Recent Developments

Watchwords 2016, Moravian Provinces

Watchwords 2016


Unity Prayer Day Offering, Tortola

Report on Tortola


Unity Board 2014 Resolutions

UB2014 Resolutions


Message to the Unity, Unity Board, May 2014

U B Letter May 2014


Watchwords 2014, Moravian Provinces

Watchwords 2014


Unity Prayer Day Offering 2014

Prayer List for the Province Suriname especially for the ministry in the interior
January 2014

Please continue to keep our sisters and brothers in the interior of Suriname in your prayers. May God also send more people to us all with the courage, foresight and compassion to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have several vacant place and we will make a new start in Dyumu at the Suriname river. The people are open for the gospel and brother Michel Joonha will be in charge. Please remember him and his family in your prayer.

Give thanks and praise for the success of the regional platform installed at the Upper Suriname River and in Brokopondo region, which means that representative of the Medical Care, the Church, the school and the women group are members of the board. Pray for their continuing work with the people especially the women and children

Pray for the development of a diaconal job in the school under the teenagers with their high rate of pregnancy.

Pray for the work that is being done on the part of the social organizations and churches to overcome violence against women and children. That the abuse will stop.

Pray for the economic situation in the interior, to spend the money they earn in the gold digging, in a right way. They are already grateful that God is helping them to improve the situation.

Pray for the many villages that are dealing with severe poverty. Many of our Moravian churches are in such villages and our sisters and brothers deal daily with a lack of proper nourishment, housing, and other necessities of life. For those of us who live in luxury, may we be willing to give out of our abundance to mission groups who are trying to help in these areas as the Upper Suriname River, Upper Saramacca River and Upper Marowijne River.

Pray for the congregation in the interior where they were a lot of activity, that it will come alive again.

The fund will also use for training the different groups in the congregation and regular visiting those area where they are no ordain pastors. The need for outboard motors that will be use as a transport from village to village.
These are the needs for the Mission work in the interior of Suriname in which we need prayer and sponsor for.


Unity Board 2012 Resolutions

Unity Board Meeting 2012

Resolutions

UB2012 Resolution 1: Ministerial exchange program

Whereas the Moravian Church continues to experience growth in many parts of the world;

And whereas there is a need for the teaching of Moravian identity and the development of Moravian polity and practices;

And whereas there is a need to continue to promote the Moravian Church as one International Church in different Countries and among different cultures, races and languages;

And whereas there is the need for the constant exchange of gifts and graces that our Lord has given to His church that can enrich the church and our common witness as Moravians;

And whereas there is much that we need to learn about each other as Moravians;

Be it resolved that a Moravian Church exchange program (clergy or laity) be developed by the Unity Board and administer by the Office of the Unity.

UB2012 Resolution 2: A Unitas Fratrum Code of Conduct in the event of a major conflict within a Moravian Church Province

Be it resolved that in light of the number of conflict situations which have developed within the past couple of decades between groups of members within Unity Provinces, Mission Provinces or Mission Areas, the code of conduct in the Unity is as follows:

-          When a conflict, as a rule between several groups or entities within a Province[1] develops and the conflict involves the leadership, and in the event that the synod, being the highest appeal body within the Province, is unable to find a solution to the said conflict, the Provincial Board notifies the Unity office as early as possible

-          In that case, the Unity office strives at its earliest convenience to visit the area with a Unity Delegation in order to learn about the situation, and if possible to call the parties together to a common meeting in order to find a way forward. As no conflict must be left to develop for a longer period of time and subsequently get out of hand, the Unity has the right and the duty to intervene with measures of mediation, even if not invited to do so by one or both parts.

-          The Unity Synod, the Unity Board and the Unity Executive Committee, whichever is applicable, has the right and duty to hear both parties, to give careful consideration to all matters, to seek to understand the issues and seek a way forward.

-          Because differences in the understanding of Moravian identity and theology are accepted within the Unity, based on the fundamental notion of seeking unity in essentials, liberty in non-essentials and love in all things, the ruling principle is that the Unity, through its structure of leadership, does its best to ensure that all members, who wish to be part of the Unity, can remain so.

-          This however, does not mean that everything and anything is accepted. Clear obedience to and agreement with COUF and the Constitution of the Province is paramount. In cases of doubt as to how to understand COUF, the structure of leadership of the Unity will offer an interpretation. In cases of a group not wishing to accept COUF, this group might be better off leaving the Unity.

-          But first and foremost, all Provinces, all leaders, all ministers are asked always to consider carefully, what builds the Kingdom of God and what is to His glory.

UB2012 Resolution 3: The Current Practice is that the receiving Province pays for a bishop and there are no funds available in the Unity for meeting these expenses.

UB2012 Resolution 4: The proposal concerning setting up a Moravian Church World Mission Conference in 2015 was accepted. The Unity Office will coordinate

UB2012 Resolution 5: Additional funding for the President’s office and compensation package for UBA, and allowance for the President of the Unity Board.

Whereas the operation budget for the Office of the President of the Unity is inadequate,

Be it resolved that the Unity Board looks at the budget for this line item and seeks to provide more funds to the office, particularly for travel and the compensation package for the UBA.

Be it further resolved that some kind of allowance should be given to the President of the Board

UB instructs UEC to look at the budget and find funding to increase both the compensation for UBA and the President.

UB2012 Resolution 6: Prospective Mission Area

Whereas a number of new Mission Areas is part of the Unity and we even see areas, which are not yet officially recognized as Mission Areas, the term “prospective mission areas” has been introduced.

Whereas some of the new Mission Areas and the prospective mission areas are established churches or congregations, wishing to join up with the Moravian Unity, but further investigation is still needed.

Be it resolved that the Unity Board proposes to Unity Synod to include the term “prospective mission area” in the terminology of the Unity. The detailed set of criteria for a “prospective mission area” shall be worked out by the office of the Unity and be presented to the Unity Board at its meeting in 2014 in preparation for Unity Synod 2016.

UB2012 Resolution 7: New region in Africa

Whereas the African Region geographically and numerically is vast and still growing

Be it resolved: The UB2012 asks the UEC to prepare a proposal for the UB2014 meeting dealing with the composition of the African Region or African Regions. The investigation of the situation and the preparation of the proposal will take place in close co-operation with the African Region. The aim is to propose a change of COUF accordingly at Unity Synod 2016. COUF #806 may also be changed accordingly.

UB2012 Resolution 8: Investigation of the viability of establishing a new Mission Area in Eastern Congo

Whereas the Moravian Church is growing in D. R. Congo

Whereas the Moravian Church in Congo is situated mainly in two areas, namely in the provinces Kasai Orientale and Kasai Occidental and in the area of Eastern Congo in the provinces Katanga and Kivu Sud,

Whereas the distances between the two areas are great and the infrastructure is next to non existing,

Whereas the Provincial Board of the Moravian Church in D. R. Congo has accepted the establishing of a Mission Province in Eastern Congo and asks the Unity Board to confirm a Mission Area

Be it resolved that the Unity in corporation with the neighboring Moravian Provinces through the office of the UBA establishes an investigation of the viability of establishing a new Mission Area in Eastern Congo covering at least the provinces Haut Katanga, Tanganika, Maniema, Sud Kivu, Nord Kivu, Ituri and Haut Uele. A Unity delegation will do this investigation.

Be it further resolved that the report of the investigation shall include a description of the viability and the vision of the Mission Area, the possible financing of the work, which one can be the supervising province and who can form a leadership initially.

Be it further resolved that the report is presented to the UEC on first possible occasion and the UEC makes a decision on creation of the Mission Area if viable.

UB2012 Resolution 9: Iringa Mission Area

Be it resolved to refer this proposal to UEC to clarify the geographical boundaries that would be included in the proposed Iringa Mission Area.

UB2012 Resolution 10: Haiti Mission Area

Be it resolved that Haiti is made a Mission Area under the supervision of the Jamaican Unity Province

UB2012 Resolution 11: Alaska United Moravian Ministries (UAMM)

Be it resolved that the UAMM is confirmed as a group of Moravian sisters and brothers and that the Unity has a responsibility to accommodate this group within the structure of the Unity.

Be it further resolved that UAMM forms group of Moravians based in Anchorage, Dillingham and Manokotak, but not restricted to these areas only, but to other parts of Alaska as it is deemed relevant. However, UAMM is not allowed to form new congregations in other villages, where the Alaska Moravian Church has a presence.

Be it further resolved that the group is being supervised by the Unity.

Be it further resolved that the Unity Board asks the APB and the UAMM to seek reconciliation, as UB sees as the ultimate goal to be reconciliation.

Be it further resolved that Br. William Nicholson is asked to seek guidance from Moravian bishops. Br. Nicholson is instructed by the Unity Board not to exercise any ordination until commissioned by a Province.

Be it further resolved that the PEC of the Moravian Church in America, Northern Province is asked to facilitate 2-3 meetings with the APB with the aim of encouragement, reflection and prayer.

The status in the Unitas Fratrum of UAMM will be re-visited by the Unity Board in 2014

UB2012 Resolution 12: pastors dealing with violence against women and advocacy, fighting violence against women 

Whereas Resolution 1, Unity Synod 2009 concerning education of pastors in dealing with violence against women, and

Whereas Resolution 8, Unity Synod 2009 concerning advocacy in order to fight violence against women,

Have not been adequately addressed in the provinces in the preceding period 2009-2012,

Be it resolved that

Unity Board asks the Women’s Desk to take action on the two resolutions and work on creating awareness within the Unity of violence against women, in order to seek to fulfill the wish of the Unity Synod 2009.

UB2012 Resolution 13: Kyela

Unity Board 2012 requests that the MCT Southern Province in cooperation with UBA to visit Kyela and bring request back to UB relative to status.

UB2012 Resolution 14: Zambia – The UB 2012 asks MCT South Western Province as supervising province to guide the Zambia leadership issues in co-operation with the UBA; once clarified, within six months, a report goes to the UEC; pending outcome of development, the UB will consider through postal vote to change the status.

UB2012 Resolution 15: Eastern Tanzania Mission Province: UB recommend withdrawing the proposal. UB ask supervising province and UBA to develop leadership and make recommendation to UEC (see also Resolution 24)

UB2012 Resolution 16: Moravian Church Northern Tanzania Mission Province is granted the status of a Unity Province.

UB2012 Resolution 17: Moravian Church Malawi – be granted the status of a Unity Province.

UB2012 Resolution 18: Moravian Church Lake Tanganyika, Tanzania Mission Province – be granted the status of a Unity Province.

UB2012 Resolution 19: Honduras Unity Undertaking shall become Mission Province with continued work toward full reconciliation and with the pledge that all negative comments and radio advertisements will cease in order to encourage the reconciliation. The Nicaraguan Province will be the supervising province.

UB2012 Resolution 20: All contributions to the Unity to be sent to one place: As part of the consolidation of the Unity Fund in Denmark, all contributions will be sent to one place. It is requested that all provinces pay their contributions in full and not deduct expenses. Statements will still be generated, itemizing what the money goes for. 

UB2012 Resolution 21: UB preparing budget proposal for the Unity finances 2017-2023: UB directs UEC to develop a draft budget (2017-2023) for the UB 2014 to consider in preparation for the 2016 synod.  Specific attention will be given to the line items of Star Mountain and Unity Archives with significant reductions requested.

UB2012 Resolution 22: Bishops’ Conference 2014: The Bishops’ Conference 2014 will be Tanzania at a venue chosen by the Tanzanian Unity Provinces. A bishop from each region outside Africa is asked to travel to Tanzania in early 2013 to prepare the bishop’s meeting in 2014. The regional chairpersons are asked to co-ordinate naming of the bishops from the regions for this meeting. The chairperson of the African region is asked to co-ordinate with all the Tanzanian bishops to set up the preparatory meeting. 

UB2012 Resolution 23: The role of the bishop in the Unity: The Unity Board, meeting in Herrnhut, Germany in 2012, urges all provinces to remember the distinct role of the Moravian Bishop as a pastor to pastors. It is our interpretation of COUF that bishops do not interfere with the decisions and authority of the provincial board.

Further, UB directs UEC to work in consultation with UCOT to prepare a document describing the Moravian understanding of bishop. Further, UB directs UEC to bring to UB 2014 a proposal regarding COUF #687-688 to UB 2014 in preparation for Unity Synod 2016. UB further asks provinces to consider having more than one bishop in each province.

UB2012 Resolution 24: Unity delegation to Eastern Tanzania

A Unity Delegation goes as soon as possible to Eastern Tanzania to investigate, and by postal vote to determine decision on status of the province. The delegation consists of Rev. N. Buya, Chair person of Moravian Church Tanzania, South Western Province and Rev. Dr. Jørgen Bøytler, Unity Business Administrator. (See also Resolution 15)

UB2012 Resolution 25: Zambia change of status await investigation of possible conflict

Whereas the Unity Board has received a report of a non-solved conflict between former and present ordained leaders

Be it resolved that before any change in status of the Mission Province is considered, an investigation is made to clarify the situation there, and provisionally a change of status could be decided postal ballot of the UB.

Be it further resolved that the UBA together with Br. Buya initiates this investigation.

UB2012 Resolution 26: The application from the Czech UU to achieve the status of a Mission Province

Whereas the Unity Board has seen the development in the Czech Unity Undertaking and encouraged the Czech Unity Undertaking to apply for achieving the status of a Mission Province

And whereas the Czech Unity Undertaking has applied for achieving the status of a Mission Province, motivated by the fact the status of a Unity Undertaking does not satisfactorily correspond to their structure within the framework of the Unity

And whereas the Czech Unity Undertaking is an ecclesiastical structure

Be it resolved that the Czech Unity Undertaking is granted the status of a Mission Province, supervised by the European Continental Province.

UB2012 Resolution 27: The Moravian Theological Institutions’ network Taskforce is related the Unity Executive Committee.

UB2012 Resolution 28: Unity Mission and Development Board: UB 2012 directs UMDB to look at the budget for the new Mission Areas and when possible include subsidies to those areas in the budget.

UB 2012 accepts the budget 2012 for UMDB as presented in the meeting

UB 2012 affirms COUF (p 137) that UMDB administers the use of UMDF and that UMDB has the right and duty to plan and agree to the annual budget of UMDF.

 

Unity Board Meeting 2012

Elections

 

President of the Unity Board:.

Br. Robert Hopcroft was elected,

Vice-President of the Unity Board

 

Br. Nosigwe Buya was elected

 

 

Election of one MCF Board member of the American Region

Br. Graham R. Kerslake is elected unanimously.

UWD Advisory Board were approved by UB

-          African Region—Sr. Angelene Swart,

-          American Region—Sr. Sallie Greenfield,

-          Caribbean Region—Sr. Muriel Held,

-           European Region—pending.

The following Sub-Desk Coordinators were approved by Unity Board

-          African Region—Sr. Rachel Lwali— (Western Province, Rukwa Province, Congo Province, Lake Tanganyika/Kigoma Rwanda, Burundi, Kenya, Northern/Arusha, Uganda),

-          Sr. Agness Njeyo—(Southern Province, Southwestern Province, Eastern/Dar Es Salaam, Malawi, Zambia

-          Sr. Margo Harris—American Region,

-          Sr. Muriel Held—Caribbean Region  (English-Speaking),

-          Caribbean Region (Spanish and Miskito Speaking areas) – Ofelia Alverez (Spanish speaking)

Seats representing South Africa (and any other English-Speaking areas that develop in Southern Africa) and the European Region areas are still vacant.

 

 

Unity Board Meeting 2012

Provinces asked to do

 

All provinces, please watch for information for a new bank account number for Unity Fund

 

UCOT meets in May 2013. All provinces are encouraged to turn in statements on UCOT agendas “same gender” and “sexual abuse” to UBA no later than March 1, 2013.

 

 

Unity Board Meeting 2012

Committees asked to do

 

Unity Board recommends UCOT to include in its agenda the office of the acolyte, including history, contemporary terms, the names, the functions in different provinces.

 

UB asks UEC to work on preparing a document spelling out understanding of Moravian Bishop, in cooperation with UCOT.

UEC is asked to revisit COUF and suggest an amendment to #687 for Unity Synod, and discussed at UB 2014.

WCC Membership of Provinces and of the Unity: UEC is asked to develop a plan.  

 

 

Unity Board Meeting 2012

Declarations

 

Declaration of the Unity Board to the Moravian Church in Honduras

The Unity Board of the Worldwide Moravian Church (Iglesia Evangelica Morava), met in Herrnhut, Germany 31st of October through 4th of November 2012.

Reports from all parts of the Unity were presented. The report of the Moravian Church Honduras Unity Province (Iglesia Evangelica Morava en Honduras),  was presented and discussed. The events having taken place within the past two years, especially what took place after the Provincial Board resolving to give the former chair person furlough was intensely discussed.

As leaders of every Province around the world, we declare that the Provincial Board of the Moravian Church in Honduras is the only recognized and legal board of the Honduras Unity Province of the Moravian Church. The members – President Isai Granwell, Vice President Mishael Miller Allen, Attorney Frank Goff Eude, Secretary Julio Cesar Mejia, Vocal I Jose Edgardo Saicion, Vocal II Brenda Arre Chavala, and Vocal III Carlos Roches – were duly elected at the only legitimate Provincial Synod, held Brus Laguna in June 2011.

Further, the Unity Board meeting 2012 has declared the former Unity Undertaking of the Moravian Church in Honduras a Mission Province of the worldwide Moravian Unity and as such a recognized entity of the worldwide Moravian Church.

Further, the Unity Board stressed the importance of the Unity Synod 2009 Resolution nr. 17, which calls for continuous reconciliation between the two Moravian entities in Honduras.

Further, the Unity Board takes this opportunity to underline the fact that the Moravian Church worldwide is one Church consisting of 21 Unity Provinces and a number of Mission Provinces throughout the world. It means that the provinces of this international Church care for one another and no province is an island, but is part of the worldwide Unity and adhering to rules and regulations stipulated in Church Order of the Unitas Fratrum.

Unity Board, November 4th, 2012 meeting in Herrnhut, Germany

 



[1] From time to time, a conflict with an individual arises within a province and is dealt with by the province and/or its synod and it may not need Unity interventions. 




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