Virginia Mennonite Conference

January 29, 2018

Editorial: Reconfiguring the Conference structure

January 29, 2018
by Elroy Miller
Conference Moderator

Editorial: Reconfiguring the Conference structure

Early on in my social work career, I was introduced to the notion of self-care and rest. Growing up as I did on a dairy farm, I was mostly indifferent to its meaning. Getting up early to do farm chores—whether I was tired or not—was not optional. We (my dad, my brothers and I) just did it; the cows had to be milked and the hay baled. It wasn’t until mid-life when I experienced considerable burnout and “helping fatigue” that the notion of rest and self-care forced itself into my …

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Finding the Sabbath in sabbatical

January 29, 2018
by Phil Kniss
Senior Pastor of Park View Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg, Va.

Finding the Sabbath in sabbatical

For many years I’ve been blessed to serve in congregations that give priority to offering sabbaticals to its pastors. Yes, Mennonite Church USA congregations get a not-so-subtle nudge from the denomination. A recommended sabbatical policy is written into pastoral support guidelines. Congregations may choose whether to follow the guidelines, and not all do. Even in congregations like Park View Mennonite Church, with a long history of providing sabbaticals, not everyone fully understands the nature of a sabbatical when it rolls around again. Occasionally, we pastors need to gently correct someone …

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