ACEs – 150 Years of United Methodism…for Good


In his book 3 Simple Rules the United Methodist Bishop, Reuben Job, sums up United Methodist theology in 3 rules: 1. Do No Harm. 2. Do Good 3. Stay In Love With God. For the past 150 years, St. Paul’s and Methodists in Helena have lived this out in our practice. To celebrate this historical achievement we chose to not just sit and cheer, but to stand and make a difference. We want to Do Good… for Good and to continue to share the love of God.

Intermountain has been a part of our history from our very early days and so this fall we are teaming up with them to learn about ACEs. This facility that we started, as the Deaconess Home for Children has turned into an organization that helps children with severe emotional and mental health needs through holistic, integrated services and a relationship-based approach. The education wing of Intermountain, Child Wise has begun a campaign to educate the community on ACEs to help us look at some big challenges we and our children are facing.


What is an ACE?

“ACE stands for Adverse Childhood Experiences. The ACE Study was initiated as a collaboration between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Kaiser Permanente’s Health Appraisal Clinic. A decade-long study, its participants numbered more than 17,000 members that underwent a comprehensive physical examination and chose to provide detailed information about their childhood experience of abuse, neglect, and family dysfunction. To date, more than 50 scientific articles have been published and more than 100 conference and workshop presentations have been made. No further participants will be enrolled, but the members are still being tracked for their medical status.” (This information and more can be found at

What do ACEs mean for us?

The higher number of ACEs a person has in their lives the higher their risk for not only mental illness, but also chronic health conditions, like COPD or high blood pressure. The list of effects of ACEs are numerous and growing as we learn more and more. Learning about ACEs helps us do a few things:
1. Build relationships in our community to prevent ACEs from happening to children in our own community.
2. Remove stigma around people who have experienced high ACEs and their resulting realities.
3. Learn about our own ACEs to build awareness that “Adversity is not Destiny,” we can use the knowledge to bring a positive future through things like the treatment of ailments brought on by ACEs or helping our neighbors learn this knowledge.
Wednesday Night Dinner to benefit Intermountain
Hosted by 150th Jubilee Committee – November 4
Our 150th team has geared up to support our long!me mission at Intermountain by hosting a Wednesday Night Dinner. This event will highlight our work with Intermoun- tain from the past to the present and our work on the ACEs campaign. Please join us for good food and a chance to support Intermountain.

Chaplain Chris Haughee of Intermountain’s intensive residential program will be there to share his heart for the ministry and meet with those individuals that are motivated to combat the effects of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and how they present obstacles for these children and families that want to connect to a church community.

Beyond his personal and professional interest in ACEs, Chaplain Chris Haughee is an advocate for greater inclusion of foster and adoptive families in the life and ministry of local congregations. You can follow the ministry at or contact him at

After the dinner on November 4 in the Fellowship Hall, those that are excited about starting the conversation around what a faith-based response to ACEs would look like in our community are welcomed to meet with Chaplain Chris in the Library (Room 101). We
anticipate that this meeting would last no more than an hour.

Design a Child’s Destiny: Adverse Childhood 

Experiences; Painting a Different Future 

ACEs Event – Friday evening, November 6, 6pm – St. Paul’s Sanctuary.  Join us to hear from two dynamic speakers: Dr. Elizabeth Kohlstaedt, Ph.D. the Clinical Director at Intermountain and Schylar Canfield-Baber will share two talks on the realities of ACEs and how “Adversity is not Destiny.”  Schylar will speak from his personal experience with ACEs and Dr. Kohlstaedt will focus on how ACEs affect the brain and development.  Please join us for this short presentation and then enjoy the Art Walk in Downtown Helena.

Challenge Helena – October 22 
Challenge Helena has spent the last year highlighting issues affecting vulnerable populations and then challenging Helena to make a difference on those issues.  This fall we are teaming up with Child Wise to challenge our community on ACEs.  Our goal is to provide personal and community ways you can make a difference to prevent ACEs and also to support those who have experienced ACEs.  Join us for a double header talk by the Executive Director of Child Wise, Todd Garrison and a young man who embodies “Adversity is not Destiny” when it comes to ACEs, Schylar Canfield-Baber.  We invite you to grab dinner and join us for two 20 minute talks, some Q&A, and a challenge.  Learn more at