Heidi L. Thompson (@hthompson) is a digital marketer focused on nonprofit news and religious publishing. She’s re-deploying the science of marketing toward the liberation of all God’s creation.

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Bond Denied for 7 Catholic Protesters Who Prayed on Nuclear Submarine Base in Georgia

Photo courtesy Heidi L. Thompson

Just steps away from a decommissioned submarine buried in the ground near the main gate at the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base in Georgia, anti-nuclear peace activists held a vigil Saturday morning to protest the U.S. nuclear arsenal and to show support for seven Catholic peace activists arrested early Thursday morning for unauthorized entry onto the base.

Lord, When Did We See You Addicted?

by Heidi L. Thompson 10-24-2017
Northeast Ohio, like much of the Rust Belt, has been ravaged by unemployment, hopelessness, and opioid addiction. Churches there are responding with help and hope.
An abandoned hotel in Warren, Ohio. (Matt Shiffler Photography/Flickr)

An abandoned hotel in Warren, Ohio. (Matt Shiffler Photography/Flickr)

OHIO'S OPIOD EPIDEMIC started a decade ago with the over-prescription of pain medicine and the arrival soon after of entrepreneurial heroin dealers. But in the Mahoning Valley, in Ohio’s northeast corner, you can trace the start of this crisis back even further, to an autumn day 40 years ago.

On Black Monday, Sept. 19, 1977, Youngstown Sheet and Tube, one of the area’s biggest steel mills, announced it was closing. The shutdown wasn’t a total shock; the steel industry had been in trouble for years. More than 4,000 workers lost their jobs that day. The closure started a chain reaction of mill and related business closings, unemployment, neighborhood collapse, and population decline that reverberates even today.

The mill closing, and all the losses that came after, had the effect of dropping an economic bomb on the region, breaking apart families, driving young people out of the area, skyrocketing poverty, and increasing demands on health and safety-net services. Like other Ohio cities with a manufacturing base, Youngstown and Warren, the valley’s largest cities, saw their jobs, businesses, and, finally, residents flee. My hometown of Warren lost a third of its population; Youngstown lost almost half.

The rubble left behind created ideal conditions for heroin’s demons to move in and take over. And they have, with a vengeance.

Developers Are Trying to Build a Pipeline Through a Watershed. These Nuns Built a Chapel in Its Path.

More than 500 people gathered in a hot and dusty Pennsylvania cornfield yesterday afternoon to join the Catholic sisters of the Adorers of the Blood of Christ for the dedication of a new outdoor chapel, built on land about to be seized from them by a corporate developer planning to build a natural gas pipeline.

My Hometown Makes the Front Page of The Washington Post

by Heidi L. Thompson 12-17-2009

At a recent holiday party, I tried to describe my hometown of Warren, Ohio.

"Warren?" I said. "Well, it's a lot like Detroit. With none of the perks."

Forgiveness as Healing

by Heidi L. Thompson 02-01-2007

Eva Mozes Kor was 9 years old when she and the rest of her family stepped off the train at Auschwitz. Within seconds, she lost sight of her father and two older sisters in the crowd.