August 10, 2020

COVID-19 Ministry Resources

Purchase KN95 Personal Protection Equipment
The General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) recently announced a new ministry partnership with On the Go Masks. The company is offering an exclusive program for the purchase of KN95 personal protection equipment (PPE) at a reduced rate so that churches and other United Methodist entities can have the supplies needed as they begin to re-open or schedule future re-openings. The program offers: FDA-registered products for adults and children; direct-to-the-church wholesale pricing; easy, online ordering; and free shipping within the United States.

Learn more about the GCFA/On the Go Masks ministry partnership.


Financial/Benefits Seminar Cancelled
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual Board of Benefits-hosted financial/benefits seminar normally held in September has been cancelled. Please note that those considering retirement in 2021 or 2022 can e-mail Benefits Manager Betsy Stewart to arrange a personal pre-planning retirement consultation by conference call, Zoom, or in an agreed upon meeting space with proper social distancing.

E-mail Betsy Stewart.

Higher Education

Leading in Crisis Panel Event – August 12 @ Noon
How do we keep our mission alive right now? How do we drive engagement and dialogues with our community? How do we witness the Good News when today’s news seems so bleak? The General Board of Higher Education & Ministry (GBHEM) is asking these questions to the experts.

Join us online at noon on Wednesday, August 13 for Part III of the Leading in Crisis series to discuss how to keep your mission alive at a time when you might be struggling just to keep your lights on. Panelists will include Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey, the Rev. Dr. Douglas F. Powe, Jr., and the Rev. Ted Henry.

View the free livestream of the Leading in Crisis e-panel.


Tell Us About A Special Ministry of Your Church
We are called to reach out to our communities in creative ways to share the love of Jesus Christ and transform the world. The EOC Communications team is blessed to have a front row seat to share across the Conference and The United Methodist Church the stories of these creative ministries. In the past month we’ve introduced viewers to:

We want to share stories of your church ministry, too. E-mail Director of Communications Rick Wolcott with information about how your congregation is making disciples of Jesus Christ in your community.


Office of Christian Unity and Interreligious Relationships (OCUIR)
The Ohio Council of Churches is hosting a watch party and discussion on the film Rigged: The Voter Suppression Playbook. The award-winning documentary tracks a systematic, decade-long effort to suppress votes and reverse the growing demographic tide of non-white and younger voters. The rigorous look at voter suppression sparks spirited discussion on the actions needed to protect our democracy.

Register to participate in this virtual event.

Anti-Racism Multi-Week Study: Starting a Journey of Reconciliation
The virtual study Starting a Journey of Reconciliation began August 3 – but it’s not too late to click the Facebook link below and join in the discussion. The first discussion – centered on the question, “Race matters: What can I do?” – called upon participants to reflect on their first encounters and experiences around race. View topics of future conversations.

Join the Starting a Journey of Reconciliation Facebook group.


Host a Virtual 5K Run/1-Mile Walk to Support Missions and Advocacy
Support a ministry of mission in your local church or community – or make a statement about peace, justice or injustice – by hosting a virtual 5K run or 1-mile walk. It’s a great way to be together outdoors at a safe social distance while building community and helping others.

Promote a mission project in your own church or district, or pick a project from our list of Advance Specials. Please e-mail Kathy Dickriede with questions and to let her know you are interested in organizing a run/walk.

Learn more about a virtual run/walk fundraiser.

Mission Volunteer Orientation Deadline is August 15
Time is running out to register for the free September 3-4 virtual Mission Volunteer Orientation presented by the North Central Jurisdiction United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM). The 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. EDT daily sessions are for all individuals and couples interested in learning more about the Mission Volunteer program or those who are discerning future long-term volunteer service as part of their journey. Participants can select from three options as they determine the best way to support the program. Are you 1) interested in serving in 2021, or 2) wanting to know more about the program, or 3) just curious about what the program entails?

Learn more and register.

NCJ UMVIM Mission Academy to be Virtual October 9-31
The Mission Academy will be virtual in October. Current sessions include: In Mission Together, Theology of Mission, Virtual Missions, Youth and Young Adults, Preparing the Local Church for Disaster, UMVIM 101, Puerto Rico Update, UMVIM Team Training, Environmental Racism. Additional sessions are being scheduled. Registration information will be available soon.

New United Methodist Volunteers in Mission Website
The five jurisdictional United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) offices have entered a new phase of collaboration by creating a website that includes resources from all five jurisdictions in one place. The new site eases the process for volunteers to gather resources and connect with the jurisdictional coordinators and each other while offering a way for missioners and project site directors to work together to better serve volunteers, whether planning to serve on a mission journey, wanting to learn more about missions, or exploring helpful resources for studying or sharing with others.

Visit the new UMVIM website.


Lay Servant Ministries Grace Period for Recertification
All in-person training events have been rescheduled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During this time of adaptation, the East Ohio Conference Committee on Lay Servant Ministries is temporarily extending from three years to four years the requirement that Lay Servants must complete a refresher or advanced course. This applies only to persons whose last course was completed in 2017. This extension does not change the requirement that every lay servant complete an annual report to their local church conference.

The Committee on Lay Servant Ministries will review the format and availability of courses in order to provide multiple alternatives for training in our current environment, and continues to be an excellent resource for online training, as well.

Contact your district director of Lay Servant Ministries for more information.

Credit Union

The 2020 Back-to-School season will look completely different than anything we have been used to experiencing in the past. Whether your student will be headed off to their first year of college, distance learning from home, going back into a K-12 school building – or a combination of these – we are here for you. The United Methodist Financial Credit Union has a variety of lending options to help you cover all of those back to school needs. From stocking your dorm with the comforts of home, to turning your kitchen table into a classroom, or buying the backpacks to hold the sanitizing wipes, we’ve got you covered.

Learn more about the Credit Union.

Media Center

The Media Center is featuring the following resources from our Drama section:

  • The Perfect Stranger; The man told the lawyer he was Jesus Christ. The lawyer decided to call his bluff.
  • Acts – The Visual Bible brings to life Luke’s powerful narrative in a dramatic recreation of the infant church as it scatters from Jerusalem.
  • Mark’s Gospel; A powerful stage performance by Max McLean takes us inside the story of Jesus so we can experience the events and characters that have inspired and challenged people all over the world.
  • Resurrection; In the events following Christ’s crucifixion, Roman guard Claudius finds himself in the middle of a cover-up that has religious leaders, the government, and his closest friends attempting to hide something from the world. Will he uncover the truth at the risk of losing his life?

To reserve these or other resources, call the Media Center at (800) 831-3972 x139 or send an e-mail to Browse the resource catalog at

Message in the Movies Message in the Movies banner (colorful film strip

Black is King
It may be a bit of a leap to call Black Is King, the visual album version of Beyoncé’s earlier CD The Lion King: The Gift a movie, but when millions of people decide to watch something in collective response, attention must be paid. It is a joy-filled, exuberant and upbeat recognition of the African diaspora and the ways in which the world is a better place because of the black experience, with music and art from a rich and varied culture.

The timing for this release could not come at a better time. As a nation (and a church) tries to come to terms with systemic racism and race inequality, Black Is King offers up a positive, life-affirming symphony. A year or so in the making, this film was shot in South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, New York, Los Angeles, London, and Belgium. The production included hundreds of costumes (and multiple costume changes during each song!). The film features an international crew of musicians from the United States, South Africa, Cameroon, and Nigeria, including Tekno, Lord Afrixano, Burna Boy, Kendrick Lamar, Childish Gambino, Moonchild Sanilli, Busiswa, Salatiel, Yemi Alade and Mr Eazi. The Knowles-Carter extended family is well represented as well as Destiny’s Child.

Read entire review.


Please pray for the families of:

  • Kenneth L. Williamsretired Elder, died July 4.

View obituaries

To submit the obituary of an EOC clergy, clergy spouse, or surviving spouse, family should contact Melissa McGee, executive secretary to the bishop’s office, by phone at (330) 499-3972 ext. 112 or via e-mail.


Details of listings may be found here.

Positions Available

  • Director of Youth Ministries – Otterbein UMC Navarre
  • Worship Leader – New Way UMC

To submit a classified ad please e-mail

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Deadline for submission is Thursday, August 20. Send articles to