(Mennonite Church USA) — Two special offerings at MennoCon19 will go towards peace church planting within Mennonite Church USA and the Peace Academic Center (formally the Hopi Mission School). These offerings will take place during joint worship services of adult, youth and junior youth at the July 2-6 event in Kansas City, Missouri.
The Peace Academic Center
The Peace Academic Center has reopened with a new vision in partnership with Hopi churches on the Hopi reservation in Kykotsmovi, Arizona. The center is currently offering a GED program and plans to open a preschool in the near future. The new name of the academic center reflects the desire of the churches on the Hopi reservation to engage more with peace theology, which speaks to the Hopi’s long-standing peace position. Peace Academic Center relates to Mennonite Education Agency as MC USA’s educational agency.
“As Mennonites, we have been engaged with the Hopi since the 1920s,” said Iris de León-Hartshorn, associate executive director for Operations for MC USA. “We are asking you to once again support this vital educational work with prayer, volunteers and financial resources.”
“We meet with community members on a regular basis,” said Lance Polingyouma, who graduated from the school in 1984 and currently serves as Peace Academic Center cultural liaison. “The hope for the future of the school is that we will reopen as an elementary school in September. We have a great many things to offer to those who come and become part of our community.”
Peace Church Planting
Mennonite Church USA is building a peace church planting support system to include assessment, training, coaching, ongoing support and seed money for qualified church planters, with the goal of planting nine new MC USA congregations each year for the next three years. The renewed focus on church planting is one tangible way that MC USA is working toward embodying the Journey Forward value to “bear witness to God’s holistic peace and proclaim Christ’s redemption to the world.” This offering will go toward helping church planters in MC USA access training, like the Sent Network developed by Mennonite Mission Network, and church planting grants.
“We have an important mission in this world, and we need to be in the places of need,” said Glen Guyton, executive director of MC USA. “We need to spread the gospel of Jesus, we need to spread our peace theology and we need to help people experience the transformation of the Holy Spirit.”