Friday, January 17, 2014

Service Sunday 2014 will focus on serving God by serving all

Service Sunday 2014 poster
The theme for the Church of the Brethren’s observance of Service Sunday 2014 is “Serving God by Serving All” inspired by John 12: 26, “If any of you wants to serve me, then follow me. Then you’ll be where I am, ready to serve at a moment’s notice. The Father will honor and reward anyone who serves me” (The Message version).

Recognized annually on the first Sunday in February, Service Sunday is sponsored by a number of Church of the Brethren ministries including the workcamp ministry, Brethren Volunteer Service (BVS), Brethren Disaster Ministries, and the Brethren Service Center.

Service Sunday celebrates those who serve in Church of the Brethren communities and throughout the world, and encourages church members to discover opportunities to serve through Brethren ministries and to explore possibilities to serve in local communities. The goal of the event is to “Be transformed by serving one another in the name of Christ.”

Worship resources for Service Sunday 2014 are online at

Source: 1/17/2014 Newsline

Youth ministry webinar series continues with event on Jan. 21

“Call and Gifts Discernment,” is the third webinar of a series on ministry with youth and young adults. It will be offered on Jan. 21, at 7 p.m. central time (8 p.m. eastern). It will be led by Bekah Houff, Bethany Seminary’s coordinator of Outreach Programs for the Institute for Ministry with Youth and Young Adults.

The focus of the webinar will be on call and vocation--what the Bible says, what it means for each of us, and how to have conversations with youth and young adults in our churches and ministries.

To join the webinar on Jan. 21 go to The Youth and Young Adult ministry office notes that the technology used for this webinar works best with non-mobile devices. After joining the video portion, participants join the audio portion by dialing 877-204-3718 (toll free) or 303-223-9908. The access code is 8946766. To view the web portion on an iPad, download the link from the iTunes store (Level 3), and have the conference telephone number and access code available to enter. The name of the app is Level 3.

For more information about the Church of the Brethren webinar series on ministry with youth and young adults, go to

Source: 1/17/2014 Newsline

Registration for the 2014 Young Adult Conference Opens January 24

Online registration for the 2014 Young Adult Conference opens Jan. 24 at The conference will be held May 23-25 at Camp Brethren Woods in Keezletown, Va. Find out more at

Source: 1/17/2014 Newsline

Friday, January 10, 2014

Church youth groups get together to register for National Youth Conference

The NYC coordinators monitor registrations for National Youth Conference 2014, on the opening evening for online registration: (from left) Katie Cummings, Tim Heishman, and Sarah Neher.
Photo courtesy of the NYC office

The NYC coordinators monitor registrations for National Youth Conference 2014, on the opening evening for online registration: (from left) Katie Cummings, Tim Heishman, and Sarah Neher.

By Lucas Kauffman

Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren youth and advisors were among the groups that got together Jan. 3 for a National Youth Conference (NYC) registration party. The youth at Highland Avenue Church in Elgin, Ill., decided to hold their party so that they would be among the first to register for NYC 2014.

They were just seven of more than 200 people who registered in the first two hours after online registration for NYC opened at 7 p.m. (central time) that Friday evening.

The group of Highland Avenue youth started off the party enjoying a meal of pizza, chips, cookies, cake, and drinks. After watching the YouTube video about how to register online, they split up in three different rooms, sitting at different sets of computers, and went to work.

Nathaniel Bohrer and Elliott Wittmeyer were two of the youth who registered. Bohrer is looking forward to seeing old friends while at NYC, and playing some Ultimate Frisbee. Both Bohrer and Wittmeyer are looking to take away several things from NYC. Bohrer is hoping to create new relationships, and receive a new understanding of how the church works. Wittmeyer is looking to have some fun, while also learning some history about the denomination, and listening to sermons that teach him something.

NYC coordinators hold their own registration party

While Highland Avenue youth were registering NYC coordinators Katie Cummings, Tim Heishman, and Sarah Neher were having a registration party of their own at the denomination’s General Offices. They were joined by Becky Ullom Naugle, director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries, and Sarah Ullom-Minnich, who is on the National Youth Cabinet.

After eating pizza and getting everything ready, they each logged on to a computer to watch the registrations come in. They counted down from 10 seconds, to the official registration opening time. It took five minutes for the first registration to be received. A few minor problems had to be dealt with over the phone. They left the offices a little after 9 p.m.

An adult advisor looks on as one of the Highland Avenue youth uses the online registration process for NYC 2014
Photo by Lucas Kauffman  

An adult advisor looks on as one of the Highland Avenue youth uses the online registration process for NYC 2014
Heishman says he is looking forward to everything, as an NYC coordinator. “I’m looking forward to seeing all the names come in, and meeting as many people as possible during NYC. I’m excited about all of the speakers, the bands (Mutual Kumquat and Rend Collective Experiment), and especially the worship services. It will be so exciting to see everything come together this July.”

More than 400 register over the weekend

Some of the churches where youth registered for NYC on the first weekend: Wakemans Grove Church of the Brethren in Shenandoah District;  Ambler Church of the Brethren and Little Swatara Church of the Brethren in Atlantic Northeast District; McPherson and Wichita First Churches who teamed up in Western Plains District; Manchester Church of the Brethren  in South Central Indiana District; Gettysburg Church of the Brethren in Southern Pennsylvania District; Oak Grove Church of the Brethren in Virlina District; West Charleston Church of the Brethren and Cristo Nuestra Paz who teamed up in Southern Ohio District.

As of Tuesday morning, Jan. 7, 464 people had registered for NYC. That is up from 366 people in about the first four days of online registration for the last NYC in 2010.

Good reasons to go to NYC

There are several reasons why youth should sign up for NYC, according to Heishman. “NYC is a place where you can meet Christ and hear your calling as a follower of Jesus,” he said. “It is often the spiritual highlight for many youth during their high school years.”

Another reason to sign up? Heishman says that NYC will be a blast.

For more information and to register for National Youth Conference, which takes place at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo., on July 19-24, go to

-- Lucas Kauffman is a senior at Manchester University in N. Manchester, Ind., and a January term intern at the Church of the Brethren News Services office.

Source: 1/10/2014 Newsline

Today is opening day for workcamp registration, last day to apply for Ministry Summer Service, Youth Peace Travel Team

Today, Friday, Jan. 10, is a key date for Church of the Brethren youth and young adults who are interesting in participating in summer workcamps, or applying to the Ministry Summer Service program or the Youth Peace Travel Team. Online registration for the summer 2014 workcamps open today at Today also is the last day for applications for Ministry Summer Service ( and the Youth Peace Travel Team (

The logo for the 2014 summer workcamps sponsored by the Church of the Brethren is based on the theme, “Teach With Your Life,” based on the scripture theme 1 Timothy 4:11-16. Debbie Noffsinger designed the 2014 workcamp logo.
Workcamp registration opens this evening

The Church of the Brethren Workcamp Ministry will open online registration for its 2014 workcamp season tonight at 7 p.m. (central time). While studying the theme, “Teach with Your Life,” based on 1 Timothy 4:11-16, the workcamp ministry will offer eight junior high workcamps this summer, as well as one intergenerational workcamp, one young adult workcamp, and two workcamps for Brethren Revival Fellowship (BRF) participants.

Two important details for registration this year include a requirement for junior high participants to have a parental permission form filled out ahead of time, as well as an increased deposit amount of $150 for all workcamps.

Anyone interested in registering can find more information about the schedule and descriptions of the workcamps at

Applications for MSS, YPTT are due today

Today is the deadline to apply for Ministry Summer Service and the Youth Peace Travel Team for the summer of 2014.

Ministry Summer Service (MSS) is a leadership development program for college students in the Church of the Brethren who spend 10 weeks of the summer working in the church (congregation, district, camp, or denominational program). Interns spend one week at an orientation followed by nine weeks working in a church setting. Interns receive a $2,500 tuition grant, food and housing for 10 weeks, $100 per month spending money, transportation from orientation to placement, transportation from placement to home. Churches are expected to provide an atmosphere for learning, reflection, and development of leadership skills; a setting for an intern to engage in ministry and service for 10 weeks; a stipend of $100 a month, plus room and board, transportation on the job, and travel from orientation to placement site; a structure for planning, developing, and implementing projects in a variety of areas; financial resources and time for the pastor/mentor to attend two days of orientation. The 2014 orientation is May 30-June 4. More information and application forms are at

The Youth Peace Travel Team (YPTT) is a group of Brethren young adults age 18-23 who spend the summer traveling to Church of the Brethren camps to engage and teach youth about issues of peace and justice while living and learning with campers. The primary goal of the team's work is to talk with other young people about the Christian message and the Brethren tradition of peacemaking. The Youth Peace Travel Team is a joint project of the Church of the Brethren’s Youth and Young Adult Ministry, Brethren Volunteer Service, On Earth Peace, and the Outdoor Ministries Association. More information and application forms are at

Source: 1/10/2014 Newsline

Friday, January 03, 2014

Online Registration for National Youth Conference Has Begun

Online registration for National Youth Conference (NYC) 2014 opened on Jan. 3. The conference will be held July 19-24 on the campus of Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo., and all youth who have completed 9th grade through one year of college are eligible to attend.

NYC Logo 200x88To register, visit and click “Register Now.” The registration process involves filling out a simple online form, paying a deposit of $225 per person, and printing out, signing, and mailing in covenant forms. More detailed information about registration is available on the NYC website.

Youth and their adult advisors are encouraged to gather and register. Many youth groups across the country held registration parties overnight. For those who did not scheduled a registration party, the NYC Office encourages all churches to plan a gathering sometime in the next few weeks.

For any questions about registration or NYC in general, call the NYC Office at 847-429-4389 or 800-323-8039 ext. 389, e-mail , or visit

Source: 1/3/2014 Newsline

Camp Harmony 90th Anniversary

Camp Harmony, a camp of Western Pennsylvania District of the Church of the Brethren in Hooversville, Pa., celebrates its 90th anniversary in 2014. Associate camp director Barron Deffenbaugh was interviewed about the celebrations that are being planned for an article in the “Tribune-Democrat” newspaper of Johnstown, Pa. Celebrations begin the weekend of May 30-31 and June 1. Deffenbaugh said area businesses have been invited to attend May 30 for a “meet and greet” with the swimming pool and high and low ropes courses open. There will be an open house for the community on May 31 with the swimming pool, hiking, GPS, and climbing tower available. On June 1 a fellowship celebration will feature a chicken barbecue beginning at 12:30 p.m., recreation and sharing times for church and community members, praise bands, choirs, individual singers, Christian comedy, and worship at 6:30 p.m. with singing and a campfire. Deffenbaugh also told the newspaper that the camp will offer a series of “one-day escapes” during the spring, summer, and fall beginning with a sled riding day on Jan. 18. Go to

Source: 1/3/2014 Newsline

Youth Roundtable will be held at Bridgewater (Va.) College on March 21-23.

This is an annual event for senior high youth and their adult advisors from the Church of the Brethren districts in the area. The event includes workshops, small groups, singing, an open mic night, and worship. The speaker will be Eric Landram, a Bethany Theological Seminary students, Bridgewater College alumnus, and member of Staunton (Va.) Church of the Brethren. Cost is about $50. For more information and to register go to

Source: 1/3/2014 Newsline

National Youth Conference Registration

Opening date of online registration for NYC: Jan. 3, 2014, at 7 p.m. (central time).