Salford Mennonite Church, located in Harleysville, Pa., was founded in 1717. An agrarian congregation throughout its history, the past 50 years has seen a transition to a suburban and professional […]
Franconia Conference delegates and leaders gathered November 2 at Penn View Christian School in Souderton, Pa. to celebrate God still at work. With a packed auditorium for a third united assembly with Eastern District Conference, representatives gathered to listen and pray, to celebrate newly credentialed and ordained pastoral leaders, and to work alongside one another after an over 150-year rift created two separate Mennonite entities. The theme “God still @ work” was an extension of the 2012 theme, “God @ work.”
Last summer my family spent some vacation time at our cabin in Central Pennsylvania’s Big Valley. I always love going there to visit my grandmother, which often means returning home with some sort of sinfully sugary gooey treat, most often a pecan pie that I’m certain would bring the highest bid at any of our church youth auctions.
A report from the September 4 meeting of the ministerial committee.
Ben: As Salford prepared to experience Mennonite Church USA’s biannual gathering in Phoenix, AZ we understood that this was going to be a different kind of experience. We knew that there were a whole host of reasons that various churches were in favor of attending and not attending. One of the dramatic factors of a trip to the Southwest was that several of our sister congregations would be unable to afford the travel expenses.
Why would these 8 people from three different churches in our conference choose to spend 5 of their lazy days of summer vacation together, being NOT-lazy?
- They enjoy making the wheels on a bike go round and round.
- They wanted to help raise money to support Mennonite Central Committee’s project of planting trees in Haiti.
On July 2 at the delegate session in Phoenix, seven people, including two from Franconia Conference, were elected to serve for a first term on the following boards: Executive Board, Everence, Mennonite Education Agency, Mennonite Mission Network and The Mennonite, Inc. The delegates also approve the selection of moderator-elect.
A decade ago, Franconia Mennonite Conference leadership noticed a critical problem: seminary-trained leaders were increasingly in short supply. So when Delaware Valley Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA), a conference-related ministry, turned over a well-funded college tuition scholarship program to Franconia Conference, a solution was soon to emerge.
As a little girl growing up at Salford Mennonite Church, I remember my father telling stories directly from the Bible to me and my younger brother Jimmy. After a particularly dramatic or gruesome account, Jimmy would gasp, “Did that really happen?”
On the morning of Saturday, June1st, thirty women came together at Salford Mennonite Church in Harleysville (Pa.) for the first women’s equipping event sponsored by the new Eastern District & Franconia Mennonite Conferences Women’s Committee.
Thanksgiving Day at the Panama City Beach was a time for Georgia Praise Center–Atlanta to offer thanks and to gather as a big family. Our congregation enjoyed dinner and a time of wonderful fellowship together with turkey, Ayam Kalasan (Indonesian-style barbeque chicken), and lots of other foods.
Three days after Hurricane Sandy swept through south-eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, members of Franconia Conference are still cleaning up from massive flooding, downed trees and power lines, and extensive power outages.
Communication has been challenging and reports are trickling in–entire communities are still without power, dealing with road closures, and running short on supplies as gas stations and grocery stores are also without electricity.
It’s a misty evening as I sit cuddled under a blanket with my laptop and a snoring dog, watching the presidential debate. Even as I type, President Obama and Governor Romney are debating the economy.
I feel my temperature rising, and it has nothing to do with the blanket. I grew up in a family in which “debate” sounds more like calm discussion and a slightly raised voice feels like yelling. Just watching the debate is feeding my anxiety.
And, if anyone else experiences conflict like I do, the election this coming November could be incredibly divisive for the church. And how much moreso, when you mix people like me with those who are very comfortable with debate, raised voices, and hearty conversation? How do we keep our eyes focused on our shared allegiance—to Jesus Christ—in the midst of such diversity and disagreement?