Press Play . . .
Above, you see the logo for the 2020 Eastern District Synod, and in the middle of that logo you see a triangle. That triangle is a familiar symbol to most of us as we find it on our cell phones, tablets and laptops. And when we press that triangle on those devices, we can immediately be taken to a favorite piece of music, a YouTube video, watch vacation memories, etc… But for now, “press play” is taking you to an over-view of our upcoming synod.
The 2020 Eastern District Synod will be held in Bethlehem, June 24-27 at Moravian College. The theme of our synod is “Into the World . . . this is the challenge of our Mission.” A synod is the highest governing body in our church and the most important decision-making gathering held, for in that setting the voice of the laity, in partnership with clergy, help set the direction for the future of our Church. Moravian synods include District, Provincial and Unity.
Delegates to this year’s District synod will be busy reviewing, crafting and deliberating legislation, hearing reports, experiencing creative worship, and engaging in mission activities. Unlike the 2016 District Synod, delegates will not be traveling off campus to participate in mission activities but will have a small block of time to engage in meaningful mission opportunities on the campus of Moravian College. Those mission experiences will enable delegates to learn how they might take those experiences home and implement them in their own congregations and areas and/or explore new ways to live out “the challenge of our mission.”
A special experience for delegates to this synod will include a presentation by David LaMotte. David obtained his Masters in International Relations, Peace and Conflict Resolution from the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. He is president of a non-profit he founded in 2004 to help support critical thought and literacy through schools and libraries in Guatemala. An award-winning songwriter, he has produced twelve full-length CDs and is author of the book Worldchanging 101. You may read more about him at www.davidlamotte.com
Synod promises to be a special time filled with work, fellowship, challenge and responsibility. Each delegate represents their own congregation, yet at synod their decisions are based, first and foremost, on the leading of the Holy Spirit. Local congregations and delegates have a shared responsibility. A delegate’s responsibility is to prepare for synod, reading all material prior to attending yet remaining open to the leading of the Spirit while at synod. The congregation’s responsibility is to pray daily for the actions and decisions of all who will gather in that place. So regardless of whether you are a delegate or one who remains at home — synod is a partnership.
Synod’s theme and logo remind us of Christ’s call to be his presence in his world — and the “press play” triangle is a symbol of our decision to act on that call. What will that action be? That will unfold as we gather at the 2020 Eastern District Synod and together seek to respond to Christ’s leading. Let’s press play…
A note from the Editor: Thank you to Sister Marie Couts, Chair of the 2020 Eastern District Synod Planning Committee, for contributing this article.
…that if your congregation is looking for a way to involve youth and adults in a mission trip that helps families in need, builds community in your congregation, and is easy to plan, the Board of World Mission has the solution? Please consider sending a team from your congregation to Laurel Ridge this coming summer for Mission Camp. Each summer Mission Camp receives referrals from local agencies and matches youth groups and their adult leaders with work sites based on their skill level and project needs. Groups should provide capable adult leaders (1 per every 5 youth) and transportation to and from work sites. The camp staff does all the rest: food, lodging, purchasing all of the necessary supplies for each work site, and providing an evening program and campfire. All Mission Camps are hosted at Higgins Lodge.
All-inclusive costs are $475 per youth, $237.50 for each required adult, and $475/ each additional adult.
Dates for this summer’s Mission Camps are as follows:
Mission Camp 1 – June 14 – 20, 2020
Mission Camp 2 – June 21 – 27, 2020
Mission Camp 3 – June 28 – July 4, 2020
Mission Camp 4 – August 2 – 8, 2020
For more information go to the Laurel Ridge web-site at:https://laurelridge.org/mission-camps.html
Five Wishes Helps Families and Caregivers
By Vince Holbrook
Your Moravian Ministries Foundation in America is proud to partner with Five Wishes to provide you with the tools to develop a Living Will/Advance Directive. Five Wishes meets the legal requirements for an advance directive in the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. In these states, you can use Five Wishes to express how you want to be treated if you are seriously ill and unable to speak for yourself, using a document that is easy to understand. All you need to do is check a box, circle a direction, or write a few sentences. Once it is signed and witnessed (notorized), your Five Wishes is a legal document.
If you live in Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, or Wisconsin, inquire about the additional, supplemental or alternative requirements for a legally-recognized advance directive.
Click this link to get your free electronic copy:
Paper copies are also available upon request from the Moravian Ministries Foundation in America, 119 Brookstown Ave., Suite 305, Winston-Salem, NC 27101. 336.725.2589
Two Spring courses, which start in early March will probably fill up fast. On Thursdays, the Rev. Joanne Marchetto will again teach our New Testament course. Jo puts special emphasis on biblical interpretation so that this course increases personal knowledge and prepares participants for teaching and preaching. Join us for this fascinating walk through the New Testament.
On Mondays we are offering our most popular course, Contextual Outreach. Dr. Jill Peters has taken over sixty congregations through this process of examining demographic data, exploring our context, and engaging local leaders for the purpose of developing a ministry plan focused on serving our neighbors. This course is open to individuals or discounted for church teams.
Calendar of Events
March 8, 2020, Beethoven and Friends: History You Can Hear! Concert by the Lititz Moravian Collegium Musicum, 7:00 pm in Lititz Fellowship Hall, 8 Church Square, Lititz, PA. Tickets are $15/$5 at the door. More info at https://gemmell-posts.com
March 27-29, 2020, Hope Conference and Retreat Center – Portals to Prayer Retreat. Take some time during the season of Lent to learn how icons, mandalas, adult coloring, prayer beads, and other techniques can be used to deepen your prayer life. Led by Rev. Dr. Tracy Pryor (Great Kills Moravian Church) and Rev. Michael Pool of Earth and Cup.
April 17 – 19, 2020 – Hope Conference Center Camp Work Weekend. Help open up lower camp and prepare it for the new camping season.
April 26, 2020 – Unitas Chorale in Concert, Sunday 4:00 pm, Advent Moravian Church, 3730 Jacksonville Road, Bethlehem, PA
May 8 and 9, 2020 – Hope Conference Center, NEMDR: Intro to Mission. Offered by the North East Moravian Disaster Response.
May 15-17, 2020 – Eastern District Confirmation Retreat, Hope Conference Center.
May 22-24, 2020 – Hope Conference Center Memorial Day Family Camp. Join others from around the Eastern District for a weekend of relaxation. Swim, boat, fish or visit nearby attractions. Bring your own tent or trailer or reserve a cabin.
May 25, 2019 10 am – 6 pm – Hope Conference Center. This event is a celebration for EVERYONE in the Eastern District. Come explore the camp in this free open house. Bring your own picnic lunch; grill and pavilion are available.
June 24-27, 2020 – The 2020 Synod of the Eastern District of the Moravian Church, Northern Province. To be held on the North Campus of Moravian College in Bethlehem, PA. The theme of this synod is, “Into the World…This is the Challenge of Our Mission”
Special offers on 2020 Daily Texts and Readings for Holy Week!
The IBOC is offering a 20% discount on the 2020 Moravian Daily Texts! All editions are still in stock and available for immediate shipment or pickup at the Church Center in Bethlehem. Daily Texts make great gifts for confirmands, new members and friends of your ministry.
While Lent has just begun, it’s never too soon to be thinking about Holy Week! To help you get ready, the IBOC is offering special pricing on Readings for Holy Week Music and Large Print Editions. Through March 27, 2020, Large Print Edition, reg. $11.95 is now $7.50; Music Edition reg. $13.95, now $10.50.
And remember, the IBOC now offers Readings for Holy Week in an audio edition! This 5-CD set brings Readings for Holy Week alive, with complete texts and hymns, ideal for use by small groups and congregations. Also makes a great gift for those who may not be able to attend local services because of distance, infirmity, conflicts in schedule, etc.
To order, visit store.moravian.org; call Jill Bruckart, 800.732.0591, ext. 38; or stop by the IBOC offices in Bethlehem.