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Ecumenical Worship Services Slated May 25, 2017

The 2017 Mount Gretna Bible Festival series of Ecumenical Worship Services will take place on Fridays in June at 7 p.m. in the Campmeeting Tabernacle, located at Third Street and Glossbrenner Avenue, just off Route 117. The series will feature a pastor from a different faith community each week leading a service built around the common theme of "God's Challenges." A freewill offering will be received.

On Friday, June 2, the Rev. Edward Zook from Herr Street Mennonite Church in Harrisburg will lead the service on the theme "God Challenges Us to Be in but Not of This World."

Additionally, the Campmeeting Association will celebrate its 125th anniversary with 20 Bible Festival programs of preaching and musical worship. Programs will include the following: Sunday, July 2, the Men in Harmony male chorus; Sunday, July 23, a re-creation of an early Mount Gretna service, with the Rev. Bob Kettering portraying the Rev. Cyrus Kephart; Sunday, July 30, the traditional Massed Choir concert, conducted by Joe Martin; Friday, July 28, a piano and vocal concert by Martin and his wife, Sue; Wednesday, Aug. 2, the Rev. Quentin Wallace; Saturday, Aug. 5, the annual Mount Gretna Handbell Festival; Sunday, Aug. 6, the National Christian Choir, based out of Washington, D.C.; and Wednesday, Aug. 23, Dave Stahl and the Sacred Orchestra during the morning worship service and the Rev. Dr. Tom Long during the evening service.

Parking is available on the boulevard lot, just past the fire hall.


HUMC Plans Youth Worship Event May 12, 2017

Local youths and their parents, as well as youth groups, are invited to attend "ichoose," a nondenominational youth worship experience on Sunday, May 21, at Hempfield United Methodist Church (HUMC), 3050 Marietta Ave., Lancaster. The theme of the event is "Upside Down - Turning Your World Upside Down for Christ," and there will be an emphasis on serving others.

The event will kick off at 4:30 p.m. with a party in the parking lot. Attendees may socialize, listen to music, play on an inflatable attraction, and munch on hot dogs, chips, and soda. Following the party, a 15-minute, high-energy performance by Christian rapper Young Joshua will take place.

The main event, an interactive worship experience, will begin in the sanctuary at 6 p.m. and will include live music by the ichoose worship team, whose 14 members come from across the United States. A drama team from Carlisle will perform, and Detroit youth pastor Nedda Nehmeh, who is a former Muslim, will speak.

Although this is the first time HUMC has hosted an event like this, it is not HUMC youth director Clarence Hogan's first time hosting ichoose. Before relocating to Lancaster County last year, Hogan hosted ichoose events six other times in various locales, including Chicago, Louisville, and Columbus, Ohio. Past ichoose events have drawn several hundred students each year.

"I do this because I believe in this generation and its potential," said Hogan, adding that while the event is primarily a youth worship experience, everyone is welcome. "I feel it's important for the kids to see that others stand behind them and support them." Everyone who attends the event will leave inspired and uplifted, he said.

The purpose of the event is to inspire students to serve in some capacity - near or far - and to commit themselves to changing the world in positive ways. At the conclusion of the event, students will be commissioned to serve.

Admission to ichoose will be free of charge. For more information, readers may call Hogan at 285-5156, ext. 293, or email


Pink Impact Simulcast Slated April 12, 2017

Pink Impact live simulcast will come to Worship Center, 2384 New Holland Pike, Lancaster, on Friday and Saturday, May 12 and 13.

Women are invited to unite for two days and encounter the Lord and His goodness through worship, teaching, and fellowship. Attendees will be led in worship by Kari Jobe and the Gateway Worship team. Presentations will be made by Bible teachers such as Lysa Terkeurst, Lisa Harper, Henry Cloud, Christine Caine, and others.

Tickets to the event are available for a fee, with meal tickets sold separately. Individuals must register at by Sunday, April 30.


Healing The Hidden Wounds Of Trauma March 23, 2017

Workshop Will Focus On PTSD

To help professionals and other members of the community better understand and assist individuals experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the Lancaster Christian Council on Disabilities will present "PTSD: Hidden Wounds of Trauma" on Thursday, April 27, from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Manor Church, 530 Central Manor Road, Lancaster.

"The more we learn, we can best come alongside someone with PTSD," said Sib Nafziger Charles, community and church relations manager for Joni and Friends Eastern Pennsylvania, a ministry that helps to mobilize and equip local congregations to reach out to people affected by disability. "We encourage people from all walks of life to attend."

The training event will include three sessions: "What Is PTSD?/Moral Injury," "PTSD: Combat Related," and "Trauma-Induced PTSD: Its Effect on the Family." The sessions will be led by Marilyn Nafziger-Macquarrie, licensed clinical social worker, and Jen Ransil, marriage and family therapist. Nafziger-Macquarrie worked in behavioral health for Veterans Affairs for 38 years. For six of those years, she worked exclusively with men and women returning from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Ransil is an adjunct professor at Messiah College and works in private practice, focusing on improving relationship dynamics and working through issues related to trauma and mental health.

The program is co-sponsored by Eastern Mennonite University, which will offer professional development credits for nurses and pastors. Everyone with an interest in PTSD is welcome to attend, however. Charles noted that the goal of the event is to help people understand PTSD and the behaviors exhibited by people with the disorder and to respond with compassion rather than judgment.

"We're hearing about it more and more, and people are recognizing it as a disability," Charles said. "It's a hidden disability, and people ask, 'Why can't they just get over it?'"

According to, the diagnosis of PTSD was first recognized by the American Psychiatric Association in 1980. In previous generations, it was called "shell shock," and it was rarely talked about. Attitudes have shifted somewhat since then, and there is a movement to help those affected heal from their trauma.

"Telling your story is where healing begins," Charles remarked. She noted that the training session will conclude with stories of hope. Survivors of war and of sexual assault will talk about how they have worked through the healing process.

There is a cost to attend the training event, with an additional fee for those obtaining credit for the course. A boxed lunch will be included in the cost. Wednesday, April 19, has been set as the deadline to register by calling 522-1467 or visiting

The Lancaster Christian Council on Disabilities has existed for nearly 10 years, and the member agencies work with individuals with various types of disabilities. In addition to Joni and Friends Eastern Pennsylvania, the council includes Faith Friendship Ministries, Friendship Community, Handi-Vangelism Ministries International, Love INC, Ministries of North America, and No Longer Alone Ministries. Joni and Friends Eastern Pennsylvania took the lead on the PTSD training event because it has a ministry to individuals who have served in active combat and their families. The weeklong Wounded Warrior Getaway is held in the fall free of charge. To learn more, readers may call the aforementioned number or email


LCBC To Host "Sticky Teams East 2.0" Conference March 10, 2017

"We are learners, and we want to learn from anyone we can get information from to figure out how to keep pushing the ball forward as a church, and that's where LCBC comes in," said Kent Jacobs, lead pastor at Epic Church, Philadelphia. Jacobs was among the 700 attendees at the first Sticky Teams East conference hosted by LCBC in April 2016.

"We approached LCBC and said, 'We love what you guys are doing, and we'd love to learn from you,' and the response was really cool," Jacobs said. "They were so encouraging and so challenging. Because of the personal relationships and what we learn at conferences - that saves us years. We don't have to learn all those lessons the hard way."

LCBC will host the Sticky Teams East 2.0 conference for pastors and church leaders on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 16 and 17, at its Manheim campus, 2392 Mount Joy Road, Manheim. With a theme of "Exploring Off the Map," attendees will take a look at how discovering new ministry directions allows individuals to lead teams more successfully.

The name and concept behind the conference originated from pastor Larry Osborne's book series Sticky Church, Sticky Teams, and Sticky Leaders.

Attendees will hear from Osborne, who is one of the senior pastors of North Coast Church in Vista, Calif., and the founder of North Coast Training Network, which organizes the annual Sticky Teams conferences in San Diego and Lancaster. Other main session speakers will include David Ashcraft, senior pastor of LCBC; Chris Brown, senior pastor of North Coast Church; and Mark Clark, lead pastor of Village Church in British Columbia. LCBC Worship will be leading during the main session worship times, and other LCBC staff members will also lead multiple breakout sessions.

Although the content of Ashcraft's talk has not yet been finalized, James Byers, director of communications for LCBC, said that it will touch on LCBC's history and intentionality over the past 30 years to grow with the clear vision of introducing people to Jesus and together fully following Him.

"The Sticky Teams conference bases all the main sessions and breakout sessions around the concept of team training and how to apply these principles within each specific ministry environment," said Byers. He noted that the conferences are designed to be beneficial for anyone who works in ministry, from senior pastors to ministry leaders and even volunteers.

"North Coast Training Network is bringing the Sticky Teams Conference back to LCBC Church in Lancaster in part because of the positive response we received from last year's registrants and (because of) the need we saw to offer this type of team-based ministry training event to pastors and church workers on the East Coast," said Byers.

"We desire to create environments where leaders feel challenged, encouraged, and inspired to take what they learn and apply it to their leadership," Byers said. "It's great content with inspiring conversations."

Interested individuals may register at Registration fees will increase on Saturday, April 1, and again on Tuesday, April 25.

LCBC stands for "Lives Changed By Christ," and the church currently has campuses in Manheim, Lancaster city, Ephrata, York, Leesport, Harleysville, Berwick, Harrisburg, and Waynesboro.


Annual Schrag Lectures Slated March 9, 2017

The Sider Institute for Anabaptist, Pietist, and Wesleyan Studies, in partnership with Messiah College's Peace and Conflict Studies program, will present its annual Schrag Lectures on Monday, March 27, and Tuesday, March 28, at Messiah College, One College Ave., Grantham. Dr. Greg Boyd, pastor, theologian, author, and the founder and president of ReKnew Ministries, will deliver three lectures.

The first lecture will be "Towel Power: Jesus' Foot-Washing Way of Changing the World" at 7 p.m. on March 27 at The Meeting House on the Carlisle campus. "Revelation: Reflection on John's Violently Anti-Violence War Scroll" will take place at 9:45 a.m. on March 28 at Brubaker Auditorium at Messiah College. "Shrinking Your Church to Discover the Kingdom: The Cost and Joy of Embracing Anabaptism" will be presented on March 28 at 7 p.m. in Hostetter Chapel on the campus of Messiah College.

Admission to all lectures is free and open to the public. No ticket is required. For more information about the 2017 Schrag/Peace Lectures, readers may contact Alisa Sentz at


Heritage And Horizons Seminars Set February 24, 2017

Heritage and Horizons, a semiannual series of seminars provided by the Apostles Academy of Arts and Sciences, has revealed its spring 2017 series. The five-week series will be held in the sanctuary of Church of the Apostles UCC, 1850 Marietta Ave., Lancaster, on Tuesdays from March 7 to April 4 from 9:30 to 11:50 a.m. Doors will open at 9:15 a.m. All are welcome.

The Heritage and Horizons spring 2017 series is titled "Celebrating 30 Years of History, Science, Literature, Religion, Community Services, and Music!" It includes speakers who have been specifically selected for their knowledge on the topics covered. Each day will feature a 20-minute break between speakers for light refreshments.

The first session will run from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m., with the second session from 10:50 to 11:50 a.m. Topics to be presented during the first session are as follows: March 7, "African Safari" by Robert Wyble ; March 14, "How We Treat Our Elders" by Lancaster Interfaith Coalition; March 21, "The Meaning of Growing Older" by Robert M. Olson; March 28, "Shakespeare and The Folger Shakespeare Library" by Linda Itzoe; and April 4, "J.P. McCaskey: Lancaster's Music Man" by Dolores Parsil. During the second time slot, Dr. Lee Barrett will present five sessions on "Can the United States Still Learn Something From the Protestant Reformation?"

There is a registration fee for the series. Walk-in registrations will be accepted on the first day. For more information about the course offerings, to register, or to be added to the mailing list, individuals may call Church of the Apostles at 392-5718 or email


Church Posts "Parent Lab" Event February 16, 2017

Grace Community Church, 212 Peach Bottom Road, Willow Street, will hold a Parent Lab event, which will focus on how to recognize crises in children, on Sunday, Feb. 26, from 6 to 8 p.m. Parents, grandparents, guardians, and others are invited to attend.

Dr. Carol McGinnis, assistant professor of counseling at Messiah College, will discuss how to recognize and respond to children's big and small crises. Discussion will focus on leveraging the anger that may emerge in crises to achieve a positive end and how to know when it is time to enlist professional help in a child's situation. There will be time to ask questions.

Light refreshments will be provided. To register to attend, contact the Grace Community Church office at 464-5333 or visit


Leadership Series Posts Morning Workshop October 20, 2016

The Clergy and Congregation Care program of Samaritan Counseling Center of Lancaster has announced that its final morning workshop in its 2016 Congregational Leadership series will take place on Thursday, Nov. 3, at the Spiritual Center at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 301 St. Thomas Road, Lancaster. Light refreshments will be served beginning at 8:15 a.m.; the program will be held from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m.

Dr. Kristen Albert, a local facilitator and workshop leader, will lead the group in a three-hour workshop through an exploration of how change can be a transformational aspect of life. Also, pastor Dean Easton will share the story of how the Lancaster Moravian congregation re-invented itself.

Albert recommends that participants read the brief article "Transition as the Way Through" by William Bridges, which focuses on the distinctions between change and transition, in preparation for the session. The article is accessible through an internet search by title.

Albert, a resident of East Hempfield Township, is an educator and consultant specializing in coaching business leaders. She holds a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Delaware, a diploma in Ontological Coaching from Newfield Network in Boulder, Colo., and a master's degree in counseling from Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania. She is also a performing musician, a lay leader in her church, a court-appointed special advocate (CASA), and member of the Strategic Planning Advancement Committee for CASA of Lancaster.

Registration is required by Tuesday, Nov. 1. There is a fee to attend, which will be discounted for individuals from a Samaritan partner congregation. Congregations are encouraged to register a team for this workshop. To register, readers may visit or contact David Miron at or 560-1949, ext. 108.


Group Chooses Co-Conveners October 19, 2016

The Religious Council of Greater West Chester has announced its co-conveners for the 2016-17 program year. They are the Rev. Annalie Korengel, Faith Woodward, and Fiona Allison.

The council represents approximately 40 congregations in the greater West Chester area, including clergy and lay representatives from congregations that are Presbyterian, Methodist, Catholic, Baha'i, Unitarian/Universalist, Quaker, Swedenborgian, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Jewish, Baptist, and Mormon, as well as congregations that are part of the Islamic Society, the United Church of Christ, and other faith communities. The council meets monthly from September through May at member churches/synagogues/meetings for fellowship and to strengthen relationships among the faith communities, learn about and explore issues of mutual concern, and share information about member congregations and activities. For further information, readers may call 610-431-7982.

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