus to help students understand the compassionate roots of their pharmacy education. “We meet today in Cordier Auditorium, named after Manchester graduate Andrew Cordier, a top aide to Dag Hammarskjold who, with others, founded the United Nations,” said Switzer, who also spoke of alumni Paul Flory, who won the Nobel Prize in chemistry, and his roommate Roy Plunkett, who invented Teflon. “And, we meet today on a campus where the nation’s first academic program in Peace Studies was established in 1948 and where it thrives today, known worldwide for its combination of theory with practice.” Students received their white coats from faculty mentor and dean Dave McFadden. Each member of the class of 2016 also signed a copy and affirmed their commitment to the College of Pharmacy honor code: “As members of the Manchester University College of Pharmacy, we commit ourselves to unwavering professionalism and rigorous ethical standards. We will behave with integrity and honesty, upholding the honor of our profession and institution and accepting full responsibility for our actions. We are dedicated to being professionals of ability and conviction and leading principled, productive, and compassionate lives that improve the human condition.” For more visit

Source:8/22/2012 Newsline

Bridgewater College Named Among the Best Colleges in the Southeast

Bridgewater (Va.) College is one of the best colleges and universities in the Southeast,  according to the Princeton Review. The New York City-based education services company selected Bridgewater as one of 136 institutions it recommends in its “Best in the Southeast” section on its website feature, 2013 Best Colleges: Region by Region, reports a release from the college. “In the profile on Bridgewater at, the college is described as one concerned with ‘personally developing students in every aspect of life and making each individual physically, academically, socially, and mentally fit for the real world,’” the release said. Students at Bridgewater were surveyed on a range of issues from accessibility of professors to quality of campus food. According to the Review, students say, “You know you’re getting your money’s worth” thanks to consistently small class sizes and ample personal interaction with faculty. One senior is quoted as saying, “I’ve never been turned away from a professor’s office; they always make time for their students and advisees.”

Source:8/22/2012 Newsline

McPherson College to celebrate 125 years.

McPherson (Kan.) College is celebrating 125 years since its founding, and its deep roots in the Church of the Brethren, with a special worship service on Oct. 21.

Although the service will start at 10 a.m. in Brown Auditorium on the campus of McPherson College, the McPherson Community Brass Quintet will play pre-service music beginning at 9:45 a.m.

All students, faculty, staff, friends of the college, and community members are welcome to the service. The planning committee features one person from the five closest Church of the Brethren congregations. Already, members of Church of the Brethren congregations in McPherson, Monitor, Hutchinson, Wichita, and Newton are planning to come to McPherson College for the special occasion.

The service will include an opportunity for people to participate in a large mass choir. Rehearsal will start at 8:30 a.m. in Brown Auditorium for anyone who wishes to participate.

The message will be delivered by campus minister Steve Crain, who is planning to speak on "Kneeling Before the Lord of the Harvest"--giving thanks for God's blessings.

Following the Children's Time in the service, childcare will be available for children age preschool and younger. Following the service, there will be a Sunday brunch available to all in attendance for $8 for adults and $6 for children at 11 a.m. in the nearby Hoffman Student Union.

Plans are also in the works to help those unable to attend to still be able to view this special time of worship. Watch for details on about how to access a planned live stream of the service online, and a video of the service afterwards.

McPherson College, located in central Kansas, is a four-year private liberal arts college offering more than 20 bachelors of arts and pre-professional programs, as well as an experiential graduate-level courses in teaching. Throughout the curriculum, students are given the “Freedom to Jump”--to explore their ideas, to learn through doing, and to make a difference in the world.  McPherson College, associated with the Church of the Brethren, is committed to the ideals of scholarship, participation, and service--developing whole persons, prepared for fulfilling life vocations.

-- Adam Pracht is coordinator of development communications for McPherson College.

Source:8/22/2012 Newsline

Planning begins for upcoming junior and senior high youth events.

2012 Jr High logoThe Church of the Brethren Youth and Young Adult Ministry director Becky Ullom has announced initial planning for National Junior High Sunday this November, as well as next year’s National Junior High Conference and National Youth Sunday, and the next National Youth Conference (NYC) in 2014.

National Junior High Sunday will be held Nov. 4 on the theme, “Put on love,” based on Colossians 3:12-15. A logo, poster, and bulletin cover are available now at More worship resources will be posted in September.

Next year’s National Junior High Conference will take place June 14-16, 2013, at Elizabethtown (Pa.) College. For more information and to register, go to Registration opens Jan. 4, 2013.

Congregations are encouraged to celebrate National Youth Sunday on May 5, 2013, using the theme “In God’s Image...” (2 Corinthians 3:18). The National Youth Cabinet met recently to select this year’s focus and begin writing worship planning materials, which will be posted at in September.

Dates for the next National Youth Conference have been announced as well. NYC will be held July 19-24, 2014, in Fort Collins, Colo. Applications for NYC 2014 coordinators are now being accepted. To request an application, contact the Youth and Young Adult Ministry Office at 800-323-8039 ext. 397 or . The deadline for applications is Nov. 1, 2012.

Source:8/22/2012 Newsline

Monday, August 20, 2012

NYC 2014 Coordinators Being Sought

Now accepting applications for coordinators for the 2014 National Youth Conference who will serve through Brethren Volunteer Service. To request an application, contact the Youth and Young Adult Ministry office at 800-323-8039, x 397 or

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Young adults contemplate ‘being the church.’

Service project group at NYAC
Photo by Ashley Kern
A group at one of the NYAC 2012 service projects. Young adults helped out at two service project sites in Knoxville: the Knoxville Area Rescue Mission and the Lost Sheep Ministry.
National Young Adult Conference was held June 18-22 at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. About 105 Brethren between the ages of 18 and 35 gathered from across the country to hear sermons, worship in community, participate in Bible studies and workshops, and explore what it means to be humble, yet bold, as the church in our world today.

The theme of the conference was “Humble Yet Bold: Being the Church,” and focused on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in Matthew chapters 5-7. Over the course of the week, participants dove deep into the Beatitudes, and the risks, realities, and rewards of being salt and light to those around us.

They were challenged to take part in this calling by a dynamic group of speakers including Angie Lahman of Circle of Peace Church of the Brethren in Arizona, Dana Cassell of Manassas (Va.) Church of the Brethren, Shelly West of Happy Corner Church of the Brethren in Ohio, Joel Peña of Alpha and Omega Church of the Brethren in Pennsylvania, Greg Davidson Laszakovits of Elizabethtown (Pa.) Church of the Brethren, Tracy Primozich representing Bethany Theological Seminary, and Josh Brockway and Nate and Jenn Hosler, representing Congregational Life and Peace Witness Ministries of the Church of the Brethren.

Each morning’s Bible study began with singing led by Josh Tindall, director of Music Ministries at Elizabethtown Church of the Brethren. This was followed by opportunities to attend workshops on topics such as Brethren Volunteer Service, workcamps, peace, scripture, spirituality, creation care, women in leadership, and a history of Brethren conflicts and fashion. Workshops were led by representatives from several organizations including the Church of the Brethren denomination, On Earth Peace, Bethany Seminary, the Open Table Cooperative, and the Center on Conscience and War.

“Coffee and Conversation,” talk-back sessions, and meals hosted by NYAC speakers took place on various afternoons. These were unique times of casual dialogue on a variety of subjects with church leaders including Annual Conference moderator Tim Harvey and general secretary Stan Noffsinger.

After supper each evening, participants gathered again for worship. Each session was carefully crafted by worship coordinators Katie Shaw Thompson of Ivester Church of the Brethren in Iowa, and Russ Matteson of Modesto (Calif.) Church of the Brethren. Along with singing, they included scripture readings and dramatic interpretations, prayers, footwashing, anointing, and communion. A worship center was constructed in the middle of the intimate theater space where worship was held, and it was slightly altered each day to emphasize the daily themes of being humble, salt, light, and bold.

Two special offerings were taken. The first raised $746.62 for the Haiti Health Program providing mobile medical clinics (see story below). The other collected $148 and eight bags of craft supplies and goodies for “Christmas in July” at the John M. Reed Nursing Home, a Church of the Brethren retirement community that has decided to spread Christmas cheer to residents all year long.

In between worship and teaching, workshops and conversation, community groups and breaking bread together, a number of activities were planned and led by members of the Young Adult Steering Committee. Highlights were a white water rafting trip in the Smokie Mountains, service projects at the Knoxville Area Rescue Mission and the Lost Sheep Ministry, ultimate Frisbee, board games, a night swim, and an unforgettable talent show.

National Young Adult Conference was coordinated by Carol Fike and the Young Adult Steering Committee of Josh Bashore-Steury, Jennifer Quijano, Jonathan Bay, Mark Dowdy, Ashley Kern, and Kelsey Murray. Each of these persons, as well as Becky Ullom, director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries, worked diligently for many months to make the conference a success.

NYAC was a conference built on time spent in community, worshiping God, and engaging in inspirational conversation. It was a safe space for attendees to gather in the name of Jesus, lift their voices in song and prayer, ask questions, and be exposed for exactly who they are: brothers and sisters, children of God, called to be salt and light--humble, yet bold.

Find an album of pictures from NYAC, provided by young adult participants, at

-- Mandy Garcia carries out donor communications for the Church of the Brethren.

Source:6/28/2012 Newsline

Young Adults Invited to Meet Moderator-Elect Krouse

Young adults going to Annual Conference are invited to an opportunity to get to know moderator-elect Bob Krouse. Young adults will meet with Krouse in the Young Adult Room #253 on Sunday, July 8, from 4:45-5:45 p.m.

Source:6/28/2012 Newsline

Tyler Starts as Coordinator of Workcamps and Volunteer Recruitment

Emily Tyler started as coordinator of workcamps and volunteer recruitment for the Church of the Brethren on June 27. Her new position combines oversight and administration of the youth and young adult workcamps with recruitment for Brethren Volunteer Service. She comes to the position from Peoria, Ariz., where she has been a member of Circle of Peace Church of the Brethren.

Source:6/28/2012 Newsline

Waldo Canyon Wildfire Near Colorado Springs

Camp Colorado staff report that they can see and smell smoke from the Waldo Canyon wildfire near Colorado Springs. “As the crow flies it’s about 40 miles away,” said a post at, which features a map showing the location of the camp in relation to the fire. The Church of the Brethren camp is just west of the town of Castle Rock.

Source:6/28/2012 Newsline

Thursday, June 14, 2012

BVS director participates in conference call with Selective Service.

Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS) director Dan McFadden yesterday participated in a telephone conference call with the Selective Service System. The Selective Service System hosted the call to update participants about Alternative Service plans in the event that a military draft is ever called for by the US Congress.

The call was hosted by Cassandra Costley, manager of the Alternative Service Program for SSS.

At this point the SSS does not anticipate a draft, McFadden said. The Selective Service office hosts calls such as this a couple of times a year to stay in touch with the various groups that have interest in Alternative Service options in the event of a draft.

During the call, Costley announced that another memorandum of understanding with the SSS has been signed by the Church of God in Christ Mennonite. This is the eleventh group or denomination to sign an MOU. The Church of the Brethren signed an MOU with Selective Service in June 2010.

Yesterday’s call focused on becoming an alternative service employer. In the event of a draft the SSS will look to faith groups such as the Church of the Brethren and BVS to host alternative service workers for two-year placements. During the Korea and Vietnam wars BVS hosted alternative service workers and would do so again.

McFadden asked about the numbers Selective Service anticipates during any given year. Based on a 1984 study, Costley reported an estimated 30,000 young men a year would be looking for alternative service placements in the event of a military draft. She added that it is possible the numbers might have doubled since then.

BVS also participates in a conference call twice a year with Anabaptist groups and the Center on Conscience and War to stay in contact in the event that there is a draft.

Source:6/14/2012 Newsline

Powerhouse Regional Youth Conference - November 10-11

A date has been set for the next Powerhouse regional youth conference to be hosted by Manchester University. The weekend of worship, workshops, music, food, and fun is scheduled for Nov. 10-11 in North Manchester, Ind., for senior high youth and adult advisors. For more, go to or call the Campus Ministry/Religious Life office at 260-982-5243.

Source:6/14/2012 Newsline

Friday, June 08, 2012

Annual Conference - Ecumenical Luncheon

Want a free lunch at Annual Conference? It will be paired with inspiring words from Rev. Jennifer Leath, a young adult leader from the African Methodist Episcopal tradition. RSVP by June 25!

Annual Conference 2012
Tuesday, July 10 at 12:00 noon
America’s Center, Room 221
St. Louis, Missouri

 The Rev. Jennifer Leath, speaker

“New Fire: Youth and Young Adults And the Ecumenical Movement”

Rev. Leath is an ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church and a member of ECHOS, the World Council of Churches commission on youth.

To order your complimentary ticket, e-mail by June 25.

Sponsored by the Committee on Interchurch Relations, the Office of the General Secretary, and Youth and Young Adult Ministry

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

MSS Interns Begin a Summer of Service to the Church

Ministry Summer Service (MSS) interns for 2012
Photo by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford
The Ministry Summer Service (MSS) interns for 2012: (from left) Sarah Neher, Kyle Riege, Jamie Frye, Hunter Keith, Laura Whitman, Molly Walmer, Lucas Kauffman, and Katie Furrow.
The 2012 class of Ministry Summer Service interns have been holding orientation June 1-6 at the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill. The mentors for each intern joined the orientation for the last two days of the event.

Below is a list of interns and mentors, as well as the ministry settings in which they will serve for the next 10 weeks:

Jamie Frye of McPherson, Kan., will be mentored by Ginny Haney, pastor of Mount Morris (Ill.) Church of the Brethren, and Jay Wittmeyer, executive director of Global Mission and Service for the Church of the Brethren.

Lucas Kauffman of North Manchester, Ind., will be mentored by Larry Fourman, pastor of Union Center Church of the Brethren in Nappanee, Ind.

Sarah Neher of Rochester, Minn., will focus on workcamps and be mentored by Becky Ullom, director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry for the Church of the Brethren.

Laura Whitman of Ono, Pa., will be mentored by Dennis Lohr, lead pastor of Palmyra (Pa.) Church of the Brethren.

The Youth Peace Travel Team of Katie Furrow of Boones Mill, Va.; Hunter Keith of Kokomo, Ind.; Kyle Riege of Wakarusa, Ind.; and Molly Walmer of Myerstown, Pa., will be mentored by a group of leaders including denominational staff. Their mentors include Ullom along with Dan McFadden, director of Brethren Volunteer Service; Marie Benner-Rhodes of the On Earth Peace staff; and Margo Royer Miller, Outdoor Ministries Association representative. The Youth Peace Travel Team provides peace education at Brethren camps and gatherings.

For more about the Church of the Brethren's Ministry Summer Service program go to

Source: 6/6/2012 Newsline

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Houff Named Coordinator of Outreach Programs for Bethany Theological Seminary

Rebekah Houff, May 2012Rebekah Houff has been named coordinator of outreach programs for Bethany Theological Seminary, to begin June 1. She is a 2012 graduate, having earned a master of divinity degree with an emphasis in youth and young adult ministry. In this one-year position, she works with Russell Haitch, associate professor of Christian education and director of the Institute for Ministry with Youth and Young Adults, to expand the institute’s current programs, explore implementation of pilot projects for future programs, and assess ways for Bethany to strengthen outreach in youth and young adult ministry. Her responsibilities include facilitation of educational opportunities for congregations, current Bethany students pursuing a youth and young adult ministry emphasis, and leaders in this ministry field, as well as events for youth and young adults themselves. A key responsibility is to plan and facilitate the 2013 Exploring Your Call, a 10-day seminar for high school students finishing the sophomore, junior, or senior year to consider how faith, vocation, and God’s call intersect in their lives. Exploring Your Call is held June 15-25 at the seminary campus in Richmond, Ind. Houff has previously served in the denomination’s Youth and Young Adult Ministry, coordinating national conferences and workcamps, and has provided youth ministry leadership in several districts and congregations.

Source:5/31/2012 Newsline

Gather ’Round co-sponsors conference on children and youth.

Jeff Lennard chats with Brian McLaren about Gather 'Round
Photo by Wendy McFadden
Brethren Press's Jeff Lennard (right) chats with Brian McLaren about Gather 'Round at the conference on Children, Youth, and a New Kind of Christianity. The conference was held in Washington, D.C., on May 7-10 with co-sponsorship from the Gather 'Round curriculum.
An innovative conference on ministry with children and youth drew well over 400 people from across North America and from several other countries.

“Whatever our faith tradition, wherever we live, we are united in shared convictions that the vitality of the church depends on children and youth and that young people are dear to God’s heart,” said Dave Csinos, founder and chief planner of the conference, called “Children, Youth, and a New Kind of Christianity” (CYNKC).

The conference was held May 7-10 in Washington, D.C. Keynote speakers were Brian McLaren, John Westerhoff, Almeda Wright, and Ivy Beckwith. Some 55 others made short presentations and led workshops.

One of the co-sponsors was Gather ’Round, the Sunday school curriculum co-published by Brethren Press and MennoMedia. Staff members Anna Speicher and Rose Stutzman led a workshop on “Sunday School that Doesn’t Have All the Answers.” At the Gather ’Round booth, all preview packs were taken before the conference ended.

Speicher was gratified by the interest shown by participants. “People are hungry for the Anabaptist-Pietist message of our curriculum,” she observed.

Those attending represented a range of Christian churches and organizations, including the Church of the Brethren, Mennonite Church Canada, and Mennonite Church USA.

"As the church increasingly finds itself on the margins of our culture, we must rethink what it means to do faith formation,” said Josh Brockway, director of spiritual life and discipleship for the Church of the Brethren. “A gathering like Children, Youth, and a New Kind of Christianity gives ministers and leaders a chance to share their experiences, explore emerging trends, and seek ways to minister faithfully in changing times."

-- Wendy McFadden is publisher of Brethren Press.

Source:5/31/2012 Newsline

National Young Adult Conference takes place in mid-June.

NYAC 2012 logoOnline registration closes June 1 for the 2012 National Young Adult Conference of the Church of the Brethren. NYAC will be held June 18-22 at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville on the theme “Humble, Yet Bold: Being the Church” (Matthew 5:13-18). Young adults ages 18-35 who attend will have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of activities including daily worship and Bible studies, free time for fun activities and good conversation, service projects, and more.

The morning Bible studies and evening worship services will be webcast live and available to view online at .

“Talk Back Sessions” will give young adults an opportunity to meet leaders of the denomination including general secretary Stan Noffsinger and Annual Conference moderator Tim Harvey, as well as some of the NYAC speakers. “Coffee and Conversation” times will give participants a chance to learn more about specific organizations within the Church of the Brethren including Bethany Theological Seminary, Brethren Volunteer Service, the Office of Ministry, and On Earth Peace.

Service projects will be held with the Knoxville Area Rescue Mission and the Lost Sheep Ministry. Special offerings will support the Haiti Mobile Medical Clinic and “Christmas in July” at the John M. Reed Nursing Home, a Church of the Brethren retirement community in Limestone, Tenn. Among the more informal evening activities are games including Frisbee, a movie night, praise and worship time, a campfire, and a talent show. The event also includes an opportunity for the whole conference to go rafting together.

The list of speakers and leaders includes Harvey and Noffsinger along with Elizabethtown (Pa.) Church of the Brethren pastor Greg Davidson Laszakovits, Bethany Seminary director of admission Tracy Stoddart Primozich, director of Spiritual Life and Discipleship Josh Brockway, Manassas (Va.) Church of the Brethren Minister for Youth Formation Dana Cassell, Nate and Jenn Hosler who recently returned from serving with the church in Nigeria, pastor Joel Peña of Alpha and Omega Church of the Brethren in Lancaster, Pa., recent high school graduate and Happy Corner Church of the Brethren member Shelley West, and Angie Lahman, a licensed minister at Circle of Peace Church of the Brethren in Peoria, Ariz. Due to unforeseen circumstances guest speaker Paul Alexander is no longer able to be at NYAC.

Webcasting starts with evening worship on Monday, June 18, at 7:30-9 p.m. On Tuesday through Thursday, June 19-21, both the morning Bible studies at 9:30-10:30 a.m., and the evening worship services at 7-8 p.m., will be webcast. On June 22, the closing worship service will be webcast at 10:15-11:15 a.m. Go to to view webcasts.

Online registration also is at . Cost is  $375 which includes lodging, meals, and programming. A $100 deposit, non refundable, is due within two weeks of registering.

Source:5/31/2012 Newsline

“Grey's Anatomy” Onsite During the Pacific Southwest District Youth Retreat

During the Pacific Southwest District Youth Retreat at Camp La Verne in April, the entire cast and crew of the “Grey's Anatomy” television show was onsite filming the season finale. “It involves a plane crash,” reported district youth advisor Dawna Welch. “It was very exciting!” Camp La Verne is located at an altitude of 6,900 feet, in the mountains above San Bernardino, Calif. The show aired earlier this month on ABC.

Source:5/31/2012 Newsline

"Brethren Voices" Features Youth of Palmyra Church of the Brethren

The “Brethren Voices” community television show produced by Portland (Ore.) Peace Church of the Brethren features Brethren author, historian, and storyteller Jim Lehman in the second of a two-program series this month. Lehman, a member at Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren in Elgin, Ill., is author of “The Old Brethren” and a number of children’s books, among other writings. In “Brethren Voices” he discusses writing and storytelling and tells one his favorite stories about how Brethren Volunteer Service was begun by young adults at the 1948 Annual Conference. In June, “Brethren Voices” features the youth of Palmyra (Pa.) Church of the Brethren who were instrumental to the beginnings of the community’s Caring Cupboard. Contact producer Ed Groff at for copies. “Brethren Voice” is available for use as a Sunday school resource as well as for distribution on community access cable.

Source:5/31/2012 Newsline

2013 National Workcamp Assistant Coordinators Named

The 2013 national workcamp assistant coordinators will be Katie Cummings and Tricia Ziegler. Cummings is a recent graduate of Bridgewater (Va.) College, where she majored in sociology and minored in peace studies. She comes from Shenandoah District. Ziegler, a 2011 graduate of Bridgewater College, hails from Atlantic Southeast District. She graduated with a biology major and has been pursuing a secondary teaching certificate this year. Both women will begin their work to plan the denomination’s 2013 workcamp season in August.

Source:5/31/2012 Newsline

Juniata College Rreceives $1 Million Grant

Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., has received a $1 million research grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute to implement and integrate a Genomics Leadership Initiative into the curriculum. It combines and expands Juniata's existing teaching and research in genomics with a developing curriculum designed to provide a solid foundation in the ethical, legal, and societal issues surrounding discoveries in genomics. Juniata is one of 47 colleges and universities nationwide to receive more than $50 million from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Source:5/31/2012 Newsline

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Replogle Accepts Position of District Youth Coordinator for Western Plains District

Shawn Flory Replogle has accepted the position of district youth coordinator for Western Plains District. The announcement in the district newsletter was made by the Congregational Resourcing Fulfillment Vision Team. He began his work in March participating with the planning team for Regional Youth Conference. Replogle served as moderator of the 2010 Annual Conference of the Church of the Brethren.

Source:5/16/2012 Newsline

National Young Adult Conference Registration Deadline

June 1 is the deadline to register for National Young Adult Conference (NYAC). This once-every-four-years Church of the Brethren event is June 18-22 at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, on the theme, “Humble, Yet Bold: Being the Church.” Young adults ages 18-35 are invited to register or find more information at

Source:5/16/2012 Newsline

Christian Citizenship Seminar Photo Album

A new online photo album displays pictures from the recent Christian Citizenship Seminar for Church of the Brethren youth in New York and Washington, D.C. Go to

Source:5/16/2012 Newsline

Manchester College A Cappella Choir

Trotwood (Ohio) Church of the Brethren is hosting the Manchester College A Cappella Choir on May 21 at 7 p.m. The choir, an auditioned ensemble of 40-50 singers directed by Debra Lynn, tours each spring after May commencement ceremonies. Tours have included performances at Carnegie Hall in New York,  the Vatican in Rome, and other prestigious venues. Trotwood is a stop on this year's tour to other churches in Pennsylvania.

Source:5/16/2012 Newsline

Bridgewater College Students Recognized by Department of Philosophy and Religion

Bridgewater (Va.) College students recognized by the Department of Philosophy and Religion for academic excellence at the annual awards convocation on May 1 included two Church of the Brethren members: Rebekah L. Miller of Bridgewater Church of the Brethren and Jesse Winter of Westminster (Md.) Church of the Brethren. Miller was presented the Outstanding Senior Award in Philosophy. Winter, a junior, was selected for the Ruth and Steve Watson Philosophy Scholarship Award, receiving a scholarship for the 2012-2013 academic year. Also receiving an award from the department was Blake Strother, who received the Outstanding Senior Award in Religion.

Source:5/16/2012 Newsline

5 Summer Christian Experience Scholarship Recipients from Bridgewater College

In more news from Bridgewater, five students including Church of the Brethren member Tyler Goss, are recipients of a 2012 Summer Christian Experience Scholarship and will spend 10 weeks in the summer working at church camps. Each student was awarded $2,500 from the scholarship program, which is funded by the Bridgewater College endowment fund. Goss will serve at Camp Bethel near Fincastle, Va. Also receiving the scholarship are Morgan Elkins and Whitney Fitzgerald, who will serve at Shepherd’s Spring in Sharpsburg, Md.; Stina Kang, who will serve at Camp Swatara in Bethel, Pa.; and Emily Ridenour, who will serve at Camp Eder in Fairfield, Pa.

Source:5/16/2012 Newsline

McPherson College has announced its first graduate-level courses in education starting this Fall.

McPherson (Kan.) College has announced its first graduate-level courses in education starting this Fall. Mark Malaby, director of the graduate courses in education and associate professor of education at McPherson, has spent the last academic year developing the unique curriculum, a release said. McPherson is seeking initial accreditation in fall of 2012 from the regional accrediting body, the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), with the hopes of gaining HLC approval to offer a Master’s in Education degree based on the course offerings. The courses have received the endorsement of the McPherson, Little River, and Smoky Valley school districts, which are encouraging their teachers to enroll in the classes. About half of the classes will be taught by working school administrators and superintendents in the area. The initial graduate level courses are “Issues in Education” and “Foundations of Education.” To apply for the graduate level courses contact Teresa Graham, graduate admissions officer, at or 620-242-0485. More information about the program is at

Source:5/16/2012 Newsline

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Christian Citizenship Seminar considers our relationship with carbon

Mural making at CCS 2012Fifty-two Church of the Brethren youth and adult advisors met for the 2012 Christian Citizenship Seminar (CCS) on April 14-19 in New York City and Washington, D.C. The theme focused on “Stepping Out: Our Relationship with Carbon.”

The 41 high school youth and 11 advisors came from 11 congregations in eight districts across the denomination. Staffing the event were CCS coordinator Carol Fike, a Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS) worker in the Youth and Young Adult Ministry; Becky Ullom, director of the Youth and Young Adult Ministry; Nathan Hosler, advocacy consultant for the Church of the Brethren and the National Council of Churches, along with past advocacy consultant Jordan Blevins; Jonathan Stauffer, BVS worker in the Advocacy and Peace Witness Office in Washington; and Jeremy McAvoy, BVS recruiter.

The group experienced four sessions on different aspects of the theme. Session 1 addressed the “Personal Carbon Footprint” led by Emma and Nancy Sleeth, a mother/daughter team and authors of “Almost Amish,” “Go Green, Save Green,” and “It’s Easy Being Green.” The Sleeth family have given up a comfortable, wealthy lifestyle to live simply as better stewards of the earth, and shared about the simple things that they are doing in their everyday lives to reduce their personal carbon footprint.

A second session on the “National Carbon Footprint” was led by Tyler Edgar of the National Council of Churches, who works with a variety of environmental issues for the NCC including mountain top removal.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hosted the CCS group for a session in one of its large meeting rooms in a downtown Washington building. Shakeba Carter-Jenkins and Jonathan Stauffer worked together to set up the meeting. Included in this presentation was Dru Ealons, director of the Office of Public Engagement for the EPA; Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator, Office of Air and Radiation; Jerry Lawson of Energy Star; Marcus Sarofim of Climate Science; and Ullom as the Church of the Brethren representative.

“Many of the advisors said that this (session with the EPA) was the best agency presentation that they had ever been a part of,” Fike reported. She added that others who met with the CCS group were impressed by the level of understanding among the students. “Tyler (Edgar) was blown away by the questions that our youth asked,” she said.

Other CCS activities included viewing the documentary “The Story of Stuff,” and exercises to help youth learn about carbon and its effects in items of daily use, such as foods, and how to calculate a personal carbon footprint. Participants also gathered in congregational groups to come up with three new things they will do on their return home, and one thing they will encourage their church to do, in order to reduce carbon’s effects on the earth’s environment (see listing below).

The event closed with each and every participant visiting and talking with a governmental representative in Washington. The group from California, for example, had breakfast with their senator. Participants from Indiana met with staff of both of their senators, and the group from Illinois and Wisconsin District was able to talk with staff of senators from both states.

Daily worship was an important part of CCS, led by Ullom and Fike, and included an anointing service. Scriptures used for worship included Ezekial 34:17-19, Job 12:7-9, Esther 4:14, Romans 8:18-21, and Matthew 25:25-29.

What are you going to do to be pro-active?

Youth and advisors who attended Christian Citizenship Seminar were challenged to come up with new ideas of things they can do to curb the effects of carbon on the environment--personally and in their churches. The Youth and Young Adult Ministry hopes to offer an insight session at Annual Conference this July reporting back from these youth initiatives:

Black Rock Church of the Brethren, Glenville, Pa.: place timers on air and heat, teach lessons about small things that churches members can do to help the planet, talk about long-term investment in solar panels, go styrofoam free, clean out the kitchen and get rid of appliances that aren’t needed.

Glade Valley Church of the Brethren, Walkersville, Md.: host an Information Sunday, lead a children’s story about carbon, print bulletins on recycled paper.

Goshen (Ind.) Church of the Brethren: install light motion sensors, turn down the water heater.

Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren, Elgin, Ill.: speak at church, have a dumpster diving event.

La Verne (Calif.) Church of the Brethren: host an eco-friendly worship and lunch on May 20, wash dishes by hand, have some carbon activities, make carbon footprint placemat, change light bulbs at the church.

Manchester Church of the Brethren, North Manchester, Ind.: plant prairie grasses at their church, rather than grass that needs mowing.

Middlebury (Ind.) Church of the Brethren: the church already hosts community gardens, start a youth garden and donate the food to local pantries, host an Environmental Sunday, host a recycling campaign at church, start a community compost site.

Palmyra (Pa.) Church of the Brethren: lead a Sunday school class for adults, hold a fundraiser, sell reusable bags and mugs, have a youth room project to “be more green,” update the church kitchen to install Energy Star appliances.

Richmond (Ind.) Church of the Brethren: hold a Sunday school class for children, with visuals.

-- CCS coordinator Carol Fike contributed to this report.

Source:5/3/2012 Newsline

Manchester trustees approve name change to 'university.'

Manchester College in North Manchester, Ind., will change its name to Manchester University on July 1, to reflect the growing complexity of the institution, the Board of Trustees decided at its spring meeting on April 21.

The timing is optimal as Manchester grows in complexity beyond its 123-year-old undergraduate, residential liberal arts core with: a new professional doctoral program in pharmacy, with faculty engaged in research agendas; a new non-residential campus in Fort Wayne; graduate programs in athletic training and education, with more possibilities.

A name change to university is strategic, said president Jo Young Switzer. “A new name will help us communicate our expanding academic competencies and goals.

“What we will not change is our mission to graduate persons of ability and conviction who will work to improve the human condition,” Switzer said. “Manchester’s reputation for exciting learning and service opportunities supported by faculty mentoring will continue in the undergraduate, graduate, and School of Pharmacy programs.”

Switzer’s recommendation and the Board of Trustee’s decision were presaged by conversations with members of the Manchester community--alumni, faculty, current students, and staff--as well as surveys by a research firm of potential students and community leaders.

Manchester currently offers more than 55 areas of academic study, including master’s degrees in athletic training and education. A total of 1,320 undergraduate and graduate students study on its North Manchester campus.

In August, the first 70 students in Manchester’s new doctoral pharmacy program begin classes in a new facility in north Fort Wayne. When that first class graduates in four years, 280 students will be enrolled in the Pharm.D. program.

-- Jeri S. Kornegay is director of Media and Public Relations for Manchester College.

Source:5/3/2012 Newsline

Seminary and College Commencement Ceremonies Set for May

Bethany Theological Seminary will be holding its graduation ceremony on May 5, in Richmond, Ind., just one of several Church of the Brethren-related schools that have announced May commencement ceremonies.

This will be Bethany’s 107th commencement, and 16 graduates will be recognized. The academic ceremony for conferring degrees will take place in Nicarry Chapel at 10 a.m., with admittance by ticket only. A worship service, open to the public, will be held in Nicarry Chapel at 2:30 p.m. Nadine S. Pence, a former member of the Bethany faculty and currently director of the Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion in Crawfordsville, Ind., will give the commencement address. Graduates Rebekah Houff, Jeanne Davies, and Andrew Duffey will speak during the afternoon worship service.

At Bridgewater (Va.) College, Robert Neff, president emeritus of Juniata College and a former general secretary of the Church of the Brethren and past faculty at Bethany Seminary, will deliver the message at a baccalaureate service at 6 p.m. on May 11 in Nininger Hall. Darla K. Deardorff, a Bridgewater alumna who is executive director of the Association of International Education Administrators and an authority on intercultural competence, will deliver the commencement address at 10 a.m. on May 12 on the campus mall.

Elizabethtown (Pa.) College holds its 109th commencement May 19, with traditional and adult learning programs celebrating graduates. There will be two ceremonies: at 11 a.m. the commencement ceremony for about 450 traditional undergraduate students held in the Dell will feature speaker Pauline Yu, president of the American Council of Learned Societies; at 4 p.m. the commencement ceremony for the 170-some Edward R. Murphy Center for Continuing Education and Distance Learning undergraduate students will hear from speaker Edward R. Murphy of the Board of Trustees, in the Leffler Chapel. This is the first time at the college that adult learners--students who have earned an undergraduate degree through the non-traditional degree program--will have a separate commencement.

At Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., James Madara, chief executive officer of the American Medical Association and a nationally known expert of epithelial cell biology and gastrointestinal disease and also a 1971 Juniata graduate, will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree and deliver the commencement address at 10 a.m. on May 12. Others to receive honorary degrees from Juniata are Timothy Statton, retired president of Bechtel Power Corporation and a former member of the board of directors of Bechtel Group Inc., and Henry H. Gibbel, chairman and chief executive officer of Lititz Mutual Insurance Co.

Manchester College in North Manchester, Ind., will laud Dow Chemical Co. scientist and Manchester sciences benefactor Herbert E. Chinworth with an honorary Doctor of Science degree at commencement on Sunday afternoon, May 20. Chinworth, who attended Manchester in the early ’40s, also is the speaker for the 2:30 p.m. ceremony, before the college confers more than 250 bachelor’s degrees and two Masters in Athletic Training degrees.

At McPherson (Kan.) College, the 2012 Commencement Day is scheduled for May 20. Also on the weekend of May 18-20 is McPherson’s Alumni Weekend with class reunions for 1952, 1957, 1962, 1967, 1972, and 1977. At the annual Alumni Awards Luncheon, Harold and Lynda Connell (’62 and ’61), John Ferrell (’51), and Eldred Kingery (’72) will be presented the distinguished Citation of Merit.

University of La Verne, Calif., will hold its Commencement Weekend on May 25-26.

Source:5/3/2012 Newsline

Jonathan L. Reed Named Dean of the University of La Verne

Jonathan L. Reed has been named to the post of dean of the University of La Verne (ULV) College of Arts and Sciences. ULV is a Church of the Brethren related school in La Verne, Calif. Reed has served in the position of interim dean for most of the past three years, and previously was professor of religion for 16 years. He was selected for the permanent position from a group of 55 candidates according to a release from the university. He is a recipient of the Excellence in Faculty Teaching Award, the Ellsworth Johnson Service Award, and is a founding member of The Academy at La Verne. He has also written many articles and reviews, and has authored several books, such as “In Search of Paul,” “Excavating Jesus,” and “Archaeology and the Galilean Jesus.”

Source:5/3/2012 Newsline

Bridgewater College has a New Strategic Plan

Bridgewater College has a new strategic plan to guide the college through 2020. “BC 2020: The Strategic Plan for Bridgewater College” identifies key areas critical to success in the next eight years and strategies for achieving goals in those areas, said a release. Areas include student success, the Bridgewater Experience, enhanced and new programs, access and affordability, alumni and community, and facilities. Nathan H. Miller, chair of the board, noted that in the future, higher education must focus on realities of living in an international community, fast-changing technological environment, and an educational environment in which new majors and curricula abound. For more go to

Source:5/3/2012 Newsline

McPherson College -l “Blake Reed Miracle Mile”

McPherson College holds its second annual “Blake Reed Miracle Mile” on May 12. The event remembers Blake Reed, manager for the college football team, who died at age 22 on Aug. 3, 2010 from complications of muscular dystrophy. On May 4, the college’s C.A.R.S. Club Show features an open house reception in the popular automotive restoration facility and a presentation by Wayne Carini, host of “Chasing Classic Cars” on the new Velocity Channel by Discovery.

Source:5/3/2012 Newsline

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

POWERHOUSE 2012: Save the Date - Nov 10-11

  • What: Powerhouse regional youth conference, a weekend of worship, workshops, music, food, and fun!
  • When: Nov. 10-11, 2012
  • Where: Manchester University (note our new name effective July 1!),
    North Manchester, Ind.
  • Who: Youth in grades 9-12 in 2012-2013 and advisors  
  • Website:  
  • Other details: Coming soon!  
Manchester College
Campus Ministry/Religious Life

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Juniata College president Tom Kepple to retire.

Juniata President Thomas Kepple
Photo by: courtesy of Juniata College
Thomas R. Kepple, under whose presidency the campus of Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., was transformed by an ambitious building plan and the most successful capital campaign in the college's history, plans to retire May 31, 2013. Kepple was named president July 1, 1998, and will have finished his 15th year leading Juniata by 2013.

Kepple came to Juniata from the University of the South, where he specialized in overseeing large-scale construction and renovation projects and longterm strategic planning. In the 15 years he led Juniata, the college's central campus has been reimagined, renovated, and in some cases rebuilt to consolidate arts, sports, and classroom instruction around a central quadrangle. Among the transformative changes:
  • Construction of the 88,000-square-foot William J. Von Liebig Center for Science.
  • Construction of the renovated and improved Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts.
  • Renovation of historic LEED-certified Founders Hall, the 1879 building that was Juniata's first campus building.
  • Closing of 18th Street, which established a central quad and central walkway that links almost all of the main buildings on campus.
  • Creation of a new multimillion-dollar Raystown Field Station, transforming the original field station into a major instructional site for the environmental science program.
Kepple points to Juniata's student accomplishments as his personal touchstone, including a marked uptick in national and international awards received by Juniata students. Juniata's athletic teams also have been successful during Kepple's tenure, earning six of Juniata's seven national championships in the past 15 years.

The completion in 2005 of Juniata's largest capital campaign, the Uncommon Outcomes Campaign, raised more than $103 million, making it the largest capital campaign in Juniata's history. Last year, Kepple also initiated the "Changing Lives to Change the World" endowment initiative, which is focused on raising Juniata's endowment to more than $100 million.

Academic programs have been significantly expanded, including reinstating a theater department and reconfiguring an existing computer science program into a more widely specialized information technology program. Additionally, renovation of the college's former science center into Brumbaugh Academic Center transformed one wing into Dale Hall, a wing designed to generate collaboration and synergy between the business, IT, and communication departments.

The college's business department introduced a major program in entrepreneurial instruction, much of it focused on the Juniata Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership and the Bob and Eileen Sill Business Incubator.

Juniata also embarked on two major initiatives to diversify the college's student body demographically and geographically. First, the college started a Global Engagement Initiative that established a Global Community Living Community, international student clubs, introduction of more international courses into the college's core curriculum, an international language outreach program and helped establish international student exchanges. Secondly, the enrollment office made a concentrated effort to expand its recruiting of domestic minorities. Today about 12 percent of the student body represent minority groups.

Many of Juniata's innovative academic programs and improvements to the college's infrastructure have made news on a national scale, which subsequently has helped raise the college's national profile. The Princeton Review noted in 2010 that "Juniata College has catapulted from regional to national status in the last decade."

Kepple and James Lakso, Juniata provost, also oversaw a faculty turnover of nearly 60 percent during the Kepple presidency. As a result the college dramatically expanded successful academic programs in theater, environmental science (now Juniata's fastest growing major), and information technology. Juniata also added faculty in digital media, art, and instrumental music. The college also added or hired new faculty to bolster the institution's established strengths in the sciences, business, religion, peace and conflict studies, and history.

President Kepple is founding chair of the Tuition Plan Consortium, vice chair of Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell's higher education transition team, founding chair of the new Landmark NCAA Division III athletic conference, and has chaired the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the New York Times/Chronicle of Higher Education President's Cabinet, NCAA Division III Presidents Advisory Committee, Brethren Colleges Abroad, Princeton Review (Advisory Board), He was awarded the Westminster College Outstanding Alumni Citation in October 2000. In 2011 he was awarded the honorary degree doctor of humane letters from Elizabethtown (Pa.) College.

-- John Wall of the Juniata College staff provided this release.

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

May 6 is Youth Sunday

May 6 is Youth Sunday in the Church of the Brethren. The theme for 2012 is "Bridging the Gap" (Romans 15:5-7). Worship resources along with a poster, congregational activity guide, bulletin covers, and much more are available to download from

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

"Empty Bowls" Dinner

Stone Church of the Brethren in Huntingdon, Pa., on April 13 hosted an “Empty Bowls” dinner featuring hundreds of bowls created by the Juniata College art department. The dinner raised money for various Huntingdon County food banks. According to a release from the college, participants got “not only soup and bread, but also a hand-made ceramic soup bowl from the college's renowned pottery program.” Sponsors included the Mud Junkies, the college's ceramics club, the Art Alliance, PAX-O, the college's peace studies club, and the Catholic Council. A 4-H group and a Girl Scout troop also created bowls for the event. The release noted this is the sixth year Juniata has been involved in Empty Bowls, a nationwide event designed to focus attention on world hunger.

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

Manchester College Church Matching Grant Program

Manchester College’s Student Financial Services has shared a notice about its Church Matching Grant Program. The college is located in North Manchester, Ind. Churches planning to participate in the program need to access the recipient roster for the 2012-13 academic year, the notice said. Go to . Click on “Church Matching Recipient Roster.” Complete and submit the roster no later than June 1 to be guaranteed Manchester College matching funds. The notice asked churches to be aware that they must follow IRS regulations regarding contributions that flow through charitable organizations, and that “this program is not intended to allow families to pass money through a church so that their child can receive the matching scholarship.” For more information contact Student Financial Services at 260-982-5066 or

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

Bridgewater College Presidential Search Committee

Bridgewater (Va.) College has announced a search committee for its next president. President George Cornelius announced March 6 that he will let his contract with the college expire at the end of this academic year. Executive vice president Roy W. Ferguson Jr. will serve as interim president. The search committee includes Judy Mills Reimer, former general secretary of the Church of the Brethren, along with chair G. Steven Agee, judge on the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit; Debra M. Allen, certified public accountant and treasurer of Sidney B. Allen Jr. Builder Inc.; William S. Earhart, certified public accountant and treasurer of Heatwole/Miller real estate management and development company; Michael K. Kyles M.D., orthopedic surgeon on the staff of Halifax Regional Hospital; Robert I. Stolzman, partner in the law firm of Adler, Pollock & Sheehan; James H. Walsh, partner with the law firm of McGuireWoods LLP; W. Steve Watson Jr., Lawrence S. and Carmen C. Miller Chair of Ethics and associate professor of philosophy and religion; and Kathy G. Wright, logistics coordinator for Philip Morris USA Inc.

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

Bridgewater College Alumni Awards

In more news from Bridgewater College, five alumni including three Church of the Brethren members will be honored as part of the annual Alumni Weekend celebration April 20-22. At the annual banquet of the Ripples Society on April 20, Dr. J. Paul Wampler (class of 1954) and Doris Cline Egge (1946) will receive the 2012 Ripples Society Medals. At the Alumni Awards ceremony on April 21, the Distinguished Alumna Award will be presented to Dr. Elizabeth Mumper (1976). The Young Alumna Award will be presented to Emila J. Sutton (2002). The West-Whitelow Humanitarian Award will be presented to Dr. Kenneth M. Heatwole (1979).

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

McPherson College in Final Four Appearance

The McPherson (Kan.) College Bulldogs recently celebrated a first Final Four appearance. “With a come-from-behind victory with less than a minute to go against Dordt College in the NAIA DII Men’s Basketball Tournament, the Men’s Basketball Team logged the first Final Four appearance for Bulldogs Basketball,” said an e-mail newsletter for McPherson alumni. “They lost to the No. 1 seed Northwood University in the semifinals, but achieved a run that will go into the record books of MC Athletics.” Watch the comeback at

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

Juniata College Film Wins Prize

“The thing to remember about zombies is that they're brain-dead hulks prone to staggering around aimlessly,” reports a release from Juniata College, “so it's doubly amazing that a group of Juniata College filmmakers were able to enliven the living dead long enough to complete a movie that won the college a $12,000 prize.” Juniata earned first place recognition for "Showtime," a zombie film created for "Show Us Your ETC," a contest sponsored by ETC Inc. (Electronic Theatre Controls). The company specializes in theater lighting. For first prize the firm bestowed a theatrical lighting board on Juniata's film team, which will control lighting and effects lighting in the Suzanne von Liebig Theatre. The equipment is worth more than $12,000. "This was filmed right before finals in December so many people on campus were walking around like zombies anyway," says Gus Redmond, a sophomore from Bethesda, Md., who originated the project when he discovered the online contest on the ETC website.

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

Juniata College: "Acting Together on the World Stage"

Several Juniata College professors and a documentary film producer will discuss how theatrical performances and dramatic rituals can become a tool for peace and resistance in regions afflicted by violence, poverty and oppression. The panel discussion takes place after screening of the documentary "Acting Together on the World Stage" at 7 p.m. April 25 in Neff Lecture Hall on the Juniata campus in Huntingdon, Pa. The film and panel discussion is free and open to the public. The event is sponsored by the Baker Center for Peace and Conflict Studies and moderated by Celia Cook-Huffman, the Burkholder Professor of Conflict Resolution.

Source:4/19/2012 Newsline

Thursday, April 05, 2012

2012 Senator Paul Simon Award

Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., is one of five institutions to receive the 2012 Senator Paul Simon Award for Comprehensive Internationalization from the National Association of International Educators. A release reports that Juniata will be profiled in the upcoming NAFSA publication, "Internationalizing the Campus 2012: Profiles of Success at Colleges and Universities." Members of Juniata's international office will accept the award at a Capitol Hill event during International Education Week in November. Juniata programs and initiatives that were recognized by the association include establishing a Global Engagement Initiative that led to the formation of an intercultural learning assessment committee and the Global Village Living and Learning Community, and the dedication of faculty and staff to provide students with transformative international experiences such as teaching and advising international students and traveling to international campuses for study-abroad or summer programs.

Source:4/5/2012 Newsline

2012 President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll

In addition to Bridgewater (Va.) College, two more Brethren-related colleges report being named to the 2012 President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll: Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa., and Elizabethtown (Pa.) College. The honor roll reflects all service done by colleges in the previous year, and is given by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Source:4/5/2012 Newsline

Bridgewater College Celebrated Founder’s Day on April 3

Bridgewater (Va.) College celebrated Founder’s Day on April 3, marking 132 years since the founding of the school. The college presented three awards to faculty: James D. Bowling, associate professor of mathematics, received the Ben and Janice Wade Outstanding Teaching Award; Barbara H. Long, chair and assistant professor of health and human sciences, received the Martha B. Thornton Faculty Recognition Award; and history professor Brian M. Kelley, associate professor of psychology, received the Faculty Scholarship Award.

Source:4/5/2012 Newsline

Middle Pennsylvania District Youth

Youth in Middle Pennsylvania District are participating in a “Soup Kitchen and Service Workcamp” in Washington, D.C., on April 15-17.

Source:4/5/2012 Newsline

Monday, April 02, 2012

Speakers at National Young Adult Conference

University of Tennessee, Knoxville
June 18-22, 2012

Who will be joining us at NYAC 2012?

  • Greg Davidson Laszakovits

    What makes Greg tick? Jesus as prophet. Vibrant communities. Peace and justice. And letting the world's cares and worries fade to the background while screaming downhill on his mountain bike. "Now, those are God moments!"

    Before pastoring in E-town, Greg consulted church starts in Brazil and directed legislative affairs for the Church of the Brethren in Washington, DC. An Arizona native, he studied History and Political Science at Northern Arizona University, Peace Studies at Bethany Seminary (MDiv), and is a BVS alum.

  • Tracy Stoddart Primozich

    Tracy Stoddart Primozich is the director of admissions at Bethany Theological Seminary, and has been serving in her position since October of 2011. Tracy is a McPherson, and BVS Alum. Tracy is graduate of Bethany Seminary and a licensed minister in the Church of the Brethren, holding a master of divinity degree with emphases in youth and young adult studies and peace studies.

  • Josh Brockway

    Josh Brockway has been the Church of the Brethren's director of Spiritual Life and Discipleship since Jan. 4, 2010. He grew up in East Nimishillen Church of the Brethren in Canton, Ohio. Josh participated in Ministry Summer Service in 1998. He earned his undergraduate degree from Manchester College, and his first master's degree from Bethany Theological Seminary. He and his wife live in Elgin, Ill., with their son and baby daughter.
Due to unforeseen circumstances Paul Alexander is no longer able to join us for NYAC.

Questions? Feel free to contact Carol Fike, NYAC Coordinator, 847-429-4386 or

See you then!

Register online now!

Check out our website at
1451 Dundee Ave, Elgin, IL 60120
1-800-323-8039, ext. 386