The latest news specifically for American Baptist Churches of Ohio.

Region Update ~ Rev. Dr. Lawrence O. Swain


Dear ABC/Ohio Pastors, ARMS, and Member Congregations:

(June 2018)  When I became your Interim Executive Minister I made a commitment to communicate with you on a regular basis.  I believe that communication from me throughout this transition season is important because keeping the ABC/Ohio family connected is essential to the spiritual vitality and health of the Region.  I hope that you agree!  In this communication I will share a few thoughts about transitions.  I apologize in advance for the length of this communication, but ask that you give it your time and attention.

Transitions are a normal and expected dynamic in all organizations, including the church, and in this case ABC/Ohio.  A transition is a movement, passage, or change from one stage in life to another.  A simple example at this time of year is when students graduate from high school or college.  Graduation is a transition from the years of high school education to the next chapter of life that might include a college education, employment, or whatever lies ahead for the graduating student.  Graduation, while expected, marks the beginning of a journey to something new, and yet to be discovered.  Such is the case whenever the People of God begin a transition.

Read more: Region Update ~ Rev. Dr. Lawrence O. Swain

Dorset Baptist Church Struck by Lightning

Dorset Baptist Church (North East Association) in Ashtabula County was struck by lightning on March 1, 2017. Please lift this congregation and their Pastor Randy Brookes in prayer!  Pastor Brooks is also the site manager of Camp Koinonia

Neighbors said the lightning struck the peak of the steeple. Firefighters found a fully involved fire in the steeple and immediately called for mutual aid from other departments. The church is located on State Route 193.  In addition to the destruction of the church steeple, there was significant water damage to the inside of the church.

Read more: Dorset Baptist Church Struck by Lightning

A Letter from Dr. Lawrence O. Swain, Interim Executive Minister


Dear ABC/Ohio Pastors, ARMS, and Member Congregations:

(March 2018) I am writing a letter I never imagined I would be writing, yet the premature passing of our Executive Minister, Rev. Dr. Ernest H. Jones, has left the Region without an Executive Minister.  It was truly a blessing to know Dr. Jones as both a colleague and friend.  I, along with the entire ABC/Ohio family grieve this loss, and will pray for Denise and the entire Jones family in their grief.  We pray for God’s comfort and strength as they discover what lies ahead in their new chapter of life.  Dr. Jones and Denise will always be a part of the ABC/Ohio family. 

As I begin this ministry as your Interim Executive Minister, I want you to know that I do so knowing that the Region is in a season of transition, and my role as an Interim is to guide the Region through the transition as you seek God’s direction towards calling a new Executive Minister.  While the position of Interim Executive Minister is temporary, there are specific things that I plan to focus on.

Read more: A Letter from Dr. Lawrence O. Swain, Interim Executive Minister

Toledo Area American Baptist Association 2016 Picnic

It was another wonderful day at the Toledo Area American Baptist Association (TAABA) Annual Picnic on June 12, 2016. Over 150 attended from sister TAABA churches. Attendance continues to grow each year! Our Region Minister Jane Gibbons joined us as TAABA celebrated together. God was good and gave TAABA an afternoon of sun and hearts filled with joy!

Rev. C. Roland Marcus Enters the Life Eternal

Reverend C. Roland Marcus entered the Life Eternal on February 19, 2018.  Rev. Marcus was a devoted servant of God. He began his ministry at Columbia Baptist church in Cincinnati. He also served Dorothy Lane American Baptist Church for 31 years, First Baptist Church in Middletown for six years and other congregations in an interim capacity for many years.  
 
Rev. Marcus was an avid lover of music, drama and literature. He was a talented singer, pianist and writer and he employed all these gifts in his ministry. He published articles on the faith, directed and performed music for worship, and wrote and directed dramas. 
 
Rev. Marcus loved his grandchildren passionately and was intensely proud of the three of them. Even as his body failed him, he made every effort to support their activities and did so with enthusiasm. Roland lived his life with a strong desire to have a purpose. He considered his purpose to be service to others. Even as he was dying, this was his concern. It is devoutly hoped that he was aware that his life’s example fulfilled this purpose. Please keep the family of Rev. C. Roland Marcus in your prayers!