Bulletin notes


See the recent Virginia Mennonite Relief Sale flyer.

Join a special Bike Shenandoah 2020 ride in memory of Steve Leaman on Saturday, September 19. Steve loved biking, and worked with Bike Shenandoah for several years in his role with VMMissions. In honor of Steve, a double portion of proceeds will go to VMMissions. The Other beneficiary agencies are MennoMedia, Mennonite Central Committee, NewBridges Immigrant Resource Center, Our Community Place, and Roberta Webb Childcare Center. Bike Shenandoah is an annual family-friendly fundraising event which includes rides of 5, 15, 30, or 62 miles in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley. This year, non-bikers can also participate by walking or playing golf, one of Steve’s other favorite sports. Register at bikeshenandoah.org Email questions to: bikeshencycle4service@gmail.com. See the brochure


The Virginia Mennonite Conference Congregational Life Commission is sponsoring three one-hour Zoom seminars in September and October in support of parents and teachers who are managing virtual learning. These small group interactive seminars are capped at 20 persons. See the attached flyer. Each seminar is $10. Register and learn more here.

  • Guiding Your Child Through Virtual Learning
    (with Matthew Swartzentruber, Licensed Professional Counselor, FLRC. September 23 | 7:00 pm)
    As many school systems have gone to virtual learning because of COVID-19, parents face many challenges in dealing with aspects of children’s virtual learning at home. In this seminar, parents will learn ideas to support their children through the virtual learning process.
  • Frazzled: Parents, Employees, and Now Teachers
    (with Kate Corder, Licensed Professional Counselor, FLRC. September 30 | 7:00 pm)
    In this time of COVID-19, parents are wrestling with confusing and frustrating roles of being good parents (seeing to the safety of their children and responsibility for their growth), achieving goals and being productive in their work organizations, and now needing to manage the education of their children in the home as many schools have gone to virtual learning. Such a “balancing act” is required, with limited time and so much responsibility. Parents who are not trained as teachers are now providing significant educational support for perhaps several children while facing the expectations of work. Many parents feel frazzled and overwhelmed by not knowing what is best and living into an uncertain future. On top of this, Seasonal Adjustment Disorder, beginning in September and October, can make changes and pressures even more difficult. Parents, you are not alone on this journey! This seminar will help you understand the emotions of being overwhelmed and equip you with easy and important coping tools to help when you are overwhelmed. These are not complicated or hard to remember, and only take a few minutes. We will also have some time for sharing our feelings and experiences.
  • Supporting Teachers Through Change
    (with Matthew Swartzentruber, Licensed Professional Counselor, FLRC. October 7 | 7:00 pm)
    Teachers face unique challenges with virtual learning. There are new expectations, new class schedules, new technologies, new ways of assigning and grading work, new processes for assisting and supporting students. Some teachers are doing all-online instruction, some are in hybrid models. How do you cope with so many new things? How can you thrive in an untested environment? The goal of this seminar will support teachers by bringing them together in a small virtual group, encouraging reflections and sharing together, and generating helpful ideas for self-care, resourcing, and networking.

The next SOS (Saving Our Surplus) initiative is to encourage caring individuals to form “$1000 Clubs,” in which families, youth groups, church cell groups, co-workers or any group of friends join together to raise $1000 (or more!) between now and the October 3 Sale date. Checks with SOS on the memo line should be made out to Virginia Mennonite Relief Sale and can be sent to 601 Parkwood Drive, Harrisonburg, VA 22802. This is an opportunity to show our compassion at a time when so many of our world neighbors are in unimaginably desperate need.

There are many changes in the MCC Virginia Relief Sale this year. Check out vareliefsale.com for details. However, Harrisonburg Mennonite Church is having their own Saturday morning breakfast fundraiser on September 26, from 7:30-9:00a.m. This must be pre-ordered, drive-thru the HMC parking lot, and pick up at your assigned time only. We ask that you get all your requests phoned in by Wednesday, September 23rd. The choices will be omelets (cheese and turkey ham only) and sausage gravy & biscuits. Mervyl Miller and Steve Smith are helping to coordinate the breakfast which will be by donation. There will be My Coins Count jugs available as you drive through to drop off contributions safely. Mark your calendars and call Merv or Linda Miller at 540-434-0077 or 540-478-3911 to sign up by September 23rd. Your donation for a yummy breakfast will bless MCC on their 100th year anniversary!

Eastern Mennonite Seminary invites pastors for virtual coffee and conversation via Zoom on Tuesday, September 15, 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. EST. Thriving in Ministry: Exploring with author, theologian & poet Pádraig Ó Tuama. Register here. There will also be a 11:00 – 11:45 am EST live-streamed Chapel Gathering with Ó Tuama entitled, “Jesus of Nazareth: strange man in strange times”. More information https://emu.edu/academics/padraig

ONLINE Popcorn Fundraiser September 15-18: VMMissions Workers Steve Horst and Bethany Tobin are fundraising for their next 22-month term in Thailand. Support them by buying some delicious popcorn through a Double Good Fundraiser! They will receive 50% of profits from this four-day virtual event and the popcorn will be shipped directly to you! Join the Facebook Event to learn more. There will be a “live” link September 15-18 for ordering and sharing with others who might be interested!

The Mennonite Church USA colleges and universities will be hosting a series of virtual Family Nights in conjunction with their Mennonite College Days (MCD) schedule. In a typical year, admissions counselors from the five colleges (Bethel College, North Newton, Kan; Bluffton University, Bluffton, Ohio; Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Va; Goshen College, Goshen, Ind; Hesston College, Hesston, Kan.) travel to the private Mennonite high schools during the fall recruitment season, and host the chapel service that day. They set up tables in the halls, host giveaways and games, and hold individual meetings with prospective students. At some of the schools, they host information sessions in the evenings to connect with parents and families. Due to COVID-19, the in-person collaborative travel schedule is not possible this fall.

Instead, the reps will “visit” each chapel service virtually, with a pre-recorded video, and host Instagram raffles and virtual visits to their respective campuses. There will be a Family Night information session, over Zoom video conferencing, coordinating with the chapel “visit” that day. However, all prospective high school students, their families, and youth groups are invited to attend, including those who do not attend a Mennonite high school. Students are welcome to register for whichever session suits their schedule; the content will be identical for each 45 minute session. Topics covered include: What to do as a sophomore, junior, and senior in high school to be a strong applicant, financial aid, the value of Mennonite higher education, how to prepare for your college visits, and an open time for Q&A. Representatives of all five institutions will be on hand to speak privately with families afterwards, or to schedule a more in-depth visit.

Click here to register for a session. The MCD Family Night sessions are as follows:

• Monday, September 21 (8:30 p.m. EST) Hillcrest Academy (all are welcome)
• Wednesday, September 30 (7:30 p.m. EST) Bethany Christian School (all are welcome)
• Monday, October 5 (7:30 p.m. EST) Dock Mennonite Academy (all are welcome)
• Tuesday, October 6 (7:30 p.m. EST) Lancaster Mennonite School (all are welcome)
• Thursday, October 8 (7:30 p.m. EST) EMHS (all are welcome)
• Monday, October 12 (7:30 p.m. EST) Central Christian School (all are welcome)
• Thursday, October 15 (8:30 p.m. EST) All are welcome!

Service and Employment Opportunities

Eastern Mennonite School is seeking applicants for an elementary Spanish teacher (Part-time with around 6 hours of direct instruction/week plus planning preparations): Teaching responsibilities include beginning Spanish instruction of approximately one hour per week in grades kindergarten through grade 5. Instruction is in-person two days per week with some flexibility in establishing the best consistent time to meet with each class. Interest can be expressed by emailing Maria Archer, principal, archerm@easternmennonite.org or calling 540-236-6002.