Four fall cluster meetings scheduled
Ohio Conference will hold four fall cluster meetings for delegates to Annual Conference Assembly. Each meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. and last about one and a half hours. The following meetings are scheduled:
- Oct. 2 — South Union Mennonite Church in West Liberty
- Oct. 4 — Toledo Mennonite Church
- Oct. 16 — Wooster Mennonite Church
- Nov. 6 — Summit Mennonite Church in Barberton
Cluster meeting agenda planned
All cluster meetings will include a devotional time led by the regional pastor. In addition, a number of business items will be covered:
- Review of search process and introduction of conference minister
- Meeting Conference Minister Dick Barrett, including a time for questions and answers
- Constitutional changes
- Stewardship update
- Annual Conference Assembly/Missional Conference update
- Mennonite Church USA’s Journey Forward process
- Sharing time*
- *During the sharing time, delegates will be asked to respond to the following question:
What have you done in the last two to three years to enhance the life of your church in one of the three areas of our Conference mission statement — worship, faith, witness?
(To read the Conference mission statement, see the final article in this newsletter.)
Salem Mennonite in Kidron will host missional conference and ACA
Salem Mennonite Church in Kidron will host the 2019 Annual Conference Assembly (ACA) of the Ohio Conference March 8-9, 2019. The theme for the gathering will be “From Jerusalem to Antioch: Legacy Churches Anchoring Missional Communities.”
Featured speakers will be Sally Schreiner Youngquist of Living Water Community Church in Chicago, Illinois, and Steve North, leader of LifeLine Toledo in Toledo, Ohio. Schreiner Youngquist and North also will be the featured speakers at a missional conference immediately preceding ACA on March 7-8. That event also will be hosted by Salem Mennonite.
For more information about the missional conference, please see the 2019 Missional Conference event description.
All churches invited to participate in MC USA’s Journey Forward process
Mennonite Church USA has released a study guide, “Pathways,” to invite churchwide engagement in the denomination’s two-year Journey Forward process. The “Pathways” study guide, available online at http://mennoniteusa.org/resource/pathways-study-guide, invites congregations and groups across Mennonite Church USA to engage in studying Scripture, singing, praying, storytelling, exploring Anabaptist history and values, and discussing how they see God working in their lives.
The “Pathways” study guide is a way for groups to participate in the Journey Forward churchwide renewal process that will highlight how God is working in the lives of people and congregations across MC USA. To learn more about “Pathways,” see the full news release at http://bit.ly/MCUSAPathways.
Deficit increases during August
Ohio Conference’s financial deficit increased during August, according to figures provided by Financial Coordinator Stan Helmuth.
Total receipts for the month were $19,524, including $18,515 in giving from congregations. Expenses for the month totaled $24,772, resulting in an operating balance of -$5,248 for the month. That shortfall added to the year-to-date deficit. At the end of August, the operating balance was -$25,305.
Despite the current deficit, it should be noted that expenses for the year so far have been below the amount budgeted for in the 2018-19 Conference spending plan. Expenses for the first five months of the fiscal year totaled just $126,856, compared to the budgeted amount of $158,396. The Conference fiscal year ends March 31, 2019.
Mission statement focuses on faith, worship and witness
Wondering what Ohio Conference’s mission statement says about worship, faith and witness? Below is the mission statement, as found in the Ohio Conference Constitution:
We believe that Jesus Christ is at the center of who we are and all we do as the Ohio Conference of Mennonite Church USA.
The mission of Ohio Conference of Mennonite Church USA
is to be a people and congregations
worship of, faith in and witness for
As God calls us to walk in the Way of Christ, the Holy Spirit empowers us to share the good news of Jesus. Embracing an Anabaptist perspective, our prayer is that:
- Our passionate worship flows from our confession of God as Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer.
- We have a vibrant faith in God as Lord of all, who is at work reconciling the world.
- Through our bold witness others will accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and will build peace with all humankind.
In order to fulfill our mission, the focus of Ohio Conference is to support, connect and lead in ways that equip and empower our congregations to enlarge the faith community in obedience to Jesus Christ.