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Archive | Church Connection


Shirley (Phelps) Roberts passed away unexpectedly on July 8, 2019 at her home in Howard City. She was born on August 26, 1942. She was a graduate of Cedar Springs High School. She was proceeded in death by her parents, Kenneth and Helen Phelps; husband, Arthur Roberts and brother, Ronald Phelps. Shirley worked in retail and finished her career at Hospice of Michigan. Some of her greatest pleasures in life were spending time with her family, her grandkids and siblings. She had a knack for canning, sewing and caring for everyone around her. She was survived by her children, Chris (T. Scott Jewett) Karen ( Bill Misner) Mike (Terri Roberts) and Sheryl Parker; brother Dan (Henri Phelps); her sisters, Susan (Bill Sigel) Sandra (Bill Ives) and brother Kenneth (Cindy Phelps). Many grandchildren and great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews. She was loved by so many people, and will forever be missed. She had such an everlasting bond with everyone she knew. Friends, family and others whose lives Shirley touched are invited to Heckman Funeral Home in Howard City for a viewing Friday, July 12 6 p.m.-8 p.m. Funeral will be held at Croton Grace Community Church on Saturday July, 13th 11 a.m. -2 p.m. Donations can be made to Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.

Arrangements by Heckman Funeral Home, Howard City

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Kathleen Ann Britton, age 69 of Pewamo, passed away on Friday, July 5, 2019. Kathleen was born on November 18, 1949 to William and Helen Beebe in Grand Rapids. Kathleen married James Britton September 9th, 1972. She enjoyed reading and gardening and loved her time spent with grandchildren. Kathleen is survived by her husband, James Britton of Portland; mother, Helen Beebe of Cedar Springs; sons, Shawn (Kelli) Britton of Hubbardston and Chad Britton of Belding; brothers, Bruce (Connie) Beebe and Fay Beebe; sisters, Harriet Harris (Chuck Eisenlohr) and Sandy Patin; and sister-in-law’s, Larain (Harold) Irish and WendyJo (Bob) Barr; and grandchildren, Wyatt Britton, Alisha Britton and Chase Britton. Kathleen is preceded in death by her father. A Memorial Luncheon will be held 11:00 a.m., Friday, June 12th, at the Pewamo Fire Department, 137 E Main St, Pewamo , MI. 

Arrangements in care of Lake Funeral Home of Ionia. Online Condolences can be made at www.lakefuneralhomes.com.

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Selma Bertha Reed, age 95, of Sand Lake, passed away at home on July 3, 2019 in Sand Lake, Michigan. She was born on July 19, 1923 to Karl and Jessie (Smith) Schnicke in Winfield Township, MI. On July 1, 1942 she married Harold Reed in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Selma worked as a Assembler for Kelvinator for many years until she retired in 1972. She was a long time member of Huggard Bible Church. Selma enjoyed sewing and quilting. She also enjoyed camping and being with family. Selma is survived by her children, George (Roberta) Reed, Paul (Donna) Reed, Virgil (Wilma) Reed, Dale (Rita) Reed, Jane (Al) Sadler; fifteen grandchildren; twenty-seven great-grandchildren; twelve great-great-grandchildren; sister, Madelin (Charles) Reed; sister-in-law, Alice Sluijer; brother-in-law, Lester Ridgeway. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Harold Reed in 2014; sister, Bernice (Bruce) Armstrong; brother, Karl Schnicke. Funeral services were held on Monday, July 8, 2019, 11:00 a.m. at the Huggard Bible Church, 21 Mile Rd, Sand Lake, MI 49343, with Pastor Rick Malone, Pastor Ron Workman and granddaughter Angie West officiating. A time of visitation with the family was held one hour prior to the funeral service at church. Burial will be in the East Nelson Cemetery. Memorials contributions are suggested to Huggard Bible Church Kitchen Fund. Please share your memories of Selma online at www.pedersonfuneralhome.com.

Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home, Rockford

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Terry A. Rizzon, age 68, of Cedar Springs, died Monday, July 1, 2019 at Metro Health Hospital, Wyoming. Terry was born May 14, 1951 the son of the late Anthony and Florence (Swarthout) Rizzon. He was a member of the Michigan National Guard for 20 years serving in Desert Storm. He enjoyed restoring military trucks. Surviving are his wife, Donna; children, Terry Rizzon Jr., Jamie (Ron) Hoppa, Anthony (Beth) Rizzon; grandchildren, Abby, Ron Jr., Hannah, Brenden, Tyler, Alexander. Cremation has taken place and a private family gathering will be held. Private interment East Nelson Cemetery. 

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

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Diana L. Thompson of Cedar Springs, Michigan, age 71, passed away on Friday, June 28, 2019. She was born to Louis and Marjorie (Heath) Rinks on December 8, 1947, in Grand Rapids, MI. Diana enjoyed sewing, crocheting, and spending time with friends and family. She especially enjoyed time spent with her grandkids and animals. Diana is survived by her beloved husband of 52 cherished years, Robert G. Thompson; her children, Denise Thompson, Robert (Brandi) Thompson Jr., Aaron Thompson, and Danielle Thompson; many grandchildren, including Skylar and Serenity; and her sisters, Janice Thompson, Mary Rinks, and Joanne Kramer. Diana was preceded in death by her brother Darwin and both parents. Please check back for family directed service information at www.pedersonfuneralhome.com.

Arrangements by Pederson 

Funeral Home, Rockford

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John David Brigham, age 59 of Sand Lake, Spencer Township, passed away Tuesday, June 25, 2019. He was born in Kalamazoo, MI on March 15, 1960, the son of Malcolm C. and Joyce A. (Gorby) Brigham. John was a graduate of Lakeview High School and was married to Pamela S. Olmstead on February 14, 1986. He was a taxidermist for over 20 years and a dredge operator for the King Company of Holland and for the last 13 years the owner of the Harvard Tavern where he enjoyed serving his people skills with the public. He loved to hunt, fish, trap, golf and boating and was a big U of M fan. He was preceded in death by his wife, Pam, and is survived by his daughter, Katie Brigham; his mother, Joyce (Bing) Downer; father, Mick Brigham; sisters, Julie Brigham and Cindy (Shane) Jenkins; significant other, Becky Balder; children, Rochelle Hunter, Braden Hunter, Kierston Moorman and Preston Yoder; grandchildren, Logan, Olivia and Shaylee; nieces and nephews, aunts, uncles and cousins. Funeral services were on Saturday, June 29, 2019 with Allen Christensen officiating. Memorial contributions may be directed to the American Heart Association or National Pancreatic Cancer Foundation. Memories and condolences may be sent via www.hurstfh.com.

Arrangements by Hurst 

Funeral Home, Greenville

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In loving memory of our dear father, Peter Naffziger, who passed away 53 years ago, July 5, 1966.

We thought of you with love today,

but that is nothing new.

We thought of you yesterday 

and the days before that too.

Your memory is our keepsake

with which we’ll never part.

God has you in His keeping,

we have you in our hearts.

Sadly missed by Children & grandchildren

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In loving memory of our father, Alton White, who passed away 54 years ago, June 14, 1965 and our dear mother, June White, who passed away 44 years ago on July 10, 1975. 

To hear your voice, to see your smile 

To sit with you and talk awhile

To be together in the same old way

Would be our dearest wish today

Sadly missed by Roger & Diana White

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Thank You

We would like to thank everyone for all the love, support and cards we received at the time of our loss of our mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and sister. We are blessed with wonderful family and friends. We also want to thank the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home for the assistance and comfort we received.

The family of Lois Larson

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True freedom

Pastor Darryl Miller

Sand Lake/South Ensley United Methodist Churches


As we approach another July Fourth celebration, I look around and see many troubles. I see people who just a few years ago stood side-by-side celebrating our nation with tears and smiles, and who now barely take time to acknowledge each other. 

I am from a family with some military service history. I have always held those who have served in high esteem, and the results of their sacrifice as well. We are a nation unlike any other. I am one of “those” who get annoyed when a man doesn’t remove his hat while the National Anthem plays. Some of you have met me! 

After 9-11, the nation changed for a time. People stood in silence while our song played. There was respect for all those who sacrificed themselves and their safety for others. However, as memories fade so does the renewed passion. 

Unfortunately, the same thing can happen when we discover another kind of freedom—the freedom from our sins. When we first meet our Savior, we are on fire and ready to take on the world in His name. As time goes by and the memory of that wonderful feeling falls by the wayside, our enthusiasm can fade too. Sometimes I think that this is because we do not really understand what true freedom is. It really doesn’t mean that we can do anything that we want anytime we want. It is much deeper than that. It means that when we fall away from God into sin, we can return to Him with repentance and He will take us back into His fold. It means that if we rebel, fall away, or simply forget that we belong to Him, He never forgets that we are His. It means that we can live lives of hope and grace, and that we can live without the worry of sin hanging over us.  Best of all it means that we can be God’s people doing God’s work with His constant presence. 

If your enthusiasm seems to be fading, renew it by remembering. Remember how blessed we are to live in a nation where we can celebrate together. Remember those who made it possible for us to be here. Moreover, remember the God who loves us and saves us from ourselves. 

Visit a local church this Sunday and see if the fire doesn’t reignite!

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