For events in the Bucher Meetinghouse, use “450 Campus Road, Elizabethtown, PA” in your navigation app. Although not an actual physical address, it will place you close to the entrance of the Young Center parking lot. Then use the building’s main entrance—beside the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies sign—to access the meetinghouse.
February 8 through April 4, 2024 • Hess Gallery, Zug Memorial Hall
Monday—Friday: 9 am–8 pm • Saturday—Sunday: 1–5 pm
Before Baptism: Growing Up Amish
“Before Baptism" showcases the collaborative photography of Gail Nogle and Ellen Sabin and provides a remarkable window into the lives of Nebraska, or “white-topper,” Amish of Central Pennsylvania. Over the past nine years, Nogle and Sabin have documented persistence and change in this highly traditional community. The exhibit features the experiences of Amish children who have not yet joined the church through baptism.
Gail Nogle, of Dallas, Texas, is a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology and became one of the few women in the world awarded a fellowship from the American Society of Photographers. Ellen Sabin is a professional photographer based in Raleigh, North Carolina. A graduate of Truman State University, she counts artists Jay Stock and Gail Nogle as mentors.
Thursday, March 14, 2024 • 6:00 pm • Susquehanna Room of Myer Hall
The annual Young Center dinner gives faculty, staff, students, church leaders, and other friends of the Young Center the opportunity to socialize and learn about the Center’s activities and programs.
A reception for Durnbaugh Lecturers William Kostlevy and Surita Sandosham will be held at 5:30; the dinner will begin at 6:00.
Cost for the dinner is $25 and reservations are required by February 29. Register online or by mailing a check (payable to Elizabethtown College) to Young Center, Elizabethtown College, 1 Alpha Drive, Elizabethtown, PA 17022. Questions? Call the Young Center at 717-361-1470.
Parking is available at the Elizabethtown Church of the Brethren, 777 S. Mt. Joy Street. Enter the parking lot from Cedar Street.
Thursday, March 14, 2024 • 7:00 pm • Susquehanna Room of Myer Hall
Celebrating Eighty Years of Heifer International
“The Christians of American can save Europe,” an early enthusiast observed during World War II, referring to a small-scale relief program then called Heifers for Relief. Created in stark contrast to the mass scale development projects of its time—the collectivization of agriculture in the USSR, the Tennessee Valley Authority in the US, and later the building of the Aswan Dam—Heifer and its visionary founder Dan West (1893–1971) sought to end war by removing its causes and creating personal human connections across religious, cultural, ideological, and geographical divides. Its successes, if often more modest, were dependent on a diverse body of ordinary farmers who shared its vision and did the hard work to make it successful. William Kostlevy will recount Heifer’s origins and how a vision became a reality.
Following Kostlevy’s lecture, Surita Sandosham, president and CEO of Heifer International, will describe Heifer’s current work and its mission to end hunger and poverty while caring for the Earth, by providing appropriate livestock, training and related services to small-scale farmers and communities worldwide.
William C. Kostlevy holds degrees from Bethany Theological Seminary and the University of Notre Dame. He is the editor of the Historical Dictionary of the Holiness Movement, 3rd edition (2024) and coeditor of Hoosier Prophet: Selected Writings of Dan West (2021). Kostlevy has served as archivist and as director of the Brethren Historical Library and Archives. He was a visiting fellow at the Young Center in fall 1997.
Surita Sandosham was named president and CEO of Heifer International in 2022. Born and raised in Singapore, Sandosham is a graduate of the University of London and has more than two decades of leadership experience at global nonprofit organizations working on behalf of vulnerable populations.
Friday, March 15, 2024 • 9:30 am–noon • Bucher Meetinghouse
The Changing Landscape of Relief, Development, and Service
The world in which Heifers for Relief (now Heifer International) took shape eighty years ago was markedly different from that of today. And yet human need remains very much the same. In this seminar, panelists will discuss key developments shaping the contemporary landscape of global relief efforts, including the significance of localization and decentralization, the role of faith communities in shaping development programs, the ways geopolitics and global economics impact relief and development, and the challenge of sustainability and climate change in development work.
In addition, they will consider factors shaping current understandings of service, including interdependent models of service, shifting motivation for service, strategies for nurturing an ethic of service, and efforts to develop authentic connections between service locally and globally. They will engage with questions and contributions from the audience as well.
The panelists will be Surita Sandosham, president and CEO of Heifer International; Nathan Hosler, director of the Church of the Brethren’s Office of Peacebuilding and Policy; Sanjay Paul, associate professor of economics at Elizabethtown College; Alain Epp Weaver, director of strategic planning, Mennonite Central Committee; and Alexandra Aligarbes, co-pastor, Harrisburg First Church of the Brethren.
Tuesday, April 2, 2024 • 7:00 pm • Bucher Meetinghouse
Language Patterns among Lancaster County Anabaptists: Do the Amish and Groffdale Conference Mennonites use English and Pennsylvania Dutch Differently?
Rose Fisher explores the language habits of the Amish and Old Order (Groffdale Conference) Mennonites of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. She considers how English and Pennsylvania Dutch are used in contrast to one another and the extent to which each is restricted to certain domains (e.g., in the home as opposed to at work). In particular, Fisher discusses how the norms of use for English and Pennsylvania Dutch differ between the Amish and Mennonites of Lancaster County and what impact that has on how the grammar of Pennsylvania Dutch is developing over time.
Rose Fisher is a Ph.D. student in German linguistics whose research focuses on Pennsylvania Dutch. During her time as the Young Center's Kreider Fellow, she will visit Amish and Groffdale Conference Mennonites to collect data for her dissertation project. As a former member of the Amish and as a linguist, Fisher is interested in promoting the Pennsylvania Dutch language by better understanding its grammar, how it interacts with English, and the ways that the rich culture of the Anabaptists shapes it over time.
Tuesday, September 19, 2024 • 7:00 pm • Bucher Meetinghouse
Discovering Fianna Bucher Meyer
Who was Fianna Bucher Meyer? She was an Elizabethtown College student (1907–1908) from a family of Brethren leaders, a young mother, and a victim of tuberculosis. She was also grandmother to Nancy L. Bieber (’67), who discovered her grandmother when she unearthed boxes of letters in the attic a century after Fianna’s death. Bieber will talk about this discovery and how her research uncovered more about Fianna’s life.
Nancy L. Bieber is a spiritual director, writer, and retired psychologist. She is the author of Decision Making and Spiritual Discernment The Sacred Art of Finding Your Way (SkyLight Paths, 2010) and Fianna’s Story: A True Story of Love, Grief, and Faith (Masthof Press, 2020). Copies of Fianna's Story will be available for sale and signing after the lecture.