North Carolina district holds annual convention

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Air of excitement characterizes district convention 

From a report by Chris Eidse

Excitement is in the air for North Carolina Mennonite Brethren churches these days. This excitement was evident as the district celebrated their 111thannual convention Sept. 16-18. This year's convention had the largest attendance in recent history. The theme of ?"Purposefully Walking Together"? from Amos 3:3 was evident in the unified spirit of the weekend.  

The 2011 district gathering was held at The Life Center in Lenoir, NC. The new multipurpose building that was completed a year ago was the perfect place to host the event. The weekend began with a Friday evening youth rally with special speaker Rev. Doug Cuperson. The youth stayed at the church for night and participated in youth seminars on Saturday morning on the topics of making good decisions led by Fran Propst and the results of making bad decisions led by Jonathan Dula. The new addition of a youth component to the weekend convention went over well and the leaders were excited about duplicating the youth event again during the winter.

All six NCMB congregations reported Saturday morning, with all churches reporting either maintained attendance or growth. Several churches have recently completed building renovations and expansions thanks to an increase in numbers.

Delegates were able of select from five seminars following the reports. Ed Boschman, USMB Conference executive director, spoke on leadership; Bruce Jost of MB Foundation spoke on the power of first fruits giving; Jon Pritchard of MB Mission taught on marriage and the family; Stephanie Banner spoke about being single in ministry; and NCDC district moderator Terry Hunt led a seminar on the Mennonite Brethren Confession of Faith. The day ended with an opportunity for pastors and other guests to attend a great football game at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC.

A record-breaking crowd of 278 attended the Sunday morning worship service. A combined choir and ?Acts of Praise? began the service with a passionate time of worship. Ed Boschman brought greetings on behalf of the USMB Conference. 

Rev. District Moderator Terry Hunt encouraged the six churches to remain faithful to teaching the good news of Jesus Christ. Hunt also spoke about the new tithing model to the USMB Conference, the switch to bi-annual NCDC convention schedule and reassigned all the pastors to their current churches. He also reminded the congregation to give God the glory and to thank the USMB Conference, Mission USA and MB Foundation for partneringwith the North Carolina District in completing the new district building.

Wendel Loewen, Tabor College Bible department member and director of Ministry Quest, wrapped up the weekend with a memorable and humorous keynote address.

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