How VMC is equipping leaders; will you join us?

End of Year appeal

As I pray and reflect, I can’t help but remember working through the logistics necessary to carry out Executive Conference Minister Clyde Kratz’s vision over the past calendar year: A January “Forum on Prison Ministry,” an effort to collaborate on the issue of overcrowding in the Harrisonburg/Rockingham County Jail, and other issues and ministry opportunities…

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Pastoral Consultation meets to engage questions of “Same-Gender Attraction, Relationship, Lifestyle”

Phil Kniss presents on unity - A Church Worthy of Its Calling

One hundred pastors and credentialed leaders in Virginia Mennonite Conference gathered in November at Lindale Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg, Va., for a three-day Pastoral Consultation, a time of intentional listening, sharing and discernment on “Same-Gender Attraction, Relationship, Lifestyle.” This was the fifth in a series of five Virginia Mennonite Conference consultations that offered a space for…

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Mennonite World Conference connects father and son

Aldine Musser

Alberto Othuon, a third generational Mennonite from Tanzania, currently worships at Stephens City Mennonite Church. The 16th Global Assembly of Anabaptists brought his father to Harrisburg, Pa., from Tanzania for international worship and fellowship with 7,500 Mennonites from 65 countries. His father, Bishop John Nyagwegwe, has been walking with God (the Mennonite World Conference theme)…

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Convention: facilitating difficult table conversations

Loren Swartzendruber

With the exception of two Mennonite Church USA Conventions, I have been present as a pastor or as an employee of a denominational agency or institution for the last 40 years. Kansas City 2015 was the first time I served as a delegate, in this case appointed by Virginia Mennonite Conference. I also served as…

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God met us at Table 80

Phil Kniss

The work we had to do weighed heavily on those of us around Table 80 at Mennonite Church USA Convention in Kansas City. We were carefully prepared for our work of “spiritual discernment,” and were reminded often throughout the delegate assembly to work in a spirit of prayerful openness to each other and to the…

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Intrigued and challenged by our ‘Jerusalem’ events

Elroy Miller photo by Lindsey Kolb, EMU

I left both Virginia Mennonite Conference (VMC) Assembly and Mennonite Church USA Convention in Kansas City feeling deeply moved by the worship experiences with emphasis on what it means to live like Jesus during challenging times. I was intrigued by the notion that holiness and unity aren’t just two dynamic concepts on a continuum, but…

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A God ‘bigger than our differences’

Mary Jo Lehman

Planners for the Mennonite Church USA Convention in Kansas City carefully assigned delegates to tables of eight or nine persons to reflect both geographical and viewpoint diversity. None of us at Table 22 knew each other beforehand, but the preliminary conversations around the table went at ping-pong speed as we quickly established commonalities and relationships.…

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Engaging possibilities and walking together in love

Clyde G. Kratz

Summer 2015 will be remembered for the gatherings of the body of Christ within our Anabaptist-Mennonite faith family. In mid-June Virginia Mennonite Conference held their annual Assembly on the theme “Built into a Spiritual House” (1 Peter 2) at Harrisonburg Mennonite Church. The first week of July, Mennonite Church USA held their biennial Convention in…

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Conference Archives seeks church records for preservation

Harold Huber

Congregations are busy with many activities that require their attention, but it is important for them to preserve the historical record of God’s work in and through their congregational life and ministries. Every congregation should have an historian who regularly collects, organizes and sends their records to the Virginia Mennonite Conference Archives for preservation and…

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In action: How Harrisonburg District is making disciples

Roy Hange

The spiritual dance of disciple-making takes many forms in, among and beyond the Harrisonburg District churches: Invitations to faith and baptism—One of my greatest joys in walking with pastors is seeing the smiles on their faces when they tell the stories of persons coming to faith in Jesus Christ and recent baptisms. I have also…

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