3rd Way Collective Reflects and Looks Forward

As we prepare for a new school year and the return of students, I’m appreciating how much has unfolded during our two years in campus ministry at Penn State. I (Campus Pastor Ben) felt much more prepared as this past fall began, this being my second chance to experience many of the seasons and rhythms at Penn State. 3rd Way Collective had a Ben's 1 picmuch larger student network, and a much bigger group of supporters and allies in the local community. Our student officers were more active and engaged, and our presence on campus was enhanced by the vision and dreams of students who connected in some way. Students have begun to recognize 3rd Way Collective as a safe space of support and connection. It has been touching to have students reach out to me for pastoral care, prayer, or just simply for conversation.

This year 3rd Way Collective created or partnered to create more than 145 events on campus and in the community focused on peace, justice, and faith. These involved more than 1600 participants including students, staff, and community members. These numbers almost doubled our first year programmatic impact – last year we were involved in 68 events with just over 800 participants. Despite these numbers, many of our most meaningful connecting points remain as small gatherings of 5 students or less. As our new team of officers and advisory team get ready for the fall, we are considering again the balance between programmatic and relational ministry, and whether one requires the other.

Our most meaningful experiences are when we have partnered with others – whether that be other campus ministry organizations for our service and learning trips, or community advocacy groups, our work is enhanced and multiplied when we collaborate rather than trying to always create something brand new.

Ben's 3 picWe are drawing in students who are interested in faith-based peace and justice from a wide swath of religious traditions. 

Our new 3rd Way Collective house will provide a physical center for our community building endeavors, and will offer a space to create new visions for connections with students. Five students have committed to living at this house seem excited for the new semester to begin!

I continue to feel blessed and supported by my incredible Advisory Committee from University Mennonite Church. It isn’t easy creating something from scratch – especially when we do not have a blueprint or an Anabaptist example to build from.Ben's pic's 2

We are grateful for your prayers and support, and we are looking at ways to shift our financial support network to a broader base than just UMC. If you or your congregation would like to support this ministry as a mission/giving project, please be in touch with Jim Rosenberger, University Mennonite Church’s treasurer.

A year-in-review video can be found here – https://youtu.be/0KNerGtFN2E

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Closing celebration service for New Life Mennonite Church

pic of church08182016

There will be a closing Celebration Service for New Life Mennonite church, Sunday August 28 at 2 p.m. Everyone is welcome. They will be        Ron Spory pic08172016
Celebrating 22 years of ministry in the Friedens and Somerset areas.

The congregation was started
in 1994 by four couples and meet at the Allegheny Mennonite Conference office. In
December 1995 they held their first service at
their new location in Friedens (if using GPS – 604
Listie Road, Friedens PA). Pastor Ron Spory has
overseen the congregation for the past 16 years.

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Celebration of Congregations and Conference

Dear Allegheny Conference Friends,

We are excited to once again welcome all AMC friends to Celebration at Laurelville Mennonite Church Center, August 5-6-7, 2016.

Our theme, Centered in Christ, will encourage us to be drawn to our focal point, Jesus Christ. Our prayer is that we will recognize again that we are persistently being welcomed into the very nucleus of the living Word.

Henri Nouwen says it well:
“The farther the outward journey takes you the deeper the inward journey must be.”
 
“When we are securely rooted in personal intimacy with the Source of Life, it will be possible to remain flexible without being relativistic, convinced without being rigid, willing to confront without being offensive, gentle and forgiving without being soft, and true witnesses without being manipulative.”
 
After a one year AMC Celebration hiatus when many of us traveled to Kansas City for MCUSA assembly and to Harrisburg for Mennonite World Conference we are anticipating:
* Joyful worship times in the Meeting House facilitated by University Mennonite
* Worshipful work on Saturday morning
* Introduction of AMC Interim Conference Minister and welcoming new pastors
* Storytelling throughout the weekend
* Hearing and sharing with MCUSA staff and agency representatives
* Afternoon seminars
* Saturday evening talent show
* Ice Cream dipped by our favorite Everence friends
* Messages from three AMC pastors
* Celebrating Communion together
* Passing the Pitcher and Basin to incoming Moderator, Marv Friesen

Grace and peace.
Cathy Spory, Moderator                        Marv Friesen, Moderator Elect

Registrations are due July 18th, registration forms. Annual reports may be found under the delegate tab, under annual reports, under 2015-16 at www.alleghenymennoniteconference.org

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Conference Students Graduate from Goshen College

GoshenMembers of the Goshen College Class of 2016 received undergraduate and graduate degrees during the college’s 118th commencement ceremony. The Class of 2016 consisted of 205 graduates who were awarded the following degrees: 127 Bachelor of Arts, 35 Bachelor of Science in Nursing, 18 Bachelor of Science, 18 Master of Science as family nurse practitioners, 4 Master of Arts in Intercultural Leadership, 2 Master of Arts in Environmental Education, and, for the first year, 2 Master of Business Administration. Students from Allegheny Mennonite Conference include:

Brian Allen Charles of State College, Pa., graduated Cum Laude from Goshen College on April 24, 2016 with a BA in Sociology. Brian attends University Mennonite Church and is the child of Thomas and Kristine Charles.

Grace L. Weaver of Harrisonburg, Va., graduated Summa Cum Laude from Goshen College on April 24, 2016 with a BA in English. Grace attended Scottdale Mennonite Church and is the child of Neal and Laureen Weaver.

 

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