Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Virlina District celebrates 36th district conference.

The 36th Virlina District Conference was held at Bonsack (Va.) Baptist Church on Nov. 9-10, on the theme, "CELEBRATE: Surrendered to GOD, Transformed in CHRIST, Empowered by SPIRIT" (Philippians 4:4-8). Total registration was 534 people, with 249 delegates (including 72 pastors) and 285 nondelegates from 78 congregations. These participated in the worship, fellowship, and discernment of the district under the leadership of moderator W. Gregory Broyles of Oak Grove Church of the Brethren in Roanoke, Va.

Keynote speaker for the Friday and Saturday evening worship services was Timothy P. Harvey, chair of the Church of the Brethren General Board and pastor of Central Church of the Brethren in Roanoke. The Friday evening service was enhanced by a duet, "Glory to the Lord, Our God," by Linda Clague and Fred Porter, as well as instrumental selections by musicians drawn from the Central and Oak Grove congregations. More than 460 people were present for the Friday evening service.

Saturday morning devotional services were led by Broyles as district moderator, and featured the lighting of a candle for each congregation and meeting point. On Saturday evening, an inspiring service was highlighted by a choir of youth and young adults from throughout the district. Attendance for the Saturday evening service was 208.

A Ministers and Spouses Banquet was held on Friday evening at Cloverdale (Va.) Church of the Brethren, with 65 people in attendance and Jim Beckwith, moderator of the 2008 Annual Conference and pastor of Annville (Pa.) Church of the Brethren, as the featured speaker. Bob Gross, executive director of On Earth Peace, was the leader of the Peace Affairs Breakfast which preceded the district conference on Saturday morning.

In business sessions, the district recognized Una Nueva Vida En Cristo Fellowship of Willis, Va., and seated the fellowship delegates. New business included approval of the Master Site Plan for Camp Bethel. This comprehensive plan details the 100 Year Vision previously adopted, and will guide the transformation of the camp over coming generations. The district also approved a District Board budget of approximately $308,000 for 2008. Delegates also heard that the Camp Bethel budget for 2008 will be $617,610. Offerings of $3,465.04 were received for the expenses of the District Conference.

Twenty-two individuals were called to leadership positions including E. Patrick Starkey of Ninth Street Church of the Brethren in Roanoke, Va., as moderator-elect. Rosalie R. Wood was called as clerk; Roger G. Stultz was called as district representative to Standing Committee; W. Gregory Broyles was called as trustee of Bridgewater (Va.) College; Donna Jamison and Judy D. Mills were called to the Program and Arrangements Committee; Dewey V. Broyles, Sandra H. Layman, and James R. Worline were called to the Nominating and Personnel Committee; Michael G. Battle, Sandra Sue Bolton, Jane Fralin Grisso, Mark L. Harmon, William J. Hinton Sr., Gerald L. Hylton, Chuck Martin, Lenoria Naff, Michael L. Pugh, Claude C. Shell, and Harry W. Shelton were called to the District Board; Terry Harris and Amanda Naff were called to the Outdoor Ministries Committee.

Delegates heard reports that Cathy S. Huffman will continue to serve as the District Board chair for 2007-08. Other members of the Executive Committee are Ronald Sink as vice-chair, J. Hebron Quesenberry as Commission on Ministry chair, Gary L. Basham as Commission of Stewards chair, Kathy Otey as Commission on Nurture chair, Jerry Wayne Naff as Commission on Witness chair, Wayne Bailey as Outdoor Ministries Committee chair, and Roy A. McVey as Church Extension Committee chair.

Reports from the district staff were received, and an entertaining and an informative District Board report titled "Are You Smarter Than a District Executive?" was presented by chair Cathy S. Huffman. Other reports were received from district committees and other institutions of the district and denomination. A report on pastoral placement revealed that 26 congregations, fellowships, and projects have been involved in the pastoral placement process in the year ending Sept. 30. Fourteen new pastors in 15 congregations were named and introduced. The conference honored Donald Kline for 59 years of ministerial service and Kermit P. Flora for 74 years of ministerial service.

The 37th Virlina District Conference will be held Nov. 14-15, 2008. Vernon E. Baker, a member of Topeco Church of the Brethren in Floyd County, Va., will serve as the moderator.

David Shumate is district executive minister for Virlina District.

Source: 11/21/2007 Newsline Extra

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