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Thursday, May 30, 2019
As we gather for the 50th session of the West Ohio Annual Conference, the Conference's Election Team co-chairs, Cyndy Garn and Bruce Boyd, would like to remind voting members of a few important items: All persons, created in God's image, are of inestimable worth. Unity is one of God's gifts to the Church. Every election should be a corporate discernment process. Elections should reflect the rich diversity of our conference. Elections should include theologi... continue reading
Thursday, May 30, 2019
By Kay Panovec A woman sweeps dirt off her front porch, seemingly oblivious that her entire house is in shambles. Windows blown out, uprooted trees, power lines strewn across the road and vehicles slammed against homes. Yet, she sweeps. The neighborhood is eerily quiet, the silence broken by the sound of footsteps. People carry wet clothes, photo albums and sparse but salvageable items to a waiting truck. In Northridge Township near Dayton, Ohio, a man nurses h... continue reading
Wednesday, May 29, 2019
A series of devastating tornadoes and severe storms ripped through 17 counties in the western half of Ohio, leaving one dead and about 90 injured. Gov. Mike DeWine has declared a state of emergency for three counties that suffered serious damage including Greene, Mercer and Montgomery. The National Weather Service reports that each county was hit by EF3 tornadoes with winds up to 165 miles an hour. The hardest-hit areas were the cities of Celina, Dayton, Trotwo... continue reading
Tuesday, May 21, 2019
Following the February 2019 session of General Conference, many United Methodists returned to their Sunday School classes, worship services and small groups asking the same question: "Where do we go from here?" In Where Do We Go From Here?: Honest Responses From Twenty-Four United Methodist Leaders, four bishops, several pastors, laypersons, campus ministers, students, general board directors and others share their honest responses to the question, "Where do we... continue reading
Tuesday, May 21, 2019
The Council at church asked him, "Can you help?" A Congolese family came to church every week for five months, walking across a field from their apartment. They bought an SUV, only to find the rear latch would not release. They needed help. Ken is semi-retired, raised by parents who reminded him consistently that God made him to be a blessing. One of his blessings is fixing things. Ken also has concerns about immigration. Despite the concerns, Ken said yes to h... continue reading
Tuesday, May 21, 2019
Safe Sanctuaries policies prepare your congregation and its ministries to provide safety and care to children, youth, and vulnerable adults, as well as to those who serve them. In 2014, the West Ohio Annual Conference adopted a recommendation stating that every church would have a Safe Sanctuaries policy... Does your church have a policy?  When was it last updated?  Do you follow the policy? Can your church be doing more? We know that many churches nee... continue reading
Tuesday, May 21, 2019
Nearly 700 clergy gathered at Otterbein University for the 2019 Clergy Session this week. This annual meeting, which focuses on the Business of the Annual Conference, included welcoming newly credentialed colleagues, celebrating those moving into retirement, and memorializing those who have died since July 1, 2018. Rev. Brian Milford, President and Chief Executive Officer of The United Methodist Publishing House, served as the featured preacher. In his opening... continue reading
Friday, May 10, 2019
West Ohio Pastor, Rev. Ryan Grace, was raised in a small White town, where he was taught that racism is dead. But, after hundreds of years of slavery, segregation, and separation, many Black people say the American Spirit has not fully moved beyond racial division, and their lives are still shaded by the color of their skin. So, as a White Christian pastor, Rev. Grace took his family on a road trip into history to see if our culture really has risen above the r... continue reading
Friday, May 10, 2019
Esther Karimi Gitobu, a West Ohio-supported missionary in Cambodia, will be visiting The West Ohio Conference next week, along with Missionary Andrew Lee, who serves as the country coordinator for the Methodist Mission in Cambodia. Esther and Andrew will make two presentations at John Wesley UMC in Cincinnati, one at 7:00 pm on Thursday, May 9, and another at 2:00 pm on Friday, May 10. The evening of May 10, they will present at Milford First UMC at 7:00 pm. Su... continue reading
Friday, May 10, 2019
CHICAGO – (May 09, 2019) The Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church completed its May 2019 meeting held outside Chicago with a pastoral and prophetic word in response to the decisions of the Special Session and the codification of some of those decisions in the Book of Discipline. “Bishops are not judges or legislators. Bishops are preachers, teachers, shepherds, mediators, and missional strategists who appoint clergy and lead annual conferences to m... continue reading