Thanks to those of you who posed for a photo or have sent your pictures to us for The Porch Project! Follow this link to see the faces of 60+ BCMCers: https://cruxphotos.smugmug.com/BCMC-Porch/
This project is ongoing, and photos will be continually added as we receive them. If you have a recent photo of yourself or your family that you’d be willing to contribute to the project, please send it to Renee Reimer firstname.lastname@example.org).
PLEASE NOTE: these photos are meant to be enjoyed by our church community. Please do not share them (via social media, etc) unless you have received permission of the people in the photo.
Thanks to Weldon Schloneger for making this project accessible to us through his photo site!
Connor Born has been serving with Mennonite Voluntary Service in Alamosa, Colorado this past year. He recently decided to extend his term for another year.
The Reopening Church Task Group continues its evolving discernment of being church together in caring love amidst spiraling spread of COVID-19. As of this writing, Harvey County reports a total of 102 positive cases and community spread. At our last task group meeting on July 8, we listened to your responses to our recent survey. In response to the question “Given the required safety precautions and assessment of your personal risk, when would you be most interested in returning to in-person worship?”, we heard a resounding word of caution about regathering for in-person worship, with very little support for beginning worship in August or September. Most of you said your willingness to return to in-person worship will depend on the number of active COVID-19 cases in our area, and some of you would prefer not to return until after there is a vaccine. Given your feedback and the data about the current rising spread of the virus in our county, the Reopening Church Task Group has decided that BCMC will not hold in-person worship until sometime after September. The task group will continue to assess community safety and make ongoing decisions about reopening as the Covid 19 situation in our area evolves. In the meantime, BCMC will continue to live stream and record our worship services as energies are also directed toward planning for faith formation, community building, and spiritual and relational support. More details to follow! The Reopening Church Task Group invites your prayers for its ongoing work. If you have questions or concerns along the way, you can be in touch with Task Group chair, Elizabeth Schmidt (email@example.com).
Western District Conference announcements
· WDC (Virtual) Annual Assembly is coming up on August 1-2! See Assembly information at: https://mennowdc.org/2020-wdc-annual-assembly/. The delegate session will be held August 1 at 9 am. Delegates, please register by July 17 to receive a Zoom link for the delegate session (link will be sent prior to August Anyone (no registration required) can participate in the August 1 afternoon webinars – links to those will be posted on WDC’s website prior to August 1.
· WDC Assembly Worship on August 2: God will be praised through wonderful music with Texas flair, a story of God’s presence by a first-generation immigrant (Sue Park-Hur), a sermon by Danny Carroll R (biblical scholar who specializes in stories of God’s people on the move) and a blessing of WDC ministers. The prerecorded worship (in separate English and Spanish versions) will go live on the WDC Facebook page via Facebook Live on Sunday, August 2 at 10 am CT. The link for this special time of worship will also be available before then by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. After Sunday morning, the worship video will be available for viewing on the WDC YouTube channel.
· WDC Assembly Virtual Kidz Kamp! There will be craft ideas, snack suggestions, music, stories and more available for elementary-aged kids via a pre-recorded video as part of our virtual WDC Annual Assembly August 1-2. We also ask our kids and youth to take a picture of any artistic responses (poem, drawing, song) to our Assembly scriptures (Jeremiah 29:4 and following; 1 Peter 2: 11-12) for use during the delegate session. Please email them to email@example.com.
· WDC Assembly Video Snapshots – To learn more about WDC congregations, Commissions, Committees and Task Forces, watch their video snapshots at: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL6aO7e884ZT5d9gHzyrfAucccOFYYd_M5, More are added as they become available.
· What seeds are growing in WDC? Each issue of the WDC Garden (quarterly newsletter) in 2020 will feature some “seeds” – brief highlights from congregations about new initiatives, creative ideas, missional practices and connections within WDC. If you have some “seeds” to suggest for consideration in the Garden, please send a note to WDC at firstname.lastname@example.org!
· Policies and Practice: If your congregation is updating your child, youth, and adult safety (“Safe Sanctuaries”) policy and/or wants an updated safety training or Circle of Grace orientation, contact WDC Associate Conference Minister Kathy Neufeld Dunn (email@example.com or 316-283-6300). She keeps current on sexual abuse prevention and response and is happy to help congregations do so too.
Camp Mennoscah announcements
· You are welcome to visit! Camp Mennoscah is open to families, individuals, and groups for days and overnights. The number of groups on campgrounds is limited and each family/group will have their own bathroom. Canoes are available for use; paddles and lifejackets are checked out and disinfected after use. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 620-297-3290. Spend some time at the river, on the trails, or simply enjoying this sacred space!
· Camp in a Box from Camp Mennoscah–The vast majority of Camp in the Boxes and tee shirts have been distributed. If you have not received yours (and we have not been in touch), please contact Camp Mennoscah at email@example.com or 620-297-3290. We’ll get it figured out!
· Camp Mennoscah’s Family Weekend has been cancelled due to the low number of attendees. The annual Camp Sing scheduled for August 8 has also been cancelled. Staff will continue to brainstorm options for events that can be done safely!
Mennonite church announcements
· Melanie Neufeld and her husband are pastors of Community Ministry at Seattle Mennonite Church, seeking justice, change and protection for unsheltered people. Get a first-hand look at their ministry in Melanie’s blog, “The prick of compassion.” http://mennoniteusa.org/menno-snapshots/compassion/
· Service Adventure only has five spots remaining for the 2020-2021 term beginning this fall. If you are interested in taking a gap year to serve, live in community, and grow spiritually, contact SusanN@MennoniteMission.net or apply online at MennoniteMission.net/ServiceAdventure.
· Imagine planting a peace church amid a pandemic and nationwide protests – that was the backdrop for Mennonite Church USA’s newest church plant in New York. Read more about the Brooklyn Peace Center: http://mennoniteusa.org/news/nyc-peace-witness/ Catch up on all the news, blogs and events from Mennonite Church by subscribing to PeaceMail, a weekly e-newsletter. Check out the latest issue and subscribe here: http://ow.ly/K5Z150Afsnm