The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.  --Song of Solomon 2:12

a newsletter for Central Plains Mennonite Conference leaders

Pastors, Elders, Deacons, Central Plains Delegates, Church Moderator, Treasurer, Christian Education Chair, Missions Committee, Mennonite Women, Church Librarian, Youth Sponsors.

April 20, 2016

For Your Prayers: weekly bulletin announcements

      Here are weekly prayer requests for each week between now and the next issue of The Sower. Please share them with your congregation by whichever method works best, whether it be in your bulletin, in the pastoral prayer or some other way. Thank you!
For Sunday, April 24

Pray for Des Moines Mennonite Church and Christ Community Church as they prepare to host us at Central Plains Annual Meeting 2016 in Des Moines June 16-19. 

For Sunday, May 1
Pray for Mennonite Church USA Executive Director Ervin Stutzman as he visits Central Plains churches in the Twin Cities region accompanied by David Boshart this weekend.  

For Sunday, May 8
Michael Swartzendruber will be installed and licensed toward ordination today at Wayland (IA) Mennonite Church.  Pray for Michael, co-pastor Kelly Slagel, and the congregation as they begin a new journey of ministry together.

For Sunday, May 15
Pray that Youth Escape 2016, the biennial youth retreat for Central Plains youth, will be a time of spiritual growth and renewal for the youth and adults who attend July 15-17. 
Next month, The Sower will be dated May 18.  Send submissions to by May 3
El Sembrador, the Spanish version of The Sower, is available here.  

Upcoming Events

Annual Leaders Retreat will take place April 22-24, 2016, in Schuyler, Nebraska.
Central Plains Annual Meeting 2016 will take place June 16-19, 2016, in Des Moines, Iowa.
Youth Escape 2016 will take place July 15-17, 2016 in central Iowa.

Only ten more days in the fiscal year

Finance update
    Income for the month of March came in at $22,603.46.  Expenses held steady at $35,544.00.  As a result of this monthly deficit, we have fallen back into the RED by $11,317.31 for the fiscal year. 
     The end of the fiscal year is just ten days away on April 30. We are all hoping for strong donations in April to push us into the black, and we will need to receive $11,000 more in contributions by next Saturday.
You can help
      Has your congregation made its full contribution to Central Plains for this year?  Every congregation receives services from conference regardless of its level of financial support. We challenge every congregation to give to Central Plains, even if only a small amount. Can we achieve 100% congregational participation in contributing to our budget? 
     To that end, two anonymous donors have offered a dollar-for-dollar match for the first $12,500 of contributions received from individuals or from contributions designated by congregations as "above annual congregational commitments." 
     Thank you for your prayerful consideration. –Stewardship Task Group

Staff News

April 22-24  Dave, Shana and Tim will attend Annual Leaders Retreat at Schuyler, Nebraska.
23-24  Tim will meet with Pastoral Leadership Committee for credentialing interviews.
April 30-May 2  Dave will accompany Ervin Stutzman on visits to Twin Cities area churches.
2-3  Shana will attend an adult formation workshop in the Twin Cities.
8 Tim will be at Wayland Mennonite for Michael Swartzendruber's installation and credentialing.
10-11  Dave will present a workshop at an Ohio Conference gathering.
14-15  Dave will be at Beemer Mennonite Church for leadership training and to preach.
16  Tim will be in Chicago to attend Lombard Mennonite Peace Center board meeting.

It's time to register for Annual Meeting!

...and you can both register and pay ONLINE!
Find everything you need on our Annual Meeting 2016 web page. Register by April 30 for the lowest rate; the fee goes up by $20 in May and goes even higher in June.
The early bird gets the deal! 

New phone number for the Freeman office

     The new number, 605-929-3325, is effective immediately.  The old number will be disconnected after Annual Meeting, June 16-19, 2016.

Villatoro family support

     Thank you for your prayers for our visits in Washington, D.C.  Read a full report here.  Continue to pray for Max and Gloria as they seek God's guidance in how to reunite their family. Other ways to support the Villatoros:

Ecuador tour rescheduled

      We are postponing the June 2016 trip to Ecuador until January 2017, since we did not have enough people subscribed for this trip. We are in the process of setting new dates for January 2017 and will post them on the Central Plains website. It's not too soon to communicate your interest in the January trip! Would you like to make a mid-winter trip to the “Land of Eternal Spring”? Contact Joetta Schlabach, or 612-375-9483.  

Youth Escape Quick Facts

Resources for congregations from ADNet

     The Anabaptist Disabilities Network has published three books in the Supportive Care Series that congregations can order from MennoMedia for just $8.99 each.
     Circles of Love, stories of congregations caring for people with disabilities and their families
     Supportive Care in the Congregation, providing a congregational network of care for persons with significant disabilities
     After We’re Gone, a Christian perspective on estate and life planning for families that include a dependent member with a disability.
     Anabaptist Disabilities Network serves congregations, families, and persons touched by disabilities to nurture ever more inclusive communities.  Resources offered and/or recommended at covering a broad range of disabilities including, physical, emotional, intellectual, developmental, and mental illness disabilities.  Consultation available to congregational leaders, groups, and individuals.  Email or call 877-214-9838.

WDC Library subscription to end April 30

     For the past several years, Central Plains has paid a subscription to the Western District Conference (WDC) Resource Library that has given all our congregations and individual members access to the library.  With the departure of a couple congregations, the conference budget needs to be reduced, and the subscription to the WDC Resource Library will be discontinued as of April 30.  
     Individual congregations can subscribe, however, and continue with the Box of Books program as well as individual library cards for their members.  A yearly membership for a congregation costs $1 per year per regular attender with a $100 per year minimum.  Individuals may subscribe on their own for $25/year.  These prices are negotiable for those who want to subscribe but cannot afford the rate.
     Central Plains also has a resource library that Central Plains churches and individuals can use.  It is smaller than the WDC Library, and it focuses mainly on curriculum for children, youth and adults.  It is located in the Kalona office. Shana will mail you items and you mail them back. Find a list of everything in the Central Plains Formation Resource Library at

Order your VBS curriculum

Jesus surprised the people he met! People in the temple were amazed by the conversations and questions they had with a boy named Jesus. Hungry people in a crowd had more than enough food to eat when Jesus provided plenty of food. Two travelers were sad that Jesus died, but then they were surprised when Jesus started walking alongside them! With each surprise, people discovered more about Jesus. Are you ready to be surprised by Jesus? Are you ready to ask questions and discover more about him? Then come along on the journey, open your eyes, and see what you will find! Find Surprise! VBS curriculum at the MennoMedia online store.

Minnesota Peacebuilding Leadership Institute

STAR-Lite Training: Learning Strategies Awareness and Resilience in a Single Day  - Saturday May 21, 2016, Minneapolis 

Strategies for Trauma Awareness and Resilience – the STAR Training  - Mon-Fri, Aug. 8-12, 2016, Minneapolis 
   –Donna Minter, director of the Minnesota Peacebuilding Leadership Institute.

AMBS Spring webinars

Greg Boyd on Anabaptism: Engaging Mauricio Chenlo on Mennonite Church Planting - Conversation 4
Thursday, April 14, 2016  1:00-2:30p.m. CDT
Presenters: Greg Boyd, PhD, and  Mauricio Chenlo, MDiv.
Moderator: David B. Miller, AMBS

For more information and to register, click here.
The Sower is published the third Wednesday of each month for Central Plains pastors, delegates, conference leaders, congregational leaders and other interested persons. Please include items from this newsletter in your church bulletins and newsletters. Find back issues at
Editor: Shana Peachey Boshart:
Spanish translation by Steven Rhodes: 319-930-7303

Office: P.O. Box 101, Freeman, SD 57029
         Monica Clem, Office Manager: 605-929-3325;
Conference Ministers: P.O. Box 352, Kalona, IA 52247
         David Boshart:; 319-936-5904
         Tim Detweiler:; 319-458-0224
         Shana Boshart:; 319-936-5905
Hispanic Ministries Coordinator: Ramiro Hernandez 319-621-3725
Moderator Margie Mejia Caraballo:  309-235-3011
Assistant Moderator Sid Burkey: 402-761-2093

The mission of Central Plains Mennonite Conference is to create settings for our congregations and partners to grow in holistic witness to God's reconciling mission in the world by developing leadership, encouraging fellowship and promoting lifelong discipleship.
Copyright © 2016 Central Plains Mennonite Conference, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
P.O. Box 101, Freeman, SD  57029

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Central Plains Mennonite Conference · P.O. Box 101 · Freeman, SD 57029 · USA

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