Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Brethren bits: Remembrance, personnel, workcamp registration, more.
  • John Samuel Horning (82) died Dec. 26, 2007. He was an ordained minister in the Church of the Brethren and with his wife, Estella, was a former Brethren mission worker in Ecuador and Nigeria. From 1956-71, the couple were medical mission workers in Ecuador, where Horning worked in a variety of ministries that included clinics, school vaccination programs, and planned parenthood measures. In Nigeria, from 1973-76, Horning was a mission doctor in the Lafiya health and medical program and served as director of the Rural Health Program. By the end of his service in Nigeria, 32 villages were participating in the Rural Health Program, and trained Nigerian medical staff were placed in leadership positions. Horning also was a medical family doctor and had been at the Wheaton (Ill.) Medical Clinic for 23 years, retiring in 1990. In volunteer service to the denomination, he was on the board of Bethany Hospital in Chicago, a Brethren-founded institution, and also was instrumental in forming the Brethren Health and Education Foundation. The Hornings were recipients of the Brethren Health and Welfare Association's Caregiving Award in 1978 and have been longtime supporters of the ministries of the Association of Brethren Caregivers. Horning was born in China on Dec. 9, 1925, to Brethren mission workers Daniel and Martha (Daggett) Horning. He graduated from Manchester College and studied medicine at the Chicago Medical School, Chicago’s Cook County Hospital, and Milwaukee (Wis.) County General Hospital, and also served at Bethany Hospital. During World War II, he was in Civilian Public Service at a camp at Wellston, Mich., and at the state mental hospital at Logansport, Ind. He also was an ardent photographer, and his pictures interpreting mission work appeared often in publications of the church. On their return to the US, the family lived for some years in the York Center community in Lombard, Ill. Most recently Horning had been a resident of Goshen, Ind., and a member of Goshen City Church of the Brethren. He is survived by his wife, their four daughters and one son, 13 grandchildren, and a great-grandson. Services will be held at York Center Church of the Brethren at 4 p.m. on Jan. 12; and at Goshen City Church of the Brethren at 4 p.m. on Jan. 19. Memorial contributions may be made to Goshen City Church of the Brethren.

  • Randy Koontz has resigned from the Material Resources program of the Church of the Brethren General Board, located at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md. He has been a baler for the program since 1985. Effective Jan. 1, he has taken a position with the warehouse operations of A Greater Gift/SERRV, which also are located at the Brethren Service Center.

  • Harry Torres Jr. has accepted the position of housekeeping supervisor for the New Windsor Conference Center at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., effective Jan. 2. Torres brings a good deal of experience to the position, having headed and managed cleaning crews for a private cleaning company, served as rental manager for heavy equipment rentals, and as a housekeeper at Carroll Hospital Center. He is a graduate of Gary Whetsone School of Biblical Studies and also has been a youth pastor for Crossroads Restoration Church.

  • Jamie Denlinger begins Jan. 7 as an intern with Brethren Press. She is a senior English major at Ohio University, and plans to complete a three-month internship with the publishing house at the Church of the Brethren General Offices in Elgin, Ill. In addition to her work experience at Ohio University Press, where she has been a production and office assistant, she has been an outreach intern at Prince of Peace Church of the Brethren in Kettering, Ohio.

  • Registration for the 2008 workcamps offered by the Church of the Brethren General Board begins online early tomorrow morning, on Jan. 3 at 12:01 a.m. central time. To register go to The workcamp program is part of the Youth and Young Adult Ministries of the General Board. Staff issued a reminder today of some things to remember when registering: individual congregations are asked to make up no more than a third of the participants of any one workcamp; although those registering will receive a confirmation e-mail, this may not guarantee a place in the workcamp because registration is not complete until the $100 non-refundable deposit is received; deposits are due within seven days of registration. “We at the workcamp office have been anxiously awaiting this day for months,” said the staff. “Thank you for your submissions, questions, recommendations, and all of the other things you do to help us prepare for the 2008 Workcamps.” The workcamp coordinators for 2008 are Sharon Flaten, Jerry O’Donnell, Jeanne Davies, and Steve Van Houten. Contact the program at 800-323-8039 or

  • Children’s Disaster Services Level I Training Workshops will be held Feb. 1-2, at Hudson Community Chapel in Hudson, Ohio, and on the same dates at the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County in Tampa, Fla. The workshop is required for all volunteers in the program, which serves children and families in disaster situations. Cost is $45 for early registration, $55 for late registration mailed less than three weeks before the workshop. For more information contact Children’s Disaster Services at 800-451-4407 ext. 5.

  • On Earth Peace has issued a “last chance” notice for registration for the Faith-Based Mediation Workshop in Milford, Ind., in February. The Ministry of Reconciliation, a branch of On Earth Peace, welcomes natural peacemakers and those interested in conflict resolution to a two-weekend mediation workshop. Five more participants are needed to meet the attendance quota. Registration continues until Jan. 16. For more information, visit

  • On Earth Peace also requests prayer for a delegation to the Middle East, sponsored jointly with Christian Peacemakers Team, which will take place Jan. 8-21. “Please add our leaders, delegates, and those they will meet to your prayers. Also remember the family members left behind,” said a prayer request in the On Earth Peace newsletter. For more information about the delegation, go to

  • Una Nueva Vida En Cristo, a new church development in Virlina District, was chartered as a fellowship in a special worship service on Dec. 21. The fellowship worships near Willis in Floyd County, Va., with Manuel Gonzalez as pastor.

  • Oak Grove Church of the Brethren in Roanoke, Va., is hosting a performance by hip hop artist Demetrius Doss, known as El Prezidino, at 6 p.m. on Jan. 6. Formerly a star athlete at Marshall University and an arena league football all star, the rapper originally from South Philadelphia brings a “funky, upbeat, and unflinchingly Christian message,” according to an announcement from Virlina District.

  • Middle Pennsylvania District and Church of the Brethren congregations are supporting Trucker Traveler Ministries. In a ministry sponsored by the Pennsylvania Council of Churches, chaplain Bruce Maxwell is available to those who are traveling through Breezewood, Pa. As part of a Trucker Ministry in Carlisle, members at York First Church of the Brethren have been sharing cookies at a truck stop. “The church ladies baked, the Bible Study ladies packed, and 110 bags of delicious cookies were delivered to the Carlisle Truck Stop!” reported a newsletter from York First. “This brought the total bags of cookies donated this year to this ministry to over 8,800.”

  • “Another Way of Sending: Brethren Mission in the 21st Century” is a continuing education event led by Wally Landes, pastor of Palmyra (Pa.) Church of the Brethren on Feb. 21, at Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pa. The event is co-sponsored by the General Board’s Congregational Life Team, Area 1, the Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center, Middle Pennsylvania District, and Juniata College. Cost is $25 plus $10 for continuing education documentation. Light refreshments and a lunch are included. The event meets the “Evangelism and Church Growth” category of the Annual Conference Continuing Education paper and provides .5 continuing education units. The registration deadline is Feb. 5.

  • Manchester College in North Manchester, Ind., has announced Fast Forward, a new way to get a bachelor's degree in three years, available for every major offered by the college. “It is the complete four-year program, compressed into three years by offering the general education courses online during summers,” explained a press release. “Students can finish in three years, saving as much as $25,000 in room and board and tuition (summer online tuition costs less), and getting an entire year jump on their careers.” Only a handful of colleges and universities in the nation are offering this kind of program for all majors, the release said. Participating students must be highly motivated, in the top quarter of their high school classes, score at least 1,100 on the SAT, and maintain at least a B average. Go to

  • A class of 15 Manchester College political science students and their professor are studying the Iowa caucuses up close this week. The "Contemporary Politics: Presidential Campaign" course is led by professor Leonard Williams. Students are following the campaigns, volunteering for a candidate of their choice, attending precinct caucuses, and keeping a daily blog, according to a release from the college. Two of the students are Church of the Brethren: Stephen Hendricks of Prince of Peace Church of the Brethren in South Bend, Ind., and Benjamin Martin of Grossnickle (Md.) Church of the Brethren. The group departed for Iowa on Dec. 31, 2007, and will return to Manchester to continue their studies on campus Jan. 7. For the students’ blog go to

  • Elizabethtown (Pa.) College has bought a nine-acre farm bordering its campus for $1.25 million, according to the “Lancaster (Pa.) Sunday News.” Formerly known as the Simon farm, the nine acres is located along Cedar Street between Elizabethtown Church of the Brethren and the Founders Hall of the college. In an e-mail sent to the college community, president Theodore E. Long said that the purchase is part of a plan to renovate older residence halls and construct new, high-quality housing on campus, the newspaper said.

  • Cross Keys Village-The Brethren Home Community in New Oxford, Pa., has announced that David K. Gerber, senior vice president, has earned the Certified Aging Services Professional credential from the Coalition for Leadership in Aging Services. Gerber was one of approximately 110 graduates of the professional training program this year, and was recognized during the annual meeting of the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging. Gerber serves on the board of the Brethren Benefit Trust, and is a lay leader for Black Rock Church of the Brethren in Glenville, Pa.

  • Dorothy Van Landeghem, a resident of the Peter Becker Community retirement center in Harleysville, Pa., plans to celebrate her 100th birthday on Jan. 13.

  • The Sojourners Community in Washington, D.C., has called attention to an effort by Burger King to undermine agreements between farm workers and fast-food chains to increase pay for Florida tomato pickers. The agreement for a pay increase of one penny per pound of picked tomatos was made by the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and McDonald’s and Yum! Brands--owner of Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, and KFC. Representatives of the Immokalee workers visited a meeting of the Church of the Brethren General Board in Oct. 2006, where they received the blessing of a laying on of hands. The “New York Times” has reported, however, that “Burger King has refused to pay the extra penny... and its refusal has encouraged tomato growers to cancel the deals already struck with Taco Bell and McDonald's.”

  • The January 2008 edition of "Brethren Voices," the 30-minute community television program produced by Portland (Ore.) Peace Church of the Brethren, features "Nightmare Beyond Borders," a discussion of the Iraq refugee crisis with two representatives of the American Friends Service Committee. In February, the show will feature Brethren Disaster Ministries as church members serve in areas around the country devastated by natural disasters. Contact Ed Groff at for copies of the programs and information about how to subscribe.

  • Tom Benevento has joined the staff of the New Community Project as a “sustainability specialist” to coordinate an Undoing Global Warming initiative and develop a model sustainable living center in Harrisonburg, Va. A key part of the program is to visit congregations to do energy audits, helping churches reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and save money. The Harrisonburg Habitat for Humanity group has asked Benevento to work with them to install solar hot water heaters on all future homes they build, using a model he has developed. Contact Benevento at 540-433-2363 or go to

  • The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity marks its 100th anniversary in 2008. The first time Christians joined in such a week of prayer was in 1908 in Graymoor, N.Y., according to a release from the World Council of Churches (WCC). Jan. 18-25 is the traditional date for the week. "Pray Without Ceasing" is the theme for 2008, from 1 Thessalonians. The worship resources are jointly published by the WCC's Commission on Faith and Order and the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. Download in English from and in Spanish from
Source: 01/02/2008 Newsline

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