MENNONITE
WOMEN USA
A POSTCARD & A PRAYER
September 2015

Noteworthy

Happy September!

 

Fall approaches, routines change and we adapt.

 

During these times of cooler temperatures and shorter days, we invite you to curl up with a crisp apple, a comfy afghan and read about the many ministries of Mennonite Women USA.

 

There is much good news here, and many ways we are partnering with God to bring about the good news of Christ.

 

Read on...enjoy!

 

Mennonite Women USA staff 

A Prayer for the Equinox
by Melissa Atchison

As we witness the sun's path subtly nearing the equator,
            align us with you, O God.
May the balance of day and night reveal your ways
            of transition and transformation.
 
As each leaf finishes its summer job and sends sweetness into storage,
            deep in the earth,
                        revealing its hidden colors,
            may bold beauty burn in our hearts,
                        anticipating
                            the fall.
 
As our seasonal tasks and pathways yield to new callings
            may we be a sign of your flaming Love,
acknowledging the heavenly beauty in our temporary forms,
            recognizing changes in our lives,
                        new ways to glorify You.
 
Melissa Atchison attends Manhattan Mennonite Church (Manhattan, Kansas) and continues as homemaker for her family, as she pursues her new calling as an AMBS MDiv Connect student. She celebrates her birthday on the autumnal equinox, which is Wednesday, September 23.
Talk-About:   
Pray the above prayer individually or with a group.
* Savor it in silence.
* Share how you have experienced being aligned with God.
* Reflect on a recent transition. What was the sweetness? What was the burn?
 * Talk about a new calling that you might be hearing as summer glides to fall. How might that nudge call you to glorify God?

Watch for an upcoming conversation on Facebook and join in!
 
Part of our mission at Mennonite Women USA is to empower women and women's groups - so Talk-About it and go for it! 
Discover your Spark! 
It's a Bible study designed for women:
  • Ready for  personal reflection on spirituality and creativity.
  • Formatted for 12 sessions plus a closing worship.
  • Perfect for starting meaningful conversation.
  • It's very Anabaptist!
  • High quality, very affordable! 
  • Young adult women will enjoy it as well as more "seasoned" women. 
  • Pair with the Spark Retreat kit for a full weekend of enrichment.  
Spark: Igniting Your God-Given Creativity by April Yamsaki is sponsored by Mennonite Women USA and Mennonite Women Canada.  Order Spark here.
NATIONAL HAPPENINGS
Still a few days left to register

A Sister Care: Level 2 "Going Deeper" retreat will be offered for the first time this fall. The retreat will be held October 2-4 at Camp Hebron located 20 miles north of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. 
 
Special group offer: If you register in a group of 3 you will receive a $10 discount.
 
Carolyn Heggen and Rhoda Keener will introduce new material building on the core concepts from the original Sister Care seminar. The retreat will provide time for individual reflection, conversation, and guided activities in a beautiful setting. 

Contact Helen Miller, Lancaster, to register

SISTER CARE RETURNS
to Goshen College

Carolyn Heggen, Marlene Bogard, and Rhoda Keener will present a second College Sister Care at Goshen College October 9 and 10. 
The seminar is hosted by Beth Martin Birky, MW USA board member, and GC professor. 

Women from local churches will provide home-cooked meals which is a much appreciated part of this event. Marlene will provide leadership for a College Sister Care at Bethel College in February of 2016 and Hesston College in March 2016.  




Timbrel Teaser

"Once, I led a Children's Time during worship, asking the youngsters to share everything they knew about me: what they'd been told and what they could gather with their own senses.

These were the most polite children--none wanted to mention my baldness. 

Finally I asked directly, 'What color is my hair?' The
hesitant and uncertain response: 'Clear?'"

Read Audrey's full reflection on her journey with hair in the Fall, 2015 issue of Timbrel.

IWF Spotlight 
 

"Dora Elcy Pereira Guevara, Colombia, participates in various ministries in her church in Teusaquillo. She completed her certificate in Theology in 2010 and is beginning work at the advanced level. "Dora is a vital part of the worship and praise ministry in her church," affirms Zarai Gonzalia, administrator at SBMC.
  
 
Kitchen Table
Pam Risser

Forty-two jars of applesauce line my kitchen counter tops. I spent the day with my oldest daughter and her children, cutting, simmering and pressing apples into applesauce for the winter. Last week I worked alongside another daughter canning apple pie filling.  The week before that, all my daughters came together for us to can quart after quart of peach halves, slices and pie filling.  Eager granddaughters jostled one another to have a place at filling jars with peach halves or turning the crank on the applesauce strainer.

We celebrate the life of Gladys Goering

Gladys (Graber) Goering of Moundridge, KS passed away on September 12, 2015 at the age of 96. She served as coordinator of the General Conference Women in Mission organization from 1973-1977.  She also wrote the book, "Women in Search of Mission: a history of the General Conference Mennonite Women's Organization" in 1980.

We thank God for the life of Gladys and her many contributions to supporting and empowering women. We extend our sympathies to her son Wynn and his wife Ardie.  
by Audrey Kanagy

"I danced all the way to the car after Elizabeth Soto Albright invited me to create artwork with women who would be attending Mennonite World Conference. 

Each afternoon women from various continents gathered in the Delaware room above the Main Hall to encourage women engaged in theological work and explore ways to connect across cultures. 

My role was to create a space where women could engage creatively, working with their hands even as they engaged their minds and hearts in the discussions. Using a method of art called decoupage, we brushed pieces of magazines onto canvases with glue, forming five images combined to create a whole picture. This project would include a compilation of women in conversation from every continent, symbols of communion, scripture, and the Holy Spirit."

See below a group picture of the work in progress and a close-up of one of the panels. 

To see each completed panel and more pictures click here.




Mennonite Women USA announces the newly launched online shop added to their website in late June 2015. It was created and developed in response to the needs and desires expressed by their supporters. Instead of having to call the office or send a letter indicating interest for particular materials, the Mennonite Women USA shop has all of their resources and materials available at the touch of a button.
 
The store is fully functional and responds to customers shopping from their desktop, laptop, tablet or smart phone. Now you can purchase as many copies of the latest Bible Study Guide Spark: Igniting Your God-Given Creativity right online for your groups or Sunday School classes. Order Sister Care materials with bulk discounts and get the new Sister Care t-shirt!

History Project Update
by Anita Hooley Yoder
  
In the next few issues of Postcard and a Prayer, I will include a quote from one of the women I have interviewed in preparation for the writing of the Centennial book. "
 
"I think it is awesome that we have a women's association.  I don't know if other denominations have that.  It's really positive.  It brings up awareness of women's issues and provides a safe space to talk about them."
--Maggie Weaver, Goshen College student  


The Sister Care seminar is now available for purchase on DVD with 12 sessions for small groups, retreats, or Sunday school classes. An easy to use 40-page facilitator's guide written by Rhoda Keener and Carolyn Heggen accompanies the DVD.

Each DVD session taught by Carolyn or Rhoda averages 12-15 minutes in length with total viewing time of 166 minutes. The facilitator's guide offers suggested scripture, songs, and additional questions and activities for participants. 


 

Each participant will need a Sister Care: Equipping Women for Caring Ministry manual.

 

Shop all our Sister Care resources available on our NEW online shop!

2015 Sister Care seminars
  • "Sister Care: Level 2, Going Deeper" at Camp Hebron, Halifax, Pennsylvania, October 2-4
  • "Sister Care for College Women" at Goshen College, Goshen, Indiana, October 9-10
  • "Compassionate Care for Pastoral Care Leaders and Teams" in the Atlantic Coast Conference, Pennsylvania, October 23
  • "Sister Care International" November 23-25, 2015 - Camaguey, Cuba
  • "Sister Care International" November 26-28, 2015 - Havana, Cuba

2016 Sister Care seminars
  • Newton, Kansas :: January 29-30
  • Bethel College :: February 5-6
  • Hesston College :: March 18-19
  • Kenya :: April
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba :: May 13-14
From The Mennonite 
Protecting our children from real life
by Jessica Schrock Ringenberg

I definitely shelter my children more than my parents did. My dad used to let us watch whatever he was watching. Which meant that at too young of age I had seen too many Stephen King movies and was tormented by terrible dreams. At least until college when I had the sense enough to decide I ...

Gifts to honor and remember

 

Mennonite Women USA invites persons to share financially to support this ministry. Individuals are invited to give in honor of, or in memory of, significant people in their lives. We recognize that each gift honors or remembers a relationship. 

 

Gifts given by:

Claire DeBerg in memory of Lyda Ann Goldner.

 

Give to Mennonite Women USA

Giving to MW USA online is so easy! Give today...transform tomorrow...
A Blessing for You
 
May your spirit sense the closing of summer with a heart at peace.
May you witness the change of seasons gratefully.
May Christ, who is your all-in-all, fill your life and give you hope.  

- Marlene Bogard

718 N. Main Street // Newton, KS 67114 // 316-281-4396