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Archive | Church Connection


Sandra S. McEwen age 75 of Cedar Springs, went to be with her Lord on Sunday, March 22, 2020 at her home. Sandra was born September 7, 1944 in Gladwin, MI the daughter of Richard and Gladys (McMahon) Sterling. She was an active member of Maranatha Baptist Church and a member of the Cedar Springs and Rockford Garden Clubs. Surviving are her daughters, Kathleen (Patrick) Ottobre, Bonnie McEwen; grandchildren, Joslin, Patrick, Dezerey, Chelsea, Crystal and Cody; great-grandchildren, Jacey, Jaelynn, Spencer, Brayden, Sayla and Payton; siblings, Kathleen (Tom) Randle, Bob (Cindy) Sterling, Suzanne (Stanley) Witer, Stephen (Penny) Sterling; in-laws, Larry (Marlene) McEwen, Sandy (Bill) Ludwick, Cindy (Dave) Lowman, Kathy Brott; many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Harry in 2013 and a sister, Sally Smith. Due to the Covid-19 Virus a private family service will be held at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. Pastor Scott Sloan officiating. Interment Elmwood Cemetery, Cedar Springs. A public service at the funeral home will be announced in the summer. Memorial contributions may be made to Maranatha Baptist Church, 12786 Algoma Avenue, Cedar Springs.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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Carl H. Anderson, age 88, of Cedar Springs, went to be with his Savior on Saturday, March 21, 2020. Carl was born in 1932, in a small cabin in the mountains of Canton, N. C. At age seven, his parents moved to Cedar Springs, MI. He married Patty in 1958. They celebrated 61 years this past year. Carl worked for Wolverine World Wide for 26 years. Prior to that he worked at the Gypsum mines in Grand Rapids, Remer and Eldered Grain Elevator in Cedar Springs, and shoveling coal, as a young boy he worked in the muck fields near Grant, MI. His passion was for farming and raising beef cattle, which he did for over 40 years. You could always find him on his John Deere tractor. He loved spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Surviving are his wife, Patty; children, Leon H. Anderson and Carlena (Greg) Arndt; four grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and one sister of Eustis, FL., Althea Iantha Ollis. A Private Service will be held on Thursday, March 26, 2020 at Pederson Funeral Home in Rockford. Burial will take place in Solon Township Cemetery.

Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home, Rockford.

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Donald E. “Duke” Ducat age 89 of Irons passed away Tuesday, March 17, 2020 at his home. Don was born November 11, 1930 in VanWert, Ohio the son of Leonard and Charlotte (Graf) Ducat. He served his country in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War. He owned and operated Duke & Son’s Plumbing and Heating and Duke’s Hardware in Sand Lake. He enjoyed fishing, hunting and was a member of Gideons International. He was a longtime active member of Bethel Lutheran Church, Howard City and helped start Resurrection Lutheran Church in Sand Lake. He was presently a member of Our Saviour Lutheran Church, Scottville. He loved life, the Lord and his family. Surviving are his wife, Norah (Brooks) whom he married on February 19, 1956; children, Barbara Gillespie, Sherilyn (Edwin) Wheeler, Mark (Nancy) Ducat; daughter-in-law, Brenda Ducat; grandchildren, Ryan Shick, Nyha (Tony) French, Tiffany (Jon) Bosma, Kurt (Kate) Snyder, Ashley (Aaron) Whalen, Hillary (Joe) Hilgendorf, Nathaniel (Jessica) Ducat, Donald (Rachel) Ducat, Andrea (Bryan) Richard, Phillip (Kenzie) Wheeler, Sarah (Blake) Baker, Dana Bailey, Jacquelyn Ducat, Jacob Wheeler; 30 great-grandchildren; brother, Carl (Nancy) Ducat. He was preceded in death by his parents; son, Leonard; grandson, Eddie Wheeler. Because of the Covid-19 Virus a service at Bethel Lutheran Church, Howard City will be announced at a later date. Interment Lakeview Cemetery, Elk Township. Memorial contributions may be made to Gideons International.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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You want me to do what??

Pastor Kevin Reed

Grace Evangelical Free Church 

“Rejoice in the Lord Always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” – Philippians 4:4

I need to admit something.  I have known this verse for most of my life.  It goes all the way back to my Sunday school days as a little kid when we would sing the song. Do you know the song? We would even sing it in a round! You’re welcome, because if you just sang it in your head like I did, it will be stuck there for the rest of the day, haha! While I may have known this verse for most of my life, it’s still a really tough one for me to live, especially these past couple of weeks. What is there to rejoice in? We’re quarantined to our homes, can’t go to work (most of us), can’t go to school, can’t go to church, can’t, can’t can’t….the list could go on and on.  

At first glance you might think, “surely a verse like this must have been written by someone in the midst of a season of life that was full of blessings, because if they were living through what we’re living through they wouldn’t have written that!” But when you look into it, you will find that this book is written by the Apostle Paul (for a list of the “joys” he experienced in his life you can consult 2 Corinthians 11:23-28) whose life after turning to Jesus was filled with difficulty upon difficulty. It was written to the body of Christ in Philippi and it was written by Paul when He was in jail. Take all that into consideration and read that verse again. Here is a guy who has had his life threatened numerous times and has faced opposition everywhere he went, and as we know from history, he will ultimately give his life because of his work for Jesus. He is in prison for doing nothing more than preaching the good news that Jesus saves. He doesn’t know what tomorrow will bring, and he probably doesn’t even know what the next hour of his life will bring. And he pens these words, “Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again: Rejoice!” 

How can he say such a thing? I would dare to say because he knew something we need to be reminded of today. “I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things.  I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him…”(Philippians 3:8,9). He knew that Jesus was enough. Knowing Jesus and having a relationship with him was enough to find joy even in the midst of difficulty. Being “in Christ” was enough for Paul to where he could be without everything else. Simply put, he could rejoice because nothing else mattered except knowing Jesus, because Paul knew that if he knew Jesus everything else would be okay. Jesus was enough for Paul; the question I need to ask myself today is, “is he enough for me?”  The answer: “YES HE IS!”  So let’s say it one more time, “Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say rejoice!” 

The choice is yours. What’s it going to be?

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Update on hours due to corona virus

We have a temporary change in our office routine to announce in regard to circumstances regarding the COVID-19 virus. Due to the fact that we have employees with auto-immune disorders and employees caring for vulnerable family members with breathing problems, our office will be closed to the general public until further notice. Please consider emailing us or calling us (696-3655) if you need to submit something, discuss something, or need to make a payment. We can take your payment over the phone with a credit/debit card. If you need to drop something off, we will have a mailbox outside our door that we will check often. Please do not put checks or valuables in the box. If you need to give us a check, please send through regular mail. At least one person will be in the office from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday to take calls, and we will be closed on Friday. This is only temporary and we apologize for any inconvenience. Thank you for understanding!

For more contact information visit our About page http://cedarspringspost.com/about/

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Ann D. Longcore age 63 of Sand Lake, died Tuesday, March 17, 2020 at her home. Ann was born June 15, 1956 in Grand Rapids, MI the daughter of Mac and Marjorie (Bird) Bailey. She worked for the U.S. Post Office for over 30 years. She loved mushroom hunting, going to the casino with her brother, Gil and baking. She loved her grandchildren dearly. Surviving are her husband, Brian; children, Lisa (Mike) Bergman, Ben (Andra) Longcore; grandchildren, Chad Bergman, Timothy Parker, Jason (Samantha) Bergman, Nicholas Bergman, Steven, Abram, Josephine and Oliver Longcore; great-grandchildren, Brayten Miles, Brookelynn Ream, Carter Bergman, Wayne Bergman; brother and sisters, Terry (Dave) Fountain, Judy (Jim) Owens, Betty Towns, Sharon (Joe) DeWildt, Gilbert Bailey, Gail (Lonnie) Armstrong; sister-in-law, Barbra Everhart; brother-in-law, Thom (Dawn) Longcore; many nieces and nephews; special aunt, Letha Gebhardt; special friend, Virginia Schumann. She was preceded in death by her parents, parents-in-law, Cecil (Velma) Longcore; son, Timothy Longcore; sister-in-law, Julie Springvloed; grandson, Michael Bergman. Cremation will take place and a memorial service will be announced in the summer. Memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded War Project. 

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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October 14, 1941 – March 20, 2018

Two years ago, a great lady that we love moved to a place where she is no longer in pain. We still love and miss her very much and pray for her.

Missing her every day – Her family

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June 1939 – March 2000

There is a day that faces us all,

When we’ll leave this world and answer God’s call.

I will leave here on earth the ones that I love,

And go to be with our God in heaven above.

Your heart that is broken, for which I’ll pray,

Will join me in heaven some glorious day.

I gave you memeories of which to remember me by,

Some will make you laugh or smile and some even cry.

I hope that you smile, knowing heaven’s where I will be,

And someday when God calls, you’ll share a mansion with me.

So shed a tear but please move on,

If I’m in your heart, I’m not really gone.

So, don’t worry about me, I’m in God’s care,

We can talk any time, just put it in a prayer.

Be strong, go forward, put a smile on your face,

I lived a good life and I finished my race.

I’ll see you again, just as we have been told,

We’ll be together forever, on the streets of gold.

by Asher Wathan

The family of Kenneth Marvel

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Stations of the Cross

Father Lam T. Le, Pastor

St. John Paul II Parish

3110 17 Mile Rd, Cedar Springs, Michigan

616 696 3904

“When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will realize that I AM”

(Jn. 8:28)

In the new Church of St. John Paul II Parish, Cedar Springs, there is a beautiful set of the Fourteen Stations of the Cross.  During this Lent, I would like to share with all of you where this set came from and what it means to reflect on these Stations.

These Stations came to Cedar Springs due to the thoughtfulness of a group of priests and the kindness and generosity of the former St. Jean Baptist Catholic Church in Muskegon, Michigan.  In 2015, a group of priests urged the Archivist of the Diocese of Grand Rapids to invite me to St. Jean Parish. Upon arrival I was completely shocked to learn that the Church, which was over100 years old, was preparing for closure. The priests and parishioners encouraged me to take any available religious items that I felt I could work into the design of the new church at St John Paul II Parish.  I instantly knew that the antique Stations of the Cross would be a unique addition to our new worship space. I gathered a team and brought them to the grounds of St. John Paul II Parish. We commissioned two local artists to restore the pieces and they are now installed in the Church. I am so grateful for my brother priests who gave a thoughtful consideration for the newest parish in the Diocese and to the parishioners of formerly St. Jean for their encouragement and understanding.  Our gratitude to all!

To explain why the devotion of the Fourteen Stations of the Cross are important to Catholics, especially during Lent, I would like to share paragraph number 131 of The Directory of Popular Piety and the Liturgy: Principles and Guidelines (December 2001) from the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

Of all the pious exercises connected with the veneration of the Cross, none is more popular among the faithful than the Via Crucis. Through this pious exercise, the faithful movingly follow the final earthly journey of Christ: from the Mount of Olives, where the Lord, “in a small estate called Gethsemane” (Mk 14, 32), was taken by anguish (cf. Lk 22, 44), to Calvary where he was crucified between two thieves (cf. Lk 23, 33), to the garden where he was placed in freshly hewn tomb (John 19, 40-42). . . The love of the Christian faithful for this devotion is amply attested by the numerous Via Crucis erected in so many churches, shrines, cloisters, in the countryside, and on mountain pathways where the various stations are very evocative.

Truly, Via Crucis/ Way of the Cross is a devotion to the suffering of Christ for our salvation: the pilgrimage to the Holy Land during which the faithful devoutly visit the places associated with the Lord’s Passion. With the replication of the Fourteen Stations (His Condemnation to Death, Carrying the Cross, His First Fall, Meeting His Mother, Simon of Cyrene is Made to Bear the Cross, Christ’s Face is Wiped by Veronica, His Second Fall, the Lord Meets the Women of Jerusalem, His Third Fall, Christ is Stripped of His Garments, His Crucifixion, His Death on the Cross, His Body is Taken Down from the Cross, and being Laid in the Tomb) on the walls of a Church/Chapel, allow the faithful, who cannot make a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, to join in these moving Scriptural reflections.

We pray the Stations as pilgrims: Like Christ, we must press through towards the Cross, which leads to the glory of the Resurrection. The Fourteen Stations of the Cross calls us to die to sin and to rise in the newness of life. May our participation in the Stations remind us of the Lord’s promise: “When I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself” (Jn.12:32) 

(Father Lam also is the Pastor of Mary Queen of Apostles Parish, 1 West Maple St, Sand Lake, Michigan 49343 phone: 616 636 5671).

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James R. Haynes age 96 of Cedar Springs, died Tuesday, March 10, 2020 at Spectrum Health – Butterworth Campus. Jim was born July 18, 1923 in Evans, MI the son of Carl and Hattie (Ridgeway) Haynes. He was in the U.S. Marines during World War II serving in the South Pacific. Jim was a founding member of Pilgrim Bible Church and a strong man of God. He worked for the City of Cedar Springs and retired as Superintendent of Public Works after 32 years. Surviving are his children, Duane (Vicki) Haynes, Roger (Elise) Haynes, Beverly (Ken) Bladen; 14 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren; 9 great-great-grandchildren; several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, L. Venita; son, Mike; daughter-in-law, Julie; grandchildren, Denise and Hollie; brothers, Carl and Charles. The family will greet friends Friday from 6-8 p.m. at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs where the service will be held Saturday 11:00 a.m. Sr. Master Sgt. John Haynes officiating. Interment Elmwood Cemetery, Cedar Springs. Military honors by the Kent County Veterans Honor Guard. Memorials may be made to St. Jude’s Childrens Hospital.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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