New Ferry ministry to aid senior citizens

A NEW ministry targeting senior citizens has opened its doors in Martins Ferry.

The Promised Land Compassionate Ministry Center is located at 709 Broadway St. and is open to all Ohio Valley seniors who are encountering tough times.

Rev. Cheryl Lawson is the director of the ministry. She said it is the hope of the ministry to be able to aid seniors by being advocates for them with their insurance and assisting them in determining if they are eligible for medication assistance.

Rev. Lawson said often times senior citizens are caught in a financial bind and must make a decision between eating or buying medications. That is a heart-breaking scenario. She said that there are many programs that can provide assistance with medical bills, heating costs and telephone bills as well as receiving commodities.

The center is a non-profit agency and provides its help free of charge. It is affiliated with the Church of Nazarene.

The center’s volunteers come well schooled for their tasks, as they received training from the Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information program. Consequently, they are well-versed in supplemental insurance and pharmaceutical issues.

Moreover, the center will make available the generic drug lists from all area pharmacies to help seniors know where they can get their medications at the lowest prices.

Staffers will also help seniors with understanding their medical bills.

The center is handicap-accessible and walk-ins are welcome but appointments are recommended. The center is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The center’s phone number is 740-738-0129.

With Belmont County home to a large elderly population, the Promised Land Ministry Center may be able to help countless seniors.


RENO SACCOCCIA now has local company in the 300-win coaching fraternity. Just one week after the Steubenville coaching icon reached the coveted mark, Monroe Central’s Jay Circosta quickly joined him.

Jay is one of the good guys in the coaching profession. The Shadyside High graduate started his prep coaching career as an assistant for the Woodsfield Redskins in 1968. He became the head football coach in 1971 and success quickly followed.

Now in his 44th year of coaching, his overall record in 300-120-5, compiled in 26 years at Woodsfield High and the past 18 at Monroe Central. Jay’s resume is sparkling as he has won 13 OVAC championships, 20 PVC titles while earning 12 state playoff berths, with a 2001 regional crown to his credit.

Jay has won every coach of the year award imaginable several times over, and was inducted into the Ohio High School Football Coaches Hall of Fame in 2006 and the West Liberty Hall of Fame in 1996. He was also named the Dapper Dan Man of the Year in 2004 and received the Carl Hamill Award in 1992.

Jay and his wife Donna Sue live in Woodsfield. They have two daughters: Jayne Vinskovich and Susan Snively. They have three grandchildren.


JOHN MAGISTRO is no stranger to the OHSAA playoffs, leading Bellaire to numerous trips to the post-season, including a pair of state title games. Now the St. John Central product is heading back to the playoffs guiding a new school. Magistro’s Westerville Central’s charges wrapped up an 8-2 regular season via a 20-7 triumph over Dublin Jerome Friday night. Westerville Central will be hosting an undetermined first-round foe this week.

THE BELLAIRE High School Sports Foundation will be hosting the 71st annual Bippus Banquet on Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the Bellaire High School cafeteria. This year’s speaker will be David Ice, class of 1991. Tickets are $10 and include dinner and dessert. All former Big Reds football players are invited to attend. For more information, or to R.S.V.P. please call Billy Marinacci at 633-2393.

TODAY MARKS the final day The Times Leader is publishing election-related letters in advance of the Nov. 8 voting. The recent weeks have been marked by a heavy influx of election letters, which is a healthy scenario.

SPEAKING OF politics, the most recent Quinnipiac poll results had 57 percent of eligible Ohio voters against Issue 2 with 32 in favor. That same poll had Gov. John Kasich’s disapproval rating at 52-36.

ANYONE WHO missed last Saturday’s OVAC Band Showcase at Martins Ferry’s Purple Rider Stadium shortchanged themselves. The second annual musical extravaganza was sensational. It will be an OVAC event which will continue to grow in stature.

I HAVE always been of the contention that the best way to honor a person is to name something after them. Dave Bruney has joined such elite ranks. The Purple Riders’ football icon can go to work everyday now at a football complex with his name attached. Friday’s celebration at the stadium was first-class in all respects, just like the honoree.

ALTHOUGH THE World Series didn’t attract whopping television numbers, it was one of the most entetraining ever. Having said that, St.?Louis Cardinals’ manager Tony?Larussa is ever bit as good as he says he is.

MONEY TRIVIA: A quarter has 119 grooves on its edge, one more than a dime. The reason the mint started using ridges was to prevent counterfeiting and devaluing the coin. At the time, coins were made of precious metals and people would shave the coin’s edges. Merchants had to start weighing the coins to determine the true value since so many coins in circulation were shaved. Now that the mint no longer uses precious metals, they still keep the ridges for the seeing impaired to be able to tell the differences between coins like the dime and penny.

Kapral may be reached at bkapral@timesleader