NC churches hold annual convention

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Boschman, Wiebe are guest speakers for convention

From a report by Chris Eidse

This year the North Carolina District Conference (NCDC) marked its 109th year as a district conference with a convention celebrating their history and the future. “Look where he’s brought us from” was the theme of the Sept. 18-19 event hosted by Laytown MB Church of Lenoir, NC.

Rev. Fred Howell opened the weekend with a welcome on behalf of this congregation that served and welcomed the participants. Following a welcome by NCDC moderator Terry Hunt, the participants enjoyed a video of NCDC history dating back to the orphanage that was started in the late 1800s. District youth director Chris Eidse gave the annual youth report and highlights video, highlighting the role young people play in the future of the church. 

Each of the six district churches followed with their annual updates. Delegates approved the 2009/2010 budget. Following lunch, participants could attend one of two seminars on practical church matters. U.S. Conference executive director Ed Boschman led a session called, “A process for finding new life in a church.”

“Ed had a wealth of information, and with all the discussion we barely got past his first page of notes,” writes Chris Eidse in a convention report. “Transitioning churches to a new vision was obviously a topic that people could get passionate about.”

Jon Wiebe, chief executive officer of MB Foundation, led a session on “Modeling Faithful Stewardship,” in which he tied healthy churches to healthy financial management. “Of particular help was a suggested breakdown for the distribution of church finances,” says Eidse. “Jon’s recommendation was 10 to 25 percent for the church building costs, 40 to 60 percent for staffing and 15 to 50 percent for helping needy people in the congregation and around the world. This was a great measurement tool to use in our church finances.”

For dinner that evening, the pastors and their wives met with Boschman and Wiebe for a time of fellowship.

The Laytown Choir opened the Sunday morning worship time with music that “rocked the house.” The North Carolina MB Mass Choir was up next, followed by congregational singing led by Rev. Morris Hatton in his vibrant piano style. Boschman preached on the convention theme, “The Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes,” from Ps. 118:23. Boschman illustrated that Jesus is the capstone by lifting a huge chunk of granite over the congregation.

The service concluded with the annual assigning of pastors. New in the pastoral role this year are Mike Mathes and Fred Howell, serving as assistant moderators, and Keith Harper Jr. who will serve as assistant youth director.

The service closed with a prayer of celebration thanking God for where he has brought the NCDC from and where he is going to bring them in the year ahead.

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