Movie review: Blade Runner 2049

Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures

“There are many surprises and moments of wonder in Blade Runner 2049, but you will need to be patient with it – it’s 2 hours and 45 minutes long. Although it is leisurely paced, it is thoughtful and provocative and one of the best science fiction films of this decade (along with Villeneuve’s remarkable Arrival from last year). ”

Read full review by Rev. Bruce Batchelor-Glader


Church Offers Help and Hope in Fight Against Opiate Addiction

By Rick Wolcott*

The Addiction Policy Forum reports that 144 people died in the United States every day in 2016 from a drug overdose.

“This is an epidemic unlike any other,” said Elaine Georgas, executive director of the Alcohol and Drug Addictions Services (ADAS) Board of Lorain County.  “If more than 52,000 Americans died last year from any other illness or disease, communities would be outraged.  We have to change the conversation and understand what addiction is and how it impacts individuals, families, and communities.”

Elaine Georgas moderated the town hall meeting
Elaine Georgas moderated the town hall meeting

Georgas moderated a town hall meeting at Lorain Faith UMC (Firelands District) to address the opiate and heroin epidemic that has gripped Lorain County. The evening, co-sponsored by the ADAS Board, included four panelists and a resource fair that featured nine agencies.

Pastor Karen Hollingsworth welcomed community members to Lorain Faith UMC
Pastor Karen Hollingsworth welcomed community members to Lorain Faith UMC

“As a church in Lorain, we care very deeply about this city and we feel we can no longer be silent while families are being torn apart by heroin,” said Pastor Karen Hollingsworth.  “We believe that every life has value.  We believe that every life is worth saving and we are speaking up to let people know that they are not alone, that there is help and there is hope.”

“I came here tonight because of the hurt that is in our city because of drug addiction,” said Kyriece Brooks.  “I was very excited to see that this town hall meeting was taking place because you don’t normally see too many churches opening their doors to host a platform such as this.”

Lorain County Coroner Dr. Stephen Evans told the 82 people in attendance that the introduction of heroin caused opioid deaths in the county to jump from 20, in both 2010 and 2011, to 60 in 2012.

Lorain County Coroner Dr. Steven Evans
Lorain County Coroner Dr. Steven Evans

“For the first time, deaths were across the entire spectrum of inner city, suburban, farm country, and they were 50-50 between male and female.  Prior to that time people dying from drug overdoses were predominantly male,” he said.  “The youngest overdose death I’ve had was a 2 year-old who got ahold of a family member’s drugs.  The oldest was a 75 year-old man who was sharing a hit of heroin with his grandson.”

Lorain Police Narcotics Detective Chris Colon
Lorain Police Narcotics Detective Chris Colon

“This drug epidemic does not discriminate, it impacts everyone,” said Narcotic Units Detective Chris Colon of the Lorain police department.

“For every person who dies there are 130 people who are addicted and there are more than 800 people using drugs inappropriately,” said Evans.  “In Lorain County, 1 out of 6 people is using drugs inappropriately.”

Evans told the crowd that opiate addiction is not a new problem.  “Three thousand years before Christ people were using opium,” he said.

What is new is how people are getting the drug.

“Eighty percent of our children start their drug habits from old prescription drugs that are in the home medicine cabinet.  That makes us as parents our child’s first drug supplier,” he said.  “This is not a criminal problem.  This is a medical problem.”

He encouraged those in the crowd to clean out their medicine cabinets and take old and unused pills to any police or fire department, which will accept them with no questions asked.

All of the panelists highlighted the partnerships that exist in Lorain County with police departments, fire departments, EMS and politicians working together to end the opiate epidemic that has placed the county in the national spotlight.

In 2014 Senator Gayle Manning (R) of Ohio Senate District 13 helped pass legislation that made Lorain County a case study for the Deaths Avoided With Narcan (DAWN) program, which enabled emergency personnel to administer the FDA-approved nasal spray Narcan to those suffering from a drug overdose.

Evans reported that police officers in the county have saved more than 300 people by administering Narcan.  Because of the program’s success, the State of Ohio made it possible for all police officers to carry the life-saving drug, and departments from across the country and around the world have asked that Lorain’s policies and procedures for the program be shared with them.

Thirteen people were trained on the administration of Narcan during the resource fair at Lorain Faith UMC.

“The DAWN program stabilized the death rate in Lorain County from drug overdose deaths, keeping deaths in the 60s in 2014 and 2015,” Evans said.  “It started a paradigm shift.  Police realized the benefit of saving lives and people were less hesitant to call in drug activity because they knew that police may be able to revive someone who was overdosing.”

But the introduction of fentanyl into the county caused drug overdose deaths to double in 2016 and Evans says that, “2017 is on pace to have more overdose deaths than last year.”

He explained that fentanyl is 50- to 100-times more powerful than morphine and heroin, and because it is a synthetic opium it that can be manufactured in a home lab without needing the opium plant.

“Users don’t know that dealers are mixing fentanyl into the heroin that they buy,” Evans said.  “So they take the same dose of heroin that they took before but because of the fentanyl that is in it the effect is much greater and the body can’t take it.”

Kim Mason addresses the crowd
Kim Mason addresses the crowd

Kim Mason has been with Lifecare Ambulance Services since 2005.  “When I started we hardly ever received calls for an overdose but in the past three years we have been overwhelmed by them.”

“We’ve lost the war on drugs,” Evans said.  “We need to change our approach and start funding prevention and treatment programs because that is the only way we are going to get out of this.”

One such agency in Lorain County is The LCADA Way, which cares for individuals and families struggling with drug and alcohol addiction by focusing on Leadership, Compassion, Awareness, Dedication, and Advocacy.

CEO Thomas Stuber said, “Drugs are more powerful and more addictive than any I can remember in my 37 years of trying to work myself out of a job in this field.  In my first year as CEO here in 1999 we had four people seek help for opiate addiction. Now it’s four people per day.”

Charlene Dellipoala is part of the team at the Lorain County Community College CARE (Caring Advocates for Recovery Education) Center, a recovery/addiction center that works with students, faculty, and staff who have addiction issues.

“When I started out I was working with students who had issues with alcohol or marijuana but now I see so many who are addicted to harder drugs,” she said.  “It breaks your heart when you think of young people who are just starting out on college careers having something like that impact them.”

“Addiction is a scary problem because it doesn’t matter what race you are, what class you are, or what gender you are,” Mason said. “It impacts not only the addict but also that person’s family, friends, and co-workers.”

“After the meeting I spoke to a man in fellowship hall who said, ‘When you help me, you help the community.’” Hollingsworth said.  “His words have stayed on my heart.  We often think that if we only help one person we are not making much of a difference.  His statement sheds a whole new light on the difference helping one person can make and how it ripples into the community.”

*Rick Wolcott is director of Communications for the East Ohio Conference of The United Methodist Church.

OCTOBER 16, 2017

Annual Conference 2018

A reminder that the dates announced at the conclusions this year of both the East Ohio Conference session and the West Ohio Conference session were changed in July.

Annual Conference 2018 for East Ohio will be held at Lakeside Chautauqua June 11-14.  Youth Annual Conference 2018 will be June 8-10.

Financial & Administrative Services

Benefits Enrollment Begins Nov. 1
The East Ohio Conference is switching to the HealthFlex benefits program in 2018.  Our conference joins 28 others across the denomination in using the health benefits plan offered by Wespath Benefits and Investments, a general agency of The United Methodist Church.

Participants select medical/pharmacy, dental, and vision plans; choose eligible dependents to cover; and can contribute to reimbursement accounts for pre-tax savings in 2018 and to save for future health needs.

The HealthFlex Benefits Election booklet and the online Alex Benefits Counselor may be used to determine whether the base plan or the optional buy-up plans best suit participants’ needs.

Click here to view the HealthFlex Benefits workshop video and learn more about the plan and available options.

PARTICIPANTS MUST ELECT A PLAN during the enrollment period of Wednesday, November 1 to Thursday, November 16.

New Employees Welcomed
Amy Lowdermilk
and Teri Capron joined the East Ohio Conference Financial and Administrative Services office on October 2.

Lowdermilk is our new senior accountant. She has a wealth of experience, having previously worked as a cash manager, a treasury analyst, and a corporate accountant.  She can be reached via e-mail at or via phone at (800) 831-3972 x-156.

Capron is our new accounts receivable clerk. She has more than 20 years of experience as an administrative assistant for a law firm specializing in workers compensation cases.  She can be reached via e-mail at or via phone at (800) 831-3972 x-135.

Ohio Minimum Wage Increasing in 2018
Minimum wage in the State of Ohio will increase beginning January 1, 2018. The new minimum wage will be $8.30/hour, an increase of $0.15.  Pay for tipped employees will increase from $4.08 to $4.15/hour.

The current federal minimum wage is $7.25/hr.  Employers are required to pay whichever minimum wage is HIGHER.

Connectional Ministries

Positions Available
The Conference Council on Ministries of the East Ohio Conference is receiving applications for two full-time positions:

Applicants must e-mail a letter of interest and a current resume to by November 1.


Advance Special 9143- Project Hope for the Homeless
As the only emergency homeless shelter in Lake County, Project Hope for the Homeless operates three programs to respond to the human hurts and hopes of persons who are homeless in Lake County by providing emergency shelter, care, and guidance, in the name and for the sake of Jesus Christ. The shelter operates a 50-bed program for individual adults including a 12-bed enclosed wing for families with children (Families Moving Forward), and an aftercare program that serves all guests.

In 2016, 88 percent of the record-breaking 430 individuals who stayed at 25 Freedom Road made a successful transition to secure a positive housing transition and/or secure behavioral health care or chemical dependency treatment. Former guests are now board members, employees, volunteers, and active in their communities. Thank you to the East Ohio United Methodist Conference for being the hands and feet of Jesus Christ! Others can join our efforts by visiting


A Word from OCUIR
The Office of Christian Unity and Interreligious Relationships (OCUIR) reports that last month’s Christian Churches Together 2017 Special Convocation focused on how the church can set an example for civil discourse in today’s society.

During the convocation:

  • Christian Churches Together Founding Director Michael Kinnamon recommended that churches, as an ecumenical witness, should make sure they know some of the joys and concerns of other churches in the community, and pray for them by name.
  • Biola University’s Dr. Tim Muelhoff, author of Winsome Persuasion: Christian Influence in a Post-Christian World affirmed his analysis of today’s culture of argument.
  • Roman Catholic Bishop Michael Rozanski noted that services on October 31 remembering the 500th anniversary of the Reformation will be opportunities for common Catholic Protestant witness.

Christian Churches Together is a fellowship of Catholic, Evangelical, Pentecostal, Orthodox, African-American and Protestant Christian Communions & organizations in the U.S.A. witnessing together to the reconciling power of the Gospel of Jesus.

Clergy Seminar

November 13-15
revitup! for a Lifetime in Ministry
Wespath is hosting an educational event for clergy ages 39 and under. This event serves to strengthen personal, financial and leadership skills in order to sustain a lifetime in ministry.

The UMC Initiative to Address Economic Challenges Facing Pastoral Leaders is offering a limited number of scholarships through a Lilly Endowment grant which seeks to strengthen personal and congregational financial stewardship leadership. The opportunity includes complimentary registration and two nights at the host hotel if the recipient agrees to the following requirements:  participate in an online survey, and complete the EY financial assessment survey. To apply for this scholarship, registrants should utilize the code provided during the registration process.  For more information.


UM Financial Credit Union

International Credit Union Day
October 19, 2017 is International Credit Union Day. Stop in at our North Canton or Cincinnati branch to celebrate the credit union movement with us! Learn more information on how your credit union works for YOU and the different products and services we offer.  Light refreshments will be provided.

Christmas Club Accounts
If you currently have a Christmas Club savings account with UMFCU, checks from those accounts will be sent out on October 25.  If you have questions or concerns, please contact one of our offices for more information: North Canton (800) 831-3972 or Cincinnati (800) 373-1059.

Pastoral Care and Counseling

October 16, 2017  Resources

In this edition we feature:
“Kindness is a language the deaf hear and the blind see.” –Mark Twain

  • A Careful Grace: Sex Offender in the Church
  • How to Deal with Ex-Sex-Offenders
  • Trying to Get Sober: Alcohol Treatment Navigator
  • Audio: 5 Minute Mindful Practice to Restore Attention
  • Thomas Merton On Being a Mystic
  • 5 Surprising Reasons You’re Not Losing Weight
  • Listings of 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 or use our quick contact form.

Media Center

The Media Center recently acquired the following resources:

Call the Media Center at (800) 831-3972 x 139 or send an e-mail to Browse the resource catalog at

Message in the Movies

Photo: ©A Quiet Passion/Hurricane Films/Courtesy of Music Box Films

Stronger “The film is a master class in art direction, using the exterior of Dickinson’s Amherst home to set the stage for an authentic recreation of mid-19th century America. Emily’s family lived through the Civil War and was intellectually engaged with the world beyond their neighborhood. In several scenes involving doctors we are reminded that the best medical knowledge of the time was often inadequate to treat many serious conditions; the possibility of death was ever-present.”

For full review by Rev. Bruce Batchlor-Glader


Positions available:

  • Youth Director, Lexington Church of the Cross UM
  • Director of Church Development, Indiana Conference
  • Office Manager, Johnson UMC
  • Administrative Assistant to the Director of Connectional Ministries, East Ohio Conference
  • Administrative Assistant to the Directors of Congregational and Multicultural Vitality, East Ohio Conference
  • Director of Youth and Children’s Ministry, Shreve UMC

Items available/needed:

  • Hymns of Faith hymnals (available)  and The United Methodist Hymnal Pew (in search of). Lansing UMC

Details of the above classifieds/items wanted can be found here. 
To submit job postings and items available please email

Events – October 16-30

Follow this link to the events calendar. 
To submit a calendar event.

Dates to remember


Please pray for the families of:

  • Augusta A. Lange, retired local pastor, who died Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017 and
  • Carolyn Clemence, surviving spouse, who died Friday, October 6, 2017.

For full obituary notices.

To Subscribe

To subscribe please send your request to Lois Speelman.  Information from this E-News may be copied and used in your local church.

The next scheduled edition of the E-News will be October 30, 2017.  Deadline for submission is October 25.