Bishop Tracy S. Malone announces the following 2022 clergy appointments and/or changes of status. Each is effective 7/1/22 unless otherwise noted.
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
|Gerald Cameron||Celebration UMC||NC|
|Lisa Courtright||Rogers UMC||MV|
|Rick Dawson||Mt. Pleasant UMC||OV|
|James MacDonald||New Washington & Tiro UMCs||FL|
|Heather McLeod||Galion Christ & Blooming Grove UMCs||MO|
|Amy Shaw||Clearview, Uniontown & Greentown UMCs||CN/TW|
|Sandra Stover||Edison, Iberia, & Ebeneezer UMCs||MO|
Visit the 2022 Appointments and Changes of Status page of the Conference website to read the Cabinet’s Core Values for Making Appointments and to see the lists of appointments, retirements, and those who are concluding their ministry.
Transform lives with Us in The United Methodist Church. Be UMC.
The #BeUMC campaign reminds us of who we are at our best – and invites us to tell others why we choose to be United Methodist. The #BeUMC campaign is built on four values that unite United Methodists: disciple making; belonging and inclusion; influence, connection, and impact; and experience of God through The UMC.
The campaign is consistent with the Council of Bishops’ “A Narrative for the Continuing United Methodist Church” that speaks to the excitement, enthusiasm and hopes for the future of the denomination that are shared amongst United Methodists. #BeUMC information and resources can be accessed from the homepage of the East Ohio Conference website.
- We are being The United Methodist Church when we create small groups to reflect on and discuss the Word of God.
- We are being The United Methodist Church when we do mission work.
- We are being The United Methodist Church when we advocate for food security for everyone.
- We are being The United Methodist Church when we pray for others.
For questions about Communications ministries such as live-streaming, licensing, social media and more, please e-mail Rick Wolcott, director of Communications, or visit the Communications pages of the Conference website.
¶ 2553: The EOC Disaffiliation and Separation Pathway
At the 2019 Special Called Session of the General Conference a new paragraph, ¶2553, was added to The Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church 2016. This paragraph states the provisions and outlines the process for how local churches can disaffiliate from The United Methodist Church due to reasons of conscience, actions, or inactions on matters or concerns related to human sexuality.
The East Ohio Conference leadership, the trustees, the executive staff, and district superintendents developed a disaffiliation process that follows the specific criteria and standards outlined in ¶ 2553. The East Ohio Conference has already utilized this process, and principles of this process for a few churches that have disaffiliated and separated from the East Ohio Conference over the past two years. Paragraph 2553 will be the disaffiliation and separation pathway that the East Ohio Conference will use and that churches will need to follow.
A Disaffiliation Documents resource will be added to the Conference website home page and Resources tab this week. It will contain guidelines for discernment conversations, FAQ, information about ¶ 2553, guidelines for clergy withdrawal and church disaffiliation, the EOC disaffiliation agreement, and more.
An Evening of Dinner & Live Music with the Howard Howell Experience – June 10
Make plans now to be part of a special evening of dinner with live music from the Howard Howell Experience. Only 200 tickets will be sold for the 6:00 p.m. Friday, June 10 plated meal in the Grand Ballroom of Greystone Hall. The Hall is right across the street from the John S. Knight Center, site of Annual Conference 2022.
When you purchase your ticket online in advance you will choose one of these specially prepared entrees:
- prime filet with a maître d’ butter, or
- parmesan breast of chicken with a red pepper cream sauce, or
- vegetables and fontina wellington with a pomodoro sauce.
Guests will be seated 10 to a table so make plans with your friends to spend the evening together around the table enjoying food, fellowship, and live music. Cost is only $32 per ticket.
New Branding for Connectional Ministries Teams
In consultation with Executive Director of Connectional Ministries the Rev. Ed Fashbaugh, the Communications office has developed a logo for the office of Connectional Ministries. Incorporated into the logo are two bridges because the office of Connectional Ministries assists churches of the East Ohio Conference in traversing the unknown to move from where they are currently to where they would like to be in reaching their communities in new ways.
The ministry teams in the office of Connectional Ministries are the pillars that support the bridge – and support EOC pastors, congregations, and faith communities reaching beyond their walls to make disciples of Jesus Christ. The Communications office and Executive Director of Connectional Ministries the Rev. Fashbaugh also worked with Rev. Beth Ortiz, director of Strategic Ministries, and Rev. Kathy Dickriede, director of Missions & Community Engagement, to create new logos for the ministry teams they each lead.
The Connectional Ministries home page on the Conference website is a great resource highlighting the ministry teams within the office, their logos, links to their respective webpages, and contact information for the Connectional Ministries office and each ministry team.
New Page Highlighting General Agencies of The UMC
A new clickable link on the sidebar of the Connectional Ministries site is a page highlighting each of the general agencies of The United Methodist Church. The page provides a brief synopsis of each agency, displays its logo, and provides a link to visit the agency’s website.
For questions about ministries of the Connectional Ministries office, please e-mail the Rev. Ed Fashbaugh, executive director of Connectional Ministries, or visit the Connectional Ministries pages of the Conference website.
New Video Resources for Healthy Pastor/Church Transitions
The Strategic Ministries office recently held online sessions to aid pastors and congregations who will experience transition in appointments at the end of June. Videos of those two trainings are now available for viewing and for downloading to be used in group discussion. Worksheets are also available to aid in self-reflection and group discussion. The video and worksheet resources were designed to be used by leadership to plan for a healthy pastoral transition so that churches receiving a new pastor can continue to live out the mission of making disciples.
The resources are organized by topic in videos and worksheets. You are encouraged to watch each video then complete the assigned worksheet for the video. The worksheet will help church leaders plan an aspect of the transition. While leaders may watch the videos separately, doing the transition planning as a team is essential so it is important to figure out a way to discuss the information and worksheets as a team. These discussions can happen through Zoom, Facetime, or by phone.
It is recommended that you watch the Changeover Zone video appropriate for you first—there is one for clergy and another for church leaders. This provides a large view of how to make a positive transition. After that it is recommended that you watch the other videos, which speak more specifically about moving in East Ohio, in numerical order for the best flow.
Missions & Community Engagement
Nankin Community Church Pillow Fight Supports ACCESS Ashland Emergency Shelter
ACCESS is a faith based, temporary shelter that provides a hand up for homeless women and families in Ashland County. Guests sleep on blow-up mattresses in one of ACCESS’ four one-bedroom apartments while they meet regularly with the ACCESS guest liaison to learn skills to help them find and maintain employment, find housing, create a budget, and access needed support services. In 2021 the shelter served 26 family units made up of 32 adults and 28 children. ACCESS partners with 11 Ashland County churches, four of which are United Methodist congregations. During the month of February Nankin Community United Methodist Church collected 42 new pillows to gift to the ACCESS shelter. Why pillows? Because many times ACCESS guests need to take the blow-up mattresses and pillows with them when they move into their new homes.
“The idea of a ‘pillow fight’ was not my creative idea but one that I loved at my previous church’s bedding ministry,” said the Rev. Jennifer Whitmore, pastor of Nankin Community Church (Mid-Ohio District). “The competition between the two sides of the sanctuary to see which collected the most pillows made it fun but it was also a great opportunity to raise awareness of homelessness in our community. In communities like Ashland, homelessness is often invisible and there is a perception that homelessness does not exist because we don’t have people sleeping on sidewalks. However, couch surfing and living in cars is a reality for many families and traumatic for children. So, this was also an opportunity to spotlight and support a local organization that ministers to families and children in our community by providing safe, temporary housing as they navigate employment, school, and life skills.”
Zoe Empowers International Dream Hunters Mission Project for VBS 2022
Zoe Empowers is a leading UMC mission, supported by EOC churches, for empowering orphans and vulnerable children to move themselves out of poverty and never need charity again. Winner of the 2021.ORG Impact Award for ending hunger and poverty, Zoe Empowers is now offering churches a free, kid-friendly, interactive, add-on mission component for use with any VBS curriculum.
Through Zoe Empowers’ International Dream Hunters resource, your VBS kids will “travel” the world discovering the dreams of God for orphaned children and vulnerable youth. They will meet children in Zimbabwe, Kenya, India, and Rwanda and learn how dreams of sewing, farming, raising animals, building houses, and starting businesses can come true for Zoe Empowers young people in other cultures, both rural and urban. The curriculum includes a leader’s guide, fun daily skits, on-site videos in four countries, and ideas for crafts and games.
Mission & Ministry Tables at Annual Conference
During Annual Conference on Friday, June 10, your mission could have an information table inside the John S. Knight Center in Akron. But you need to hurry because table space is limited. If you are interested in securing space for your mission and ministry table, e-mail Melanie Thomas, Connectional Ministries administrative assistant, or call her at (800) 831-3972 ext. 102.
Meet Global Ministries Missionary Willie Berman – May 15-17
Join us for food, fun, and conversation as Global Ministries missionary Willie Berman shares about Manos Juntas Mission and the House of Hope Children’s Home. He will be at multiple events in the East Ohio Conference May 15-17.
#STILLINMISSION – June 2
Join Global Ministries via Zoom as we explore the transforming work of United Methodist missionaries still in mission serving around the world. At noon Eastern on June 2, you will hear from: Patrick Abro, health operations manager with the Burundi Annual Conference; Hector Laporta, Methodist Studies faculty member with the Methodist Church of Mexico; Jin Kim, coordinator of Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace with the World Council of Churches in Switzerland; and John Nday, agricultural coordinator for Cambine Mission in the Mozambique Episcopal Area.
For questions about Missions & Community Engagement ministries and opportunities, please e-mail the Rev. Kathy Dickriede, director of Missions & Community Engagement, or visit the Missions & Community Engagement pages of the Conference website.
MTSO Science for Seminaries Digital Dialogues – May 10 Via Zoom
Methodist Theological School in Ohio offers a free online discussion from 7:00-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 10. Organized by the school’s Science for Seminaries Digital Dialogues, “Trust in Science? Responses to the Challenge of Science Denial” the online session will feature keynote speakers Gale M. Sinatra, the Stephen H. Crocker chair and professor of psychology and education at the Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California, and Barbara K. Hofer, professor of psychology emerita at Middlebury College and a fellow of the American Psychological Association.
Sinatra and Hofer are the authors of Science Denial: Why It Happens and What to Do About It, published in 2021 by Oxford University Press. The book focuses on key psychological constructs such as reasoning biases, social identity, epistemic cognition, and emotions and attitudes that limit or facilitate public understanding of science, and it describes solutions for individuals, educators, science communicators and policy makers. MTSO will give free copies of Science Denial to the first 50 “Trust in Science?” registrants.
Camps & Retreat Ministries
Register Now for Summer Camp 2022
It’s time to think about how your children will spend their summer vacation. Camping can satisfy what children need! At camp they experience faith, responsibility, and cooperation as part of a caring community. They experience self-esteem as children of God. In a world where it is hard to be a kid -and it is hard to be a parent – let East Ohio Camps be your partner in faith and the development of your child. Our camps offer great places, great experiences, and trained, caring staff. Contact your local church, call the East Ohio Conference Camping office at (800) 831-3972 ext. 108, or click the link below to visit us online.
For questions about Camps & Retreat Ministries opportunities, please e-mail the Rev. Gary Jones, director of Camps & Retreat Ministries, or visit the Camps & Retreat Ministries pages of the Conference website.
United Women in Faith Mission U 2022 – July 9-10 & 16-17
Our newly designed Mission u 2022 is more flexible and intergenerational than ever with curricula for youth, children, and adults focused on the 13th chapter of the Gospel of Luke.
This year we find ourselves in a period of disruption and uncertainty. Amidst a devastating pandemic, divisive political climate, unaddressed systemic racism, ecological crises, and economic turmoil, we turn to the stories of Jesus that have anchored Christian communities for two millennia. Our hope is that we will leave Mission u with a bigger and broader vision of the community Christ is calling us to be in times of loss, grief, and massive disruption.
The adult study will be via Zoom July 9-10 and July 16-17 for two hours each day. Saturday sessions are scheduled from 10 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and Sunday sessions from 7:00-9:00 p.m. We will study Who Can Be Together? A Biblical Exploration of Luke 13 by Candace Simpson. There will also be an in-person retreat at the University of Mount Union July 22-23.
The youth study will be in-person during the July 22-23 retreat. Youth will discuss Community in the Midst of Challenging Times by Kenya Cummings. The children study will also be held at Mount Union during the retreat using the book The Growing Tree by Ilka Vega.
Credit Union’s Great Rates Can Help Your Church or Ministry
The Credit Union is happy to help churches with ministry accounts, which pay a higher dividend yet keep your money liquid in the event a church needs funds quickly with no penalty. Remember that when you do business with Christian Family Credit Union, you participate in the Kingdom-building work and ministry of the Credit Union. We invite you to align your finances with your faith when you bank with Christian Family Credit Union. Join us today.
Spiritual Formation & Christian Education
Spiritual Formation Network Gathering via Zoom – May 12
Anyone serving in spiritual formation and Christian education is invited to join in the next spiritual formation network gathering at 7:00 p.m. on May 12. We will gather via Zoom for a time of devotion and prayer, discussion, advice-seeking, and Q&A. To obtain the Zoom link, please e-mail the Rev. Gary Jones, director of Spiritual Formation.
For questions about Spiritual Formation & Christian Education ministries opportunities, please e-mail the Rev. Gary Jones, director of Spiritual Formation, or visit the Spiritual Formation & Christian Education pages of the Conference website.
The Media Center highlights these new resources:
- He Speaks to Me uses the account of God speaking to Samuel in 1 Samuel 3 to show how God speaks to Christians and how we can discern His voice and position ourselves to respond.
- With Us in the Wilderness shares that the book of Numbers is a story of wilderness wandering, but it’s also a story of God’s presence among His people. Discover how even when they rebelled – and this book tells of many rebellions – God’s love and promises remained.
- The Waymaker: Finding the Way to the Life You’ve Always Dreamed of teaches us S.A.C.R.E.D., a daily habit, a rule of life, a way of life, that will reorient our soul in relation to God through Scripture and prayer and study.
Message in the Movies
The Most Reluctant Convert: The Untold Story of C. S. Lewis & C. S. Lewis Onstage: The Most Reluctant Convert
Both films are almost identical recitations of the original play. Director Norman Stone borrowed a few visual concepts that he had used in an earlier recap of Lewis’ life, the 2005 television documentary C. S. Lewis: Beyond Narnia (Streaming for free on Tubi TV).
Viewers familiar with Lewis’ writings will have fun identifying familiar passages from Surprised by Joy, Mere Christianly and other works. While Lewis remains a provocative and brilliant apologist for the faith, I don’t find his fear of hell to be particularly persuasive, and his theology is still mostly an intellectual exercise.
Celebrations of Life
Please pray for the families of:
- Dessie V. Essex, surviving spouse of the Rev. Otis Essex, died April 12.
- Linda K. Alvey, surviving spouse of the Rev. William Alvey, died April 12.
- Myrna M. Jones, spouse of the Rev. Walter A. Jones, died March 11.
To submit the obituary of an EOC clergy, clergy spouse, or surviving spouse, family should contact Melissa McGee, executive secretary to the Bishop, by phone at (330) 499-3972 ext. 112 or via e-mail.
- IT Client Development Specialist – GCFA
- Director of Ministries with Children & Families – Marion Epworth UMC
- Director of Children’s Ministries – Christ UMC in Louisville
- Pianist/Organist – Loudonville UMC
- Church Administrator – Bay UMC in Bay Village
- Connectional Relations Specialist – GCFA
- Director of The Wesley Foundation/Senior Pastor of Wesley UMC – The Wesley Foundation at the University of Illinois and Wesley UMC
- Executive Director of Finance and Administration – The Dakotas Annual Conference of The UMC
- Volunteers for Missions Teams, Youth Groups, Sunday School Teachers, Confirmation Classes, etc. – Grandview UMC in Cuyahoga Falls
- Direct Support, Housekeeping, Habilitation Specialists, Non-Medical Transportation Drivers, and other positions – Flat Rock Homes
- Family Life & Youth Leader – Ontario UMC in Mansfield
- Youth & Young Adult Director – Belden UMC in Grafton
- District Administrator – The Mahoning Valley and Western Reserve Districts of the East Ohio Conference of The UMC
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