April 18, 2012

Walking together on the road to Easter

Plains on EasterIt’s a familiar story, especially for those who have grown up in the church.  So how do we retell the story of Jesus’ passion and resurrection year after year in ways that open us up, once again, to the pain, the beauty, and the wonder of Jesus’ sacrifice and victory over death?  The season of Lent, celebrated for the forty days leading up to Easter, marks Christ’s journey to Jerusalem.  It invites those who follow Jesus to walk with him by remembering his life, practicing disciplines of fasting and sacrifice, and engaging in deeper commitment to their brothers and sisters.  Read more. . . .

See Easter photos from Franconia Conference congregations

Easter at WhitehallWe have started a photo album of pictures from Lent, Holy Week, and Easter celebrations throughout Franconia Conference.  Add your photos by emailing them to Emily.

Send us photos from other events, too!  And don’t forget that you can also post photos on our Facebook wall.

See photo albums. . . .

Social Stream (FranconiaMC,  #fmclife)

  • Sea of Galilee (FB) Christopher Dock: A powerful drama presented by seniors in chapel this morning…video
  • (Tw) @tristaanogre Listening to @LG_Moyer from this past Sunday. Good stuff from @RockhillMC
  • (Tw) @gaybruntmiller “Are we [Mennos] ready to let God unbind us to become more fully who God intends us to be?” -Andre Gingerich Stoner
  • (Photo) Steve Kriss, Director of Leadership Cultivation took this photo of the Sea of Galilee while leading a class to Israel in cooperation with Biblical Seminary (Hatfield, Pa.).

Zeal Appeal: Higher Ground Leaders Forum*

The dictionary defines zeal as “eagerness and ardent interest in pursuit of something; fervor.”  If you have ever sat among the bleacher seats at a Philadelphia Phillies baseball game you recognize a form of zeal that frequently infects anyone who follows a professional sports team. Zealots may become so fanatical and uncompromising in pursuit of their religious or political ideals that they resort to violence as a means of furthering their agenda.  Read more . . . .

Do you or someone from your congregation have a blog on faith and life or faith and leadership?
Add it to our blogroll by emailing eralph@franconiaconference.org.

Mark Your Calendar

Mark your CalendarFor a complete listing of upcoming events, check out the Franconia Conference Calendar.  The Conference office keeps a Google calendar of congregational and Conference Related Ministries events to help avoid scheduling conflicts—so please help us keep it up to date!  Add your event to the calendar by sending an event invitation to calendar@franconiaconference.org

Pastors & Conference Related Ministry Leaders’ Breakfasts 8-10 a.m. at the Mennonite Conference Center (unless noted).  $6 donation requested.

  • June 14: Dale Nafziger, entrepreneurial missionary in Nepal.  Full description.
    Pastors–if you bring a business leader with you, you’ll get your breakfast for free!
  • July 18: Equipping to minister to inmates and ex-offenders in your congregation and community, led by Liberty Ministries.


  Fresh Expressions Vision Day

  • WHEN: Saturday, May 19, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • WHERE: Plains Mennonite Church
  • WHAT: This will be an interactive time for congregations to learn about Fresh Expressions as well as dream and discover how to empower and equip God’s people to develop creative expressions of church that can reach the increasing diversity in their communities.  Full description. 
  • REGISTER: More info to come.


Franconia & Eastern District Forum

  • WHEN: May 24,7-9  pm
  • WHERE: Christopher Dock High School
  • WHAT: This forum will focus on the current realities of our conferences. What are the present-day similarities and differences in the vision and mission of our conferences?  Full description
  • REGISTER: Open to all delegates and interested individuals.
Training for all Credentialed Leaders of Franconia Conference

  • WHEN: Saturday, April 21, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • WHERE: Towamencin Mennonite Church
  • WHAT: This day will focus on increasing our understanding of what it means to be intercultural and our capacity to respond to differences in our congregations—generational, economic, gender, etc.  There will also be important information shared about Formation Expectations and Requirements for Credentialed Leaders.  Full description. 
  • REGISTER: No cost for credentialed leaders.

Notes to Pastors: Ministry, Money, and MeEverence

When: Thursday, June 7, 2012, 9:00 am to Noon
(8:45am for coffee, pastry, & fruit)
Where: 191 Allentown Road, Souderton, PA  18964
(The old Elroy schoolhouse where The Upper Room meets)
More info: Randy Nyce at 215-703-0111 or randy.nyce@everence.com


Part 1: Money and Me

Pastors and other congregational leaders want to be at peace with finances at home and in ministry. Participants will use a money autobiography to interact with each other about practices that were modeled in their families of origin. How have our formative experiences affected how we feel and function as steward leaders in our congregations?

Part 2: Ministry and Money

What is the role of the pastor as a steward leader? What is the role of lay leaders as steward champions? A look at congregational budgets: models, processes and implementation. Learn about resources for the pulpit and classroom.


Beryl Jantzi currently serves as Everence stewardship education director. Prior to working for Everence, he was a pastor for 23 years in Pennsylvania and Virginia. From 2004 to 2010, he was moderator of the Virginia Mennonite Conference and currently serves as the overseer for the Southern District of the Virginia Mennonite Conference.  Beryl has a master’s in divinity from Eastern Mennonite Seminary and a doctorate in ministry from Lancaster Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Margo Maust, have two daughters and live in Harrisonburg, Va.

* The views expressed in each week’s featured blog do not necessarily reflect those of Franconia Conference; these blogs are included to initiate conversation and network members of the conference community.  See our full Terms of Use.