Bill Fentum, Former UMR Associate Editor

About Bill Fentum, Former UMR Associate Editor

Bill Fentum was a dedicated employee of The United Methodist Reporter from 1985 to 2013, serving as the associate editor. Bill continues his work in journalism in a variety of positions as an independent journalist.

Film Review: Place Beyond the Pines survives a few missteps

The Place Beyond the Pines tells a story in three “acts,” that may or may not be inspired by the Old Testament theme of children suffering “for the iniquity of [their] parents” (Exodus 20:5). Either way, it makes for a compelling if oddly structured drama.

Q&A: Bringing a sports legend to life on the big screen

The new movie 42 focuses on the years when baseball great Jackie Robinson (1919-1972) joined the Brooklyn Dodgers and became the first African American player in the modern era of Major League Baseball. The cast includes newcomer Chadwick Boseman as Robinson and Harrison Ford as Branch Rickey, the Dodgers general manager who signed him onto […]

Film Review: Robinson biopic offers winning entertainment

42 is named after Robinson’s uniform number—which in 1997 was retired permanently in his honor. And of course, the movie is a tribute in itself, a crowd pleaser that overcomes a few moments of dramatic excess with sincere performances from all concerned.

Q&A: New miniseries re-enacts Bible stories

She captured America’s heart every week as the divine messenger with the lilting and soothing Irish accent on Touched by an Angel. He is the creative genius behind Survivor, The Apprentice and The Voice. Together, Roma Downey and Mark Burnett are one of Hollywood’s most uniquely equipped married power couples. Beginning March 3, you will […]

Film Review: Much-touted docudrama gives us room for debate

Audience reactions to Zero Dark Thirty, the Academy Award-nominated drama about the 10-year hunt for Osama bin Laden, have ranged across the spectrum. Some viewers find it extremely suspenseful—especially in the last half hour—while others compare its slower moments to watching paint dry.

Agrees with Dan Dick

  Thanks for the article by Dan Dick (Dec 14, Reporter). I find his explanation of the principles behind the leadership initiatives pushed by our leadership in the UMC helpful because it explains the contradictory approaches that have been packed into a universal approach mandated in an effort to help us. It helps me understand why […]

‘The Hobbit’ barely survives overblown production

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Rated PG-13 for extended sequences of intense fantasy action violence, and frightening images The first question on many fans’ minds when director Peter Jackson announced he’d be filming The Hobbit as a follow-up to his nine-hour Lord of the Rings adaptation, was: Will this one be produced on a smaller […]

Wrap It Up! Books on faith still gladden hearts at Christmas

By Sam Hodges, Managing Editor and Mary Jacobs, Staff Writer… Getting pleasantly lost in a bookstore isn’t easy to do anymore. Bookstores have continued to close as readers and publishers embrace online book sales, digital books and e-readers. The recent announcement by the United Methodist Publishing House that all Cokesbury stores will be shuttered by […]

Churches aid storm relief effort

Staff Reports… United Methodists in New Jersey and New York are mobilizing to help residents in those areas affected by Hurricane Sandy. On Staten Island, Bethel United Methodist Church is serving as a staging area for relief efforts. Ten United Methodist congregations on Staten Island and their buildings all weathered the storm. “That’s a good […]

Amy Valdez Barker to be executive secretary of Connectional Table

  The UMC’s Connectional Table (CT) has announced the hiring of the Rev. Amy Valdez Barker as executive secretary, effective Jan.  1. She will provide administrative leadership for the CT as it coordinates the mission, ministries and resources of the denomination. “Amy’s experience as a leader in The United Methodist Church, along with her vision and passion […]