On the cover: A handbell awaits its chance to ring during the 24th Moravian Music Festival. Photo by Mike Riess
High school students from many corners of the North American Moravian world came together for a week of learning, prayer, fellowship, worship—and, of course, fun!—at Convo 2013 in Greensboro, N.C.
Since 1957, Convo has invited Moravian youth who have completed grades 9 through 12 to join together every four years. Relationships forged at each of these gatherings are life-changing and last forever.
Announced last fall, the Prayer Shawl Minsitry of the United Brethren’s Church on Staten Island is hoping to provide one prayer shawl for each delegate to the Northern Province Synod in June 2014. That means 250 shawls! The group has commitments for close to 100, and is looking for more knitters to help!
For many, summer is a time of fun, relaxation and vacation. For me, this summer has been one of fun; relaxation, that’s another matter!
July and August offered me many opportunities to be out and about in the Moravian world. In early July, I attended the Youth Convo in Greensboro, N.C. with more than 60 students, counselors and leaders. Watching these bright, articulate, God-loving high schoolers talk together, work together and have fun together was an inspiring sight. See the story starting on the next page to read what a meaningful experience Convo was for those who were there.
Prayer Day for Christian Education, September 8, 2013
The second Sunday in September is designated as a day of prayer for Christian education. The nurture of Christians of all ages in their faith is the responsibility of each congregation. Pray for your congregation’s Christian education program and for the personal growth in faith of each member.
Brother Otto Dreydoppel died at Lynnwood, Washington, July 13, 2013, at the age of 85. Born November 30, 1927 in Philadelphia, Pa., he was the son of Otto and Sophie (McCubbin) Dreydoppel. Brother Dreydoppel graduated from Moravian College in 1952 and Moravian Theological Seminary in 1955. He received a Masters in Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1970. He was ordained a Deacon in the Moravian ministry May 1, 1955 and consecrated a Presbyter January 20, 1963.
Sister Mary J. Matz died at Bethlehem, Pa., July 31, 2013, at the age of 81 years. Born August 10, 1931 in Havertown, Pa., she was the daughter of Charles and Olive (Wise) Dill. Sister Matz graduated from Grove City College, Grove City, Pennsylvania.
In July, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania came alive with music as the 24th Moravian Music Festival came to town.
For seven days, singers, musicians and music lovers from around the country (and the globe!) braved the summer heat of Bethlehem for a week of workshops, rehearsals, concerts and more. In Central Moravian Church and on the south campus of Moravian College, participants played, sang and appreciated the broad scope of Moravian music.
During the week of July 14, 2013 eleven members of the Hope Moravian Church of Hope, Ind. traveled to Staten Island, New York on a Mission Trip. Lots of Moravian congregations have been doing that very thing this summer, as so many of us are moved to help out the many East Coast residents whose homes were damaged or destroyed, just nine months ago, by Superstorm Sandy.
Nearly one thousand Lutherans, Episcopalians and Moravians gathered in Central Moravian Church in Bethlehem, Pa. for a unique celebration of the full communion relationship among the three denominations—the first-ever of its kind.
The celebration arose out of several years of conversation among the heads of the local territories of the three denominations: the Rt. Rev. Paul V. Marshall, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Bethlehem, the Rev. Samuel R. Zeiser, bishop of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and the Rev. David Bennett, president of the Eastern District, Northern Province, of the Moravian Church. Their discussions of ways to demonstrate full communion led to the question of what the three churches have in common. One clear answer: Music.
This year America commemorated the lives of two important African Americans who through their brave determination helped to end racial segregation and injustice in this country and the world. On February 4 the nation celebrated the one-hundredth birthday of Rosa Parks (1913-2005), who was arrested in Montgomery, Alabama, on December 1, 1955, for refusing to give up her seat on a bus to a white passenger. June 12 marked the fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of civil rights activist Medgar Evers, who, not long after President John F. Kennedy delivered his address to the nation on civil rights in 1963, was shot in the back at his home in Jackson, Mississippi, by a white supremacist.
Every Monday night we here at the GAPS Community at Downey Moravian Church sit down together to share a meal. As you might imagine, most aspects of our life together in intentional community involve some level of intentionality and purpose. But the lens that provides us with much of our focus and direction is this weekly house meal when we gather to reflect on where we have been, to plot and plan for where we are going, and to freely imagine the new paths that we might forge together.
Thanks to the generosity of several donors, five college-age students received scholarships allowing them to attend their first Moravian Music Festival. Each offered insights on their participation:
In June 2011, more than 400 Moravian women from around the globe gathered in Concord, N.C. for the 11th Moravian Women's Conference. Over the course of three days, the conference challenged attendees to step out of their comfort zones and be the hands and feet of Christ in our communities, churches, provinces and world. The theme, "Stepping Out of the Boat," based on Matthew 14:29, provided inspiration for worship, music, prayer, fellowship and education.