World Fellowship Sunday
On Sunday, January 18, Mennonite congregations around the world will celebrate World Fellowship Sunday. Each year, on the Sunday closest to 21 January, Mennonite World Conference congregations are invited to remember the first Anabaptist baptism in 1525, an act of obedience and courage, which continues to shape our understanding of what it means to be disciples of Jesus Christ today. On this one Sunday of the year, we celebrate our global Anabaptist community in our worship together, in spirit and in body, and in praying for each other.
Here at Berkey, we will celebrate World Fellowship Sunday in our worship service (with communion) and with a congregational potluck following Sunday School. Please bring a main dish, and either a salad or a dessert to share. We are also asking for donations to Mennonite World Conference's Fair Share fund to support the networks and resources of our global Anabaptist church family. One way to think about this donation is to consider what you would spend to eat out, and contribute the cost of that meal. You can make checks out to Berkey Avenue, with MWC in the memo line.
Berkey Teacher Appreciation Meal
The Education Commission is planning a special meal on Sunday, January 25 to say thank you to You, our Berkey Sunday School teachers (and your families) for serving our congregation this year in nurturing our children, youth and adults. Please join us for a simple meal and lots of delicious desserts for the congregation!
~ Berkey Christian Ed. Commission (Cindy, Dan, Deb, Marilyn and Ruth)
The Education Commission is planning a special meal on Sunday, January 25 to say thank you and honor or teachers from nursery through adult classes. Please consider providing a dessert (any kind) for the appreciation event. Contact Ruth Roth
or (574) 533-8955.
Berkey Hosting GIHN
Our congregation will be hosting families who are homeless and part of GIHN from January 11 - January 18. Thank you so much to all the many volunteers at Berkey for your ongoing commitment in serving with GIHN.
~ Sue Byler, Linda Liechty, Lorraine Pflederer, Ruth Roth (Berkey GIHN committee)
Meals for College Students
Over the years Berkey has been a wonderful, welcoming church home for many college/young adult students. One of the highlights for the students is having a meal each Sunday after church. This allows them to get to know our church family in a more informal setting and learn to know a wider range of people. If you can help in hosting a meal, please go to the website
(usarname: students password: bamf) or contact Ruth Roth
or (574) 533-8955). You don’t need to make anything fancy – just a simple meal of food you enjoy making. You can host in your home or at the church, using the church kitchen. You may sign up individually, with someone else or as a small group. Thank you so much for your meals and friendship to our students!
Menno's Best coffee
If you ordered Menno's Best coffee, you can pick up and pay for it in the fellowship hall after worship.
New to the Library
We have four new books at the library this week: When the Roll is Called a Pyonder
by Diana Zimmerman which is a tales of a traditional Mennonite farm family in Lancaster, PA, as seen through a child’s eyes. The spirited speaker develops a rich sense of herself and her community as she grows up in a conservative religious context where female children are reared for lives of obedience, modesty, and piety.
The Amish Way: Patient Faith in a Perilous World
by Donald Kraybill, Steven Nolt and David Weaver-Zercher who bring a rare combination of expertise and understanding to the religious beliefs and practices that shape Amish life.
Growing up Mennonite in Rural Pennsylvania
by Elmer S. Miller, brings out the memories of childhood and youth during the 1930's and 1940's in which Miller's initial sense of identity was constructed.
The Donkey's Dream
by Barbara Helen Berger as read by Dan Schrock for the children's story on Christmas Eve. This poetic retelling of the Christmas story is from the point of view of the patient donkey.
On Wednesday, January 28 the MYF will be preparing care packages for Berkey Avenue College Students. Please bring individually wrapped treats to share with our students. Homemade baked items are fine, too. Please bring them to church over the next two Sundays or have all items to the church by 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday 28. Thank you for your support!
~ MYF kids and sponsors
Creation Care Class
The Every Creature Singing class will be discussing session 4 of the online curriculum. This session deals with Genesis 1 and 2. Can you remember a particular time and place you heard the creation story? What questions from the curriculum do you want to talk about?
Membership Exploration Sessions
Are you interested in becoming a member at Berkey? Beginning January 11, Marilyn and Dan will begin hosting membership exploration sessions for adults during the Christian education hour. Our purpose is to become better acquainted with each other and with the congregation. It's fine if you want to participate in the sessions but aren't sure yet if you want to become a member.
More Sanctuary Chairs
The Coordinating Council is offering the congregation an opportunity to buy more new chairs for the sanctuary and to replace at least some of the older brown chairs. These new chairs will be identical to the 107 chairs that are currently in the front of the sanctuary. Our chair fund already has about $5,110, enough to buy 36 new chairs. The Council is accepting further donations into the chair fund until the last Sunday of January. Learn more
Head on over to our Facebook page
for a photographic collection of our early history -- complete with difficult to recognize building features, incredible hairstyles and clothing, and who knows what else we will dig up! Play along and see if you can spot anybody you know, and don't forget to like our page if you haven't already!
Bethany Christian Schools
Waging Peace with Notorius Killers
Michael J. Sharp ('01) walks unarmed into the base of the FDLR, notorius for their recruitment of child soldiers and sexual violence against villagers in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Sharp, who works for MCC, does this every few weeks in an effort to make a peaceful change. A coordinator for the Mennonite Central, he has an unusual approach to peacemaking. Learn more
A Trio Recital by the Merling Trio will be held Sunday, January 11, at 4:00 p.m. in Rieth Recital Hall of the GC Music Center. The award-winning Merling Trio is the ensemble-in-residence at Western Michigan University, and is comprised of pianist Susan Wiersma Uchimura, violinist Renata Artman Knific, and cellist Bruce Uchimura. Admission to the concert is $10, with tickets available at the door one hour in advance of the concert.
Coach Declared Cancer-free
We are so grateful to celebrate with our Men's Basketball Coach Neal Young and wife Maggie for his renewed health, for the baby that they are expecting in May and for an exciting year of basketball! “Coaching is so much more fun when you have the amount of energy that’s required to do it. My personality, I’m energetic. I enjoy being around people. I like being around my players. I like being around my assistants. I like spirited debate. Last year, none of that was there. I had no energy to spare. Everything I was trying to do, it was the bare minimum. When you’re not able to be yourself, it’s hard to enjoy things.” -- Neal Young. Learn more
Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary
Four workshops will precede Pastors Week at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, January 26, 2015 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Anabaptist Approaches to Scripture, Creating Safe Spaces in the Church, Why Polity Matters, and The Bible Doesn't Have to be Boring. Learn more
Greg Boyd, a leading spokesman in the growing Neo-Anabaptism movement, will present a free public lecture, “Living truth: The promise of the Anabaptist tradition in a post-Christendom culture
,” at College Mennonite Church, Tuesday, January 27, beginning at 7:30 p.m. Dr. Boyd, a Pastors Week presenter at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, is a best-selling author and pastor.
MCC: New immigration resources
From Old Testament exhortations to the words of Christ, the Bible calls us to welcome newcomers. There are many ways churches and individuals can respond to the needs of immigrants in their community, including by helping immigrants with legal paperwork. Churches looking for tangible ways to get involved can find useful resources like toolkits, guides and training opportunities at our website
Register now for PA 2015
Already making summer plans? Plan to attend Pennsylvania (PA) 2015, the 16th Assembly of MWC which will be held July 21-26, 2015 in Harrisburg, PA. Where else can you worship and fellowship with thousands of Anabaptist Christians in an international gathering? Come get inspired by the music of Zimbabwean and Kenyan choirs. Learn about the global Church by visiting the Global Church Village. Play or watch the Anabaptist World Cup soccer tournament. Get to know others through Friendship Groups. Take part in a service opportunity. See all that PA 2015 has to offer
MCC Alumni Potluck
You are invited to an evening of fellowship, friendship and sharing at an MCC Alumni & Friends International Potluck on Saturday evening, January 17, 2015, at 6:00 p.m. at the Assembly Mennonite Meetinghouse, 1201 S 11th St, Goshen. Special guests for the evening will be Dan and Jeanne Jantzi, longtime MCC workers and current MCC Regional Directors for Asia. They are based in MCC's regional office in Chiang Mai, Thailand and travel frequently in their work with MCC programs in Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Indonesia and Philippines. They have worked with MCC since 1989, serving previously in DR Congo, Nigeria and Indonesia.
Please bring a favorite international dish to share (tableware will be provided), and join an informative evening of conversation and connection with the Jantzis. Please RSVP to the MCC Great Lakes
office or (574) 534-4133 to to help us prepare for the size of the group.
You’re invited to attend “Paying it forward: joyful stewardship in the Anabaptist tradition”
Sunday, January 25, 2015, 6 p.m. at Menno-Hof with presenter John D. Roth, Professor of History, Goshen (Ind.) College. From the beginnings of the Anabaptist movement in the sixteenth-century, the principle of stewardship has been a central part of our understanding of Christian faith and practice. The gifts of wealth, time, and talents that God has generously given to us are meant to be shared with those around us. This is the first event in Menno-Hof’s “Simple Treats, Stewardship & Servanthood” winter series. Bring finger foods to share – coffee will be provided. RSVP is requested (seating is limited) firstname.lastname@example.org
Women's Spirituality Retreat
Out of the Whirlwind: A Women's Spirituality Retreat at Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center of Goshen College, Wolf Lake, 7:00 p.m. Friday, January 23 through Saturday, January 24, 3 p.m., Farmstead Barn and Rieth Village Site. Women of all ages are invited to Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center for a weekend getaway that will include time outdoors, time to reflect on biblical texts related to nature, guided contemplative prayer and spiritual practices workshops. Step out of the whirlwind and make space to listen for God’s voice in a beautiful winter setting. Jackie Wyse-Rhodes, Janie Beck Kreider and Jennifer Schrock will return to provide input for this 3rd annual event. The cost of $50 includes two meals and lodging; $30 students. To register, email Janie Beck Kreider
. Registration deadline is January 14. Learn more
Have something to sell, rent or lend? Want to buy or borrow something? Looking for a job or wanting to volunteer? This is the place to have it be known!
Are you looking for a way to serve while sharing your faith? Menno-Hof, Shipshewana needs individuals and couples in agreement with Anabaptist values and beliefs to serve as host and/or hostess for a minimum of one month June – August 2015. Responsibilities include conducting tours and some light housekeeping. Menno-Hof offers visitors from around the world accurate information about the faith and life of the Amish and Mennonites. Two furnished apartments are available on-site. For more information contact Susan Miller, managing director or call (260) 768-4117. Learn more.
Mennonite Central Committee's Sharing With Appalachian People (SWAP) program is seeking summer staff to help with coordination of construction volunteers, meals, materials and job sites for their home repair projects in Kentucky and West Virginia. Summer staff are a critical component of SWAP's successful ministry, as they help facilitate the weekly SWAP service groups working on housing repair for low-income persons. Summer staff vary in age from 19 to 70+, and they receive meals, lodging and a weekly stipend for their service. For more information go to swap.mcc.org or call Colettia at (606) 633-5065.