Transformed, transforming.

February 10, 2011

God is on a mission to change the world. Everyone knows the world needs it. Humanity has a propensity of messing things up and we all have done our share. Sin, we call it, and it ripples out into all of our relationships, human institutions, and even affects creation. God’s mission to change the world […]


Praying with the Early Church

January 20, 2011

On December 12, the Early Church (in downtown Harrisonburg) gathered to ordain Ron Copeland to the ministry. It was my first visit to their worship service and remarkable in many ways. The youthful diversity of the gathering—students from EMU and JMU—meet with the group on a regular basis. Persons with various racial/ethnic characteristics came together […]


Our core values

December 23, 2010

Core values are those values we hold dear. They represent the orienting center of our lives, the priorities by which we live. They are usually expressed by how we live our lives and what occupies our attention in terms of time and money. Sometimes core values are also expressed by our words. When our core […]


Baptism as remembering

December 8, 2010

I attended a baptismal service again recently. Four members of the Daniel family went “under the water” as the pastor put it. Father, mother, and two sons all gave verbal witness to their faith in Jesus Christ and accepted the sacrament and sign of baptism in the presence of God and a company of people. […]


A half-serious lament

December 2, 2010

With a bit of sadness this summer, I witnessed the final decisions associated with dissolving Ohio District of Virginia Mennonite Conference. It made sense since the district had essentially become an “empty set” as Conference Minister Owen Burkholder put it. Chestnut Ridge, the last remaining congregation, had transferred amicably to Ohio Conference earlier. Still, since […]


On the death of two bishops

November 18, 2010

Lloyd S. Horst died October 7, 2010 at the age of 97. Truman H. Brunk, Jr. died October 8, 2010 at the age of 79. At both funerals, I heard the descriptor “Encourager.” And, “gentle.” Each of these men was ordained in Virginia Mennonite Conference. Lloyd served as pastor and ordained bishop in VMC and […]


“We could never do this on our own”

November 1, 2010

“We could never do it on our own.” These or similar words express the sentiment of everyone at VMMissions—our staff, our board and our workers. We constantly receive reminders that we are involved in something far larger than ourselves. Sometimes we lead. Sometimes we follow. Sometimes we just get out of the way! VMMissions continues […]



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