By MC USA staff
(Mennonite Church USA) — Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Mennonite Church USA (MC USA) announced that it is adapting its meeting plans for the remainder of 2020, including the upcoming meetings of the Executive Board, the Constituency Leaders Council (CLC) and the Racial Ethnic Council, as well as the Women Doing Theology conference.
“These unprecedented times require patience and flexibility,” said Joy Sutter, moderator, MC USA. “By meeting virtually, we can better protect the health of our members, while still advancing the important work of the denomination.”
The Executive Board, which was slated to meet in Kansas City, Missouri, will meet via Zoom on Sept. 11-12, 2020.
The CLC, which also was slated to meet in Kansas City, will gather via Zoom on Oct. 16-17, 2020. The CLC is an MC USA advisory group comprised of leaders from the area conferences, agencies and constituency groups that meets at least twice each year to counsel and advise the Executive Board.
The Women Doing Theology conference, which was scheduled to meet Nov. 5-7, 2020, in Harrisonburg, Virginia, will not take place as an in-person gathering in the fall.
“We want to prioritize everyone’s safety and wellbeing,” said Sue Park-Hur, MC USA’s denominational minister for Transformative Peacemaking. “We hope to hold a series of online events, and we are seeking direction from women in the church about what they need from a virtual gathering at this time.” She added that the steering committee is inviting feedback through a survey. Deadline to respond is August 28, 2020.
The Racial Ethnic Council will meet via Zoom in the next two months for its annual meeting. Dates are still pending, said Iris de Leon-Hartshorn, MC USA associate executive director for Operations.
The annual binational gathering of MC USA conference ministers and Mennonite Church Canada regional ministers, scheduled for the first week in December, also has been cancelled. Plans are being made for a shorter, online gathering.
Mennonite Church USA is the largest Mennonite denomination in the United States with 16 conferences, approximately 530 congregations and 62,000 members. An Anabaptist Christian denomination, MC USA is part of Mennonite World Conference, a global faith family that includes churches in 86 countries. It has offices in Elkhart, Indiana and Newton, Kansas. mennoniteUSA.org