Category Archives: conference

Welcoming the Stranger


By Barbie Fischer As we begin this journey of diving into the subject of hospitality, it seems fitting to start at the beginning. The origin of the word hospitality can be traced back to the Hebrew/Aramaic word הכנסת אורחים (hachnasat orchim) which literally translates to bringing in of strangers. Something that nowadays may give many … Continue reading Welcoming the Stranger

Creating Space

teddy bear picnic

By Jenifer Eriksen Morales My 4-year-old daughter invited me to join her picnic, complete with plastic fruit.  I looked at the stuffed animal guests, “Wow, you have very different friends.  Aren’t you afraid the bear will eat the dogs or the dogs will eat the cats?” She patiently responded, “No Mommy.  That is not going … Continue reading Creating Space

Locally Handmade Comforter Appears in the New York Times

Vincent quilts 5

by Barbie Fischer Often when items are donated to a ministry, the recipient of the donation is unknown. The Vincent Sewing Circle ladies are well aware of this fact as they have been making comforters by hand since 1934 and donating them to people in need, in recent years mainly to Mennonite Central Committee (MCC). … Continue reading Locally Handmade Comforter Appears in the New York Times

Blessing and Appreciation

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On Wednesday, March 23rd, Franconia Conference hosted an appreciation luncheon for the Conference’s 19 Conference Related Ministries (CRMs). Representatives from the organizations enjoyed lunch in the Fisher Auditorium at Dock Woods, part of Living Branches. Welcome remarks were given by Ertell Whigham, conference executive minister. John Goshow, conference moderator, reflected on his time as a leader at … Continue reading Blessing and Appreciation

Women Meet to Tell Their Sacred Stories


By Anne M. Yoder, Coordinator, EDC/FMC Sistering Committee On March 12, over 35 women met together for a Day Apart, held at Towamencin Mennonite Church. Attendees came from various Mennonite churches in Eastern District and Franconia Mennonite Conferences. A large group coming from Centro de Alabanza de Filadelfia, a South Philadelphia congregation that is made … Continue reading Women Meet to Tell Their Sacred Stories

Havin’ A Blast!


By John Stoltzfus What do you get when you bring together 130 junior high youth from 15 different churches in Franconia and Eastern District Mennonite Conferences? A picture of both the present and future reality of the church and kingdom of God. Our junior high youth are image bearers of God. They have the ability to … Continue reading Havin’ A Blast!

Going to the Margins with a Missional Lens

noel article photo

From February 25 to March 1, 2016, I had the privilege of visiting Mexico for the first time in four years. The occasion, the Annual Red de Iglesias Misioneras Internacionales (RIMI) Leaders Conference. Translated into English, RIMI means the International Network of Missionary Churches. This network was founded by Kirk and Marilyn Hanger, of New … Continue reading Going to the Margins with a Missional Lens

Reflection on Hope for the Future

Recently, three of our Franconia Conference members took part in Hope for the Future, an MCUSA gathering of leaders of color from across the church. These gatherings are designed to explore the ways that power, privilege, cultural bias and racism function in our denomination. As Franconia Conference continues to strive to be intercultural and give all … Continue reading Reflection on Hope for the Future

Loving Our Muslim Neighbors


by Esther Good Following the terrorist attacks in Paris, France in November, and in San Bernardino, California in December, many have struggled with the question of how we should relate to our Muslim neighbors. Tensions have remained high, exacerbated by the election season, and the answer to this question has reared its head in the … Continue reading Loving Our Muslim Neighbors