Anabaptist Communicators Conference 2014: Are Anabaptists ready to go big?

October 24 and 25, 2014 at Mennonite Central Committee's Welcoming Place

As Anabaptist
communicators, we are modern messengers of an old, sacred story. Today’s world
seems hungry for that story, but cast in new, practical, contemporary ways. 

What is “the good news” that Anabaptism brings to a weary world today?
What hope do Anabaptists bring to a world full of fear, dislocation, conflict,
climate change and economic inequity? What are our roles and mission as
Anabaptist communicators? What is the “unique selling proposition” of
Anabaptism, and are we ready to promote that message? Who needs to hear and
experience it? 

questions and more will be explored from a communicator’s perspective through
storytelling, learning and interaction.

To register, click here

For list of speakers, presenters, off-site visits seminars and banquet, click here

Schedule, Worship Leader, Keynote Sessions, Banquet, Offsite Visits, Speakers

Thursday, October 23

Children’s Orientation Room

Meeting House editors meet during the day

Dining Hall

5-6:30 pm         Check-in.
Times subject to change based on arrival times.

5:30-6:30 pm     Dinner. People
arriving later will need to drive their own vehicles to        local restaurants (map provided).

Dining Hall, curtained-off

6-8 pm              Anabaptist
Communicators Board meets over dinner

Location on campus TBD

8 pm                 Mixer


Friday, October 24

Dining Hall

7:30-8:30 am     Breakfast

Upper Assembly

7:30-8:30 am     Check-in

8:30-9 am         Welcome,
introductions, announcements

                       Worship led by Emily Morgan Ralph

9-10:15 am        Keynote session 1: Going BIG: Twelve reasons why Anabaptists
are        sexy – Todd Wynward

Upper foyer

10:15-10:45 am Break

Upper Assembly

10:45 am-noon  Keynote session 2: Critical building blocks for Anabaptist communicators
– Barth Hague

Dining Hall

Noon-1 pm       Lunch

Front of Dining Hall

1-4:30 pm         Depart for
off-site visits

5 pm                Depart
for banquet and program


Eastern Mennonite Missions Meetinghouse

6-9 pm              A trip to
Afghanistan via Myanmar (Burma): Banquet and program

Sheryl Sensenig Martin. Banquet catered by Karen people of

Habecker’s Mennonite

Saturday, October 25

Dining Hall

7:30-8:30 am     Breakfast

Upper Assembly

8:30-9:30 am     Welcome,

Worship led by Emily Morgan

9:30-10:30 am  
Keynote session 3: A World
of Enough, 2275 A.D. – Todd Wynward

Upper foyer

10:30-11 am      Break

Upper Assembly

11-noon            Keynote
session 4: A World of
Enough, 2275 A.D. – Todd Wynward (continued)

Dining Hall

Noon-1 pm       Lunch

Various rooms

1-2:30               Professional

Upper foyer

2:30- 3 pm        Break

Various rooms

3-4:30 pm         Seminars

Upper Assembly

5-6:30 pm         Dinner
business meeting, wrap up


contemplative charismatic and convinced Anabaptist, Emily Morgan Ralph is
passionate about sharing the Good News of Jesus through music, storytelling,
attentive listening and radical discipleship. Currently on the pastoral team of
Sunnyside Mennonite Church in Lancaster (Pa.) city, Emily also provides
communication support for Franconia Conference (MC USA) and Mennonite World
Conference. Over the last decade, Emily’s growth as a worship leader and
consultant led her to start Franconia’s intercultural worship cohort, a diverse
gathering of musicians who experiment with community-building through
multicultural and multilingual worship. She is author of the book God’s
Dream on Earth: New Narratives for the Intercultural Church
and a
contributor to Herald Press’ Tongue Screws and Testimonies.



Keynote sessions


Session 1:
Going BIG: Twelve Reasons Why Anabaptists Are Sexy – Todd Wynward

Do you think it’s time to go big? Do
Anabaptists really have an important message for the world? Learn more about
the emerging Anabaptist movement and consider which characteristics of
Anabaptism are most important from a communicator’s perspective.

Session 2:
Critical Building Blocks for Anabaptist Communicators – Barth Hague

Image, identity and story – the
fundamentals communicators should keep in mind in building a brand that could
jump-start an Anabaptist revival.

Sessions 3 and
4: A World of Enough, 2275 A.D. – Todd Wynward

An imaginative look into a positive
future of our world, experienced through a spirited creative session in which
Anabaptists turn out to be underdog heroes--two centuries from now.


Barth is associate vice president of University Relations and chief marketing
officer for Wichita State University. Before joining WSU, he served more than
18 years as communication director and later vice president of Marketing
Services for Everence, a financial services company in Goshen, Ind. Barth also served
in various broadcasting assignments, including anchor of the KFH Morning News,
Wichita, Kan., and host of a weekly public affairs program on KUT, the 100,000-watt
NPR affiliate in Austin, Texas. He is currently president of the Newton (Kan.)
Library Board of Trustees and chairman of the Newton Historic Preservation
Commission. A frequent speaker and writer on corporate branding, Barth holds a bachelor’s
degree in business from Goshen (Ind.) College and a master’s degree in communication
from the University of Texas at Austin. He and his spouse, Betty, live in
Newton, Kan. They have two grown sons.


Todd lives with his family in Taos, N.M. When he is not re-imagining
Christianity, Todd is re-imagining public education and the American way of
life, starting with his own. Locally he practices homesteading in the high
desert, while nationally he works to galvanize movements in watershed discipleship,
bioregional food covenants and more-with-less living. He has been engaged in
experiential education and social change movements for 20 years, and has spent
more than a thousand nights outdoors. He is the founder of a wilderness-based
middle school, leads backpacking and river trips for adult seekers, and is an
animating force behind TiLT, an intentional co-housing community. calls
his novel The Secrets of Leaven “a delicious mystery… exploring deep
questions.” His writings and doingscan be found at



Friday banquet and program – A trip to
Afghanistan via Myanmar (Burma)


The 2014
Anabaptist Communicators Conference includes an evening of storytelling and
inter-cultural learning.


will be treated to a meal prepared by local Karen people, formerly of Myanmar
(also known as Burma). They will be preparing a meal for us of rice, noodles
and different toppings including those with meat and also vegetarian options.
Egg rolls and dessert will round out the meal.


They will also
help us to understand their culture a bit more through some songs and a short


After our
stomachs are satisfied, we will welcome Sheryl Sensenig Martin to tell us
stories. ​​Sheryl lived with her family in
Afghanistan for 16 years with Mennonite Mission Network, serving women in a
family nursing context. She went to be a peaceable presence with Muslim people,
and left with the experience of receiving and learning more than she expected.
We will hear stories of resilient and resourceful people in the Afghan context.


This enjoyable
evening will take place at the Eastern Mennonite Missions’ Salunga
Meetinghouse. Vans will be ready to carry people from the MCC Welcoming Place
to Salunga at 5 pm. Dinner will be at 6 pm and we’ll be done by 8 pm.



Offsite visit options


MCC East Coast Material Resources
- Ephrata

James Wheeler

W Trout Run Rd, Ephrata, PA 17522

MCC East Coast Material Resources Center in Ephrata, Pa., is a central
collection point for items donated by people in the U.S. who are responding to
requests for materials from MCC partners. Dig in to the hand-on experience of
faith in action and how volunteers check and pack kits, making comforters,
hand-quilting heirloom quilts, and recycle and ship material resources.
Volunteers come from Mennonite, Amish, Brethren in Christ and other churches as
well as youth and school groups, service clubs, senior groups and families.


Hans Herr House - Willow Street

Host: Scott

1849 Hans Herr
Dr, Willow Street, PA 17584

The 1719 Hans
Herr House, built in that year by Christian and Anna Herr, is the oldest surviving
house in Lancaster County and the oldest original Mennonite meeting house still
standing in the Western Hemisphere. $8 fee for visit; please pay Scott.


Steeple View Lofts and Heart of
- Lancaster city part 1

Larry Gingrich

N Water St, Lancaster, PA 17603

facilities and learn about new city-based ministries growing out of two
well-established organizations – Landis Communities and Friendship Community.
Interact with staff on how Anabaptists values are understood and communicated
in the organization communications, marketing and ministry emphasis. Learn
about communications and marketing strategies that are used/adopted in these

- Lancaster city part 2

Host: Ryan Martin

114 E Chestnut St, Lancaster, PA 17602

Infantree is a small team of designers and creative thinkers
who are passionate about crafting brands in big ways. Founded by two graduates
of Lancaster Mennonite High School, Infantree tackles a wide range of strategy,
print, identity, digital, packaging and environment projects that have won
national recognition.


of Oasis
- Ronks

Host: Joel Nofziger

60 N. Ronks Rd., Suite J, Ronks, PA 17572

Oasis is a collective of Amish and Mennonite Lancaster
County farmers who use chemical-free and certified organic growing techniques.
All of the produce comes from small, family-run, horse-powered farms.



Seminar options


Anabaptist Artist on Gallery Row


works in a storefront studio on Lancaster’s Gallery Row. She will share her
journey of faith and art and what it means to be an Anabaptist in a downtown
artist community.


full-time artist from Lancaster, Pa., Liz travels abroad once a year to spend
several weeks painting such beautiful subjects as the canals of Venice, the
lavender fields of Provence, or the brooding sea and landscapes of Ireland. One
of her most popular collections, the Red Umbrella series, follows a solitary
figure with a red umbrella to many of the locales Liz has visited. Art is not
always what called her; from age 23 to 31 Liz lived in a village in northern
Sweden’s Lapland, where she served on a mission team working with a local
congregation. The artist she idolizes most is the Master Painter Himself, God
the Creator, who has filled this earth with form, color and pattern too
beautiful for any human to recreate. Liz sells her works through her gallery in
downtown Lancaster’s art district on Gallery Row and on



The Next Decade of Anabaptism

Hague and Todd Wynward

open forum around the general sessions, in which participants can get their
questions answered, tease out ideas and explore topics of interest more deeply.
Learn more about inspirational trends within new Anabaptism in various forms
across the country and around the world.



Identity for Anabaptist Communicators
(brainstorming/working session)

Scott Sundberg and Fred Yocum

If you are interested and want to have a part in shaping the
visual identity of Anabaptist Communicators, please come and join this
interactive workshop. We desire input from not only designers, but any and all
interested in this process.


and Storytelling: Asking that Touches Hearts and Inspires Imaginations

Rebekah Burch Basinger

Storytelling is integral at every phase of fundraising, from
making the case for your organization’s worthiness to receive gifts, to asking
for support, to saying thank you. Statistics matter, but stories are more
likely to touch hearts and inspire imaginations. In this session, we’ll talk
about how to find, craft, and tell stories that encourage generous giving and
set up the call to action.

Rebekah has held administrative positions at three
Christian colleges, directed a grant-funded project for the Coalition of
Christian Colleges (now Council for Christian Colleges and Universities), and
for a brief time, worked with the Association of Independent Colleges and
Universities of Pennsylvania as the Director of the Foundation for Independent
Colleges of Pennsylvania. Her solo consulting practice, Basinger Consulting,
helps faith-based nonprofits and their boards fulfill their missions with
economic vitality. In addition to articles and chapters on academic governance,
institutional advancement, and Christian stewardship, Rebekah is co-author with
Dr. Thomas Jeavons of Growing
Givers’ Hearts: Treating Fundraising as Ministry
Publishers, 2000). 

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"Anabaptist Communicators" 
2014 Akron, PA—

2013 Bluffton, OH—Bluffton University

2012 Waterloo, Ontario, Canada—Conrad Grebel University College

2011 Harrisonburg, VA—Eastern Mennonite

2010 Goshen, IN—Goshen  College

2009 Akron,
PA—Mennonite Central Committee

2008 Wichita,

2007 Winnipeg, MB—Canadian
Mennonite University