The Fall Issue of the RCA Today is out and includes stories from our region. Be sure to check out the great story on Corey Buchanan from First Reformed Church in South Holland, IL and a story on growing community from Emmanuel Reformed Church on Clinton, WI.
Women Corresponding Delegates to 2017 General Synod are needed in our region. Each year our region sends 2 women to be corresponding delegates to the RCA’s General Synod. This year, General Synod is taking place on the campus of Hope College in Holland, MI from June 8-13, 2017. These delegates are in addition to those sent by the classes. A corresponding delegate functions in all aspects of the General Synod with the exception of voting. Our desire is for the voice of women from this region to be better represented at General Synod and so the information from the synod and the spirit that is caught at the synod can be brought back to the region within the context of women in our churches. If you are a woman, or know of a woman, who fits within this purpose you are invited to submit that name by contacting Chad Schuitema.
A Youth Corresponding Delegate to General Synod is also needed for this year’s RCA General Synod taking place in Holland, MI at Hope College from June 8-13, 2017. This non-voting delegate is one who is somewhere around traditional college age. In addition to participating in the regular business of the General Synod, the youth corresponding delegates meet and do things together. It is anticipated that the youth delegates have given some thought about the possibility that God may be calling him or her into ministry, but that does not necessarily mean that a decision has been made. It is an intention of the participation in General Synod as a youth delegate to help that person discern hearing the Holy Spirit’s voice. Do you know of someone who might be a candidate for this youth delegate? Please contact Chad.
The RSMA annually gives out Urban Ministry Grants. In 2017 we will be supporting ministries such as: a Director of Multi-Cultural Worship, a Violence Prevention ministry in the inner-city, and other ministries that seek to reach out to people who are typically thought of as “the least of these.” These ministries seek to missionally impact urban areas within our region. Your church can help support these ministries by giving to our Urban Ministry Fund. This “asking” is $4 per church member and $2 per Sunday School participant. Any amount given is used completely to fund these ministries. For more information, contact Chad.
DATE CHANGE: Creating Congregational Cultures of Generosity (CCCG) is an opportunity for any RSMA church to be in an RCA learning community led by Ken Eriks and the Lake Institute focused on growing a culture of generosity in congregations. In three one-day seminars, pastors and ministry leaders learn to unearth and energize congregational generosity by exploring the significant and necessary steps to creating lasting cultural change. Interactive segments of CCCG explore theology, the role of adaptive leadership, fiscal transparency, and the importance of donor care. Participants leave with action steps for both laity and clergy to explore and experience generosity. The dates for this learning community are November Nov. 19, 2016, January 14, 2017, and March 4, 2017 and it will be held at Christ Community Church in Lemont, IL. For more information, click HERE. If your church is interested in joining this learning community, please contact Chad Schuitema.
A new website and a new tool to help your church find help for its mission and ministries is available from the RCA’s Transformed and Transforming staff. The updated Transformed and Transforming website can be found by clicking HERE. To connect with RCA leaders and resources to help your church, simply go to this quiz.
The Regional Synod of Mid-America Assembly will be meeting November 10 to discuss and vote on the formation of the New Thing Classis. The Assembly heard the request at its May meeting and Illiana-Florida Classis and Chicago Classis were instructed to study the formation of this classis in various ways and report back to the Assembly. We ask for your prayers for this important meeting.
News from Camp Manitoqua
Storm the base, capture the flag, and win the game! Camp Manitoqua and Retreat Center invites you out to one of the most epic days of paintball you will ever experience on October 22 from 10am – 4pm! Come play a full day of paintball on our wooded course. Space is limited; registration processed on first come first serve basis. Cost is $36 (includes gun and mask rental, 1000 paintballs, and a box lunch). Register online at www.manitoqua.org/events by RSVP by October 19. Ages: 7th grade and older. Questions: call the office at 815.469.2319.
Have a BLAST this winter break – Registration begins October 3rd for our WinterBlast day camp program, a break from school, not from fun, at Camp Manitoqua and Retreat Center. Held during winter break for grades 1-6; featuring classic camp activities, winter snow games, hot lunches, and more. Additional information (including downloadable brochure) available at www.manitoqua.org/winterblast, or call our office at 815-469-2319.
Enjoy a taste of fall at the Red Oak Luncheon, a pleasant occasion for seniors, at Camp Manitoqua & Retreat Center on Wednesday, December 7th. Coffee & Rolls will be served at 10:30am. Our program will begin at 11:00am with lunch to follow at 12:00pm. Tours of the grounds will be available after lunch. Cost for the event is $10.00. Please make reservations at 815-469-2319 by November 23.
Camp Manitoqua & Retreat Center’s fall retreat season has begun. At this time, we are offering groups a 15% discount on any retreat booked for December 2016 or January 2017. Please contact Ken at 815.469.2319, or at firstname.lastname@example.org for availability.