Tatums to be honored for service

URBANA — The Canaan Baptist Church family and community will honor the Rev. and Mrs. B. J. Tatum at 5 p.m. Sunday for 34 years of service to the Champaign-Urbana community as well as nationally and internationally.

Ministry offers ex-inmates avenue for change

RANTOUL — A former Holiday Inn Jr. on the village's south side could easily be named "The Second Chance Inn."

The former roadhouse does more than house people needing a place to stay. It's a 10-month stopping point for many former prison inmates wanting to turn their lives around.

Ministry's director has plenty of support

RANTOUL — Peter Schneider, director of Jesus is the Way Prison Ministries, remembers the first time he set foot in a prison.

The place was the state prison in Danville. The year was 1994.

"It was stark," he said. "It was very intimidating. The people who were running it seemed pretty aggressive as far as not cutting you any slack."

Catholic academy passes halfway point in fund drive

DANVILLE — Several weeks into Schlarman Academy's first major fundraiser, Catholic school officials announced that they are more than halfway to their $1.5 million goal.

"We're very excited. We have raised $800,000 in a very short period of time," said Suzette Kittell, who is co-chairing the new academy's capital campaign with Raymond Broderick.

State has had previous foster-care changes

Illinois has been through similar foster-care transitions in Chicago and Rockford.

More than 250 in area affected by battle between Catholic Charities, Illinois

The battle between the Catholic Church and state of Illinois over foster care and adoption services has real-life ramifications for more than 250 East Central Illinois children.

Currently, about 135 children in Champaign County are in foster care homes managed by Catholic Charities, according to state figures. In Vermilion County, the agency oversees 125 foster cases.

Schlarman Academy starts first year in Danville

DANVILLE — For as long as she can remember, Kristen Cahill looked forward to becoming a Schlarman Hilltopper and wearing 'Topper blue and gold.

Unlike students before her, Kristen didn't have to wait until high school to do that. This year, she's a seventh-grader at the new Schlarman Academy, which adopted the now-closed high school's mascot and colors.

Church network to distribute school supplies Saturday

CHAMPAIGN — It's time to start thinking back-to-school, and a group of local churches will be holding its annual distribution of backpacks and school supplies early this month.

The Christian Mercy and Justice Network will distribute those items on Saturday, beginning at 9:30 a.m., at Salt and Light, 1512 W. Anthony Drive, C.

Council action may save home of early Urbana mayor

URBANA — City council action on Monday could save a 136-year-old home where one of the city's first mayors resided, but it will come at a cost to the Urbana taxpayers.

First Christian Church collecting items to send to Joplin, Mo.

CHAMPAIGN — First Christian Church in Champaign is collecting relief supplies to send to Joplin, Mo., to help victims of Sunday's tornado.

A member donated a semi-truck, trailer and driver to take supplies, and the church is collecting a list of items, listed below.

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