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The Brethren in Christ Church in Japan celebrated its fifth anniversary in 1959. Missionaries Doyle and Thelma Book are on the left and Pete and Mary Willms and their daughters Margie and Bonnie are on the right.

2023 Annual Meeting to Celebrate Seventy Years of the Brethren in Christ in Japan

The 2023 Annual Meeting will be held on Saturday, September 30, 2023, at the Grantham Brethren in Christ Church, 421 Grantham Rd., Mechanicsburg, PA 17055. Dinner will be at 5:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall, with the program following at 6:45 in the sanctuary.

The focus of the meeting will be the Brethren in Christ Church in Japan which celebrates its seventieth anniversary this year. Joining us will be former missionaries to Japan who will be part of a panel discussion. We also look forward to hearing greetings by video from the church in Japan. In addition, John Yeatts, Historical Society president, will present his annual report.

The cost for the dinner is $22.00 per person. Please fill out the registration form (see link below) and send it with your payment to Ken Hoke, 101 Clarindon Place, Carlisle, PA 17013. Deadline for registration is September 22, 2023. Note: if you served in Japan with the Board for World Missions, you will be our guest for the meal. When you fill out the registration form, write BICWM in the space for the amount included.

Registration form (print, fill out, and mail)


2023 Heritage Service Featured our Old Order and United Zion Brothers and Sisters

The Annual Heritage Service was held on Sunday, June 4, 2023, at the Ringgold Meeting House. It was a joint service with the Old Order River Brethren, the United Zion Church, and the Brethren in Christ Church U.S. These churches are the three related groups in the United States that grew out of the original formation of the River Brethren in south central Pennsylvania in the late 1700s. Each group led the worshippers in song, and a representative from each group described three deeply held values or beliefs and one desire for their ongoing ministry as a church family.

The Old Order River Brethren presenter was Chris Brode. He spoke led a song in the Old Order style.  Representing the United Zion was Rev. Ethan Levengood, songleader, and Rev. John Leisey spoke. Dr. John Yeatts spoke for the Brethren in Christ U.S. and David Perry led the singing.

You can watch the entire service here.



About 100 people attended the 2021 annual dinner and meeting Saturday, October 2, 2021 at the Grantham Brethren in Christ Church, where E. Morris Sider’s new book was released.

John Dietz, a board member representing the Old Order River Brethren, asks Morris a question.

With the intriguing title of Brown Sugar Sandwiches and Other Stories, the book features Sider’s memories from his life. During the program, Society president Ken Hoke moderated a panel of Society members who asked Sider questions about his book, giving him an opportunity to share “behind the scenes” about his writing process and some stories he chose not to include in the book.

All members of the Society will receive a free copy of the book, and additional copies are available for sale for $10 each plus postage. Email the Society for a copy.

If you missed the meeting, you can listen to the audio.


Annual Heritage Service, June 6, 2021

Two congregations tell stories of how they responded during the COVID-19 pandemic by serving others in their communities. Watch the video.