Cluster meetings outline changes for B.C. congregations

Informing Mennonite Church B.C. congregations how they will fit into the new structure while MC Canada reorganizes was the focus of two cluster meetings in November. Meetings in Richmond on Nov. 21 and in Abbotsford on Nov. 23, 2017, drew about 20 people each, with participants from Black Creek and Kelowna joining in online for the Abbotsford meeting. “This was especially an effort to bring clarity to how donations should be given in the new structure,” said Garry Janzen, the regional church’s executive minister. “The key shift is the focus on local congregations as the centre of mission.” The primary message was that the contributions for MC Canada are to be combined with the line for the regional church (MC B.C.), and then an agreed-upon amount will be forwarded to do nationwide and global ministries. At the Vancouver area meeting in Richmond, a question arose about why congregations were being asked to give the same amount when MC Canada staff nationwide are being reduced. The response was that some costs are being shifted to regional churches, particularly donor relations, congregational engagement and receiving of donations, so capacity in the regions needs to be increased. A discussion ensued in Abbotsford about whether congregations that do not wish to participate in nationwide ministries could continue to participate with the pension plan. —By Amy Dueckman

 

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At cluster meetings in November 2017, members of Mennonite Church B.C. congregations heard more about how they will fit into the new structure of Mennonite Church Canada. (Photo by Amy Dueckman)

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