And whatever you do in word or deed,  do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:17 (NKJV)
November 21, 2019
In Our Prayers
This week we remember the family of Samuel Henry Flora, Jr. , 95, of Bridgewater, who passed away Mon., Nov. 18. Funeral services will be at 1 p.m. on Sat. at the Bridgewater Church. Click here for more information.

Notes of condolence may be sent in care of:
Lillie Ann Flora
210 Virginia Avenue
Bridgewater, VA 22812
District News
In Our Pastoral Family
Interims
-J. D. Glick has been called as half-time interim pastor at Staunton.
-Mike Hostetter will begin as interim pastor at Sunrise in Dec.
Pastoral Vacancies
Friends Run/Smith Creek - full-time, David Morris, interim pastor, congregational profile available
Garbers - part-time, congregational profile forthcoming
Leake's Chapel - congregational profile forthcoming 
Mill Creek - full-time associate pastor, congregational profile available
Pine Grove - part-time, congregational profile forthcoming

Pleasant Hill - part-time, congregational profile forthcoming
Waynesboro - full-time, Dot Mellott, interim pastor, updated congregational profile available
Third Thursday Specials
Church Growth:
The Timberville congregation welcom ed seven individuals into their church family. Fern Blubaugh (Angie Magenhofer’s mother) was received by affirmation of faith. Six other individuals were baptized: Jody and Wendy Hart, along with children Faithlyn and Bailey. In addition, Brooklyn Magenhofer and Cardie Magenhofer were baptized. Brooklyn and Cardie are the daughters of Karl and Angie Magenhofer.

Seven new members also joined Calvary congregation on Nov. 10 through transfer of letter and by affirmation of faith.

Submit church growth stories to Brenda Diehl for inclusion in the Third Thursday edition of the Shenandoah Update each month.

Calendars:
Brethren Woods Releases 2020 Schedule
Brethren Woods released the Programs and Events Calendar for 2020 this week. Click here to see what will be happening at camp next year. The calendar includes winter camp, workdays, women’s and men’s retreats, spring festival, the golf tournament, renewing our faith outdoors dinner, and the Christmas party. New adventure days and family nights have been added. Summer camp season will feature six weeks of day, half-week, and week-long programs for K-12 th  grade campers. This Is Our Prayer! has been selected as the curriculum theme.
Local CROP Walk a Success
Bridgewater College Chaplain Robbie Miller reported the CROP meal earlier this month sold 170 tickets and raised $1,940. The Bridgewater/Dayton Area CROP Hunger Walk had 37 walkers and has raised $2,387.62 (with more coming in) bringing the total thus far to $4,327.62

This year marks the golden anniversary for CROP Hunger Walks . The first walk was held in 1969. These community-wide events are organized by local congregations and proceeds are utilized to end hunger through the programs of Church World Service.
Pleasant Valley Needs Figurines for Nativity Scene
Daniel House is looking for wooden story figurines for a nativity activity. These particular figurines were popular in the Church of the Brethren during the 1970s and 1980s. They were part of Jubilee's God's Good News and were produced by El Arbol De Dios in El Salvador. Churches that are willing to lend these sets to Pleasant Valley during Advent should contact Daniel House at 234-9921.
Choir Robes Available
Stone Church has choir robes to donate to any congregation who is interested in receiving them. Contact the church at 261-6946 for more information.
District Sponsored Events
Pastors' Gathering
We know this is a challenging time for pastors and the congregations they serve. Various individuals and small groups of pastors have requested we gather as pastors to share honestly where we find ourselves in the midst of what is occurring in the Church of the Brethren. This gathering would not be to judge, to persuade or hold forth on a position, but rather to support each other in the choices and challenges with which we are each dealing. Plans call for pastors to gather on Sun.,  Nov. 24 , from 3 to 5 p.m., at Mtn. View McGaheysville ( 8601 McGaheysville Road , McGaheysville). We trust this will be a time of encouragement and support for all who attend.
John Jantzi
District Executive Minister
Wayne Pence, Chair
District Leadership Team
December Pastors' Gathering Date Set
The Dec. Pastors' Gathering will be at Lantz Chapel, Bridgewater Retirement Community ( 302 N. Second Street , Bridgewater) on Dec. 10 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The time will be spent in fellowship and focused questions.
Meetings at the District Office
Please take note of the following meetings and events scheduled for the District Office:  
-Today: 12:30 p.m., District Office staff meeting, phones unanswered
-Nov. 28-29: District Office closed for Thanksgiving holiday
-Dec. 5: 11 a.m., District Office staff meeting, phones unanswered
Mark Your Calendar
THANKSGIVING SERVICES:
Nov. 24: Community Thanksgiving Service at Antioch (23502 Senedo Rd., Woodstock), 6 p.m. An offering will be received to benefit local ministries Refreshments will be served afterward.

Nov. 27: Thanksgiving Eve services at Mt. Olivet ( 17723 N. Mountain Road, Broadway), 7 p.m.

LOOKING AHEAD:
Dec. 1: Christmas Carol Hymn Sing at Timberville . Guests will be The Good Time Gospel Quartet . Click here for flyer .

Dec. 8: Love Light service at Lantz Chapel , Bridgewater Retirement Community ( 302 North Second Street , Bridgewater), 7 p.m. This service for celebrating, honoring and remembering is open to the community and features the BRC Village Choir and Bridgewater Church of the Brethren Children's Choirs. Click here for flyer.

Dec. 14: A Heritage Christmas with the Brethren & Mennonite Heritage Center ( 1921 Heritage Center Way, Harrisonburg), 2 to 6 p.m. Crafts, live music, singing, and refreshments. Cost : $10 adults, $5 students, children 5 and under are free.

Dec. 21-23: Live Nativity with Mill Creek , 7 to 9 p.m., nightly, at Michael’s Barn ( 8218 Port Republic Road , Port Republic). Contact the church office with questions.
District Youth Events
Place the following two dates on your calendar for 2020:

Jan. 25: (Please note date correction) District Sr. High Winter Retreat will be held at Mill Creek ( 7600 Port Republic Road , Port Republic) . The Interdistrict Youth Cabinet (IYC) will be leading sessions and youth will have the opportunity to serve the community. It will be a great time to have fun and grow in faith. Times and more information will be forthcoming.

Feb. 28-Mar. 1: Youth Roundtable at Bridgewater College. The theme will be 2020 Vision. More information will be forthcoming.
Brethren Disaster News
Disaster Auction Book Ads Have been Mailed
Copies of ads that appeared in the 2019 Auction Booklet were mailed last week to over 90 churches, according to Shenandoah District Disaster Auction Committee Chairperson Catherine Lantz. The remaining ads were delivered Mon.

Churches and businesses may renew their ads for the 2020 booklet by Jan. 5, and Auction Representatives are asked to recommend new advertisers who may be interested in purchasing ad space. Contact Catherine Lantz at 896-7556 for more information.
Brethren Woods
Renewing Our Faith Outdoors Dinner is Dec. 8
Tickets are selling out and space is filling up for this year's Renewing Our Faith Outdoors Dinner scheduled for Sun., Dec. 8. Hors d'oeuvres will begin at 5 p.m., with a delicious dinner served at 5:30 p.m. Musical artist and worship leader Jessica Crawford will provide the inspirational evening entertainment. Tickets are $75.00 for individuals or $600.00 for a table of 8. There is still time to purchase tickets and support the ministry of Brethren Woods; contact the camp office TODAY at 269-2741 or email camp@brethrenwoods.org . You may also register online at  http://brethrenwoods.org/annual/dinner/ . If you cannot make it but still want to support the camp, click here to donate online and contribute to the dinner's fundraising total.
 
Camp Now Hiring for 2020 Paid Positions
Assistant Director Linetta Ballew announced yesterday that  applications are now online for 2020 Summer Staff (Paid) Positions. "Strong, solid Christians are needed to serve in June and July during the 6-week summer camp program," she emphasized recently in a release. Open positions include several counselors, lifeguards, an arts and crafts director, a nature director, a challenge course facilitator, kitchen assistants, a maintenance assistant, various support staff, and summer supervisors (summer program director and/or head counselor). 
 
Be sure to check out the Summer Staff webpage to review job descriptions and get more information about serving at camp. Click the Apply Here button to apply. If you need any assistance, utilize the online chat during the application process, email the camp or call the office at 269-2741.
 
Winter Camp 2020
Winter Camp is back and better than ever in 2020. Campers in third through eighth grade are invited to head out to camp for this two-night weekend retreat on Feb. 7-9, 2020. Winterized facilities and wood-burning stoves will keep everyone toasty while enjoying the camp’s traditional activities like crafts, singing, nature, Bible study, group games, morning watch, vespers, and delicious family-style meals. There will also be all kinds of extra special winter fun including a mid-winter celebration (complete with a lost-and-found sock snowball fight!), snow-tubing at a nearby resort, hot chocolate, and a movie night with popcorn and snacks! 

It all begins at 6 p.m. on Fri., Feb. 7 and ends at 2 p.m. on Sun., Feb. 9. Registration includes lodging, meals and snacks, snow-tubing, a group photo and an apparel item, staff leadership, and all retreat supplies. It promises to be an amazing weekend of fun, faith, and friends this winter.  Click here  for more information, online registration access and a paper flyer/printable registration form.
Preparing for the Holidays
Links for Advent Lectionary Readings
The season of Advent begins this year on Dec. 1. Click on the link for each week of Advent below and read all of the lectionary scriptures for that week.

Revised Common Lectionary - Year A
Dec. 1: Advent 1 - Isaiah 2:1-5, Psalm 122 (8), Romans 13:11-14, Matthew 24:36-44;

Dec. 8: Advent 2 - Isaiah 11:1-10, Psalm 72:1-7, 18-19, Romans 15:4-13 (4), Matthew 3:1-12;

Dec. 15: Advent 3 - Isaiah 35:1-10 (10), Psalm 146:5-10, or Luke 1:47-55, James 5:7-10, Matthew 11:2-11;

Dec. 22: Advent 4 - Isaiah 7:10-16, Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19 (19), Romans 1:1-7, Matthew 1:18-25;

Dec. 24/25:Christmas Eve/Christmas Day:
Choice 1 - Isaiah 9:2-7, Psalm 96, Titus 2:11-14, Luke 2:1-14, (15-20) (10), or Choice 2 - Isaiah 62:6-12, Psalm 97, Titus 3:4-7, Luke 2:(1-7), 8-20 or
Choice 3 - Isaiah 52:7-10, Psalm 98, Hebrews 1:1-4, (5-12), John 1:1-14.
Upcoming Classes and
C.E.U. Opportunities
Pastors in the Shenandoah District are required to accumulate 5 continuing education units (CEUs) within five years. The District offers several opportunities to acquire these units. Two classes being offered through the Christian Growth Institute (CGI) this winter each provide 1.6 CEUs. Details follow:
1) Church History (Beginnings to Present) Jan. 11, Feb. 8 and Feb. 29, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Instructor David Miller invites students to "...study the lives and circumstances of persons and communities who endeavored by their own effort and the grace of God to follow Christ and share in the life of his church. History is more than dates, timelines and wars (though there is some of that). Ultimately, this is a love story, a revolution, a conquest, a tragedy, a comedy, and a mystery all brought together. Textbook reading isn’t the most exciting, but Gonzalez is a good writer and he offers a fine introduction to the subject. If you give the class a fair shot, you’ll get more than you bargained for. This is the story of people who – through the power of God – turned the world upside down (Acts 17:6)." 1.6 CEUs.

2) Belief and Practices of the Church of the Brethren Jan. 18, Feb. 1 and 15, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with Jim Miller, instructor. By the end of this unit, the student will be able to recount the origin and development of the Brethren from 1708 to the present day, including important historical figures. This includes familiarity with the history and activity of the Brethren in his or her particular community or region. The student will also be able to articulate the beliefs, basic values and special emphases that are characteristic of Brethren faith and life, and become familiar with the way these values and beliefs have expressed themselves in organizational and ecumenical expressions. Finally, the student will be able to describe and conduct the various ordinances of the Church of the Brethren.1.6 CEUs.

Contact Sarah Long for more information about registering for either of these classes at 234-8555.

REGISTER THIS WEEK for the annual Clergy Tax Seminar, which is scheduled for Jan. 25, 2020. This class is for seminary and academy students, pastors and other church leaders. Participants will learn how to file clergy taxes correctly and legally, how to comply with regulations while maximizing tax deductions and may earn 0.3 continuing education units. Registration is $40 per person and the registration deadline is Jan. 15, 2020. For registration and other information, click here .

Eastern Mennonite Seminary’s annual School for Leadership Training will be held Jan. 13-15, 2020. “Shalom in the Streets: Recapturing God’s Vision in Ordinary Places.” Register before Nov. 26 to take advantage of the early bird special of $190. For more information and requirements, visit https://emu.edu/seminary/slt/.
 
Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership is hosting several upcoming classes. Click here and scroll down to view future educational offerings.
Continuing the work of Jesus. Peacefully. Simply. Together.
Questions? Comments?
Contact Brenda Diehl
Director of Communications
Images through pixabay.com , unless otherwise noted.
Banner picture by B. S. Diehl, District Conference, 2019