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Virginia Mennonite Conference & Virginia Mennonite Missions August 2007 Vol. 17, No. 10 Photo by Jon Trotter Photo by Brian Schlabach Mennonites gather to “live the call” in San Jose As one of Virginia Mennonite Conference’s In other actions the delegates approved MC seven delegates, I enjoyed a glorious gathering of USA’s joining Christian Churches Together a “fel- worship and work as nearly 2,000 adults came lowship of Christian churches…whose mission is together for MC USA’s biennial convention in San ‘to enable churches and national Christian organi- Jose, Calif., July 2-6, 2007. VMC members were zations to grow closer together in Christ in order the fifth largest group present. About 10 VMC con- to strengthen our Christian witness to the world.’” gregations brought youth to the convention. They They also affirmed Ed Diller, a lawyer from joined with nearly 4,000 other young people, main- Cincinnati, as moderator-elect. Former moderator ly high schoolers, for a week of dynamic worship, Roy William goes off the board while Sharon service projects, workshops, fun and fellowship. Waltner, a health educator from South Dakota, took The delegates’ session included lengthy discus- the reigns as moderator. Bishop Leslie Francisco, sions about health care which built on dialogue from Calvary Community Church in Hampton, Va., begun at Charlotte 2005. Those deliberations cli- completed his term on the executive board and maxed in a 93% affirmative vote on a resolution Glen Guyton, also from Calvary, was appointed to which stated, “…as a denomination, we are com- the board. Natalie Francisco was reappointed to a mitted in principle to providing basic health insur- second term on MMA’s board. ance for all eligible pastors…we request the Two VMC members in particular had high pro- Executive Board oversee the development and files at Convention. Eastern Mennonite Seminary implementation of a plan whereby all congregations professor Mary Thiessen Nation brought the of MC USA participate together in an arrangement morning message at the adult worship session on that covers all of our pastors with basic health Tuesday. Drawing on her 18 years of experience insurance.” The delegates were encouraged by the working in inner-city Los Angeles, she encouraged fact that the Executive Board, MMA and the mis- telling our stories, and remembering the biblical sion agencies have all expressed interest in partici- stories, in our journey toward emotional and spiri- pating in the new plan. It will draw from a larger tual healing. Also Luke Hartman, who works with pool and replace the existing denominational health Harrisonburg City schools, spoke to the youth. plan for congregational employees (COMB). Jim If you have never been to a biennial Mennonite Schrag, MC USA’s executive director, likened this Convention, I encourage you to do so. Mark your resolution to completing the first lap of a four-lap calendars now, and plan to come to the next one in race. The race won’t be won until the details of the Columbus, Ohio, June 29-July 4, 2009. plan are developed and individual congregations affirm their participation in it. • Steve Carpenter Virginia Mennonite Conference Coordinator Faith through time “Time is the water in faith that the unknown makes itself known to us. On which we live, and we the other hand, when we explore the “Jesus Christ” breathe it like fish…For what record, we are going from what eyewitnesses is a man, what are we all, but observed and projecting it through space-time to God bits of time caught for a —backward and forward from our point of view. moment in a tangle of blood, To affirm, then, that God “spoke” in times past bones, skin, and brain? We and that God “speaks in these last days” through are time’s containers. Time Jesus Christ is to affirm that God has a real interest in pours into us and then pours space-time. It matters what the Creator says. And, to out again. In between the two Owen Burkholder affirm that the One who is beyond space-time entered pourings we live our destiny.” Conference Minister into it through a birth, joined it in death, and trans- (Nanapush in Louise Erdrich’s forms it through resurrection, is to affirm that the life Four Souls, p29, Harper Perennial, 2005) of Jesus of Nazareth brings us to the purpose of God “Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many for human beings. and various ways by the prophets, but in these last Space-time is God-blessed, God-entered, God- days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appoint- transformed. A life of faith is a life of partnership with ed heir of all things, through whom he also created God through Jesus Christ. It is the Spirit of Jesus who the worlds.” Hebrews 1:1-2 (NRS) now enables us to live this life of faith—a life that invites the ‘beyond space-time Presence’ into our *** human space-time bound existence. My scientist friends say it is impossible for human beings to think outside of space-time dimen- sions. That leads to the great speculations on either side of our lifespan: where were we before we were born? Where do we go when we die? (Notice, those are space [where] and time [when] questions.) In my message to the VMC Assembly at Hickory on July 26, I offered the following statement as a beginning place for our faith: God creates space- time and engages it in Jesus Christ. Faith goes two ways—from the unknown to the Connections (USPS 007-205) is known, and from the known to the unknown. When published monthly by Virginia Mennonite we say that “God” created space-time, we are speak- Missions and Virginia Mennonite ing of things that we simply cannot know with our Conference to connect congregations human space-time limitations. It is a statement of with each other and conference agencies. Editor General Gloria Lehman F o c u s Virginia Assistant Editor Mennonite Jon Trotter Conference Connections is distributed free to each expenses ••• household of supporting congregations. income Sept. 1, 2006 to Subscription rates: $5 per year, 2 years June 30, 2007 for $9. Send subscriptions to Connections Circulation Manager, 901 $226,861 $202,264 F i n a n c i a l Parkwood Dr., Harrisonburg, VA 22802 General Special Projects Phone (540) 434-9727 Virginia (800) 707-5535 Mennonite E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org Missions email@example.com expenses expenses Web www.vmmissions.org ••• income income www.vmconf.org Sept. 1, 2006 to POSTMASTER Send address June 30, 2007 changes to 901 Parkwood Dr., $504,227 $466,527 $733,703 $744,652 Harrisonburg, VA 22802. Periodical postage paid at Harrisonburg, VA 2 Connections August 2007 22801. Stories of Peace Chinese believers find a home away from home sponsored by the Peace Coordinators of the Virginia Mennonite Conference Lifting up ex-prisoners: Hong Yan Zhou, 42, known by his American friends as “Jack,” “the least of these” became a Christian just over seven years ago. Married and with a “The body of Christ has a mandate from God to young daughter, he was a post care for the least of these,” says Bishop Paul graduate student at Chongqing Gaskins of the Christian Conquest Ministries in University in southern China work- Washington, DC. “I believe the body of Christ should ing on a linguistics degree. have the heart of the Lord in its vision and purpose. Hong Yan says, “Early in 2000, And this includes the planning for the coming home I was praying for a revelation from of brothers and sisters from prison.” a God I had never known, some This has provided the passion behind the mis- true divine being. Immediately sion of the Conquest Reintegration Ministries afterwards a Christian graduate (CORM), a ministry begun by Christian Conquest student from Auburn University Fellowship, a Virginia Mennonite Conference con- approached me and helped open gregation in Washington, DC. As many as 3,000 for- my eyes to Jesus.” The two mer prisoners return to the District each year, many became friends, and soon Hong Yan with a limited education, no job skills, frayed family and his wife Bo Hu were leading a relations, and empty pockets. CORM’s Transitional newly formed Christian house Hong Yan Zhou, his wife, Housing Center (THC) provides a place for ex-pris- church. Theirs was one of countless numbers of Bo Hu, and daughter, Emily. oners to live as they reintegrate into the society unregistered home church fellowships that are around them. Structure and rules are in place at the springing up all over China, resulting in the phenom- THC to foster accountability and discipline. A com- enal spread of Christianity in that country. But before passionate Christian environment that respects the long, the local State Security Council apprehended dignity of the men residing there is created. Bible Hong Yan three times, their apartment was studies and support groups are held on a regular searched, and he was ordered not to take part in any basis. more unregistered church activities. According to Rev. Louis Jones, Executive In 2004 he had the opportunity to spend a Director of CORM, “one of the most trying aspects semester at Eastern Mennonite University. While of working with ex-prisoners is finding businesses here, he was granted asylum status through the US who will give them jobs.” Mark Ty Purvis was told State Department. Then after two years of much that he would never work in his field again due to his prayer and testing, the dream of Bo Hu and ten-year tax fraud conviction. After his release from prison, old daughter Emily (Zhiyang) joining him was real- he went to Conquest House, had a roof over his ized in August 2006. head, a place to fax resumes and make phone calls, Currently the three are making their home with vouchers for clothing, and some of his food. “I could Rachel Stoltzfus, a member of the Harrisonburg- focus on working toward employment and a career.” based Family of Hope House Church. Through After a job as a temporary substitute teacher, his Rachel, the Zhous have found a church home away excellent performance led to a full-time math from home in Family of Hope. teacher position. He credits CORM with giving him Soon after their arrival in the US, Emily entered the boost he needed to get his life back on track, and a statewide “Drawing Your Dreams” poster contest sees himself as the recipient of the Lord’s blessings sponsored by the Virginia College Savings Plan. Her in his life. painting of herself as a future veterinarian treating a Minister LaVerne Brewster of Christian family of pandas won a first-place prize for her grade Conquest Fellowship also conducts Bible studies at a level and netted a full, four-year scholarship to any detention facility for women. “We try to get them to Virginia public university for which she is later see that while prison and drugs may have devoured accepted. them, it has not negated God’s purpose for their Members of Family of Hope feel blessed to have lives,” she stated. “We are excited because as we the Zhous in their fellowship, and hope many others minister to these women, the Holy Spirit also pours learn to know these wonderful neighbors and out His Spirit upon us.” friends. • Story by David Powell • Harvey Yoder Virginia Mennonite Conference Peace Committee Family of Hope August 2007 Connections 3 Friendship in tragedy’s wake Church offers comfort to Koreans after Virginia Tech shootings When the Rev. James Rhee first heard about the shootings at Virginia Tech, he was consumed by grief for the victim’s families and overwhelmed with guilt that a fellow Korean had killed 32 Americans. It was as if the gunman, Seung-Hui Cho, a senior at Tech, was his own son who had gone on a ram- page and randomly opened fire on students and pro- fessors before turning the gun on himself on the morning of April 16. Rhee had received a warm welcome from mem- bers of Stephens City Mennonite Church a year and a half ago, when they offered free use of their sanc- tuary. But when Rhee heard the tragic news that Monday morning, he wasn’t sure what their reaction would be. Would they blame him and his 44-member church, or all Korean people? With a heavy heart, Rhee decided to attend a prayer meeting at Stephens City Mennonite the next morning to share his sorrow and grief over the tragedy that had taken place on the college campus Comforters for the in Blacksburg. His wife, Sharon, decided to join him. But just as wounded victims the Rhees started walking over to the church, a A particular group of students will be facing the short distance from their home, Sharon’s feelings of stark reality of returning to the campus where they guilt overwhelmed her. She panicked and ran back to were the victims of a most horrific crime. This past the house. “I wanted to attend and pray, but I April 16, thirty-three students and faculty were couldn’t,” she said. killed at Virginia Tech. The outpouring of support When James met with the group, he apologized from around the world for their families was truly for Cho’s actions and shared the emotions he and amazing to witness. Often relegated to a side-bar in other members of the Stephens City Korean this whole story, though, were the twenty-five stu- Community Church, also a Mennonite congregation, dents at Virginia Tech who survived the shooting, were experiencing. “I felt like I wanted to escape but were wounded, and will be living with that vivid from the Korean community because I was so memory for the rest of their lives. Many of those ashamed,” James said. “We have a very strong students will be returning to campus this fall to com- nationalism. We feel like we are one big family.” plete their programs. The next day, the Rhees and other members of We at Christiansburg Mennonite Fellowship the Korean church joined Stephens City Mennonite invite our sisters and brothers of Virginia for a family-night event. That was when members of Conference to help recognize the particular suffering the two congregations took their dialogue a little of those wounded students. With your help, we deeper. Sharon had finally summoned the courage to would like to make a comforter for each of those stu- share her feelings about the shootings. What she got dents. We have been in contact with the Dean of in return was empathy and words of comfort. “They Students at Virginia Tech who heartily endorses this encouraged me, and they understood my feelings of effort. The University will take care of distributing guilt,” she said. “You are part of our family. You are the comforters to the affected students. We are not God’s family.” seeking face-to-face contact with the students; they The two congregations developed a closer bond will receive these comforters anonymously, or at the as a result of that evening. “I feel the spirit of God very most, with broad greetings from Virginia was among us in seeking unity,” Aldine said. “We Mennonite Conference churches. If your congrega- learned about ways to respond that bring healing and tion would like to participate by making a comforter, hope, and that glorify God.” please contact Christiansburg Mennonite Fellowship (540-382-8787) and we will send you further details. • Adapted from an article appearing in The Winchester Star, written by Lorraine Halsted, printed on May 29. • Les Horning 4 Connections August 2007 Christiansburg Mennonite Fellowship Good $ense course Rally for religious freedom in Rome published in Italian “Most Holy Saints Square,” several blocks from the notorious Coliseum of ancient Rome, was Several evan- an appropriate setting for an unusual gathering. gelical publishers Approximately 700 evangelical believers from all in Italy informed over Italy con- us that we have no vened there books on the stew- on June 23 to ardship of money express their in Italian. Friends desire for who work in the more religious secular financial freedom. setting were not Organized by aware of any Italian the “Italian books designed to Evangelical help families man- Alliance,” this age finances. With was only the courtesy Willard & Eva Eberly second such that in mind, we began searching among the many English books on event in the the subject to find a practical, but simple study history of Italy, the first one guide that could easily be contextualized for Italy. having taken place in 1998. Through MMA’s “Stewardship University” we Italy’s history is marred by discovered Willow Creek’s Good $ense Budget 800 years of religious oppres- Course: Biblical Financial Principles for sion and persecution. The last Transforming your Finances and Life (by Dick four decades of religious free- Towner and John Tofilon.) They graciously granted dom have been limited howev- VMM a reasonable contract for translation rights. er, by a 1929 fascist law and by Using the first corrected draft of the translation, a dominant religious system Ken Horst taught a “trial run” course among the that is strongly linked to the Mennonite churches in Palermo, Sicily where it political state. was well received. The “believers’ church” Casa della Bibbia, widely known and respected movement in Italy, that num- Christian publisher in Italy, agreed to publish the bers less than 1% of the popula- book for us, if VMM would finance it. By faith we tion, has been weak and divided agreed. They subjected it to thorough correction, with traditionally little influence contextualization, and careful layout. Daniele on the Italian society. This rally Salini, a fine Christian financier and president of an demonstrates a new commit- association of Christian Italian professionals and ment to unified witness and to seek a common (top) Italian evangelicals at identity and platform. Some themes that emerged the rally in Rome for more businessmen, highly endorses its content. Here is religious freedom in Italy. a translated quote from the introduction he wrote during the rally: we are already free in Christ; we for the Italian version, “Money will have its right- are not here to protest against something but (above) Lia Giuliana and ful place when it becomes an instrument that we rather to encourage the cause of religious free- Eva Eberly in Rome. They dom; we openly declare our prayer support of our went to the rally represent- learn to use in fulfilling God’s plan for our lives.” ing the Mennonite church Our son, Jon Michael, added the final touch— government’s leaders. A clear call was launched in Bari. an attractively designed cover appropriate for the for the legal recognition of evangelical churches, courtesy Willard & Eva Eberly Italian culture that definitely influences its com- qualifying them to receive tax-deducible gifts, to mercial value. Most of all, let’s pray that all that’s perform marriages, and other similar rights. been invested in this book will yield dividends of Lia Giuliani and Eva Eberly represented the transformed lives in the area of finances among the Mennonite church and were part of a delegation of Italian churches. believers from Bari. A highlight of the rally for them was the radiant testimony of a well-known • Eva Eberly Italian soccer player who was recently converted Mediterranean Regional Assistant and now a leader of “Athletes for Christ” in Italy. • Eva Eberly CMediterranean Regional Assistant August 2007 Connections 5 FLRC comes home for its 20th anniversary On Sunday afternoon, July 1, the Family Life and families: “I will walk with integrity of heart Resource Center invited friends from everywhere within my house;” “I will set before my eyes no to celebrate its 20th birthday. What made this date- vile thing;” “I will look with favor on the faithful of and the place, the Park the land so that they may live (right) Ralph Steger, executive director of View Mennonite Church- in my house;” “No one who FLRC, Deb Layman, -significant was that it practices deceit shall remain in Gloria Snider, Radella was exactly twenty years my house;” “No one who Vrolijk, Rowland Brunk, earlier, July 1, 1987, that utters lies shall continue in my (all board members), Dorothy Hottle, office FLRC first opened its presence.” (from Psalm 101) manager, and Carroll doors at that very loca- Then there was the music. Hottle celebrated the tion, using several office The rich, resonant sound of the 20th anniversary of the spaces in the south fifty-voice adult choir from the Family Life Resource Center at Park View annex of the church. First Russian Baptist Church Mennonite Church on At the celebration, Jim was unforgettable. We all July 1. Glanzer and Harvey wished for more. Yoder, clinicians at FLRC for most of those years, The offering for the event totaled $1400, all of shared some of their memories, beginning with the which will go toward making up some of the differ- coming of Randy and Rhonda Weber, the Center’s ence between what it costs to run the Center (cur- first therapists and directors. From an agency oper- rently with an office and clinical staff of eight FTE) ating on a shoestring and a prayer, FLRC has and the reduced amounts often paid by insurance grown to one with an annual budget of $450,000. companies and by individuals without health cover- The Center still relies on lots of prayer and other age or other means. help to support this Christian-based counseling and An earlier 20th Anniversary fundraiser, a resource agency. Couples Night Out at Simple Pleasures held Among the early FLRC supporters present at May 19, also helped provide some much needed the event were Gloria Lehman, the first chair of funds for operating expenses, debt reduction and the board, and past board member John Drescher, recent building repairs. FLRC now owns its offices who has become the most widely-read Mennonite on 273 Newman Avenue, and looks forward to pay- writer ever. Drescher, now from Quakertown, ing off its $90,000 mortgage for the building and its Pennsylvania, spoke on the theme “Changes I new annex as soon as possible. Have Seen in Family Life and Parenting Over the The FLRC board and staff appreciate all of the Last Fifty Years.” congregations and individuals who have made At nearly 79, Drescher’s message was as strong these twenty good years a reality, and especially and impactful as ever. For example, he spoke of thank the local businesses and other generous five commitments each of us need to make if we donors who helped sponsor our 20th anniversary are to avoid being seduced by the persuasive media events. messages constantly being aimed at our children • Harvey Yoder, counselor, FLRC (at right) Destiny, Hailey, The fifth annual Back Yard Bible Michael, Essence and School in Graham, N.C., was held beside Keira work together to the playground in Parkridge Apartments build the temple in instead of in Keith and Tami Nice’s back response to our story yard. Many children live in the apart- about Josiah. ments there. Average attendance during courtesy Tami Nice the week was 45-50 children, ages 3-13. On Wednesday evening there was lots of thunder and lightning, and leaders need- ed to make a decision about holding an outdoor Bible school in these conditions. A dozen or so kids gathered around and begged, “Please don't cancel Bible school.” For safety, it had to be cancelled that evening. The students were eager to participate. It was a great opportunity to begin friendships with families there; future outreaches include a school supply distribution in August. 6 Connections August 2007 Connections Prayer Calendar August 2007 Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Intercede for a youth Kerry-Ann Tyrell and At 7:00 p.m. today, the Many of us take a year- 1 camp to establish 2 Lisa Reid, youth from 3 2007 class of tranSend 4 ly summer vacation this This month’s prayer calendar is sponsored by Jamaica, attended Youth friendships with un-evan- will be commissioned for month. Pray we may be Dick and Wanda Good gelized youth through Camp in Trinidad last week- their terms of service. open to God's leadings in music, sport activities, and end and travel home tomor- What a challenge ahead of our lives during the coming in honor of their good friends at Riverside Mennonite Church English conversation cours- row. Thank God for this each one! With your year and that we may learn es, being held in Niksic, a opportunity for them, and prayers and God's constant to rest in Him and just "be." and others in the Harman, West Virginia, community who have made ask for His guidance as they presence, they will do the university city in their summer sojourns there memorable and rewarding. Montenegro July 30-Aug. 5. continue to serve Him work set before them. through their congregations. Thank God for another The Italian Mennonite Anita Rhodes, serving A VMM team has Pray for Conference The Annual General Pray for Conference 5 Virginia Mennonite 6 Church still waits after 7 as an historical inter- 8 been working on 9 Minister Owen 10 Meeting of the 11 Minister Owen Conference Assembly; more than 20 years for offi- preter at Nazareth Village rebuilding a church in Haiti Burkholder as he walks Mennonite Church of Burkholder’s ministry of another time to connect cial recognition by the under VMM's tranSend pro- since August 3. Thank God with various districts and Trinidad & Tobago begins encouraging the churches of with others, worship, and Italian government. Ask gram, leaves for Turkey, to for the good connections special ministry clusters in today. Pray for the church VMC. He preaches at Zion work on the needs of the the Lord to intervene on visit her missionary sister, there, and ask Him to bless the transitions of as they have their business Mennonite Church, in church. Pray for the plan- their behalf to break en route to Israel. Pray for the church as it grows. bishops/overseers. session on Saturday, and the Broadway, Va., tomorrow. ning process for next year’s through the obstacles. traveling mercies. celebration with worship on Assembly in Harrisonburg. Sunday. Pray for Victor Nancy Marshall has Youth camp for Thank God for the Phil, Marcia, Crystal Praise God for Teachers, principals, 12 Espinoza, pastor of 13 returned to Orange 14 Jamaica Mennonite 15 ministry of Myron 16 and Christopher 17 answers to prayer for 18 parents and stu- Iglesia de Jesus la Promesa Walk Town, Belize, after Church is held this week. Augsburger as he retires Lehman returned to their the Chris Riddle family. A dents are preparing for a (Church of Promise of being in the US for VA Bible study, activities, and this month as overseer for home in Italy yesterday. suitable, adequate apart- new school year. Let's pray Jesus), Wallace, N,C., one Assembly and vacation with good interaction make this a the leadership/administra- Their home leave was full ment was found for them that they will have good of our recent church plants, her family. Thank God for highlight for those who tion cluster of special min- of church visits and family near Centro Koinonia, a attitudes and open minds as he reaches out to his her energy and creativity as attend. Ask God to bless the istries. Pray for discern- times. Ask God to bless developing area of Bari, to learn a lot about God's neighborhood. she reaches the Deaf com- leaders and the youth as ment in finding his succes- their transition time with Italy. world. munity around her. they participate together. sor. insight and energy. Willard Eberly is plan- Pray blessings over a Richard and Margaret Pray for those who Pray for Aaron and Paul Kratz, Trinidad, The Hickory Hmong 19 ning a vacation/ 20 PIM team from 21 Keeler now live near- 22 are heading off to 23 Laura Kauffman, 24 meets monthly with 25 Mennonite Church seminar for young adults and Harrisonburg, Va., Stan er to the Gospel Lighthouse college for their freshman VMM and MMN workers in pastors and leadership teams celebrates their third families this week in McMahons (Ireland), and Menn. Church where they year that they may remem- Colombia, as they reach out in the Mennonite Church of anniversary today. Pray for Calabria, Italy. The purpose is Maurita Eberly as they help give leadership to this con- ber the things they have to a variety of people as Trinidad & Tobago. May the pastor, Chaiya to encourage commitment to provide meaningful activities gregation of 80 members. learned at home and they teach English, relate to God's grace and insight be Hadtasunsern, and his con- love and serve God and His for this vacation/seminar. Ask God to bless them as church and that they may the church youth group, and shared through him and gregation, that they may church, and to reach their they have more contact with be kept from all evil. interact with community good decisions be made for grow in numbers and in generation for Christ. Pray this home community. members. the wellbeing of the church. the knowledge of Jesus for this event. Christ. Crystal Lehman is VMC's four elected The VMC staff and a Pray for the heads of Both VMC and VMM Thank God for Sarah 26 going to Black Forest 27 officers, plus the 28 representative of the 29 Conference-related 30 end their fiscal years 31 Bixler’s work as If you would like to sponsor Academy in Germany for conference minister and Listening Committee will Ministries EMU, EMHS, tomorrow. Both began the interim youth minister on her junior year of H.S. Pray conference coordinator, will meet tomorrow to evaluate VMRC, VMM, VMC, month in deficit positions in this, her last day at work the prayer calendar, please she’d soon make friends and meet in Richmond tomor- the Hickory 2007 Mennonite Media and their general operating for the Conference. Pray contact Gloria Lehman at adjust to living away from row to prepare for the Assembly. Pray for discern- Pleasant View Inc. as they accounts. Pray that God's for discernment for VMC her family and church in Conference Council meet- ment as they seek to (540) 434-9727 or email gather for breakfast and people may respond gener- leaders in the search for Bari, Italy. ing on September 21. Pray improve these gatherings. fellowship tomorrow. ously to the financial need. her successor. firstname.lastname@example.org for wisdom and guidance. 7 The annual Ministry Retreat for pastors/ ministers will be held February 22-24, 2007 2008, at the Williamsburg Christian Retreat Center. David Brubaker, assistant professor at the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding at Eastern Mennonite Your pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters Announcements University, will be the resource person. His topic will be “Managing Conflict in the Congregation.” Mark your calendars now! and dollars make a difference! We are hoping to raise $25,000 for this year’s Penny Power projects. In 2006, congregations “Women of Worth—WOW!” is the topic for the contributed $26,873.32! We hope to continue Mennonite Women of Virginia’s annual retreat the effort and momentum from last year. November 9-11 at Holiday Inn Koger South Hotel in Richmond. Angie Williams is the speaker for this • Highlight Penny Power during your Sunday morning dynamic event. Watch for registration information in worship service. Involve the children in your church. church mailboxes this summer. Plan to join women • Bring jugs from your church/org. to the Relief Sale, in your congregation and from all around Virginia October 5-6, at the Rockingham County Fairgrounds. • Take your empty jugs back to your church and start Mennonite Conference for worship and fellowship. collecting for next year’s Penny Power projects! Promote Penny Power in your congregation with a new three-minute DVD, “The Three Littlest Missonaries” about the children of Chris and Melody Riddle, mission workers in Bari, Italy. Funds from Penny Power raised this year will assist the childrens’ valuable relational ministry. Contact Laura for a DVD at (800) 707-5535 or email@example.com. Connections (USPS 007-205) Periodical postage Virginia Mennonite Board of Missions PAID Virginia Mennonite Conference Harrisonburg, VA 901 Parkwood Drive 22801 Harrisonburg, VA 22802-2498
"Mennonites gather to “live the c"