APRIL 17, 2017

2017 Appointments/Changes of Status

Districts: (CN) Canal · (FL) Firelands · (MO) Mid-Ohio · (MV) Mahoning Valley · (NC) North Coast · (OV) Ohio Valley   (SH) Southern Hills · (TR) Three Rivers · (TW) Tuscarawas · (WR) Western Reserve

Note: effective 7/1/2017 unless otherwise noted

Carolyn Baker:
Perrysville UMC, TR
Doug Beggs: Beechwood & Peace UMCs, TW
Lori Burdette-Steele: 
Creston Canaan UMC, FL
Shaun Green: Uhrichsville First & Good Shepherd UMCs,  TW
Gregory Kendrick,Jr. (W. Ohio): Associate pastor, Church of the Saviour UM, NC
Carolyn Nichols: Greentown UMC, TW
Shirley Stoops Frantz: Bristolville UMC, WR 4/1/17

Stephen Modranski:  Sycamore Tree UMC, OV
Tom Snodgrass: Cadiz Scott Memorial UMC, OV

View the current appointment list

Health Benefits

Conference-sponsored health benefits to change effective January 1, 2018.

It is very important that you attend one of the eight informational meetings hosted by the Conference Board of Pensions.  Anyone can attend any of the meetings, at which handouts will be distributed and the changes discussed.

You should attend an informational meeting if you are currently covered by the conference health benefit plan with Aetna. 

This includes:

  • active clergy and lay employees of the local church,
  • retirees younger than age 65,
  • retired clergy, their spouses and surviving spouses who are younger than age 65,
  • lay delegates to Annual Conference, and
  • chairpersons of Finance Committees and of Staff Parish Relations Committees.

No changes are planned to the health care benefits of retirees who are age 65 or older; retired clergy, their spouses and surviving spouses.

The 2018 Health Benefits Plan page of the conference website will have the latest information, as it is available.  Please direct questions to  Benefits Manager Betsy Stewart.

Visit Africa University

The generosity of the East Ohio Conference built the first two three-story dormitories at Africa University, and has endowed the most university scholarships of any annual conference in the denomination.  The March 19 special offering for Africa University raised $801 to further support its students.

You have an opportunity to represent the East Ohio Conference and visit Africa University with Bishop Tracy S. Malone August 20-30, 2017.  While in Zimbabwe the group will tour the 3Cs-supported Emsizini School, visit Victoria Falls, cruise the Zambezi River, take a game drive in a national park, and see a drum and dance show.

The reservation deadline is May 15, so you must act quickly if you would like to be part of the EOC delegation.  The approximate cost of the trip, including airfare, is $5,300/person.  A $750 deposit is due, along with the trip application, by May 15.  E-mail Bruce Hitchcock at bhitchcock@windstream.net to request an application and receive the payment schedule.

Native American Ministries Sunday

Native American Ministries Sunday is April 30, a day set aside by The United Methodist Church to recognize and honor the contributions that Native Americans make to our church and society.

When you give to the special offering on April 30: you support aspiring Native American pastors and enrich outreach in their communities; you equip seminary students who will honor and celebrate Native American culture in their ministries; and you empower congregations that are finding fresh new ways to minister to their communities with the love of Christ.

To publicize Native American Ministries Sunday in your church be sure to check out the downloadable videos, bulletin inserts, social media banners, and graphics that are available in the Native American Ministries Pastor and Leader’s Kit.


Advance Special #9195 – South Street Ministries
South Street Ministries is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) non-profit organization committed to the physical, socio-economic, and spiritual well being of the South Akron/Summit Lake neighborhood.  Founded in 1997 by Duane and Lisa Crabbs, South Street has had eighteen years of programming, ministry, and shared life with, for, and amongst the poorer residents of Summit Lake and South Akron.

The major programs of South Street include after-school program, summer youth camp, urban gardening, bike shop, jail ministry, open gym basketball, a teen arts studio, youth sports scholarships (including football, soccer, and wrestling), and extensive adult outreach (recovery, reentry, employment, and others). Other consistent efforts include pastoral counseling, emergency food, employment and shelter assistance, as well as a consistent, loving neighborhood presence. This new year also includes new programming including  South Street’s Economic Development Center.

Volunteer Testimony
“Nearly three years ago today I walked into South Street’s Front Porch café for the first time…I remember getting goosebumps as I sat and watched some “odd couples” do lunch in the once-ethnic club.  I had never been in a space before—in Akron, at least—businessmen, laypersons, ministers, the affluent and the poor ate together in one space…At the time, I was a part of a college internship and volunteered with Joe the Executive Director. I became a volunteer as soon as I could, and loved meeting all of South Street’s ‘regulars’ and friends.  I thank God for South Street Ministries’ work in Summit Lake! They really taught me how to be good neighbors and friends to people I used to think were different than me…the teens I work with are now my friends”

To support this ministry, make a donation through your local church treasurer to Fund #9195


May 17
Confronting the Issue of Opioid Addiction
Cuyahoga County made national headlines on February 6 with news that, in one weekend, 14 individuals died from drug overdoses.  Church of the Saviour, (North Coast District)  will host a panel of experts who will speak from their experience about dealing with the complex issue of opioid addiction. The event begins at 7 pm. Presenters include: Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner Thomas Gilson, MD, Signature Health Medical Director Libbie Stansifer, MD and Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court Judge Joan Synenberg. For more information. 

UM Financial Credit Union

Don’t Miss Out On This Offer
There’s still time to transfer those high interest rate loans to a UMFCU Visa Card!  5.24% APR until the transferred balance is paid in full. No transfer fees. Offer available through 5/31/2017. Don’t have a card with us yet? No problem. Apply today.

For more information call 800-831-3972 Ext 6 or 800-373-1059.

Pastoral Care and Counseling

April 17, 2017 Resources
In this edition we feature:

  • Women in Ministry: Finding Shoulders to Stand On
  • Video: Her Truth: Women in Ministry
  • Three Urgent Leadership Questions for Thriving in a Connected World
  • Spiritual Practice: Caring for Creation
  • Being with Flowers
  • Tuning In: Good Listening
  • Love Your Body, Free Your Mind
  • Listings of Spiritual Formation Groups and our Spiritual Directors

Contact Us
If you have any questions or issues you would like for us to address, or would like to get email alerts when new resources have been posted, please contact Howard Humphress at hkhumphress@gmail.com or use our quick contact form.

Media Center

The Media Center recently acquired the following resources:

  • The Rewritten Life: When God Changes Your Story explores the transformational power of God through the stories of people in the Bible whose lives were changed forever by God. It connects the biblical stories to our own lives, showing us that God wants us to be just as intimately involved in rewriting our stories so that we may become and do all that God has planned for us-all for God’s glory.
  • TrueU 02: Is the Bible Reliable? and TrueU 03: Who Is Jesus? equips students to stand up for their beliefs in the face of a culture that tells them their faith is absurd, obsolete, and impractical.

To reserve these or other resources, call the Media Center at (800) 831-3972 x 139 or send an e-mail to sarnold@eocumc.com. Browse the resource catalog at  www.rqmweb.com/eocumc

Message in the Movies

Movie review by Rev. Bruce Batchelor-Glader
Photo by Pure Flix

The Case For Christ “Once again, I am stumped about who the intended audience for this film might be. I cannot imagine that most atheists would flock to a flick entitled The Case for Christ. In a recent online interview at Patheos.com, Strobel said: “I think the evidence can get us to the point of being in intellectual agreement, but ultimately, coming to faith and being as the Bible refers to it ‘born again’ requires receiving this gift of grace.”

For full review.

Classifieds/Items Available

  • Office Manager, Solon UMC
  • Youth Director, Sunbury UMC
  • Choir Director, Delaware Asbury UMC
  • Director of Music Ministries,  Church of the Saviour UM
  • Worship Director, Mentor UMC

Details of the above classifieds/items wanted can be found here.

To submit job postings and items available please email lois@eocumc.com

Events – April 17-May 1

April 18
Ohio PAUMCS, Oak Chapel UMC
April 18
Sibshop, Greensburg UMC
April 18
Goods Distribution, McKinley Community Outreach Center 
April 20
Expect A Miracle Workshop, United Theological Seminary
April 20
Supper at The Corner, Smith Corners UMC 
April 21
Gospel Bluegrass Jam, Manchester UMC 
April 22
Historians Convocation
April 22
Tuscarawas Spring Conference & Leadership Training, Union Ave UMC
April 22
Engage: Faith.  Family.Friendship. Brecksville UMC
April 22
Credit Union Annual Meeting, North Canton Faith UMC
April 22
Paint Party Fundraiser, Smithville UMC
April 23
Holy Humor Sunday, Smithville UMC
April 23
70th Anniversary Celebration, St. Matthew UMC
April 23
Three Rivers District Spring Conference, Coshocton Grace UMC
April 26
Concert, Newcomer’s Chapel of Pigeon Run UMC
April 28
Youth Fundraiser, Wooster UMC
April 29
Race At The Rock, Flat Rock Care Center
April 29
Rummage Sale, Smithville UMC
April 29
Racial Justice Training, Christ Woodland UMC
April 29
Taxable Goods Distribution, McKinley Community Outreach Center
April 29
Free Lunch, Park UMC
April 29
Free Meal, Mentor UMC
April 30-May 2
Thrive: Ministry on the Edge Conference
April 30
Free Breakfast, LaPorte UMC
April 30
Canal District Spring Conference, Lockwood UMC
April 30
Auction Fundraiser, Park UMC
April 30-May 2
Tent Revival, Mt. Zion UMC

Follow this link to the events calendar.

To submit a calendar event.


Please pray for the family of Barbara Ann Crooks, surviving spouse of Rev. Paul Crooks, who died March 30, 2017.

For full obituary notices.


To Subscribe

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The next scheduled edition of the E-News will be May 1, 2017.  Deadline for submission is April 26.