2024 Winter Delegate Assembly
Equipped by God:
we Worship, we Empower, we Discern
Annually the first Saturday in February, the 2024 Winter Delegate Assembly will be held at Waynesboro Mennonite Church on February 3, 2024.
Cost is $35/in-person; $20/zoom.
Two webinars will be hosted by Caleb Schrock-Hurst
New Delegate Orientation - Monday, Jan 22 @ 7pm. Contact Caleb to register.
9:00 Session I
Call to Order & Welcome
Host Church Welcome
Music & Worship
10:30 Session II
Racial Justice Task Force
Faith & Life Commission
VMC in Prayer
1:00 Session III
Denominational Affiliation Work Group
2:45 Session IV
Review and Approval of Minutes Action 1
Gifts Discernment Ballot Action 2 & 3
VMMissions Status Change Action 4
Congregation & Ministry Updates
Music & Worship
I am a Latina mom of four children and I have been spending more than two decades helping moms, specially, single moms and their children with their physical, emotional and spiritual needs. During these years, I have volunteer my time in the community and the church supporting, guiding Latino families. Helping my community is one of the greatest and continuous accomplishments of my life.
Support the Senior Pastor in the overall vision casting and leadership of the church’s teaching. Work with the Senior Pastor to ensure weekend services are planned and executed. Able to recruit, teach, train, spiritually support and effectively supervise volunteers for adult small groups and adult ministries within the church. Serve as the primary contact for visitors. Visit members in the hospital, care facilities, and homes. Conduct funerals and weddings Provide pastoral care to children, youth, and families; provide confidential pastoral counseling in emergencies and short-term basis. Intentional about building relationships with congregation. Tends to the spiritual needs of the congregation as one who will give an account to God. Provide guidance and oversight for adult and small group teachers and leaders. Teach Small Group or Sunday School classes as needed. Provide staff oversight for the pastors/directors responsible for Children and Student Ministries. A spiritual leader to the staff that encourages, challenges and holds them accountable to their walk with God both at an individual and group level. Provides coaching, evaluation, mentoring, and bible teaching to the staff.
Mary Jo Veurink
Mary Jo Veurink is originally from northeastern Pennsylvania where she lived at Spruce Lake Retreat and was a member of Spruce Lake Fellowship (Franconia Conference) with her family until the age of 22. After graduating from Eastern Mennonite College, she married Lynn Veurink and they lived in South Dakota for several years before moving to Hendersonville, NC, where they were members at Asheville Mennonite Church. They were very active there, including as Youth Leaders.
In 2007 they moved to the Valley where she started a freelance graphic design business, Bluewood Design, and also worked as Administrator at Grace Mennonite Fellowship, where they became members soon after moving to the area. She has been involved in many roles and committees at GMF, including Elder. She now works full time at Eastern Mennonite School as Counseling Office Manager.
She and Lynn have two daughters, Anna (20), who attends Virginia Commonwealth University, and Ruby (16), who attends Broadway High School.
Request to Update VMMissions’ Status with VMC
- Background on the VMC/VMMissions Partnership
- VMMissions was founded by VMC in 1919 to lead and coordinate VMC’s mission efforts, initially in Virginia, West Virginia and neighboring states, and eventually abroad, especially in the Caribbean and the Mediterranean.
- VMMissions continues to help VMC churches engage in both short- and long-term mission endeavors domestically and internationally. Thirty-four of our current mission workers come from VMC churches. VMMissions also serves as a liaison between VMC churches and our historic international partners.
- VMC’s Constitution and Bylaws currently categorize VMMissions as a Conference Commission. VMMissions is also considered a Conference Ministry. It is the only organization in these two categories. Other long-standing partners of VMC are considered Conference Endorsed Ministries.
- Changes to the VMMissions Constituency
- Historically, VMC and VMMissions had identical constituencies. Over the past decade, that has changed as congregations leaving VMC have continued to relate to VMMissions, and as partners beyond VMC have begun to participate in VMMissions’ programs.
- Currently, the following percentages represent participation by constituents beyond VMC: 48% of workers, 31% of office staff, 31% of congregational giving.
- In light of these changes, the VMMissions Board desires to stay meaningfully connected to VMC while making room at the table for the diverse range of partners involved in our work. Becoming a Conference Endorsed Ministry (CEM) seems the best path forward.
- Rationale for Updating VMMissions’ Status with VMC to CEM
- CEM status allows VMMissions to maintain a strong relationship with VMC while also including other partners more fully at the table (including as board members).
- CEM status more accurately describes how VMMissions and VMC currently relate.
- CEM status provides the opportunity for VMMissions and VMC to develop shared goals and expectations in a Covenant of Understanding.
- Steps to Update VMMissions’ Status with VMC
VMC Restructuring for Mission Task Force (July 2019):
- The task force proposed that VMMissions would “no longer be a commission of VMC” but instead “a mutually agreed upon Memo of Understanding will outline a relationship that will serve to keep the two bodies cooperative and interdependent.”
VMC-VMMissions Ad Hoc Restructuring Task Force Statement (November 2022):
- Joint statement: “We agree that the category of Conference Endorsed Ministry represents the best blend of autonomy and accountability for VMMissions' relationship with VMC.”
- However, in light of VMC leadership transitions and the Gilliam process, we agreed mutually to pause the process until after the 2023 VMC Summer Assembly.
Consensus of VMMissions Board (November 2023):
- The Board agreed to move ahead with the request for a change of status with VMC from Commission and Conference Ministry to Conference Endorsed Ministry. Paul Yoder and Aaron Kauffman presented that request to Conference Council on November 17, 2023.
Action Unanimously Approved by Conference Council (November 2023):
- “That we recommend, with Conference Council support, this change in status for VMMissions from Commission and Conference Ministry to Conference Endorsed Ministry at the Winter Conference Assembly.”
Implications for Updating VMMissions’ Status with VMC
|VMC Conference Ministry
|VMC Conference Endorsed Ministry
|Refer to VMMissions as “a mission agency of Virginia Mennonite Conference”
Require one board member from each VMC district.
Allow up to eight members at large.
The board itself appoints all board members.
|The President serves as a non-voting participant on Conference Council.
Two VMMissions board members can serve as voting members on Conference Council.
The Chair of the VMC Gifts Discernment Committee is invited to sit on the VMMissions Governance Committee.
VMC delegates are invited to affirm at-large board appointments.
|Submit changes to governing documents to Conference Council for “review and response” prior to enactment.
Provide an annual report to VMC delegates.
Provide one staff or board member as a VMC delegate.
Ensure that at least 75% of VMMissions board members are members of VMC churches.
|Relate to VMC in “a spirit of mutual counsel.”
Develop a Covenant of Understanding to be reviewed every 3 years.
Provide an annual report to VMC delegates.
Provide one staff or board member as a VMC delegate
Retain at least 60% Anabaptist representation on the VMMissions board.
Make an annual contribution to VMC.
Action item 1-3 require a simply majority to pass. Action item 4 requires 75% approval for the constitutional change.
Action 1: After reviewing the minutes from the 2023 Summer Delegate Assembly, do you approve the minutes? Yes/No
Action 2: As recommended by Conference Council, do you approve nominee Mary Jo Veurink for the position of Secretary for 3-year term Sept 1, 2023 - Aug 31, 2026? Yes/No
Action 3: As recommended by Conference Council, do you approve nominee Veronica Sanchez for the position of FLC Member-at-large for 3-year term Sept 1, 2023 - Aug 31, 2026? Yes/No
Action 4: As recommended by Conference Council, do you approve the status change of VMMissions from a commission & conference ministry to a Conference Endorsed Ministry? And do you also approve the Constitutional changed Yes/No
Acknowledgement 1: We, the delegates of Virginia Mennonite Conference, acknowledge with regret the withdrawal of Knoxville Mennonite Church from formal membership in VMC. We are grateful for its ministry and pray that God bless and guide the congregation in its new affiliation.
Acknowledgement 2: We, the delegates of Virginia Mennonite Conference, acknowledge with regret that Roberta Webb Child Care Center, due to legal implications, has voluntarily not renewed their Covenant Agreement as a Conference Endorsed Ministry.