Winter has finally come to the people of Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference!

Dan Miller took a trip to Detroit in the second week of December to join a group meeting with Bonnie Childs, Peace Community Mennonite Church, and to visit with Denise Colona and Bishop Sam Wilson from Community Christian Fellowship Ministries. Those were good meetings. He was also going to visit Shakil Khondoker while there, but Dan got very sick and needed to cancel. He spent most of the next week at home.

The rest of staff kept things moving.

Greg Sommers met with Stewardship Team on December 17. That group continues to monitor the financial situation and work at advancement plans. Greg and John Powell have been working on a short presentation for Missional Leadership Team (MLT), staff and Stewardship Team members to share Sunday mornings while visiting congregations.

Many staff took vacation over the holidays, so the conference office was closed for two weeks, opening again on January 5.

Dan met with the MLT for their meeting on Jan 9. Doug Kaufman joined for lunch and gave a Ministry Credentialing Team (MCT) report. Staff received an update on January 13 about the staffing discussion.

January promises to be a busy month. A member of the team attends the Northern Michigan Pastor/Spouse retreat in Conway, Mich. each January. Dan will be attending this year. He will also attend the Anabaptist Renewal Circles gathering in Ohio at the end of this week. Both Doug and Dan will attend AMBS Pastors Week. We tried to find at least one person to attend Eastern Mennonite Seminary’s School for Leadership Training because of this year’s focus on “nones.” If you are attending that event, we would be glad to receive your reflections on how that emphasis connects with thinking about future possibilities for IN-MI Conference.

We are beginning to anticipate winter delegate meetings. This year there will be two meetings, one north (Bethel Mennonite, Ashley, MI) and one south (First Mennonite, Indianapolis). We did this several years back and received encouragement to do this again. The reports we received from the last meetings were that people were glad that they made time to be present. An announcement of the dates was sent to delegates last week: March 14 (north) and 21 (south). More information can be found on the conference website.

The office will be closed Monday, January 19, in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.