November 2015

Happy November!
All thankful people, I invite you to pray.  
History is in the making for Mennonite Women USA's ministry of Sister Care. I invite you to pray for the upcoming Sister Care seminars in Cuba: 
November 23-25 in Camaguey and November 26-28 in Havana.

Carolyn Heggen and Rhoda Keener will present two seminars in Cuba over Thanksgiving to about 70 women. Midian Lobain and Raquel Suarez are organizing the local hosting. Funding to assist the Cuban women is provided by Mennonite Central Committee and CIM through the Latin American Women Theologians.

Funding for travel to and within Cuba is provided by individual donor gifts and the Mennonite Church USA Sexual Abuse Care and Prevention Fund. This trip, like all of Sister Care International is funded above and beyond our general operating budget.

Elizabeth Soto-Albrecht was scheduled as a presenter for this trip but had to cancel due to family health concerns in Puerto Rico.

This Thanksgiving please remember all of these women in your prayers for traveling safety, and for all to receive the love of God through empowerment and healing. 

This is an historic moment!  
May God' Spirit be experienced!

Marlene Bogard, Executive Director
El Shaddai, 
     we come before you humble in spirit, 
     knowing you are LORD of all the earth.
Nature exalts you 
     and we worship your majesty and mystery.
Jehovah Jireh, 
     you are indescribable in generosity, 
     may we be as well.  
We pour out our lives in service, 
     we proclaim your great faithfulness, 
          and share cheerfully and liberally 
               to accomplish your will.
El Roi, 
     thank you for seeing our circumstances 
          even before we do.  
This emboldens us to share with one another, 
     encourage one another, 
     and to be still and know 
           that you alone are enough and more than enough to share. Amen.
Kelly Bates Oglesby is joyfully married to Herman Oglesby. They are blessed with children and grandchildren. Kelly is the lead pastor of Parkview Mennonite Church in Kokomo, IN.
Talk-About:  Names for God
  • Pray the above prayer individually, or as a group.
  • Savor it in silence.
  • Reflect on how you address God in prayer. What has meaning?
  • Share how God's generosity encourages your generosity.       
Our mission at Mennonite Women USA includes empowerment of  women and women's groups, so...

...Talk-About it and be empowered!
Our New Ministry: SAGE
Ready to discern a new ministry? 

Is your women's group looking for a project? Yearning to connect with younger women? Become a Sage!

You are invited to help shape this new ministry!

  • What do younger women need?
  • What are best practices in connecting different generations of women?
  • What resources can you suggest: websites, apps, books, journal articles?
  • What do you wish you had known as a younger woman?
  • How can you imagine a Sage retreat, seminar or conference?
  • Do you have a story to share?
Tuesday, December 1

We are overjoyed to join #GivingTuesday this year--a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide.

Occurring this year on December 1, #GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday to kick-off the holiday giving season and inspire people to collaborate in improving their world and to give back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support.

Have you discovered 
  • A Bible study designed for women
  • Perfect for a devotional or study
  • Great for personal reflection or group conversation
  • 13 sessions written from an Anabaptist perspective on spirituality
  • Very affordable
  • Makes a wonderful gift
  • Appreciated by women of all ages
Spark: Igniting Your God-Given Creativity
by April Yamasaki is sponsored by Mennonite Women USA and Mennonite Women Canada.

Timbrel on SALE
2 for $25!

Give the gift of inspiring, ethical content by and for Anabaptist women with our winter SALE!

Now through April 1, 2016 buy two NEW subscriptions to Timbrel for just $25:
  • one for you
  • one for a friend!
IWF Spotlight 
Fabiola Arango Libero
Currently, Fabiola continues to be involved in the work and activities of the community and her hope is to continue to educate herself so that she can serve better. 
 Kitchen Table
by Connie Detwiler

Reflections from the Sister Care: Level 2 Retreat

What happens when 40 women from six different conferences gather for a weekend at Camp Hebron, to wonder, "What has God placed me on this earth to be about?" A Sister Care, Level 2 "Going Deeper" retreat happens!  

MW USA Staff: Berni Kaufman, Marlene Bogard, Claire DeBerg, Rhoda Keener
"We Remain Committed to You, Mennonite Women" MW USA Responds to CLC Question 
by Marlene Bogard

Mennonite Women USA is a constituency group of Mennonite Church USA. Basically, this means we are strongly affiliated and collaborate with the denomination, but we do not receive any funding. MW USA has its own budget, mission statement, staff and programming. 

The MW USA Board Chair and Executive Director are invited to the twice-yearly gatherings of the Constituency Leader's Council (CLC) for discernment of matters pertaining to the entire denomination. Prior to the fall gathering of CLC on October 19-21, 2015, all participants were asked to respond to this question:

To what extent has the delegate assembly (decisions) at Kansas City affected your group/conference's relationship with Mennonite Church USA?

And here is our response...(read here).
For Christmas Gifts, Visit our Online Shop! 
Mennonite Women USA is happy to offer the online shop, created and  
brown_paper_gift.jpgdeveloped in response to the needs 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 our resources and materials available at the touch of a button.

Visit us for Christmas gift-giving and purchase 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
Many prominent international female pastors and seminary professors, especially in Latin America, are strongly connected with Mennonite Women USA. These connections are fun to cultivate and celebrate. I saw this firsthand at Mennonite World Conference. Read my full reflection on this from the November, 2015 issue of The Mennonite

The Sister Care seminar is now available for purchase on DVD with 12 sessions for small groups, retreats, or Sun
day school classes. 

An easy to use 40-page facilitator's guide written by Rhoda Keener and Carolyn Heggen accompanies the DVD.

Each DVD session is 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.

2015 Sister Care seminars 
  • "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 6
  • Hesston College :: March 19
  • Kenya :: April
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba :: May 13-14
From The Mennonite 
Seven questions with... Alicia Horst

Alicia Horst is a former missionary kid, a seminary graduate and a worker at the NewBridges Immigrant Resource Center in Harrisonburg, Va. In this interview, she explores the way her faith impacts her work and her development within the Mennonite church. 
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 each gift honors or remembers a relationship. 


Gifts given by:

Lelia Esch Schlabach in memory of Lugene Zehr.

Rhoda Charles in memory of Miriam Charles and Cleta Reinford.


Give to Mennonite Women USA

Giving to MW USA online is so easy! Give today...transform tomorrow...
A Blessing for You
May your journey into advent be filled with wonder.
May the advent pregnancy give birth to something beyond belief.
May you hearts be full with new life and new hope.    

- Marlene Bogard

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