How did your congregation celebrate Social Justice Sunday?

Grace & Groundings, Ohio Conference’s racial reconciliation team, would like to hear how you did or did not use the 2024 Social Justice Sunday resources. We would appreciate responses to a short questionnaire whether or not you used, or plan to use, the resources created by Grace & Groundings. The questionnaire is brief and will help Grace & Groundings as they continue their work. Please respond…

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Welcome Shaquez!

New Program and Communication Coordinator to begin on July 1 My name is Shaquez Dickens. I am originally from Wooster, Ohio, where I previously worked in various roles at The College of Wooster. I graduated from Indiana Wesleyan University with my Bachelor’s in Business and will soon graduate with my Master’s in Organizational Leadership. My husband, Bob, and I live in…

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Is God calling you? (Or someone you know?)

And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. John 14:13-14 Thank you for the ways you support Ohio Mennonite Conference! The Gifts Discernment Committee is tasked with filling all Conference committee positions. Sometimes their…

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UPDATED: Staffing positions available

Ohio Conference is looking for a half-time administrative coordinator and a quarter-time bookkeeper. These two roles can be hired separately, or combined if an applicant has experience in both areas. Each position makes a significant contribution to the conference’s ability to work toward its mission to love God, love others, and make disciples of Jesus Christ. The Administrative Coordinator will accomplish…

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Congratulations, Sue!! Sue Short graduates from AMBS

On April 27, AMBS held its commencement service honoring 22 graduates. One of those honored was Sue Short, pastor at Zion Mennonite in Archbold. Sue anticipates completing her Master of Divinity with a major in Pastoral Ministry this August. Sue completed most of her degree from a distance through the MDiv Connect program. Sue states, “My seminary experience at AMBS…

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It’s Official! We are Ohio Mennonite Conference!

Conference’s name is now officially Ohio Mennonite Conference. The action that the delegates took at Annual Conference Assembly in March of this year to change the name of Conference from Ohio Conference of Mennonite Church USA to Ohio Mennonite Conference has been recorded by the State of Ohio, and the bylaws have been amended. This organization’s name is now officially…

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Fiscal year closes with a deficit

Ohio Conference’s fiscal year closed on March 31, 2024, with a $47,192 deficit according to figures provided by Financial Coordinator Stan Helmuth. Receipts for the month were $22,440, a $14,695 increase over February. Expenses for March were up slightly over February at $33,298 due to Annual Conference expenditures. The ending yearly deficit is the largest the conference has experienced in…

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How is your congregation impacting the community?

The new strategic plan that was adopted at Annual Conference Assembly in March, states that congregational stories of “evangelism and community participation” will be included in Ohio Conference’s communications throughout the year. How is your congregation working in the community? Are you beginning something or have you been involved in something for some time now? Would you be willing to…

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Bluffton University announces merger with University of Findlay

At a press conference on March 20, the presidents of Bluffton University and the University of Findlay announced that they had signed a Memorandum of Understanding declaring the intention to pursue a merger of the two universities. This would create one institution with two campuses. Each university would remain affiliated with its denomination—Bluffton with MC USA and Findlay with the…

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Former Ohio Conference pastor passes at age 82

Robert “Bob” Schloneger, age 82, formerly of Ohio Conference, passed away on March 25, 2024, in Goshen, Indiana. Born on April 17, 1941, in Louisville, Ohio, Bob married Enid Miller in 1963. They had three sons and one daughter. Over the course of his life, Bob served in various ministerial roles, including many in Ohio Conference. He pastored at North…

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AMBS receives grant for new initiative

Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS) in Elkhart, Indiana, has received a $1,249,830 grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to establish a program, “Anabaptist Thriving Congrega­tions,” to help congregations deepen their study of the Bible with the goal of connecting more authentically with their communities. The project is being funded through Lilly Endowment’s Thriving Congregations Initiative. The aim of the initiative is…

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Salem Mennonite to co-host service at Lima Mennonite

Palm Sunday special service at Lima Mennonite, Sunday, March 24, at 6:30 p.m. Lima Mennonite (1318 Main St., Lima, Ohio), together with Salem Mennonite in Elida, will host Sarah Augustine, co-founder and co-chair of the Dismantling the Doctrine of Discovery Coalition. Her presentation will focus on understanding the Doctrine of Discovery, a set of laws rooted in the 15th century that…

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Healthy Boundaries refresher training planned

April 22 is the deadline to register for the Healthy Boundaries 201 training sponsored by the Ohio Conference. This training will be held on Tuesday, April 30, at Wooster Mennonite Church from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The training also will be available online through Zoom. Lunch will be provided for in-person participants. To register, go to https://buytickets.at/ohioconferenceofmennonitechurchusa/1157814.

April is Abuse Prevention Month

April is Abuse Prevention month. Congregations and pastors are welcome to contact Nancy Kauffmann, interim denominational minister of Church Safety for Mennonite Church USA’s Church Vitality office, if they wish to have a speaker, training or other resource to use during the month. You may contact her at nancyk@mennoniteusa.org.

Nominees sought for Bring the Peace awards

Mennonite Church USA is seeking award nominations for its 2024 Bring the Peace initiative. The denomination gives the award to a Legacy Peacemaker and a Young Peacemaker each year. A Legacy Peacemaker is someone who has devoted their life to peace and justice work, whereas a Young Peacemaker is a young adult or teenager who has just begun their peacemaking journey and is…

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Safe Church policies will be webinar focus

Mennonite Church USA (MC USA) is hosting a webinar, “Making a Safe Church Protection Policy,” on Monday, March 25, at 7 p.m. ET. Facilitators will be Marlene Bogard and Nancy Kauffmann, MC USA’s interim denominational minister for Church Safety. Webinar participants will learn how to write a protection policy, how to use the policy, when to update their congregation’s policy…

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Jesus Collective to hold Unite Conference

If you are interested in explor­ing further the ideas about a Jesus-centered faith that featured speaker Meghan Larissa Good present­ed at ACA, consider attending Unite, a conference hosted by the Jesus Collective. This event will take place April 24-26 in St. Paul, Minnesota. For more information, see https://jesuscollective.com/unite.

Webinar to focus on women in ministry

In honor of Women’s History Month, Men­nonite Church USA (MC USA) is sponsor­ing a webinar, “The Hope-Filled Persis­tence of Women in Ministry,” on Monday, March 11, at 7 p.m. This webinar will look at the lives of MC USA women in minis­try across the generations and today. Rev. Amy Zimbelman, con­ference minister of Mountain States Mennonite Conference, and Elizabeth Johnson,…

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Bluffton to offer new environmental science major

BLUFFTON, Ohio — Starting in fall 2024, Bluffton University students will have the opportunity to major in environmental science. Housed in the department of health sciences, natural sciences and mathematics, the program will provide students a broader understanding of the natural and built worlds around them through classes in biology, chemistry, geology, and soil, water and climate sciences. See the…

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Missio Dei issue features Latin American women

The 32nd issue of Missio Dei, a publication of Mennonite Mission Network, describes 20 years of Movimiento de Mujeres Anabau­tistas Haciendo Teología desde América Latina (Movement of Anabaptist Women Doing Theology from Latin America — MTAL). Spanish and English versions of the booklet, Women, 20 years of paving the way between dreams and hopes, a collaboration be­tween Mission Network and…

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Camp Luz seeks program director

Camp Luz is seeking a leader who is passionate about seeing people growing in their faith in Jesus Christ to serve as program director. Use your skills and experience to make a difference in the lives of hundreds of children, young adults, and families. This position is available immediately. See the Camp Luz news release for more information. A full…

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Healthy Boundaries refresher training planned

Ohio Conference will hold a Healthy Boundaries 201 training on Tuesday, April 30, at Wooster Mennonite Church from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The training also will be available online through Zoom. For those meeting in person, lunch will be provided. Healthy Boundaries 201 is designed for credentialed pastors who have previously completed Healthy Boundaries 101. Please note: All persons…

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Seminary programs offer support for pastors

Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS) in Elkhart, Indiana, is offering programs which support pastors currently serving in the church. The Transition to Leadership program guides and nurtures new pastors during the crucial first years of ministry. This two-year program includes monthly one-on-one mentoring sessions, biannual Learning Events with other new pastors and their mentors, and optional consultations with consultants with…

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Fairlawn Mennonite to host MCC Comforter Bash

This year the Ohio MCC Comforter Bash will take place at Fairlawn Mennonite Church, 8520 Emerson Road, Apple Creek, Ohio. Hours are as follows: Friday, March 8 – 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday, March 9 – 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. See the Ohio Conference website for more information: https://wp.me/p6vGMi-4eD.

Lent at Home guide is now available

“Christ Among Us” is the theme of the Lent at Home 2024 worship guide, now available for free from the Mennonite Education Agency (MEA) website: https://bit.ly/2024LentatHome. This guide uses weekly and daily Scriptures as a basis for worship rituals, prayers, and activities designed to help individuals and households of all ages prepare for the season of Lent.

POTC focuses on non-military career options

Peaceful Options for Training and Careers (POTC), an independ­ent initiative formed by Mennonite Church USA and Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), has begun training volunteer counselors to help young adults find non-military career, service and training opportunities. Titus Peachey, a retired MCC peace educator, led the most recent training session on Jan. 18, 2024, via Zoom. To learn more, see the…

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Social Justice Sunday is June 23

Grace & Groundings, Ohio Conference’s racial reconcilia­tion resource team, would like to remind everyone that February is Black History Month and June 23 is Social Justice Sunday. This spring Grace & Groundings will be sharing resource materials for observing Social Justice Sunday in your congregation.

Orientation sessions will be held online

Orientation sessions for new delegates to Annual Conference Assembly (ACA) and for table group leaders at ACA will be held on Zoom prior to ACA. The new delegate orientation will take place Feb. 19 at 7 p.m. To attend, use this link: https://bit.ly/2024NewDelegateOrientation. The table group leader orientation will take place Feb. 20 at 7 p.m. To attend, use this…

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Register for ACA by Feb. 9

Have you registered for Annual Conference Assembly (ACA)? Feb. 9 is the deadline to register for ACA at the regular fee of $50 per person. After that date, the registration fee rises to $65 per person. Sharon Mennonite Church in Plain City will host the 2024 ACA March 1-2. The featured speaker at this event will be Meghan Larissa Good,…

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