September 19, 2022


Transform Lives with Us through The United Methodist Church. #Be UMC.
Today, we launch a new EOC-branded #BeUMC online resource and a new campaign featuring the tag line “Transform lives with us through The United Methodist Church. #BeUMC.”

The campaign builds on the denomination-wide #BeUMC campaign adding the tag line as an explainer for those who are not familiar with either the abbreviation “UMC” or our mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

The new resource on the Conference website features this video from Bishop Tracy S. Malone stating why she is proud to be United Methodist and explaining that the four core values of the denomination’s #BeUMC campaign align with our shared East Ohio Conference vision, into which we have been living the past six years.

To download the video above, first click the share button in the upper right corner of the video window, then click the Vimeo link. Then, on the Vimeo page click the download link underneath the video window.

The new EOC #BeUMC online resource also features:

  • EOC images highlighting the core values of the #BeUMC campaign: disciple making; belonging & inclusion; influence, connection & impact, experience of God through The UMC.
  • Downloadable EOC-branded #BeUMC social media graphics and other resources.
  • A link to the denomination’s #BeUMC resource.
  • A one-page downloadable infographic explaining the #BeUMC campaign.
  • A downloadable 45-page discussion guide offering messaging, Bible verses, and suggested questions for leading small groups about each of the campaign’s core values.

Over the next several weeks, the Communications team will be adding to the downloadable resource page videos of clergy and laity stating why they are proud to be United Methodist. These videos will be highlighted on a rotating basis in the center column on the homepage of the East Ohio Conference website, one of many places on the site where you can access the EOC #BeUMC campaign resources.

Learn more about the EOC #BeUMC campaign and access the downloadable resources.

Bishop’s Office

Tour the Holy Land with Bishop Tracy S. Malone – January 31-February 9
Bishop Tracy S. Malone and the Methodist Foundation of Ohio will lead an Educational Opportunities tour of the Holy Land January 31 through February 9, 2023. Participants will see Jericho, Qumran, Bethlehem, Caesarea, Mount Carmel, Galilee, Cana, Nazareth, Samaria, Jerusalem, and so much more during this 10-day trip.

“This pilgrimage to the Holy Land will open up the Bible in a powerful way by expanding your understanding of scripture and deepening your faith as we visit sacred sites, worship together, and encounter God in the ancient places that ground our faith. It is my hope that those who participate will experience spiritual renewal both in their personal walk with God and in their respective ministries,” said Bishop Malone.

Cost of the trip starts at $3,498 departing from Cleveland, Columbus, and Pittsburgh on January 31, 2023. For those who choose to purchase trip insurance, the cost of the insurance is due by October 18.

Learn more and register to be part of the Holy Land tour.


Follow Conference Ministries on Social Media
Read the most up-to-date news about East Ohio Conference ministries online. Click on the links below and then bookmark the social media pages of the East Ohio Conference and those of the Connectional Ministries office team.




For questions about Communications ministries such as the #BeUMC campaign, live-streaming, licensing, social media and more, please e-mail Rick Wolcott, executive director of Communications, or visit the Communications pages of the Conference website.

Connectional Ministries

Daring to Speak and Hear God’s Word with William Willimon – on October 1
All are invited to the Myers Lecture at Church of the Saviour UMC in Cleveland Heights on Saturday, October 1 from 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Guest speaker Rev. Dr. William H. Willimon has taught and lectured around the world in some of the most prestigious universities and small church meeting rooms. In addition, he has authored nearly 100 books, selling over a million copies. With humor, affability, and incisive wisdom, Will has set the standard for more than a generation of preachers and inspired life-changing discipleship among congregations.

Co-sponsored by EOCUMC Connectional Ministries, registration includes box lunch and a copy of Bishop Willimon’s book Listeners Dare. Early-bird registration has been extended to September 22 and will save you $10! All registration closes September 28.

Learn more and register to attend.

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.


Emotional & Spiritual Care Workshop – October 22
The Emotional & Spiritual Care (ESC) Team invites you to a register for its upcoming October 22 workshop. The three-hour course, led by an experienced team, will be helpful both on an Early Response Team (ERT) worksite and to help participants be active listeners and compassionate caregivers in many difficult situations of life.

The workshop is Saturday, October 22 from 9:00 a.m. – 12 noon at the East Ohio Conference Area Center (8800 Cleveland Ave. NW in North Canton, 44720). It is recommended, but not required, that participants for the workshop have previous United Methodist Committee on Relief Early Response Team (UMCOR ERT) training or be planning to have ERT training in the future. Please e-mail Melanie Thomas or call her at (330) 499-3972 ext. 102 if you have any questions about the training opportunity.

Learn more and register by the October 19 deadline.

Early Response Team Returns from Assisting Kentucky Flood Victims
Rev. Steve Court shares his first-hand account titled “We Receive More Than We Give.”

“I was blessed to be part of a team of five persons traveling to Jackson, Kentucky to help with disaster recovery. We used our United Methodist Committee on Relief Early Response Team (UMCOR ERT) to provide written assessments of the status of homes devastated by recent flooding. Our training and sensitivity to spiritual and emotional care through active listening created connections with people that blessed us with stories of faith and resilience.

“Prior to our arrival, work teams and volunteers from other faith communities provided groundwork that gave us hospitality, a place to stay, and guidance on how we could be of help. We were very impressed with the staffs of the Methodist Mountain Mission and Kentucky River Community Care as they organized recovery response even while their own homes and families had been impacted. As we visited with survivors, we were deeply touched by their openness and appreciation for our presence. A 91-year-old man shared how his son had pulled him out of the water. ‘I’ve lived here all my life and seen many floods. This was the highest water level I’ve ever seen,’ he said. An 80-year-old lady went back to work at her school as a special needs teacher even though her home was completely damaged. ‘I need the children as much as they need me,’ she said. ‘This place is like a war zone. We all have PTSD.’ A young man shared how his wife and young children escaped from their home just five minutes before they watched it wash away.

“When we participate in long-term recovery or early response teams, we truly experience a connection that inspires. We have additional work teams going to Detroit, western Kentucky, and back to Jackson. If you want to be part of this ministry, e-mail Melanie Thomas or call her at (330) 499-3972 ext. 102. You will be glad you did!”

Learn more about long-term recovery projects and upcoming mission journeys.

West Ohio Long-Term Recovery Site Ready to Receive Teams
A new United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) long-term recovery site in Clermont County is ready to receive teams and assist those impacted by the July 6 tornado that destroyed areas of Goshen, OH. E-mail Pam Haverkos for more details about teams that are needed.

For questions about Missions & Community Engagement ministries and opportunities, please e-mail the Rev. Kathy Dickriede, Connectional Ministries office Missions & Community Engagement director, or visit the Missions & Community Engagement pages of the Conference website.

Multicultural Ministries

Perspectives: Black Theologian Day – October 8
Reaching Across the Racial Divide is the theme for Perspectives: Black Theologian Day 2022 to be held at Strongsville UMC from 9:00 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 8.

Cousins Betty Kilby Baldwin and Phoebe Kilby will share their experiences of discovering they are connected through slavery and then embarking on a path toward reconciliation and reparation. Their presentation will draw on lessons from their 2021 book, Cousins: Connected through slavery, A Black woman and a White woman discover their past – and each other. The cousins are living out a dream of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that the children of former slaves and the children of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table in fellowship.

Perspectives: Black Theologian Day 2022 participants will learn ways to reach across the racial divide and work toward racial reconciliation in their personal lives, in their churches, and throughout their communities. There is no cost for the event, but participants need to register in advance, so the planning team knows how many lunches to prepare.

Learn more and register by September 30.

For questions about Multicultural Ministries opportunities, please e-mail Will Fenton-Jones, Connectional Ministries office Multicultural Ministries director, or visit the Multicultural Ministries pages of the Conference website.

Health Benefits

HealthFlex Benefits Enrollment November 2 – November 17
HealthFlex is more than a health insurance plan. It’s a comprehensive approach to healthier living – an integrated, wellness-driven health program offered through Wespath Benefits & Investments, a general agency of The United Methodist Church.

The enrollment window for HealthFlex 2023 benefits opens Wednesday, November 2 and closes Thursday, November 17. During the online enrollment period participants can select their individual 2023 benefits plan, change who they cover, and elect health account contributions. The link to enroll online, and to use the ALEX cost estimator to help you make decisions of the plan that will be best for you, will be provided in the October 17 and October 31 issues of E-News.

Media Center

The Media Center highlights these new resources:

  • The Problem of Jesus confronts you with the real Jesus of history, asking you to wrestle with the teachings, claims, and actions of the man who has forever altered the course of human history. Every person must make their own decision about Jesus, choosing how they will live in light of the answers they discover about this amazing man.
  • Isaiah: Striving Less and Trusting God More Isaiah served as God’s mouthpiece to the nation of Judah but also to the surrounding nations. His message echoes into our lives today as we read his call to rely on the Lord. Using the genres of poetry, narrative, and prophecy, Isaiah communicated clearly that followers of God could trust in Him.
  • When Making Others Happy Is Making You Miserable explores why we fall into people-pleasing behaviors and offers advice for how we can break out into the freedom God has called us to. Because the truth is we cannot fulfill our divine purpose if we’re too busy living everyone else’s.

To reserve these or other resources, call the Media Center at (800) 831-3972 ext. 139 or send an e-mail to Browse the resource catalog at

For questions about the Media Center and its resources, please e-mail Amy George, Media Center coordinator, or visit the Media Center pages of the Conference website.

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

Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.
Honk for Jesus has been promoted as a mockumentary, featuring the kind of observational format familiar to fans of television’s The Office or Abbott Elementary. As Lee-Curtis and Trinitie want to tell the filmmakers that all is well, their body language sends another message altogether. Unfortunately, this movie decides to set aside this point of view fairly early as we are privy to private time with the Childs that is not being filmed, including one bedroom scene and many occasions of frustration and profanity behind the scenes.

Read entire review.

Celebrations of Life

Please pray for the families of:

  • Mary C. Tolbertsurviving spouse of the Rev. Dr. Robert J. Tolbert, died August 29.
  • Leah Iris Andrewsspouse of the Rev. David Andrews, died September 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, by phone at (330) 499-3972 ext. 112 or via e-mail.


Details of listings may be found here.

Positions Available

  • Youth Director – Gay Street UMC in Mount Vernon
  • Director of Children’s Education – Gay Street UMC in Mount Vernon
  • Children’s Choir Director – Rocky River UMC
  • Director of Family Ministries – Hudson UMC
  • Chief Financial Officer (CFO) – The Desert Southwest Conference of The UMC
  • Organist – Lakeside UMC
  • Church Pianist – Trinity UMC in Mt. Gilead
  • Church Administrator – Bay UMC in Bay Village

To submit a classified ad please e-mail

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Deadline for submission is Thursday, September 29, 2022. Send articles to