Connecting Columbia Union Seventh-day Adventists

Ohio Conference

At the end of this year, Seventh-day Adventists in the Pennsylvania and Ohio conferences will see two Adventist Book Centers (ABC) close—one in Mount Vernon, Ohio—the other in Hamburg, Pa. The closures come as a result of the Idaho-based Pacific Press Publishing Association’s (PPPA) decision early this fall to end a management agreement of some 17 ABCs across the North American Division.

In addition to his family, staff members of Kettering Adventist HealthCare (KAHC) system based in Kettering, Ohio, are in mourning over the loss of one of their key founders. Vernon Luthas, MD, passed away Monday at the age of 85.
 

This week presidents of the Columbia Union’s eight conferences, two healthcare networks and university met in Columbia, Md., for executive-level board meetings. The week started with Presidents’ Council where each president shared praises and challenges from their field. On Tuesday each conference’s top-three officers met for Administrator’s Council where they handled the business of the union. They also heard a presentation on crisis communication from Celeste Ryan Blyden, Visitor publisher and editor, and author of the new book, Crisis Boot Camp, published by the North American Division. 
 

“Today we are revisiting the days of pioneers of the [Seventh-day] Adventist movement when there were women evangelists who raised up churches, who preached and baptized,” said Dave Weigley, president of the Columbia Union Conference, during an ordination service for Hazel Burns (81) and Margaret Turner (90) at Ohio Conference’s Kettering church last Sabbath.

During year end meetings last week, Columbia Union Conference Executive Committee members voted to give $40,000 to the Allegheny East and New Jersey conferences to aid them in their super storm Sandy relief efforts. The three union officers then prayed over José H. Cortés, New Jersey Conference president; and Henry J. Fordham, Allegheny East Conference president; as well as for the efforts of volunteers throughout New Jersey.

Refugee families from Bhutan, Somalia and other countries of conflict were recently displaced by an apartment fire in northern Columbus, Ohio, and forced to rebuild their lives yet again. The fire claimed everything, forcing families to flee with what was on their backs, leaving cell phones and identification documents behind.