Celebrate the Holy Birth
by Berni Kaufman

In this Advent season, I pray we find
Humility, like the Magi, to journey where God leads
Openness, like Mary, to birth possibility
Persistence, like Joseph, to follow God despite social convention
Elation, like the Shepherds, who beheld the heavenly choir.

With hope, let's celebrate the Holy Birth!

Berni Kaufman, Moudridge, KS, has served as Executive 
Assistant  for 16 years with Mennonite Women USA. 
Choosing Sisterhood this holiday season

This is the season of giving. 

MW USA invites you to choose a special woman in your life and give her the gift of time

  • Take your grandmother out for coffee. 
  • Spend a girls' night out with your sister(s). 
  • Invite your mother to the movies.
  • Take a brisk walk with a coworker. 
Give that special person, your sister, the gift of your undivided time.

To Women
by Berni Kaufman

With an entire week of vacation at Thanksgiving, my grand-nieces and I knew they would get bored. I offered them a few hours of work at my office to help me clean out for retirement. 

"What do you do?" my  13-year-old niece, Mya, asked. She has been in the family for just three years, and the nature of my employment hasn't been on the top on her to-learn-about-the-family list! Before I had a chance to reply with something simple (e.g., "secretary"), her 11-year-old sister, Shaelea, who has been part of the family since birth, answered, "She works for women and men to be equal." 

"Well, not quite," I thought. But, it was an answer they could both get behind.

Berni meets Liliana, an IWF recipient, at a Sister Care event in  Paraguay
That I have been executive assistant of Mennonite Women USA (MW USA) for 16 years is hard to wrap my head around. I signed on soon after the merger. A challenge from the beginning has been convincing our constituency that, because we are women of the Mennonite Church in the United States, we already belong to Mennonite Women USA. W hether or not we can quilt or like sewing circles is secondary. 

MW USA grew out of a group of women's journey to find their place in the church. A century ago, stay-at-home moms were looking for outlets to socialize and use their talents for kingdom building. Women's groups emerged in the Mennonite church as well as in other denominations. To this day, women gather to pray and play together with a focus on kingdom building.
Gifts from international sisters

Some of our women still gather to quilt or roll bandages. Others find time after the children are in bed to Skype for prayer and support. In addition to monthly meetings, MW USA women's groups are gathering once or twice a year for weekend retreats that include prayer, support, and service. 

Through my years with MW USA, I have come to appreciate women's strength. Observing the resilience of the staff and board, I marvel at women's courage to speak prophetically against violence and injustice in the world. I have met many devoted and faithful women both in my office and in countries around the world. These women have been my teachers. My sisters.

While my time with Mennonite Women USA is coming to a close, I continue the journey to faithfully live out my call while empowering others to do likewise.

When Shaelea and Mya came to work for me during their Thanksgiving break, we stopped at a local coffee shop. When the barista brought us our drinks, I raised my cup. I wanted to speak words of cheer, but I wasn't sure what they should be. Before I could speak, Shaelea raised her cup and said, "To women!" 

Indeed, I will journey into retirement "to women!"

Brooke Oyana, Philadelphia, PA, is the new administrative assistant of Mennonite Women USA. You will learn more about her next month!

Give to Choosing Sisterhood

Make a difference today! Give financially to MW USA and support our Choosing Sisterhood campaign.  Your gift will help to provide much needed respite for our women leaders who are under-resourced, overworked , and critical to Holy Spirit's movement among us. 

To give to Choosing Sisterhood, click here to give online.Or mail your check to Mennonite Women USA / 718 N Main St / Newton, KS 67114. 
Sister Care in South Korea

Located in a beautiful, mountainous region near Chuncheon in South Korea, the Pilgrim House retreat center was a fitting place for a Sister Care leaders' training seminar. Attendees traveled from many regions to attend the event, which took place November 7-9, 2019. Sun Ju Moon, a graduate of AMBS and the director of the Korea Anabaptist Center, coordinated the training. 

The 35 participants were beautifully diverse. Some women were in their 20s while others were in their 60s, and they represented diverse denominations: Mennonite, other Anabaptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Methodist, Catholic, and Quaker. 

Read the entire article.

Our Eternal Sisterhood

Mennonite Women USA invites you to honor a significant person in your life through a f inancial gift to this ministry. 

If you would like to give financially to MW USA in memory or honor of a specific individual, please contact the MW USA office. 
"I am about to do a new thing;
    now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?"
(Isaiah 43:19)

Keep your eyes and ears open for MW USA in your area. 
  • Watch for our webinars "Women and Wealth" 
  • Celebrate International Women's Day with us the month of March.
  • Get your walking/running shoes out for upcoming 5Ks.
Mennonite Women USA | office@mwusa.org | 316.281.4396  | mwusa.org
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