The Information - September 1998 (Vol 8 No. 10)
A Communication from the Chairman of the Moravian Church, E.W.I. Province.
From Missionary Nurse to Pastoral Ministry
Sister Adlyn Binta Mgonela who served as our Missionary Nurse in Tanzania for about seventeen (17) years applied and has been accepted for the full-time pastoral ministry of our Church.
During her years in Tanzania, Sister Binta did an excellent job and was well received by the people. She even served on the P.E.C. of the Province. She provided high quality leadership in several areas of ministry outside of the Hospital. Our Province is truly grateful for the outstanding work of Sister Binta and we thank her sincerely.
However, if you know Sister Binta, you will also know that her first love was for the pastoral ministry but in the early 1970's, there was no provision in our Province for women to become Pastors. As she puts it: "the decision was made for me to be a Missionary Nurse". Before her training in Nursing was completed, she was still expressing a need to have some theological training. Even during those years in Tanzania, she raised the matter several times with the P.E.C. It is therefore not surprising that after seventeen (17) years in Tanzania and with a Tanzanian husband and two (2) children, she is still pursuing her call to pastoral ministry.
She entered the UTCWI in Jamaica in August, 1998 and we are convinced that her years of experience on the mission field will be an asset to the UTC community, to the
Jamaica Province and to the Glory of God.
Let us keep Sister Binta and her family in our prayers as they make the transition and the adjustments.
Many thanks again Sister Binta and may God bless you and yours in this new aspect of ministry.
Sister Lilian George, Christian Educator on St. Croix reports on Provincial Camp '98
"Come . . . Celebrate Christ" was the Theme of this year's Provincial Camp which was held from August 2 through 15 at the Gracefield Moravian Camp Site at Cedar Grove Village in Antigua.
There were 55 campers in total as follows: Antigua - 18, Barbados - 9, Trinidad - 7, Tobago - 8, USVI - 9, Guyana - 1, Jamaica - 2, and Surinam - 1. conspicuous by its absence was the St. Kitts Conference. The Cayman Islands did not respond this year.
Sis. Julie Joefield-Parris was the Supervisor of the Camp. Sis. Georgette John was the Director and Sis. Eloise Stephen acted as the Co-director in the absence of Sis. Eulencine Christopher. Other Christian Educators attending were Sis. Esther Moore-Roberts and Sis. Lillian George. There were also 8 Counselors from the various Conferences.
This spirit-filled two-week gathering of youth, portrayed a warmth of friendship, pleasant memories, tearful moments, and the like. But most and best of all, was the inviting of Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ into these young lives. One camper remarked, "I am very proud of myself, I accepted Christ as my personal Lord and Saviour."
One of the more touching format was when Sis. Moore-Roberts used the concept of the "stone" to represent our sin. It was a bit strenuous to hold one up until all those long Scripture passages were read, but when the group members came with containers to take them, what a relief it was! A striking example of what Jesus did for us at Calvary.
The Theme studies, Workshops, Interest Groups, cultural activities, Debates, Etc. all contributed to the theme "Come . . . Celebrate Christ". All in all, I would say that the objectives were met.
I would be remiss if I did not mention the three Services that were held - The Opening at Spring Gardens, the Evangelistic at Gracefield and the Closing at Lebanon. At the closing service, campers were able to highlight two of the activities practised during the two weeks - The Choir and the Liturgical Dance. Spectacular indeed!!! Many also had pleasant memories of Hospitality Sunday when they were able to visit and worship with families in the various Moravian congregations all over Antigua.
On behalf of the Christian Educators, I would like to extend our appreciation to the Antigua Conference and Sis. Parris for all the energy and effort that was expended in making this a reality. May God continue to bless all of you.
Extension Programme with Moravian Seminary getting New Focus
The Chairman of the P.E.C. had some very useful discussion with the Dean of the Moravian Theological Seminary in Bethlehem concerning the future development of the Extension Programme.
While both Brothers shared the concern for the slow progress of the programme, there was a definite commitment on both sides to the programme.
Participants can expect some significant changes which will make the programme more attractive. A brochure will be published and it is also expected that greater use will be made of the technology available by means of the computer.
The next semester will be in January 1999.
Interested persons are asked to contact the Provincial Office.
Friends' Association for Unity Archives
Brother Paul Peucker, the archivist at the Unity Archives in Herrnhut reports on the founding of "Friends' Association for Unity Archives."
On 6th June 1998 the Friend's Association (Archivverein) for the Unity Archives was founded in Herrnhut. The goal is to support the work of the central archives of the worldwide Moravian Church.
In the last couple of years, interest in the Herrnhut Archives has increased: in the last year alone 137 people from 13 different countries spent 446 days doing research within the facility. Numbers for the current year are proportionally already higher. Many of these researchers would like to give their support to this institution. Also many people from the Moravian Church realize the importance of the archives as an institution that preserves the history of our church.
Established in 1764, the holdings of the Unity Archives include records of the coordinating boards of the Moravian Church beginning in 1722 as well as the family and estate archives of Count von Zinzendorf. Nowadays the Unity Archives ranks among the three Unity undertakings.
Many problems confront the present archives staff: the facility is more than a century old, modern standards of security and preservation cannot be kept and the building is simply full. In May of this year the European-Continental Synod therefore approved the construction of a new repository, but finances for this extension cannot be found only within the European Continental Province. In the archives collection there are many documents and objects that
are endangered and that need restoration. The Friends' Association wants to help and to raise public awareness for these unique archives. Within weeks of its existence applications for association membership arrived not only from Germany, but also from the USA, Australia, Great Britain and Switzerland.
Friend's Association of the Unity Archives
C/O Unity Archives
P.O. Box 21
Germany Tel.: 49 35873 48731
The Secretary of P.E.C. in Barbados
The Secretary of the P.E.C., Bro. Cortroy Jarvis, visited Barbados from August 4-5, 1998 in order to finalise arrangements for staffing in the Conference.
The Chairman in the USA
The P.E.C. Chairman, Bro. Nicholas, spent most of August in the USA. It was a combination of work and vacation.
Along with several other Heads of P.E.C., he was invited by the American Province (North) to its Synod at Bethlehem Pennsylvania from August 7-11.
There were over 350 delegates along with office staff, tellers, pages and observers.
About 75 reports from Committees were passed and over 36,000 pages of documents were distributed.
The new P.E.C. was elected (please see reference elsewhere in this Newsletter) and two Bishops were also elected.
The Revd Dr. Kay Ward, Director of Continuing Education and Assistant Professor of Pastoral Theology at Moravian Seminary, was elected and became the first female Bishop of the Unity. The second election was that of the Revd C. Hopeton Clennon formerly of the Jamaica Province who is now serving in Pennsylvania.
Sis. Ward was in Antigua in January, 1997 as part of the teaching staff in the Buxton Grove Extension Programme.
Bro. Clennon is well known to many of us as in addition to being a colleague from our sojourn at the United Theological College (UTC) in Jamaica, he was the main presenter at our 1997 Provincial Men's Conference in St. Kitts.
From August 12-14, the Chairman attended a Consultation on Mission involving the Board of World Mission (BWM) and its partner Provinces of EWI, Guyana, Honduras, Labrador, Nicaragua, Tanzania (Western), and the Unity of the Brethren in Texas. The Alaska Province was also invited but did not make it.
The two facilitators were the Revd Hopeton Clennon and the Revd Dr. Horace Russell.
The BWM sought to learn from other Provinces how partnership could be realised; how the Board could facilitate, support and utilise other Provinces in the mission of sharing Christ with the world.
Altogether, it was a blessed time and many of the issues discussed and contacts made will be very useful as we seek to respond to God's call.
Thanks to the Northern Province and the Board of World Mission for this special effort.
- September 10-17 Provincial Staff Retreat - Antigua
- September 20 Day of Prayer for spouses of Ministers and offering for the widows.
- October 8-11 The P.E.C. meets in the USVI.
Resignation at CCC
The Revd Dr. Monrelle Williams has resigned as the General Secretary of the Caribbean Conference of Churches (CCC) as of September 1, 1998.
A letter from the Chair of the CCC's Praesidium, the Revd Dr. Lesley Anderson, says in part:
"On behalf of the Presidents and Continuation Committee of the CCC, I wish to officially inform you of the resignation of the Revd Dr. Monrelle T. Williams as General Secretary of the CCC. His resignation is effective September 1, 1998.
As is normal procedure, a Search Committee will be appointed shortly to set the process for the selection of a new General Secretary. An integral part of this process would be advertising the post. We will be sharing more information and details with you as time goes on.
In the interim, Mr. Gerard Granado, Associate General Secretary, has been asked to act as General Secretary."
Ministers Celebrate Two of our Ministers recently had celebrations to mark their years in the ministry of our Church. On July 19, Bro. Romeo Challenger held a Service of Thanksgiving at the Greenbay Moravian Church to mark his twentieth (20th) year in the ordained ministry. The Revd Charlesworth Edwards of the United Moravian Church in New York was the Preacher for the occasion.
On August 23, Bro. Kingsley Lewis held a Service of Thanksgiving at the Potters Moravian Church to mark his twenty-fifth (25th) year in the ordained ministry. The Preacher then was Revd Romeo Challenger.
Congratulations Brothers! The entire Province is grateful for your years of service to our Province and to God.
In Costa Rica:
Chairperson: Revd Samuel Downs
Vice-Chairman: Pastor Victor Hodgson.
Secretary: Revd Myrtle Hooker
Treasurer: Pastor Fernando Hodgson
First vocal member: Dr. Leopold Pixley
Second vocal member: Sis. Imogine Omeir.
Fiscal (Comptroller): Bro. Lawrence Tom.
In Great Britain:
Bro. W. J. H. McOwat-Chairman
Bro. D. J. Newman
Bro. D. Woods
Sis. J. K. Morten
In America (North)
Revd R. Burke Johnson-President
Revd David L. Wickmann
Revd Lawrence Christianson
Mr. George Friedman
Mrs. Shirley Knapp
Mr. Richard Santee
Dr. Yvonne Maddox
The Unity Chairman, the Revd Dr. Hans-Beat Motel reports:
At present (August 1998) the Unity Board consists according to my knowledge of the following persons:
- Alaska: Revd Frank Chingliak
- British: Revd John McOwat
- Czech: Revd Jarek Pleva
- EWI: Revd Joseph Nicholas
- European: Revd Dr. Hans-Beat Motel
- Honduras: Mr. Wincap Cassy
- Jamaica: Revd Stanley Clarke
- Nicaragua: Revd Fernando Colomer
- South Africa: Revd Derrick Meyer
- Suriname: Revd John Kent
- Tanzania-South: Revd Nielson A. Mwaisango
- Tanzania-West: Rt. Revd Isaac R. Nicodemo
- Tanzania-South-West: Revd Sadock I. Simwanza
- Tanzania-Rukwa: Revd Donald M. Siwalozi
- United States North: Revd Burke Johnson
- United States South: Revd Dr. Robert Saywer
This list does not include Affiliated Provinces and other Regions of Moravian Work.
Let Us Pray For
The spouses of our ministers especially as September 20 has been set aside by the Province for this purpose.
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God's mercy and protection as we continue through the hurricane season.
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All those who will be entering new classes, new schools, Colleges & University this month.
Congregations are encouraged to be intentional in praying for these students in the context of the Worship Service.
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Our Ministers as we meet in retreat in Antigua September 10-17.
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Our colleagues in the Jamaica Province; their families and their ministries as well as all the lay leaders who are providing excellent leadership in very challenging circumstances.
Please Join the Ecumenical Prayer Cycle and Pray:
Week 38: September 13-19 - Costa Rica, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama
Week 39: September 20-26 - Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela
Week 40: Sept.27-Oct.3 - Burkina Fasa, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger
Week 41: October 4-10 - Cameroon, Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea
Happy Anniversary to Judges Hill
The Judges' Hill Moravian Church in Antigua will celebrate its 13th anniversary on September 28.
Judges Hill has 111 members and the Pastor is Bro. Kingsley Lewis.
Happy Anniversary to Memorial in Trinidad
The Memorial Moravian Church in Trinidad will celebrate its 15th anniversary on September 13. Memorial has 82 members and the Pastor is Bro. Selvin McMillan assisted by Sister Georgette John.
Birthdays this Month
Happy birthday to:
Bro. Rudolph Gibbs 2
Bro. Samuel Jacobs 7
Bro. Walton Frederick 7
Sis. Veronica Brown 9
Bro. Keith Horsford 10
Sis. Audrey Gregory 18
Sis. Lynda Prout 29
Anniversaries this Month
Happy Anniversary to:
Revd Ezra &
Revd Julie Parris 5
Revd Romeo &
Mrs. Deborah Challenger 8
Revd Conrad &
Mrs. Sonia Spencer 24
Revd Cicely &
Mrs. Keith Horsford 30
Harried Motorist, teaching his son to drive: "go on green, stop on red, careful on amber, and look out when I turn white."
John and Mike had jobs at a cotton mill. One morning the foreman came along and found John reading a letter to his coworker.
"Hey" cried the foreman, "what kind of horseplay are you two guys up to?"
"Mike got a letter from his girlfriend," explained John, "but he can't read, so I'm reading' the letter for him."
"How come you got the cotton in your ears?"
"Mike doesn't want me to hear what his girlfriend wrote to him!"
A one dollar bill met a 20 dollar bill and said, "Hey, where've you been? I haven't seen you around here much."
The twenty answered, "I've been hanging out at the casinos, went on a cruise and did the rounds of the ship, back to the United States for awhile, went to a couple of baseball games, to the mall , that kind of stuff. How about you?
The one dollar bill said, "You know, same old stuff, church, church, church."