District Office newsletter

There are many people, things, and experiences for which I thank God. It is not possible
to list them all in this article. It is possible to say that gratitude and thanksgiving are set
points for life. The life we have is a gift from God who is loving, good, and benevolent. If
we were computers, we could say that our default setting is one of thanksgiving and gratitude! I don’t pretend that life is nothing but a bed of roses without fear, pain, and suffering. Only a fool would say that. These experiences are not even possible without the gracious gift of life. And these experiences do not reduce or destroy the gift of life and all the
goodness that goes with living.
I am profoundly grateful for the opportunity to make the life of others better. One of the
ways to express our gratitude to God is to better the life of another human being. This is one of the capacities God gives
us. Generosity flows from gratitude and thanksgiving. We share the joy and wonder of life. All of us are enriched when
we share life. I am so grateful for our brothers and sisters at Wintersville UMC. They have generously shared enough
money to build and furnish a dorm room at Africa University in Zimbabwe. I don’t know if a single member of that
church has ever visited Zimbabwe, or Africa Univ. I don’t think any member at Wintersville UMC knows any student at
AU. Even so, the love and compassion of Jesus Christ has moved them to provide a safe living space for young women
being educated in Zimbabwe! They gave $26,500. That is the cost of a dorm room for two young ladies and furnishings.
And the Wintersville UMC challenges you and your congregation to match their generosity! Can the Ohio Valley District match the gift of Wintersville? Many of you are thinking that there is no way you can come up with that much
money. You are correct. Many of you cannot. But some of you can match, or better that gift! We have three years to
match it. Here is a way for churches who cannot match the gift outright to still provide a significant gift. Divide the gift
by the number of churches in the district.
26,500 divided by 84 equals 315
Can your church give $315? Even our smallest and poorest congregations can give $315. If you give that gift three times
it comes to $945. I believe we can all give that. Here is a giving format to help you discern what Christ would have you
945 315 x 3
2,835 945 x 3
8,505 2,835 x 3
25,515 8505 x 3 Just finish this…26,500! (continued on page 2)
Ohio Valley District
The United Methodist Church
Volume 18, Issue 2 November 2020
Valley Vision
Rev. Bruce Hitchcock, District Superintendent
Page 2 Valley Vision
(c0ntinued from page 1)
In the name of Christ, please consider how you can show generosity in the face of all the division and rancor in our
country. Why not show them what the followers of Jesus have to say about mess in our nation by showing the goodness of God in a kind gift? Simply pray, asking Jesus to show you what to give and how to give it. This is a challenge to
congregations. What can your church do to give life to young women who are suffering?
I also challenge individuals to make donations. Our average worship attendance as a district is 4,212. If we divide
26,500 by 4,212 it equals 6.30. On one Sunday, everyone in attendance could give $6.30 and we would match the gift
of Wintersville UMC. Many hands make light work! I have used simple arithmetic to show what is possible! You can
make a significant contribution no matter how small, or big your gift is. This is a matter of giving out of the goodness
of God in your heart. You can Teach, Reach, and Bless sisters in Christ with the gift of safe housing for the purpose of
education. Friends, what would Jesus have you do?
You can support the Teach • Reach • Bless campaign and show your commitment to the education and wellness of
women today for a better Africa tomorrow in a couple of ways.
You can make checks payable to your church and write “Teach • Reach • Bless” on the memo line. Church treasurers
can send the monies collected to the Conference lockbox and include the church remittance under Fund 9915. However, if you want the money to be tracked for matching Wintersville UMC’s donation, individuals or treasurers can send
the check to the Ohio Valley District Office, 352 Canton Rd, Wintersville OH 43953, and we will record it and forward
it from here.
If you would like to make a commitment to the campaign payable between now and December 31, 2022, here is a commitment card that you can turn it into your church office or to the district office.
Volume 18, Issue 2 Page 3
Prayer Concerns
Our sympathies are extended to
Pastor Al and Maggie Hoder and
family after the death of Maggie’s
mother, Patricia Greiner.
Please continue to pray for Pastor
Lee Iden during his recovery.
Please pray for the families of :
• Robert H. Schwenk, retired
Elder, who died November 6.
• Jeanne Garth, surviving
spouse of the Rev. Lynn
Garth, who died October 11.
• Brian C. Briggs, retired Elder,
who died October 8.
3 Rev. Tom Jones (Thoburn)
4 Anita Carson (Church of the
8 Patty Staley (Harrisville/
Pleasant Grove)
13 Jodi Westling (Brentwood)
14 Rosie Thomas (Yorkville/
21 Rev. Dan Crowe
22 Rev. Bruce Hitchcock (Ohio
Valley DS)
30 Kathleen Snodgrass (New
The Urban Mission staff and volunteers have been registering families for our
Christmas Kids toy distribution program. If our math is correct, there is a possibility that more than 1,000 children might sign up for our program this year. As
a result, we are in need of your support more than ever before. From now until
December 14th, we’ll be collecting both new and used toys for our Christmas distribution. To find out how you can get involved, please call 740.282.8010.
We give God thanks for the partnerships the Urban Mission shares with a number of local (and not so local) churches. Whether your church prays for our ministry, financially supports our ministry, or sends volunteer teams to serve with us,
we are extremely grateful for you. In 2021, we hope to engage our church families
even more so. Please let us know how we can best serve you.
We are encouraging all East Ohio congregations to collect items
for MMDC, then bring to the drop-off site the week of Nov. 29.
All items have been requested by the receiving mission sites. The MMDC seeks to
advocate and empower their mission partners.
LIST OF CHRISTMAS NEEDS (new items only)
● Jump ropes
● All types of sports balls (soccer, basketball, softball, baseball) and pumps
● Simple musical instruments like a recorder, harmonica, or percussion
● Board games (Jenga, Trouble, Candyland, Connect 4, and other simple games
that don’t require batteries)
● 32-64 oz. bottle liquid laundry detergent (no spray)
● 16-40 oz. bottle liquid concentrate household cleaner (no spray)
● 16-34 oz. bottle dish soap (no spray)
● Toothpaste – 2.5 oz or larger
Carrollton First UMC | 253 S Lisbon St, Carrollton, OH 44615
Drop off: Nov 29-Dec 4, 8:00am-4:00pm. Bring to enclosed vestibule by parking
lot. 330.627.7671 | office@yellowbrickchurch.org
352 Canton Road
Wintersville, OH 43953
Phone: 740-264-1601
Fax: 740-264-1972
E-mail: cevans@eocumc.com
Web: www.eocumc.com/ohiovalley
Ohio Valley District
The United Methodist Church
With the DS in November
Non-Profit Organization
U.S. Postage Paid
Permit No. 200
Electronic Service Requested
Saturday, December 12
10:00 a.m.—2:00 p.m.
Brilliant UMC
525 Labelle St, Brilliant, OH 43913
Social Distancing will be observed. Masks required.
14 Rule of Christ Training
18 Martins Ferry Charge Conference
26-27 Office Closed for Thanksgiving
29 Preaching at Tiltonsville