Ten leaders from Franconia Conference congregations voiced wide-ranging perspectives during two conference calls held recently to garner feedback on a controversial action taken by Mountain States Mennonite Conference earlier this year….
Franconia Conference delegates and leaders gathered November 2 at Penn View Christian School in Souderton, Pa. to celebrate God still at work. With a packed auditorium for a third united assembly with Eastern District Conference, representatives gathered to listen and pray, to celebrate newly credentialed and ordained pastoral leaders, and to work alongside one another after an over 150-year rift created two separate Mennonite entities. The theme “God still @ work” was an extension of the 2012 theme, “God @ work.”
Bally Mennonite Meetinghouse was built in the 1730s in the Bally Community, which was settled by German Reformed, Catholics, and Mennonites, who have traditionally worked together. At one time, Bally had a number of industries, but currently has just two major industries: Bally Block and Bally Ribbon.
Franconia Conference Board members took action to appoint Klaudia Smucker as a new member of the Conference Board at the April 22 board meeting.
Smucker serves as pastor of Bally Mennonite Church, a role she assumed in 2010. She came to Franconia with extensive pastoral and conference leadership experience in Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference. “We are thankful that Klaudia has chosen to use her considerable experience and wisdom on behalf of Franconia Conference,” said Conference Moderator and Board Chair John Goshow.
Bally Mennonite Church has always been a place where creativity has blossomed, but like many small churches, we have been facing declining numbers of children. Our community preschool, which meets daily in our building ten months out of the year, has continued to flourish, but this growth hasn’t been reflected in our Sunday school program.
We had what looked like two main problems: first, our Sunday school preschool class, which sometimes had just a couple preschoolers, was, for a while, combined with an older class and this wide age range seemed to be daunting for the children as well as the teacher; and second, despite many opportunities, we seemed unable to get our preschool families to come to our church.
Klaudia Smucker, Bally firstname.lastname@example.org “I am not planning on preaching,” I told one of my seminary professors. “I’m more interested in pastoral care and counseling.” “Ask your minister anyway, and […]