Reflections on beginnings and endings defined much of this year’s ACC Annual Assembly, held at African Community Church of Lancaster (ACCL) on April 22.
The delegate business of the morning included the approval of a new budget and the affirmation of a slate of new leaders. Affirmed for a second term on Executive Committee are Assistant Moderator Todd Gusler, Secretary Lynn Brubaker, and Members at Large Steve Crane and Addie Banks. Affirmed for second terms as committee chairs were Keith and Ruth Miller for the Peace & Justice Committee and Dawn Ranck-Hower for the Ministerial Leadership Committee. Elisa Parmer was affirmed as the new Youth Committee chair, as was Michael Charles as the Gifts Discernment Committee chair, along with new Gifts Discernment committee members Pyllis Pellman Good and Dwight Rohrer.
Delegates released two congregations from ACC membership, Hope Community Church in Fleetwood, PA and Oley Valley Mennonite Church in Oley, PA. Both had requested release from ACC membership. A prayer of blessing was shared for both congregations as they seek affiliation elsewhere.
We celebrated the ministry of Merv Stoltzfus who retired as Executive Conference Minister after serving over 30 years with ACC. Staff and Executive Committee shared gifts followed by a time of storytelling and thanking Merv for his deep impact on so many lives in his time of ministry.
After lunch was the formal installation and blessing for Joanne Dietzel, who began her role as Executive Conference Minister on April 1.
The afternoon included sharing from speakers and group conversation on “re-storying God’s Mission”. Eric Frey Martin, Nelson Okanya, and Emily Ralph Servant each shared about different aspects of pursuing God’s mission in the world and how, for many, the vision of mission has shifted to focus on our home communities. Groups were invited to share how their congregations view “missions” and speakers shared about how missions was viewed historically and how we can practically pursue God’s kingdom in our neighborhoods today.
A recording of both the delegate session and the missions presentations is available on the ACC Youtube channel, youtube.com/@acc_menno.