Author Archives: Mike Riess

Honoring 150 Years of Freedom (Moravian)

On Sunday, December 22, 1866, a group of resolute German settlers in rural Freedom, Wis. gathered to organize a new church. Thirty-four men and women representing 14 charter families gathered in a crowded cabin to ignite the spark that would become Freedom Moravian Church. With the influx of Mecklenburg Germans to Wisconsin in the mid […]

Read More…

Salem 250: A radical design for Salem foiled by Piedmont’s rolling hills

Imagine you are a visionary German nobleman, head and benefactor of a tiny mission-minded church proclaiming the Gospel of Christ. Now imagine you have practically an entire continent — or say 100,000 acres — where you can lay out a City of God, a New Jeru-Salem in this Eden on earth. What do you plan? […]

Read More…

Moravian Theological Seminary celebrates 2016 Commencement

On May 15, Moravian Theological Seminary celebrated the conclusion of its 209th academic year with the largest graduating class in Seminary history. Festivities began on May 14 with a community Lovefeast open to all members of the Seminary community. Graduating students developed this ecumenical and interfaith event with Rev. Dr. Riddick Weber, Seminary Chaplain, and […]

Read More…

Presbyterians, Moravians commemorate full communion relationship

On the afternoon of Sunday, June 5, at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Madison, Wis., a service celebrated the covenant partnership between the Northern and Southern Provinces of the Moravian Church and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)— a relationship that was approved by synods of both provinces in 2010. Gradye Parsons, Stated Clerk and head of the […]

Read More…

Western District Synod 2016: Making plans to meet “Aspirations for the Future”

When the 110 delegates from Western District congregations and agencies arrived at Mt. Morris for their 2016 Synod, many were pondering the District’s “Aspirations for the Future.” Three days later, many were on their way home having made commitments to see those aspirations come to light. The 2016 Synod, held for the first time at […]

Read More…

July Official Provincial Elders News

Prayer Day for World Peace and Nuclear Disarmament August 7, 2016 In accordance with legislation enacted at the 1982 Synod of the Northern Province and affirmed by the 1990 Synod, the first Sunday in August has been designated as a day of prayer for world peace and nuclear disarmament.   Prayer Day for Public Education […]

Read More…

Weekly Moravian Message, June 26, 2016

Sixth Sunday after Pentecost June 26, 2016 Letting Go Disciple: Iíll follow you anywhere . . . Jesus: Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head. Disciple: Lord, let me first go bury my father . . . Jesus: Let the dead […]

Read More…

Images of the 2016 Eastern District Synod

Read More…

Eastern District elects new leadership at 2016 Synod

At the 2016 Synod of the Moravian Church Eastern District, held June 22-25 in Bethlehem, Pa., delegates elected members of the Eastern District Executive Board (EDEB). The EDEB provides administrative leadership and coordination for the Eastern District, Northern Province. The Rev. David Bennett was elected to a third term as the president of the EDEB. […]

Read More…

Weekly Moravian Message, June 19, 2016

Fifth Sunday after Pentecost June 19, 2016 Those Poor Pigs When discussing the story of Jesus driving demons out of the man and into the herd of pigs, people often feel bad for the pigs. What had those innocent creatures done to deserve their treatment? Some scholars believe Jesus chose this particular course of action […]

Read More…

Weekly Moravian Message June 12, 2016

Fourth Sunday after Pentecost June 12, 2016 A Time for Extravagance It is a simple story, appearing in all four Gospels with some variations. However, certain aspects are consistent: Jesus was dining as the guest of honor. The door was open so people could mill around. The guests were reclining, as was the fashion for […]

Read More…

Common Ground: Engaging neighbours in their faith

As the culture in North America changes, so too does the way our neighbours engage in their faith. The Common Ground Community Café, co-founded by the Revs. Ian and Eileen Edwards, with support from the Moravian Church Northern Province, was developed as a creative response to a cultural desire for spiritual conversation and community in […]

Read More…

Van-Es celebrates 75 years of Canadian camping

In 1941, Moravians gathered on a wilderness site east of Edmonton for their very first time. That site would soon be named Van-Es, taking its letters from the Unitas Fratrum’s Latin motto “Vicit Agnus Noster Eum Sequamur” – a name that reminds all who gather together on the land that Our Lamb Has Conquered! Fast […]

Read More…

Unionville Moravian draws community in to celebrate quiltmakers’ work

Members of Unionville Moravian Church in Unionville, Mich. discovered that a quilt show was a wonderful way to draw in a community and honor the women who made them. Organizers chose the theme “A Celebration of Quilts and Their Makers” to commemorate the wonderful group of quilters from Unionville Moravian who had a long tradition […]

Read More…

Mid-states Camping offers faith and fun

The camping ministry in the Mid-states—for Moravian congregations in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana and Illinois—is unique from all the other Moravian camps in that each one is held at a different location. The goal of MSYMC is to ensure that the youth and young adults of the Mid-States Moravian churches (which include Ohio, lower Michigan, Indiana, […]

Read More…

There is only one Laurel Ridge Experience

Laurel Ridge, the Moravian camp for the Southern Province, is a mountain place set apart for forming disciples of Jesus Christ who live and learn in community to serve in the world. And for many who have ever been on the mountain, there is only one Laurel Ridge Experience! Laurel Ridge offers campers a chance […]

Read More…

“We Make Memories” at Hope Center

Hope Conference & Renewal Center, an outdoor ministry of the Eastern District, is preparing for a summer season filled with meeting new friends, enjoying campfires, swimming, boating, worshipping by the lake or on the hill and celebrating the 70th anniversary of “Camp Hope.” Overlooking Little Silver Lake in Hope, New Jersey, Hope Conference Center offers […]

Read More…

“Camp Hope” celebrates its 70th anniversary (and a brief history of Moravian camping)

  Hope Conference & Renewal Center, formerly known as “Camp Hope,” is celebrating the 70th anniversary of its 1946 purchase this year. The 1940s, when the camp property was purchased, was a significant period of ministry for the Moravian Church, as youth and young adults discovered camps, conferences and outdoor ministry. Although programs for youth […]

Read More…

Studying Moravian Doctrine: Ground of the Unity Part III

Editor’s Note: Following the outline established by the 2005 Jesus Still Lead On study guide, we are sharing different aspects of The Ground of the Unity, one of the worldwide Moravian Church’s key doctrinal statement, in each 2016 issue of The Moravian. This month, we’ll discuss A Church of Sinners and Personal Belief. Both the […]

Read More…

Eastern District Synod to focus on mission in our neighborhoods [UPDATED]

Every four years, delegates from Eastern District Moravian congregations meet in Bethlehem for several days of meetings, discussion, legislation and fellowship. For its 2016 Synod, to be held June 22-25 at Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pa., the Eastern District is adding a new component: mission.

Read More…

Western, Canadian Districts elect new leadership at 2016 Synods

At this spring’s 2016 Synods of the Moravian Church Northern Province Western District and Canadian District, delegates elected leaders to guide their Districts through the next four years.

At this spring’s 2016 Synods of the Moravian Church Northern Province Western District and Canadian District, delegates elected leaders to guide their Districts through the next four years.

Read More…

CrossWalk continues solemn yet joyful tradition

Forty-two years ago, several weeks before Holy Week, Trinity’s young associate Pastor, Phil Bauguess, sat down on the floor with the youth fellowship. “Hey gang! I have an idea!” (This was not always a good thing.) He continued. “We’re gonna build a 200 lb. cross and carry it through downtown Winston-Salem to Old Salem.” Honestly, […]

Read More…

Ponderings: Another one of those “Daily Texts moments”

It may just be the time of year—the IBOC is busy working on the 2017 Moravian Daily Texts—but I recently had another one of those powerful “Daily Texts” moments that knocked me for a loop. As I’ve written before, I see the Daily Texts every morning on my phone – it’s how I start my […]

Read More…

Moravian Magazine, June 2016

In this issue: Moravian Camping Ministries, a Solemn CrossWalk, Common Ground in Edmonton, Deed Day and more!

Read More…

Deed Day offers rare look at the beginnings of Bethlehem

On a rainy Saturday in April, more than 800 people visited the Northern Province Moravian Archives in Bethlehem to get a glimpse at how the Moravian community in Pennsylvania came into being. For “Deed Day”—on April 2, 2016—archivists put the original deed for the land purchased for the Moravian settlement on display for one day […]

Read More…

District Developments, June 2016

The Newsletter of The Eastern District Moravian Church David E. Bennett, President The Divine Whispers of Leftovers! It all started with too much food! The Lebanon congregation had planned a special “Take a Friend to Church Sunday,” which included a nice luncheon following the service. Certainly being the amazing hosts they are, the congregation worked […]

Read More…

Weekly Moravian Message, May 29, 2016

Second Sunday after Pentecost May 29, 2016 The Power of the Word For years we have being reading God’s Word. We have learned about God’s promises and witnessed them fulfilled in the lives and com-munities of the past and present. Yet are we in all circumstances willing to trust in the “Word” that goes forth […]

Read More…

Weekly Moravian Message, May 22, 2016

Trinity Sunday May 22, 2016 The Trinity–Why It Matters Throughout the year we have opportunities to ponder the wonders of creation and be in awe of the Father who created all that exists. At Christmas and Easter we rejoice in the coming of the Son of God and in all that Christ has done for […]

Read More…

United Methodist Church approves full communion with North American Moravian provinces

The 2016 General Conference of the United Methodist Church (UMC) approved a relationship of full communion with the Northern and Southern Provinces of the Moravian Church in North America. The full communion agreement, which still requires approval of the Moravian Provinces at their respective 2018 Synods, recognizes each other’s ministries and encourages witness and mission […]

Read More…

District Developments, May 2016

“We agreed to sponsor ‘a’ family Who arrived as ‘the’ family And is now ‘our’ family.” A message from our president, the Rev. David Bennett These words describe the “journey of the heart” for members of Central Moravian Church who have joined with four other local faith communities in resettling a Syrian refugee family. Inspired […]

Read More…