stories from the people of Park View Mennonite Church February - March 2008
house this spring through city streets to A Park View Church CrossRoads, which is member’s passion located off Garbers for an age-old trade Church Road behind is meeting up with a and above heritage center’s Harrisonburg High desire for a School. blacksmith shop. But first, Larry, This spring R. Marty and others will Larry Martin, a remove the first story of retired teacher, is the wash house. Only heading up a project the second floor and by Steve Shenk to build a roof will be moved. The 19th-century-style shop for blacksmiths at Valley floor of the blacksmith shop will be dirt, like they all were Brethren-Mennonite Heritage Center, which is also in the past. The centerpiece of the shop will be a known as CrossRoads. It is a labor of love. But Larry is forge/fireplace. fulfilling a dream—and enjoying an incomparable view In addition to donating labor, Larry has also paid for of the Shenandoah Valley from CrossRoads’ 13-acre some supplies and is donating some blacksmith hilltop campus. equipment. An anvil will be donated by Park View’s H.D. Other Park View members have been helping Larry. Swartzendruber. The marks of a blacksmith’s trade are Before Christmas, Al Keim dug a hammer and an anvil. the foundation for the For 30 years, Larry taught 14-feet-by-20-feet building. Then welding and metal work at Ervie Glick laid the block for the Massanutten Technical Center, foundation, topped off by field retiring in 2002. People kept stone that he skillfully put asking about blacksmithing, so together like a jig-saw puzzle. the school hired a blacksmith to James Flory brought the stone teach a class, with Larry as his from the site of a demolished assistant. That’s how he learned barn on Acorn Drive near Park the trade. View. Larry soon took over the class Marty Miller of Park View and succeeded in getting the Church helped pick out the old school to put blacksmithing into farm building that will serve as the curriculum for welding the blacksmith shop. The students. “Manipulating metal, farmer—Martin Eby—who sold which is what blacksmiths do, is a his farm on Acorn Drive last year, useful skill for welders,” says donated his wash house to Larry. CrossRoads. One of Larry’s jobs was to Wendell Maust, a supporter of collect blacksmith equipment for CrossRoads and owner of Maust the school. He found a forge in Larry Martin blacksmithing at CrossRoads’ Enterprises, will move the wash the old industrial arts building at Harvest Day
A Blacksmith Shop at CrossRoads
Broadway High School. He bought anvils in Pennsylnext to his home on Gravels Road north of Harrisonburg vania. “I was dealing in them for a while,” he says. come chandeliers, lamps, candle holders and flower Some people stands. They are displayed in a special room full of his confuse work. blacksmiths with furriers, who put shoes on horses. Blacksmiths make metal tools as well as ornamental iron pieces. In the old days Detail of 12-inch grill made by Larry in the same a blacksmithing class. person often did both jobs. About 10 years ago, Larry helped start the Shenandoah Valley Blacksmiths’ Guild. The group met at Massanutten Technical Center until Larry retired. Now they meet at the Burkholder Buggy Shop near Dayton. “The shop’s owner is an excellent The resident blacksmith looks on as Larry works at the anvil in blacksmith, even though only a small part of building the blacksmith shop at Louisbourg Fort in Nova Scotia. a buggy involves metal work,” says Larry. Only three members of the guild work full time as blacksmiths. One of them is on the staff at Frontier Larry has made an iron gate for the entrance of a Culture Museum in Staunton. Most of the members are home, an iron railing for another, and he researched like Larry and the other two from Park View and fashioned a Lithuanian iron cross at a customer’s Church—John Miller and Marty Miller: blacksmithing is a request. For the Mennonite Relief Sale, he has donated hobby. a table lamp and flower stand. But to look at Larry’s work is to see more than a “In the old days, the materials for blacksmith work hobby. An artist is obviously at work. Out of his shop were more expensive than the labor,” says Larry. “But nowadays the hours and hours of work that go into a finished product are what make them expensive.” Last summer Larry and his wife Pauline traveled to Nova Scotia, and a highlight for him was visiting a blacksmith shop at an old fort. He noticed a strange-looking anvil which the resident blacksmith couldn’t fully explain. So Larry promised to do some research and get back to him. He found out that the anvil was the product of the days in the 18th century when the French occupied the area. Another thrilling site is the National Cathedral in Washington. The typical visitor is impressed with the stone Gate Larry made for James and Yvonne Flory.
work. But to the members of Larry’s blacksmith guild, they notice the intricate iron work throughout the building. For two weeks this year, Larry will be a traveling teacher rather than a traveling tourist. He will teach blacksmithing in the Central American country of Belize under the auspices of Virginia Mennonite Missions. Larry got his start at CrossRoads by making items that would have been used in the Burkholder-Myers House when it was built in 1854, like a cooking crane in the kitchen fireplace. One project was to take the two surviving clothes hooks and re-create 75 more. He had to make three tools just to forge the hooks. One of his inspirations is a 19th-century blacksmith named Christian Funk, who had a shop near Broadway. He was the brother of Joseph Funk, the musician in Singers Glen. At CrossRoads, Larry has been the resident blacksmith since the annual Harvest Day started in 2004. Working outdoors with a makeshift forge, he and his guild colleagues make nails and hooks to give to children.
New Group Formed For 18 months Vi and I have attended Park View. Forming a “small group” began simply. Rachel Brown asked if Vi and I were interested. The names mentioned at that time included Jane Ellen Reid and Beth Krall. Soon after we began meeting, Pearl Hoover showed interest. Our group decided that meeting time would be at lunch after morning worship on the first and third Sundays. We plan our menus in a very specific way. (Ask one of our members.) Small groups are orchestrated by Elder Ann Yoder. Ann has a sixth sense, if you will, for noting who might be open to and would profit from a different way of experiencing Church. Small groups allow for dynamic interaction. This interaction can be varied by the needs and strengths of the group. There are groups who sing together, groups who do a book study, groups who study the Word.
Beth Krall, Rachel Brown, Jane Ellen Reid, Vi Dutcher, Pearl Hoover, Jon Dutcher
Ervie Glick (left) and Larry Martin (right) direct the concrete for the foundation of the blacksmith shop. His dream for the past four years has been to host visitors to Harvest Day in a real blacksmith shop. If enough people step forward to pay for supplies and volunteer their labor, the dream will come true on September 27, 2008. For more information about the blacksmith project, contact CrossRoads at 438-1275 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
On a personal note, when we began meeting, our group was relatively unacquainted with each other; therefore, we resisted the urge to jump into a structured format. Instead we spent October, November, and December getting to know each other casually. We told stories about ourselves as we ate, stories which produced group laughter; we discussed the various ways we celebrate the holidays; we soberly reflected on serious concerns which were foisted on specific members. Finally in January, we felt the time had come to be more definitive, and we agreed to each take a meeting to tell our personal story or faith journey. At this point, our group is still open. Note: there is only one man in this group; however, my testimony can be summed up in one word, “Great!” —Jon Dutcher
2007 Evaluation for Pastor Phil Kniss During the fall of 2007 PVMC Council Personnel Committee conducted an evaluation of lead pastor, Phil Kniss. The evaluation was done on-line except for a few responses received by paper copies. Approximately 122 individual evaluations were received. The survey provided for a response of “most always, often, seldom, or never” and also allowed for written comments. The responses were 98% in the “most often” or “often” categories in all areas of the survey. Numerous comments were received, with almost all being quite positive. The survey data and individual comments indicate strong affirmation for the ministry of Phil at PVMC. Especially strong affirmation was received for Phil’s preaching and worship leading. Comments: • Most view Phil as positive and proactive. Phil is viewed as highly competent in most of his roles and duties. He demonstrates a consistent and high level of integrity. The large majority of respondents indicated that Phil “most always” meets their expectations. • The congregation views Phil as deeply committed, a visionary, and an advocate for congregational growth. • “Administrative Ministry” received consistently high ratings, and comments noted Phil’s strength in using technology and in worship. • Overall there is strong affirmation and appreciation for Phil. Comments included appreciation for his candor, maturity, honesty, humility, personal integrity. • He is gifted in preaching ministry, worship leading. He is prepared, sincere, and truly cares for the spiritual welfare of the congregation. Other strengths include organization and coordination skills, commitment, vision and ability to view the big picture, solid theology consistent with the denomination, ability to represent the congregation to the broader community and larger church. Phil is seen as “pushing beyond the typical” in his sermons and ideas. Recommendations: • The personnel committee suggested Phil establish a more regular schedule for supervisory meetings with the other staff. • Recognizing the heavy load of the lead pastor, the personnel committee suggest Phil consider delegating some of his tasks to other staff.
PVMC is blessed to have a highly respected, mature, spiritually gifted lead pastor such as Phil Kniss. Please keep him and our whole ministry team in your daily prayers. —Joseph L. Lapp, Congregational Chair
The 4 th and 5 th Grade Sunday School Class Many of our 4th and 5th-grade lessons remind us of God’s presence among people and of those who follow God. Bryson Boettger found our study of the plagues memorable. “It would have been scary to be there when the plagues came,” he admitted. We were all reminded of God’s presence when we viewed Dove Tale, a Ted and Lee video that portrays various characters from the Christmas story. “I liked how it showed what happened, but in a funny way,” Kayla Leaman remembered. Other class members also enjoyed the portrayals of Elizabeth, Zechariah, Mary, Joseph, the innkeeper, shepherds and many others. It was an enjoyable way to spend two Sundays when many class members were traveling with their families over the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.
While beginning study of Jesus’ baptism and ministry, class members are learning some of the beatitudes in American Sign Language. Annie Wessner already knew some signs for other words, so she had some background for learning the beatitudes. Claire Smeltzer said that the sign for “mourn” looks like crying, so it is an easy one to remember. Most of the students found out that they can learn sign language at least as easily as their Sunday School teachers, and have been able to prompt the teachers when they forget. We are all learning together. —Sherwyn Smeltzer
Making the Most of Growth To be missional, we must be biblical. All through the New Testament we see growth in the numbers of the followers of Christ and in the number of churches. Approximately 120 believers (Acts 1:15) soon became about 3,000 more (Acts 2:41). "And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved." (Acts 2:47). The church started in Jerusalem. Paul wrote letters that we have to seven churches. The angel spoke to six additional churches in the province of Asia that we don't have letters to from Paul. No one knows how many churches are in the world today. But we do occasionally learn of new churches being started. Several are in the Harrisonburg area, others in the Virginia Conference. As we move to Uganda in Africa we read in the Mennonite Weekly Review that last year 23 people joined four congregations in the new Ugandan Mennonite Church. I have a strong conviction from Bible study that Jesus' design and desire is that every congregation grow by evangelism. How else can we interpret the New Testament accounts? This article focuses on workers in other lands who are from this area. From Harrisonburg Mennonite: Skip, Carol, Noelle, Melody, Jessamyn Tobin in Thailand; Tim and Tama Shoemaker in Ireland; Chris, Melody, Micah, Adam, and Isaiah Riddle in Italy along with Phil, Marcia, Crystal, and Christopher Lehman and Willard and Eva Eberly. The last two families both have their church membership in Italy. Steve and Betsy Dintaman, and Aaron, Laura, and Abigail Kauffman from Zion Mennonite, Broadway, serve in Lithuania and Columbia respectively; Richard and Margaret Keeler, Ridgeway, and Paul and Evelyn Kratz serve in Trinidad; Sharon Kniss, PVMC, in London. Let us pray much for these workers in other countries. A good way may be to choose one family or choose a different family each week.
Neighbors Well Received in Community Park View Mennonite finds itself in a well-churched community, according to a recent random readership survey for Neighbors, the congregation’s quarterly outreach newspaper. Of the 40 homes surveyed in North Park View where 2,000 homes receive Neighbors, 66 percent of the residents said they attended church from two to four Sundays in the last four weeks. Among the churches represented were the local United Methodist, Baptist, Roman Catholic and Presbyterian congregations. A small minority of those surveyed were Mennonites. Going door to door in mid-December, immediately following the mailing of the winter edition of Neighbors, surveyors Dick Benner, John L. Horst and Carl Smeltzer were warmly received and found that the newspaper is well read and appreciated. Some 88 percent said they received it, with 70 percent saying that yes, they know it is a Park View Mennonite paper. Forty-three percent said they read most of it, 30 percent “some of it” and only 13 percent “none of it,” for a 73 percent readership result. When asked whether they liked the stories or the news items best, 40 percent rated the “stories” higher than the news items—28 percent. Some didn’t have an opinion either way. “We love your paper,” said two elderly ladies living close to the church. “We read it from cover to cover!” Three JMU college males, sharing a townhouse in Lake Terrace, invited the questioner in and said that while they don’t go to church regularly they “read almost everything in the publication” and enjoy it. No one refused to participate in the survey. A couple of respondents said they attend Park View on occasion as a result of the newspaper, “slipping into the back so we aren’t noticed.” One said they “like the ministers.” To determine the number of children under the age of 12 living in the household, the surveyors found a total of 20 in the sample who “would attend Summer Bible School” if Park View held its traditional one. This was done for the benefit of the VBS planners who are wondering how many community children they might be missing by holding an alternative program called “Camp Kiva” at Highland Retreat for the past two years. Neighbors is an eight-page, full-color tabloid publication with all original stories and news items from the church. Sent out quarterly to some 2,000 households in North Park View, located from Lake Terrace homes to the north, to Village Square and
Lincolnshire Drive to the west, to Greystone Street to the south and all the homes to Route 42 to the east, it has winter, spring, summer and fall editions, to feature the major seasonal activities of the year. “We attempt to show how our members are involved in the community as a form of “missional outreach through our stories,” says Dick Benner, the editor, rather than taking the more direct promotional approach of ‘see what wonderful saints we are at Park View.’ “We are invitational by bill boarding the church events that are planned with community interest in mind—Taizé, Men’s Bible Study, music, drama and film events and the worship series of Advent and Lent (Easter). “I have a great planning group who helps come up with these stories and features,” he says, in the persons of John Horst, Hannah Lapp, Barbara Moyer Lehman, June Schrock and Bethany Versluis Fairfield, all members of the Outreach Committee, which Benner chairs. “They are creative and in touch with both the congregation and the community.” Carl Smeltzer, who surveyed half of the homes in the survey, serves on the Missions Commission as Park View’s mission advocate. —Dick Benner
Living Room Coffee House in Its Eighth Season
The beginning of a new year always causes us to reflect on the past and plan for the future. In the midst of reflection and planning, make time to get better acquainted with your faith community. On November 4, 2007, we had an all-church potluck that was attended by approximately 180 persons. I heard many positive comments about the potluck and was encouraged by many persons that we should do it more often. So another all-church potluck is being planned for February 10. Other activities that are planned in the next couple months are the Living Room Coffee House every Friday night through March 14; Wednesday, February 20 Fellowship Meal; and, back by popular demand on April 27, we are planning another in-home potluck; look for more details later. —Irene Kniss Community Life Commission Chair
Looking for a place to relax with friends and family after a busy week? Consider spending Friday evenings (7-11 p.m.) in the Living Room Coffee House. Now in its eighth season, the fireplace room is transformed each week into a cozy setting with conversational groupings of couches and chairs, tables for playing your favorite
Conversation by the fire...
card and board games, hot drinks and snacks, wonderful music, a crackling fire and more. We have a great staff this year who are working both behind the scenes and on Friday nights to create a
Above & right: the music...
warm and inviting space for members of our congregation and the community to gather. Phyllis Showalter coordinates the Coffee Bar, Steve Shenk lines up folks to Spin Tunes, Kathy Weaver schedules Kids Stage, Ross Erb, Jimmie Pusey and others tackle weekly set up, and Hannah and Michael Cranston handle the tear down. If you see these folks around, let them know how much you appreciate their efforts and feel free to volunteer your help. Plans are in the making for several evenings of special activities and/or music. Watch for upcoming announcements with the details. If you have a talent to share or want to make any other suggestion, feel free to contact Cindy Smoker (email@example.com or 434-6347) anytime. The Coffee House runs through March 14. Hope to see you in the Living Room this Friday night! â€”Cindy Smoker
...and the games.
The Church: Catholic and Anabaptist The incompatibility of the Roman Catholic and the Anabaptist/Mennonite paradigms is deeply ingrained in the psyches of both communities. Historical developments, peculiar to the second half of the 20th century just past, brought two seemingly opposite impulses into that polarized picture. On the one hand, the first-time publication of important 16th Anabaptist records contributed importantly to "a recovery to the Anabaptist vision" (H. S. Bender), and hence a renewed awareness of the fundamental gulf between these two histories. On the other hand, globalization and related developments, notably "the end of Christendom" (see Google on the Internet), softened the boundaries between these two polarities, Roman Catholicism and Anabaptism. Space does not permit a sketching here of the historical responses to those boundary softenings. But an example of all this popped into our Park View community on the last two days of November just past. A partly two-day conference on the above title, open to general church public, was held at Eastern Mennonite Seminary (EMS) on November 29-20, 2007. Speakers were two professors from the Catholic University of America (CUA) (Washington DC): George F. McLean and William Barbieri; and two from Eastern Mennonite University (EMU): Nancy Heisey and Ray Gingerich. The sponsor of this event was the Anabaptist Center for Religion and Society (ACRS). While convened on rather short notice, attendance at this meeting was strong and the response was enthusiastic. The larger context for this brief conference was the current conversation underway over the past decade between the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (PCPCU) and the Mennonite World Conference (MWC). A 77-page report of that dialogue between 1998-2003 was published by Pandora Press in 2005. Discussions of church, sacraments, and peace figured importantly in those agendas. Another meeting in the series had been held in Rome merely a month before the above conference at EMS. Nancy Heisey, professor at EMU and current president of MWC, participated. More immediately, however, the November meeting at EMU was occasioned by the collaborative bonding between George McLean, emeritus professor of philosophy at CUA, and Paul Peachey, now a VMRC resident with wife Ellen, who surprisingly but happily spent the second half of his career as a professor of sociology, likewise at CUA. Unrelated to this, but
simultaneously, Peachey became involved, likewise surprisingly, in organizing an ecumenical response of church people in the USA to the Christian Peace Conference, formed by the churches in the Soviet Bloc during the Cold War. Eventually Christian Associated for Relationships with Eastern Europe (CAREE) emerged, today still publishing studies pertaining to churches in eastern Europe. McLean, heading the internationally-active Council for Research in Values and Philosophy (CRVP) at CUA, included Eastern Europe in his program during those times. Though with differing agendas, there was enough overlap between CAREE and CRVP that Peachey was drawn into collaboration with CRVP activities as well. Thus though employed by different schools in the same institution, it was in Eastern Europe that their paths really began to cross. And because of the importance of George McLean's contribution to the evolving dialogue between these polar traditions in the Christian story, I will comment briefly on his opening address, now in typescript, without summarizing the rest of the conference. Before doing so, however, a paragraph follows on the contour of the conference. In immediate terms, as the above title suggests, the theme and focus of the meeting as such was simple and straightforward. The first and the last speakers were the Roman Catholic guests; the second and third were the resident Mennonites. To begin (late afternoon Thursday), Professor McLean offered some opening observations on his Anabaptist encounters from his Catholic setting. In the evening session Professor Heisey reported on the follow-up meeting the previous month of the Catholic and Mennonite teams who had met in dialogue five times, 1998-2003. The Catholic team represented the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (PCPCU); the Mennonite participants represented the Mennonite World Conference (MWC). On Friday morning Professor Gingerich offered some Mennonite perspectives on this encounter, and finally Professor Barbieri looked at future challenges in this dialogue. Fr. McLean titled the opening address, late afternoon Thursday, November 29: The Church: Catholic and Ecumenical A New Paradigm for Mission in Global Times His beginning paragraphâ€”a single sentence, announces: "The modes of relationship between Mennonites and Roman Catholics in recent decades have turned from being one of utter wariness to the
point of deathly persecution to modes of dialogue and cooperation which augur even deeper modes of mutual enrichment." And with similar incisiveness he ends: "In short we find the two traditions, Mennonite and Catholic, veering today toward convergent courses. May this proceed and succeed ever more fully." The elaboration of two major dimensions fill the space between that beginning and end. The first expands on the contrast between objectivity and subjectivity. "Objectivity" McLean applies to the nature and role of the Catholic tradition as it secures and configures the diversity and multiplicity of the elements comprising the "whole," with the "order of subjectivity seen diachronically." Further, he observes: "This attention to subjectivity enables one to appreciate the ingenuity, dedication and even heroism of Christian communities responding to their different and changing circumstances." This implies, one might say, that Catholicism is one-sidedly "top down," while Anabaptism is one-sidedly "bottom up." The second half of this essay is more problematic. If the first half is spatial, the second is rather more temporal. He characterizes the first millennium CE as holistic in outlook whereas the second is rather more pluralized and chaotic. "The challenge for the third millennium upon which we now enter is to change the paradigm that is neither the simple unity of the past, nor that of the chaotic and combative diversity of modernity, but a synthesis or whole which integrates and surpasses both." Of this, surprisingly enough, Professor McLean makes China a case study. Here the complexity of the argument takes us beyond the scope of this brief sketch. But listen again to McLean's closing challenge, quoted above: "In short we find the two traditions, Mennonite and Catholic, veering today toward convergent courses. May this proceed and succeed ever more fully." What a challenge! Neither can simply "throw in the towel," thereby effectively becoming the other. How can we reaffirm the profundity of the "believers' church" paradigm as we confront the deficiencies of our own readings of that gospel realization? â€”Paul Peachey Note: This is an abridged version of Paulâ€™s presentation to Faith and Issues class in December.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle From every side we are made aware today that the Lord's earth—the natural environment that sustains us all—is suffering serious degradation at human hands. To date most churches have given low priority to environmental problems. Many Mennonites who have traditionally understood their role as good earth stewards and accepted the scriptural teaching have today neglected or forgotten an environmental ethic and have not been fully aware of the impact of our lifestyle on the global environment and on our sisters and brothers world-wide who share God's earth with us. In our individual work and family life, we seek to become more caring about our impact on the environment and seek to educate ourselves and act upon our best knowledge of ways to conserve the resources we use. (Excerpts from a statement made by the Mennonite Church General Board and General Conference Mennonite Church Board, July 31, 1989.) This statement continues to be applicable nearly 20 years later. Though we have certainly made great strides overall in our care of the Earth, we have a long way to go. This column was inspired by the congregational series last fall, the focus of our formational community on creation care, and a growing personal awareness and concern. Creation-focused living requires intentional, and sometimes inconvenient, changes in our lifestyle. As I consider all of the changes I could make in my life to better care for the Earth, it can feel overwhelming, even paralyzing. Instead, I will try to remember that every little bit counts...it's not about all or nothing. Several people have suggested an ongoing column about creation care in the inView. I would like to focus the first column on a familiar, but important hierarchy: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. First, a few facts from the E.P.A. and the National Recycling Coalition. • The U.S. is the #1 trash-producing country in the world at 1,069 lbs. per person per year. This means that 5% of the world's people generate 40% of the world's waste. • Americans use 680 lbs. of paper per person per year. Approximately one billion trees' worth of paper is thrown away each year.
• Americans use 2.5 million plastic bottles every hour. Most are thrown away. • Recycling one aluminum can saves the equivalent of a half gallon of gasoline. Reduce: We can reduce how much we need to recycle by reducing the amount of waste we create in our homes. Buy only what we need at the grocery store, buy products with less packaging (or with recyclable packaging), buy in bulk, buy fruits/vegetables without the clear plastic bag, avoid disposable items such as paper/styrofoam cups or plates, reduce paper waste (register for the DMA's Mail Preference Service), and use cloth napkins rather than paper are just a few ideas to get you started. Reuse: Many grocery stores now sell cloth bags, or they can be purchased at reusablebags.com, and even cheaper on ebay. Reuse office paper for scrap paper, wash and reuse baggies, take clothing or unwanted household items to the thrift store rather than the landfill, put grass cuttings on the garden or leave them on the lawn, and compost kitchen waste. Recycle: The contents of an average American trash can look like this: 37% paper, 26% organic, 10% metal, 10% glass, 7% plastic, 10% other. Consider buying products that can be recycled and/or are made of recycled materials. If you live in the county and don't have the luxury of curbside recycling, use old waste cans or purchase some stackable bins to collect and sort recycling. The Rockingham County Landfill on Grassy Creek Road accepts glass, aluminum, newspapers, magazines, phone books, cardboard, #1 and #2 plastics, used motor oil and antifreeze, metal, batteries, appliances, and tires. Dave's Recycling on South 42 accepts #1 and #2 plastics, aluminum and tin cans, cardboard, office paper, and newspaper. EMU accepts magazines, phone books, white or colored office paper, non-window envelopes, corrugated cardboard, cereal box-weight cardboard (pasta, cracker, jello boxes, etc.), lightweight filmy plastic (baggies, fruit/vegetable bags), aluminum and tin cans, #1 and #2 plastic, and batteries. —Sara Godshall
Park View Mennonite Women Speak Since our organization did not have any special Christmas projects to write about, our women have been invited to give comments/opinions about our organization. Some of them are PVMC women, others are women from other area churches who attend Mennonite Women very regularly. Ruth Lehman says, "I'm impressed how our attendance continues to stay up, even in less pleasant weather. I enjoy our lunch together." Mildred Stoltzfus comments, "I enjoy knowing that our work benefits MCC." Una Lee Wilkins states, "I thoroughly enjoy meeting with PVMC women and the devotional period. I also enjoy piecing comforters at home." Margaret Gehman says, "I enjoy the fellowship. It's a broadening experience with this group of women since some of them I have had as students. I feel this is a place where I can still serve the Lord. I had worked with MCC earlier." From Ethel Mellinger, "It's a good time to be together, engaging in purposeful activities that benefit those in need. Most of what I do is knitting prayer shawls, which are given to women who have suffered great loss." Linda Matheny comments, "I really enjoy the group; everyone is so friendly and they want to talk. People are willing to show you how to do things. We're doing work that is important. Our paths wouldn't otherwise cross. Many of these women are older and we've had many shared experiences." Vera Kauffman says, for her, "Number one is the fellowship. We appreciate the opportunity to share, and sometimes share concerns. For those who don't quilt, there are other worthwhile things to do. The devotional guide is a good focus for our meditation. There is a good spirit there." Pauline Myers says, "I really enjoy Mennonite Women. I don't want to miss it, so we check the calendar so our necessary trips to Upstate New York don't conflict with the date." From Dorothy Logan, "I think it is a wonderful avenue for women to work together on projects which benefit MCC and I think we should really increase the number of comforters we make." Doris Rosenberger, "I'm so happy with it. I see so much good happening besides what tasks we accomplish. Mennonite Women meets a special
need in the life of the congregation, beyond what projects we complete." Carmen D'agostino, " I enjoy being with the women, making friends. I enjoy working and the devotional, and would encourage others to attend. Being there is important for me." June Martin says, "It's really great to support MCC with nice comforters." Fern Hostetler thinks back and says, "Several women who began the Sewing Circle could never have dreamed how many people would be blessed, locally, and all over the world. I have been privileged to serve the Lord for many years through Mennonite Women." Marian Martin says, "Mennonite Women provides for me an opportunity to participate in projects which help meet world needs. The devotional guide and the projects connect me with other Mennonite women in our own congregation and beyond." Lois Martin, who supervises the lunch, comments, "I see the co-operation of bringing food and also the clean-up as a way of interacting with each other. I appreciate women offering to help with serving the meal and clean-up, and not needing to ask for help. Providing the meal is a way of sharing so other work can be done." Patricia Santiago is joyful when she says, "I think Mennonite Women at Park View is doing a wonderful job! I enjoy the meetings very much!" Ladies, we'd love to have you! â€”Margaret Smeltzer, President Park View Mennonite Women
Update on the Journey with Kate It's 4:30am, and we have just carried our sleeping angel into the pre-warmed van for our 2-3 hour trip to Children's. Oh my, she stirs, fully awakens and then, out pops a question and another, and another… ”but WHY do I have to go to the hospital? Do Chloe and Sophie have to go? Why don't they have to go? I WANT to go to my bed. I don't WANT to go to the hospital! Will there be needles? Will it hurt? Will you stay with me? Can I get an ice cream sandwich?...” You get the idea. These questions simply multiply with every MRI. After the questions are answered to her satisfaction she eventually gets into a space of calmness and goes back to sleep. We arrive for our 8:30 appointment at 7:20 (they want us there at least an hour early) and wait in the appropriately named "waiting room" until almost 9:30; they are apparently running behind, short-staffed as they say. When we get back into the exam room the nurse kindly asks Kate what she would like to do first and Kate goes through everything. "First you have to weigh me…now take my blood ‘pweshuh’ on my leg, this one…and my ‘tempatuh,’ right here…now I need the band-aid with the red light" (to measure oxygen and heart rate).” Then we walk our precious bundle back to the sedation room and upon noticing the kidney-shaped, mauve-colored object on the shelf, she yells excitedly, "Hey, they have a spit-up bucket just like ours!" One comment dripping with sad humor. Everything moves along quickly now…the mask of nitrous oxide is placed over her sweet little nose and rose-petal lips as she stares trustingly, yet questioningly into my eyes. She is asleep after one verse of the "Good Morning" song she chose today. Then Dean and I leave Kate in the hands of strangers and wait for a long 45 minutes. I go down the hall to donate blood to help pass the time and Dean stays in the waiting room. We get the news that the procedure is complete and we can go be with her and wait for her to wake up. And let me just say, when she does, she does so with a vengeance! Arms are flailing and vocalizations are somewhere between a moan and a scream…she just starts reaching and pulling cords and we have to hold her down to keep her from ripping her IV out. It only takes a mere 10-15 minutes for her to progressively settle and we are out of there for the
ice-cream sandwich. We always breathe a short sigh of relief when we can leave the radiology area. Then we wait …this time it's a few days for the results. Dr. Rood's report is again, “stable.” "She continues to present with a highly unusual case." We, of course, see the miracle in this statement. When they compare scans over the past year the tumor appears quite different. The part of the tumor that enhances the dye is slightly larger, however, the edges are softer, concave, instead of convex…descriptive of a more benign tumor and there are these fluid-filled spaces within the tumor, "islands of the tumor that have died" … he presumes their existence is due to the treatment. All good news! We see the world in color once again. Although we live life quite normally between these MRIs we have a level of fear/worry that creeps into our spirits around these times. One of sadness for Kate and the many children that have to know a hospital this well. We are reminded of our lack of control and God's grace simultaneously. The words of a familiar hymn always come to mind during these times, "Healer of our every ill, light of each tomorrow, give us peace beyond our fear, and hope beyond our sorrow." The other good news in the day is the nutritional component—her metabolic profile and blood counts are perfect, better than ever, actually. We believe this is because of some nutritional changes we have made in our house. Without going into too much detail, let's just say she is getting more fiber and plant-based foods, which is helping to reduce some of the medicinal side-effects and give her more energy. Now we need to make some decisions regarding the oral-chemo regimen she has been on for the last year. The presumption is that the treatment allowed part of the tumor to die; however, the doctors are not certain whether that is due to the high-dose chemo we had during our intense hospital visits (targeting the higher grade portion of the tumor) or the low-dose chemo we have been doing daily over the past year (targeting the lower grade portion). That's the million dollar question. We will consult with Dr. Rood in February and we covet your prayers for wisdom and peace as we make decisions for the next year. Thanks for continuing to follow Kate's journey. —Dean & Andrea Weaver [Taken from their “Care-Page,” with their permission]
Meet Louise and Emil Kreider Louise and Emil are newly arrived residents on Hawthorne Circle, coming to this area from Beloit, Wisconsin on Labor Day, 2007. Cal and I welcomed them to Park Village of the Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community. One of our first visits with Louise and Emil was when a new grandson of theirs was visiting from New York City. This little fellow was two months old (accompanied by his mother) and, according to Emil, might be a candidate for a certificate for the most time spent in a retirement community at this early age. The Kreiders are enjoying their home which is large enough to host family and friends. At Christmas there were four adults and five children spending time with them. Aunt Barbara and Uncle John Fast also dropped by and entertained the children—making yarn ornaments and also showing them the church organ and pipes. Emil and Louise are enjoying the activities in this area with three universities adding a rich variety of lectures and events. They spent 37 years at Beloit College, with Emil teaching in the field of economics, including international trade and finance, economic development, investment analysis and labor economics. Louise was program coordinator for the college’s international studies office. While at Beloit College they took sabbaticals and leaves from the college, which were related to their fields of interest, and which augmented Emil’s teaching and Louise’s work in international studies. Their time away from campus included a year in Bolivia and Ecuador on a USAID project and a year in Paraguay where Emil was chief of party for another USAID project with the Paraguayan Ministry of Education building regional education centers (grade one through normal school) in the interior of the country. The project also involved curriculum development and Peace Corps assistance. Other experiences included a year’s sabbatical in California on a banana studies project with Dole and a half year in Costa Rica where Emil worked for Stone Container, estimating the impact
on the country of the company’s tree farming operation. He also worked for periods of a semester to a year for banks, a hospital, and Deere and Co. In recent years he served as a member of the investment committee for the trust department of the First National Bank of Beloit. On these times away from the campus, Emil was sometimes seen as a liberal “on the hill”; when on campus he was suspected of being a conservative. The experiences in Central and South America gave Emil a desire to continue his study of the Spanish language. At about age 50, he took courses in Spanish at Beloit College and went to Costa Rica for a summer, arranging a home stay and hiring a tutor to speed up learning the language. Louise was an at-home mom with their three sons until the youngest was in school. She then took the position of program coordinator of the college’s World Affairs Center, and in the 22 years in that office, she saw it expand to include academic programs in many more countries than had been previously offered and also saw a substantial increase in the number of international students studying at Beloit College. After retirement, she did considerable volunteer work for the First Presbyterian Church in Beloit as well as the emergency room of the local hospital, board of the public health department and board of the public library. We are happy to have the Kreiders living nearby and pleased that they have found PVMC to be a church home where they enjoy the music, the sermons and the fellowship. They look forward to becoming acquainted with many of you. —Freda Redekop
Making Sense of the Journey ... In the foreword of a recently published book, Loren Swartzendruber, president of EMU, writes that since our personal histories have made us who we are, then, if we want to understand each other, we ought to hear each other’s stories. Loren is introducing a book of sixteen life stories about people with whom Park View Church people are pretty well acquainted. All but three of them attend church here. Entitled Making Sense of the Journey: The Geography of Our Faith, this book of life journeys is published by the Anabaptist Center for Religion and Society, now commonly known as ACRS, which had its beginnings in conversations among retired Mennonite faculty members during the nineties. The group, who finds shelter under the wings of the EMU administration, would like to exemplify how elders can contribute to the world of thought and faith in this community. The ACRS has taken the form of monthly breakfast gatherings, planned mainly by Ray Gingerich, at which members have been unfolding highlights of their lives. These meetings are open to everyone. The sixteen life stories that compose Making Sense of the Journey were edited by Robert Lee and Nancy V. Lee, and the book was first distributed on December 6 at the EMU Seminary where all sixteen contributors were present. Those attending the occasion could solicit autographs from the complete cast of authors. Copies of the collection are available in the EMU bookstore. Editors Bob and Nancy have prepared a quiz for this edition of inView to lure Park View readers to find the book. [Editor’s note: Two copies are currently in the Park View library.] One Sunday long ago at Park View, former pastor Owen Burkholder began a sermon by expressing how overwhelmed he felt to think about the mountain of life experiences represented by the congregation here—all the sorrow and pain, the trials and burdens, the accumulation of the years of struggle and failure, strength and survival. Some of those experiences are in this book. Although in the opening introduction of this volume (“Who We Are”), Al Keim eloquently elucidates the purpose and values of these memoirs, I think it is possible as well to identify a poignancy akin to Pastor Owen’s heart cry for us his listeners that long past Sunday morning. Whatever your response to Making
Sense of the Journey, you will know sixteen of your fellow pilgrims better than before. — Jay Landis
Match the Author to the Paragraph... Find out how well you know the thinking of the thirteen Park View members who are featured in the book Making Sense of the Journey: The Geography of Our Faith by matching their names with representative quotes from their chapters. Answers may be found on page 19. Thank you to Robert and Nancy Lee, editors of the book, who selected the quotes for us. The names are below: write on the blank beside each name the number of the paragraph that you think they wrote. Esther K. Augsburger Myron S. Augsburger James R. Bomberger Samuel L. Horst Albert N. Keim C. Norman Kraus Nancy V. Lee Harold D. Lehman John R. Martin Paul Peachey Calvin W. Redekop Calvin E. Shenk Edward B. Stoltzfus second aspect of this ‘integration’ came with the 1“Adiscovery of the centrality of Jesus Christ in the entire faith system of Anabaptism…. ‘There can be no other foundation beyond that which is already laid, I mean Jesus Christ himself’ [NEB, Menno Simons]. Jesus not only challenged tradition and authority but substituted for it a new ethic: ‘It has been said of old...but I say to you....’ He thereby established a new Alternative Community in which the ethic was one of loving God and neighbor as oneself. The method was discipleship, that is, following Jesus, in the entire gamut of human existence, socially, economically, politically, physically and materially. I knew that Christ called me to live in the Alternative Community and to share it with others.” “That dual Sunday-Monday call, at once personal and communal, yet with each aspect emerging independently, was unique. Though not a blueprint or a literal precedent, it became a touchstone that has prevailed for me to this day. It was an experience
resonating with that of Jacob, the Genesis patriarch, recorded in Genesis 28. Setting out on foot for his ancestral land to find a spouse, he slept in the desert with a stone for a pillow. Following a deep sleep with a nighttime vision, he awoke frightened: ‘Surely the LORD is in this place...and I did not know it.’ No, the LORD is not a handyman with a quick fix for our run-of-the-mill daily inconveniences. But we are instructed repeatedly to wait for his larger direction, not determined by our own self-improvised calendar.” is a fabulous invention by us human 3 “Language beings.... Words and language are important symbols for Christians because they reach out as a human creation to suggest symbolically and imaginatively transcendent reality and God’s relation to creation and man. I noticed that there are not any divine words, just human ones.... This fact is a built-in humbler for theologians and for all religious people who talk of spiritual realities. No, the revelation and knowledge of the mystery of God’s creating, saving, and consummating grace is not apart from human symbolization.... But then the big question began haunting me. How does the invisible transcendent reality impinge on created reality, on us humans? How do we know God’s presence? As an answer in process, I decided....” experience of teaching in many different 4 “…this cultures, often with an interpreter, had a major impact on my view of the Bible and the question of how to communicate its message. Teaching the Gospel of John in English from the Greek text to students from perhaps ten different language backgrounds, for which English was at best a second language but the only language they had in common, was a formidable challenge! And preaching to tribal pastors in the mountains of the Philippines through a chain of multiple translations by interpreters who knew only two of the three languages involved heightened one’s appreciation for the priority and precedence of the Holy Spirit as both inspirer and interpreter of Scripture!” idea of the pacifist God derives from the nature 5 “The of Jesus’ life and death, which illustrates that human beings are radically free to believe or not to believe in God. God limits himself–his power–so that humans can be free to choose or reject his presence in the world. This insight, so opposite anything I had been taught
before about the nature of God, made it possible for me to actually believe in God for the first time.” “I believe in holistic mission–evangelism and justice–and I have great appreciation for Anabaptist theology, which incorporates the two…. …I believe in personal evil and structural evil.... The gospel must address personal issues (e.g. witchcraft) and social issues (Marxist exploitation) …I am convinced that Jesus offers hope for peoples’ personal lives and addresses issues of social injustice. I believe that interfaith dialogue is an important part of witness. I celebrate the Jewish reclamation of Jesus; Jesus is on the Jewish agenda…. I believe Western Christians must embrace Arabs and Jews, and we must also make a place for Ishmael’s people in our theology.”
“Everyone hopes that he or she may be able to do something in life that makes a difference. I want to tell you what that was in my life.... In the rather turbulent period of the 1960s at EMU the dress restrictions for both men and women, plus other issues,…made for much discussion, often fraught with emotional turmoil for students, faculty and board.... …I used the occasion of the church-wide Christian Education Convention meeting on the EMU campus in August [where] I was to appear on the platform the first evening to welcome the audience in the name of Virginia Mennonite Conference and the College. Telling only my father beforehand, I came to the platform along with the evening speakers, dressed in coat and tie. My audacity shocked some people, and my popularity quotient took a precipitous decline. But by the opening of the 1964-65 school year, other faculty laymen had followed suit. The board and conference never reinstated the plain coat requirement at EMC.... While I do not want to take undue credit or blame for the change, I had a part in it, and I know it made a difference.”
“I sought to emphasize a Christian mission in 8education, discipling people as they studied from a Christian perspective. What had motivated me in the first fifteen years was sharing the Gospel beyond our ethnicity and yet sharing it with fidelity to our heritage and faith. Now in education, I asked how we prepare a generation to understand the relation of the gospel to their field of study and to share this gospel beyond our
ethnicity…. One of the first things we did was to look at how to integrate the meaning of our Anabaptist Christian faith into the whole of our academic program.” “During the course of my studies, I developed the 9Formation Course sequence for the seminary’s curriculum. These three core courses became required of all students: Formation in Personhood, the first year; Formation in Ministry, the second year; and Formation in Discipleship, the third year. For a number of years [my book] Ventures in Discipleship was used in the latter course. My dream was that students going through the discipling experience would then disciple their church members when they became pastors.” “I took every opportunity I could to travel to 10Washington to press on with my research, usually staying two or three days at a time, working through stacks of Confederate military records and walking over to the Library of Congress to search relevant materials. I spent many days reading the individual claims made to the Southern Claims Commission by individuals as the endnotes to my 1967 published book, Mennonites in the Confederacy: A Study in Civil War Pacifism, revealed. “ recently I was invited by the governor of the 11“Most northern part of South Korea to spend ten days there to talk about making a very large (likely 60 or 70 feet high) sculpture for a Peace Park they are placing close to the border of North Korea….This trip was most challenging! The governor wants me to create the sculpture with tanks and missiles. I am not sure how it will all work out, but I am truly challenged. The invitation came after the Governor had seen the ‘Guns into Plowshares’ sculpture in the news and on the Internet.” “In China (1981—83) we were among the first 12foreign teachers allowed into the country after the Cultural Revolution. We got to visit and fellowship in the church in China as it came back from thirty years of being silenced. I remember one of our Chinese leaders’ question to a British teacher: ‘Why must these people worship God? They are good teachers and very effective. Their religion is their only flaw.’ As you can imagine, our witness in China was a witness of presence. Occasionally we found how clearly it spoke.” “Another [opportunity] happened one autumn 13after I had been invited to be the sponsor of the
English club, the largest, most popular club on the campus. In this capacity I helped select the English movie shown every other week…and led a discussion afterwards. Sometimes, to my dismay, a different movie would be substituted for the one on the schedule. That is how one night I found myself watching a fierce Rambo film in which Rambo, against orders, rescues American prisoners of war in a jungle. What was I going to do with that?”
Opie Doesn’t Live Here Anymore: Where Faith, Family, and Culture Collide I’ve come to the realization that the world is not the same for youth today as it was for me when I was a teen. Parenting isn’t the same for me as it was for my parents, either. As I have had the privilege of interacting with youth and families, I see how culture today turns many of our assumptions upside down. How do we encourage our children to live as Christians in a world of iPods, instant messaging, and cell phones? Dr. Walt Mueller, president of the Center for Parent/Youth Understanding, has written a book titled Opie Doesn’t Live Here Anymore: Where Faith, Family, and Culture Collide (Standard Publishing). For me it was a thought-provoking look at what it means to live at this time, in this place. Mueller states that we are here to be a redemptive presence, to live out God’s Kingdom in this world. Through a series of blogs and essays, Mueller attempts to outline what it means for God’s people and the world to meet. I found the book to be invaluable in helping me to understand the world our youth live in and to see where God’s grace and love are most needed. Mueller is honest in his questions and observations and at times is pretty brutal in his critique of how the Church and Christians have lived. I highly recommend this book for anyone with a heart for youth or young adult ministry or for those who are parenting children and youth today. Read it and be better prepared to embrace the collision of faith and culture. I would be happy to loan my copy of the book out to any parent interested! —Ross Erb
help with the construction project. Fortunately, I had just enough time to get a head start with the wiring ”rough Tuesday, October 9, we packed our car with tools, two in” work, since they were kept busy with other details bicycles and our luggage and set out for Phoenix, before the other ”dry wall” volunteers would be there to Arizona. We made two family stops on the way, one in help close up the open walls. When the three additional Louisville, Kentucky to visit Marie’s sister Lois and SOOP volunteer couples moved in two weeks later, the husband Mike, and the other in Greensburg, Kansas to work space “shrank” dramatically. Even with some visit her other sister Esther and husband Bill at the MDS unexpected challenges along the way, we enjoyed the tornado reconstruction work site. The tornado satisfaction of seeing the rooms painted, the trim work devastated a wide path, except for a few spots that finished, the rugs installed and nearly all of the electrical were unexplainably spared. The next morning we met a devices installed and energized before we left. few volunteer workers and contractors at breakfast and The ongoing Trinity Church community service were given a tour of the area before we left for programs are sponsored and coordinated primarily by Albuquerque. On Friday morning we enjoyed a closeup the commitment, dedication and vision of church of the hot air balloon launch and stayed a couple of members and the staff hours to watch the members of the spectacular morning show Goldensun Habilitation over Albuquerque. By Center for handicapped early evening we were in people who benefit from Phoenix after taking the semi-independent living in 89a scenic detour through group homes. We got the Oak Creek Canyon acquainted with the south of Flagstaff. Goldensun staff, residents In Phoenix, we were and supporting church welcomed by our SOOP members at the weekly (Service Opportunities for combined evening dinners Older People) that rotated each week coordinators and hosts between three nearby Dottie and Roland Yoder. group home locations and Almost immediately, we John & Marie Kauffman with their SOOP group while sight seeing our SOOP volunteer began our orientation and location. Other service were set up in our oneprojects for future SOOP volunteers will also include the month accommodations. My construction work Thrift Store, Ten Thousand Villages Store, the Food assignment was already prescribed to precede dry wall Bank, the Glencroft Retirement Center, ESL instruction volunteers expected to arrive in a couple of weeks. It and miscellaneous other much needed human services. was obvious that there would be little time to goof off Local volunteers that offered to help with since they also had a few additional handyman construction work included Emil Yoder, Arlen Godshall, assignments for me. Marie’s assignments included David Hostetler, Arlan (Smokey) Smoker, Melvin Yoder kitchen duty and cleaning; she also knew that with and Robert Yoder. Marlin Hershberger, who invested in shopping and cooking for volunteers, she wouldn’t have the new SOOP volunteer house, also serves as much time for fun things. So we just decided to find our Community Operations Coordinator for Goldensun fun at work, and by Saturday we began planning our Peace Ministries. He and his wife Del are deeply work strategies. Sunday we met Mary Zook and her tour committed to this and other church projects and friends in Phoenix at Trinity Mennonite and compared frequently appeared on site and provided much notes on the Albuquerque show. encouragement and support for us and the Goldensun Already Monday morning three volunteers from staff. Our SOOP volunteer group included Phyllis and Trinity Mennonite appeared to work in the three new Norman Lind, Annabelle and Glen Roth, and Fanni and bedrooms and a bathroom that were studded out in the Wilbur (Kirby) Birkey. We enjoyed very much working former garage area. Two or three Trinity Church with these friends during the day and having some free volunteers continued to show up almost every day to
SOOP in Phoenix
time on weekends and evenings to do things together, such as playing table games, going to Thursday evening folk concerts at the Public Library and visiting a museum. One Sunday afternoon we took a pleasant drive to visit the small shops in Jerome, a ghost town that was once a booming copper mining community. On a Saturday we all traveled to Sedona and stopped on the way back for a quiet and memorable evening walk in Crescent Moon State Park along Oak River. Now and then we responded to the urge to “burst forth” into singing a favorite “river” song together. Dottie and Roland Yoder, our very capable SOOP hosts, provided the warmth, direction, motivation and support that helped make our entire assignment a most pleasant and memorable experience. We concluded our assignments and said “good bye” to our old and new friends on Monday, November 12 . Our trip home was a pleasant mixture of sightseeing and stopping to visit some old friends. From Cortez, Colorado, we drove to the Mesa Verde, site of the old cliff dweller community, and spent about half a day there with a guided walking tour group. From Mesa Verde we continued east to Pueblo and arranged to meet Marie’s cousin Rachel Wenger Roth and her husband Richard for breakfast. Their daughter and grandson also joined us there. Following a brief visit at their house, we set out for Beatrice, Nebraska, where we joined Marie’s college friend Rachel Frey Frerich and her husband Norman on Thursday morning for breakfast. After a short visit at their house, we headed east and finally arrived home late Friday evening where we again thanked God for friends and for the lingering display of the beautiful fall colors of West Virginia and Virginia in the afternoon sun. —John Kauffman
January 22,2008 We are in our second week here in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, working with an inter-university doctoral program in religious studies called ICRS. Our office is in the Graduate School building of the largest and oldest of those universities, Gajah Mada State University. The campus covers several square miles of the city. The second university is Duta Wacana Christian University. We live on the campus of the third university, Sunan Kalijaga Islamic State University in a fairly small but very nice house there. Classes begin for our program on Monday. The class I am helping to teach is the History of Religions in Indonesia since 1945 (the year of Indonesian independence). This is the second semester of a two-semester course. The first semester was about the History of Religions in Indonesia before 1945.
Shirlee in front of Gajah Mada University Graduate School building
As you might guess, people of different religions— Islam, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, etc.—look at religion and its history in Indonesian in very different ways. Our course is intended, among other things, to help students of different religions (this includes several students from outside Indonesia) to develop a more shared way of thinking, understanding and studying the wide range of religions here and the way these religions have related to each other. Of course in the midst of this students and faculty speak about how they understand religions in general and their own religion. We will certainly talk about the abuse Christians inflicted on others over this history as well as the abuse they have experienced. Pray that we will be able to listen well, build relationships, share appropriately and learn to love all these people as Jesus loves them. Peace and joy, —Lawrence (and Shirlee) Yoder
Don and Margaret Foth report that their daughter Mary Foth Whalen recently earned her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Catholic University in Washington, D.C. Congratulations to Leah Jacobs, a member of the EMHS Girls’ Volleyball Team, who was recently recognized as Best Offensive Player, and was named to BRC All-Tournament Team and BRC 1st Team All Conference. Ed and Mildred Stoltzfus enjoyed hosting their entire family over the holidays. All 17 were together for Christmas Day and the day after. They were especially happy that all of their 8 grandchildren (ages 6-20) were able to be there. The highlight of the holidays for Steve and Karen Moshier Shenk was taking Amtrak and Greyhound to see their sons in New York and Boston. Adam moved to New York in the fall, and Jeremy, Bridget and August went to Boston last summer. All of them were together at New Year’s in Boston. John and Barbara Moyer Lehman enjoyed visiting Barbara's family in eastern PA during a weekend in December. On Christmas Day they made the 9.5 hour trip to Berne, Indiana to spend 3 days with John's 91year-old mother, who lives in Swiss Village retirement community. Siblings gathered together to play games and share our annual rice and curry meal. It was a special time when 91-year-old Great-grandma Lehman met 11-month-old Samantha, her first great-grandchild for the first time. It was also a wonderful moment before we all departed when our son Ben casually mentioned they were expecting a second child. Ben has 6 months to go in his last year of a 3-year residency in Emergency Medicine at UVA Hospital. Their second child will be born in July, hopefully timed to arrive between Christie's 3rd and 4th year of residency in PM&R,(Physical Medicine and Rehab). Barbara and John look forward to making frequent treks across the mountain to help with child care. Bergen White, age 17, will present a senior pedal harp recital on Saturday, April 5 at 3:00 p.m. at Park View. Bergen, a student of Jessica Frost of Winchester, will present works for harp by Bach, John Thomas, G.F. Handel, Karl Philipp Emanuel Bach, and Hasslemans.
Bergen will also play two duets with her teacher. The recital is free and open to the public, and a free will offering will be taken to raise money to buy a Lyon & Healy Concert Grand pedal harp, an expense that costs $20,000. A reception will be held following the program in the fellowship hall. This fall Bergen will be attending Butler University in Indianapolis, a liberal arts and fine arts school where she will be double majoring in pedal harp and biology. Jack Butt is on sabbatical from the history department at James Madison University for spring 2008. Julia White is on sabbatical February through May from The Shenandoah Valley Children's Choir. In late February she will direct the American Choral Directors Western Division Honors Children's Choir in Anaheim, California that includes 10 states and 150 children. In late March Julia will direct the national Kodaly Honors Children's Choir in Denver, Colorado that includes 200 children from across the nation. Jack, Julia, and daughter Evan will live in southern France for 3 weeks in April and two weeks in Florence, Italy in June as part of their sabbatical leave. The Rudy family, now living in Manheim, PA, report on their activities: Jon is doing peace-building consulting from home; one of his jobs involves returning to the Philippines in February and May. He is also enjoying volunteer work through the Lancaster Area Victim Offender Reconciliation Program (LAVORP) and is chair of the peace committee at their church. Carolyn is happily employed full time as a Health Services Supervisor in a non-profit Christian agency working with developmentally disabled adults. It is a new area of nursing and she loves many aspects of the job—a great work atmosphere, day hours, weekends and holiday free, and health care for the entire family. What an answer to prayer!! Solomon has mastered his first semester in 11th grade at Lancaster Mennonite School. He has found a place in drama that he enjoys. In January he played Pilate in The Robe, and in April he will play Enjolras in Les Miserables. David came through his first high school semester with flying colors.” He has made friends and enjoys jazz music more than he expected. He played his trombone in an ensemble at church each week during Advent.
Models of Leadership It is always delightful attending the Church Leadership Appreciation Banquet during the week of School for Leadership Training at EMS. This year was no exception. Once again Martin Chapel was transformed into a lovely dining venue. Round tables, covered with flowing white cloths, were decorated with simple elegance. The food was delicious, especially the chocolate silk pie! The staff served us efficiently in rather crowded conditions. Gathering around tables with old and new friends after a busy week of listening and interacting on an important topic, I found myself reflecting on what took place these few days and being grateful for the many church leaders sitting around me.
John & Marian Martin display their award, with Barbara on right
Even more important than the good food and fellowship, the program that followed the meal was the highlight. Recognition was given to John and Marian Martin and Paul and Daisy Yoder for 50+ years of ministry. Gloria Diener took the stories, background, experiences of these 4 individuals and wove them together in a wonderful narrative that showed how they came together, at times overlapped with one another and occasionally were running parallel. As Gloria read the narrative that she created out of the tapestry of their lives and we observed with powerpoint the old and new photos, it was evident that God had been at work over the years, preparing their hearts, opening up possibilities and calling them into service in a variety of ways! The positions held, the roles they filled required hard work, long hours, challenging responsibilities, a willingness to move and relocate their families. It meant
taking risks and trusting that God would provide. John R. Martin and Paul T. Yoder have modeled for us strong, capable, yet humble leadership. They have been and continue to be deeply committed to the Mennonite Church and the work of the global church. It was evident throughout the intertwining of their stories that in each case, their spouses, Marian Martin and Daisy Yoder, had a huge impact on what these two men committed themselves to and were able to accomplish over 50 years. I think God for each of them and their gifts. These 4 individuals sacrificed and gave much wherever they were called and whomever they served. But they also were quick to assure us that they received much and found deep joy and blessing as they served God, the church and the community. May we continue to be diligent in prayer and persistent in tapping shoulders and calling forth leaders among us who are willing to serve in similar ways. â€”Barbara Moyer Lehman
Answers to author quiz 11 Esther K. Augsburger 8 Myron S. Augsburger 12 James R. Bomberger 10 Samuel L. Horst 5 Albert N. Keim 4 C. Norman Kraus 13 Nancy V. Lee 7 Harold D. Lehman 9 John R. Martin 2 Paul Peachey 1 Calvin W. Redekop 6 Calvin E. Shenk 3 Edward B. Stoltzfus
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