Sidha Apsari from Indonesia is a participant in the Great Lakes IVEP (International Volunteer Exchange Program). She shared her experiences from living and working in Kidron, Ohio, during the Friday evening service.
Supplies and funds for health kits were dedicated during the Friday evening offering. MCC health kits include a toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, fingernail clipper and towel. People in such countries as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Haiti, Nicaragua, North Korea, Russia, Serbia and Ukraine have received health kits in the past few years.
Steve Steiner recently participated in an MCC learning tour to Sudan. During the Friday evening service, he shared from his first-hand experiences on the theme of "Rebuilding" based on Nehemiah 1:1-11.
Congregational representatives, from churches throughout the Great Lakes region, gathered on Saturday morning for a breakfast with regional associates. Five regional associates relate to churches and individuals in the different geographical areas of our region: Gwen & Les Gustafson-Zook (Indiana and southwest Ohio), Roy Jiménez (Illinois and Wisconsin), Jorge Vielman (northwest Ohio and Michigan) and Marlin Yoder (central/eastern Ohio, northwest Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Kentucky).
Claude Schrock, Great Lakes Board Vice-Chair, facilitated the business session on Saturday morning. Agenda items included updating the congregational representative policy, affirming new Board members, presentation of program plans and affirming the budget.
Six different workshops were offered during two sessions on Saturday morning. Mary Stata from the MCC Washington Office led a workshop titled "Pursuing Peace in Congo," where she distributed information and resources.
Mary Ann Weber, Great Lakes Human Resources Coordinator, led a workshop about opportunities with MCC for young adults. Additional workshops included "Saving in a land of scarcity: savings groups and sand dams in Mozambique", "Beyond Darfur: South Sundan", "Peacebuilding through friendships", and "Palestine/Israel update".
Emily Coyne, one of the planning committee members from Reba Place, gets some help filling water pitchers for one of the meals. MCC Great Lakes is extremely grateful to Reba Place Church for their warm hospitality during these meetings.