Blanchester church to start English as a Second Language classes for locals

By John Hamilton -

BLANCHESTER — A village church wants to help its Latino neighbors.

Rev. Paul Crisp of the Blanchester Church of the Nazarene told officials at the September 23 Blanchester council meeting about the church’s intentions to start an English as a Second Language class.

“As best we can tell, there are about 15 families — as estimated by our Hispanic friends — that live in the Blanchester area,” said Crisp at the meeting. “As many of you are aware, many of them cannot speak English. We want to help.”

The classes are set to begin on November 7 at the Exchange, a community outreach center for the church. So far, a group comprised of church members, community members, and Hispanic community members has met to discuss the class — which is open to anyone in Clinton County.

Kirsten Easterling, a high school Spanish teacher from Hillsboro, will be the instructor.

This endeavor came after Crisp visited the Nazarene Church in Los Angeles. He said that due to the diverse community, the church had sermons in Korean and Filipino, as well as English.

“From that day on, I had a desire to be a part of something like that,” he said. “At the time, there weren’t many people of different nationalities in our area, though we’ve noticed more Spanish speakers recently.”

The church is planning on other events as a form of outreach to Latino community members. These include a Hispanic celebration day on October 17, where those interested in the class can register. They’re also planning to have a Spanish-language worship by Christmas.

“These are people who contribute to community life in Blanchester, primarily by hard work. They have proven to be gracious and eager to retain their culture, yet blend with ours as English speakers,” said Crisp.

For more information,contact Crisp at 937-728-9563. You can also contact the church directly at 937-783-4321 or email them at .

By John Hamilton

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574