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Archive | Church Connection

HARRY W. SHEPARD

Harry W. Shepard “Bud”, 78 of Rockford, passed peacefully at home surround by his family on Tuesday, April 28, 2020. Harry began his journey of life on February 20, 1942 the son of Harry Sr. and Lorraine (Benham) Shepard. He graduated from Union High School and honorably joined the United States Air Force serving from 1961 – 1965. Upon Harry’s arrival back home, he began his career in plumbing/pipefitting, which he continued until retirement. In 1983, Harry married the love of his life, Laura. Together they shared a love of camping and fishing. Harry, along with his wife, spent every weekend taking the grandkids up north, teaching them the true meaning of family and of course, how to catch the biggest fish. As the years passed, Harry’s love for coffee, friends, and family turned into traditional morning coffee dates. Harry’s greatest joy came from his family bonds with Kerri, Bridget, Shauna, and Aleisha Smith, along with his great-grandson, and best pal, Ayden Isaacson. Harry wore many hats as he faithfully pursued the life of husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and most of all, friend. He took on multiple roles for many people to ensure that each needed figure in their life was present. Harry’s determined and heartfelt personality created the best role model. He could always be found cracking jokes and being the crowd comedian. Surviving are his wife, Laura; children, Ronda Smith, Harry “Bill” (Kim) Shepard, Wayne Ream, Kenneth (Beverly) Ream, and Aaron (Sarah) Ream; sisters-in-law, JoAnn Shepard and Shirley Mosher; 13 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; his beloved dogs, Roscoe and Rosie; and many nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents: three sisters, MaryLou Shepard, Francis Slavens, and Patricia DeZwaan; brother, Robert “Bob” Shepard. The love and memories that Harry left behind will never be forgotten. The stories of his jokes, camping trips, and life story will forever be shared with friends, family, and great-great-grandkids yet to come. As a family, we would like to hear your stories, see your pictures, and relive the amazing memories that Harry has left with you. A private memorial will be held at Fort Custer National Cemetery, Augusta. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. Memorial contributions can be made to: Fresenius Kidney Care, 311 Rockford Park Dr. NE, Rockford, MI 49341. 

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

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KURT PROBST

In loving memory of Kurt Probst, our loving husband, step-dad, son, brother, uncle, step-grandpa, who joined the Lord one year ago, May 6, 2019.

Spring has come and so are all the memories of loving you. Our lives go on without you but nothing’s the same. We have to hide our heartaches when someone speaks your name. Sad are the hearts that love you, silent the tears that fall. Living our lives without you is the hardest part of all. You did so many things for us. Your heart was kind and true, and when we needed someone, we could always count on you. The special years will not return when we were all toghether, but with the love within our hearts a part of us went with you the day God took you home.

Greatly loved and missed by your loving wife, Helen; step-son, Thomas; mom and dad, Art and Carolyn; brother, Alan (Mercedes); niece, Mikayla; nephew, Austin; step-grandkids; Tianna, Franklin and Talia.

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Thank You

The family of Gary Brooks would like to thank you for the cards, flowers and kind expressions of sympathy shown to us during his passing. Your kindness and compassion during this difficult time was very much appreciated and a great comfort to the family!

The Brooks Family

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Do not be afraid

By Pastor Jon Huizenga 

Phone: 616 485-6943

website – www.riseupcedar.org

Facebook @riseupchurch

Email – info@riseupcedar.org

Hi neighbors! I am new to this “From the Pulpit” article. So, if we have not met before, it’s nice to meet you.

Our circumstances have been scary lately. You might be afraid of catching the virus. Or you could be afraid of how this is impacting your work or your school. Maybe you are afraid of the politics of it all. Like me, you could be afraid of how much isolation you can handle. (Staying at home and never going out is not my first choice for a good time!)

This general community nervousness has me thinking about the many times Jesus says, “Do not be afraid,” to people. He says it a lot.

One example is in Mark 4:35-41. Jesus herds his disciples into a boat to get away from the crowd after a long day. His disciples are experienced boat handlers (they are fishermen), but a storm comes up that is nearly swamping their boat. They are genuinely afraid, even though they are professionals. Jesus, however, is sleeping on a boat cushion like a baby. When they wake him up, he gets up, rebukes the wind and the waves, and the wind and waves obey him. Their fear of the storm ended, but now they were afraid of the power of Jesus!

In the story, the fear of the disciples seems to come from four things: 1. They failed to take note of the peace of Jesus.  (He was not afraid, was there really a reason for them to fear?) 2. They failed to take note of the presence of Jesus.  (If Jesus is in your boat, do you need to be afraid?) 3. They failed to take note of the power of Jesus (If someone tells the wind to stop and it does, you might be in the presence of God.) 4. They failed to take note of the personality of Jesus. (In their fear they shouted, “Don’t you care?” In fact, Jesus both cares and has power.)

Our current boat of life is a little stormy right now, don’t you think? How might our fear be different if we asked, “Where is Jesus at this moment?” The peace, presence, power and personality of Jesus change things.

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Thanks for everything – even our government

Pastor Dave Vander Meer

Rockford Springs Community Church

Today, as in everyday, we have so much to be thankful for.

“Lord, thank you for our food, our clothes, our homes, our churches, our families, our work, our money, our safety, our health and strength, our doctors, our hospitals, our stores, and our transportation.”  

Whoops, Oh yes, “and for our government, thank you.”

This last petition may be hard for some right now, while for others it is totally embraced.  There is a wide range of opinions and feelings out on the street regarding our government and the various actions it has taken recently with the COVID 19.  For some, the government has taken measures to protect, while for others the government has taken measures that have made things worse. But regardless where we are on the spectrum of views and voiced opinions, we would do well, each and every one of us, to pause and consider what the Bible teaches about government.

1. God is the King.  He is in control of all things.  Psalm 95:3 “For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods.”

2. God is the one who created and instituted government. Romans 13: 1 “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.”

3. Governments, just like churches, families, and businesses, are made up of people, and hence, at times, do not do everything right, or do what they do with the right motives.  

4. Governments need support. There are numerous ways the Bible tells us to support our government.  We need to pay taxes. Romans 13:6 “For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. 7 Pay to all what is owed to them.”

We need to give respect. Romans 13:7b “respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.”  We need to pray for them.  I Tim 2:1 “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, 2 for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.” We need to hold them accountable. This is why we speak a “word of conscience” to our government and why we vote.  This is why it was right, for example, for Nathan the prophet to come and point out King David’s sin. 

Two more things to carefully consider:

1. This is a time to trust God.  He is the one who will care for us without fault.  And He is the one who can change the heart of our government to properly care for His people. Prov 21:1 “The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD; he directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases.”

2. And finally, Christian, we need to always remember that our citizenship is in heaven. Phil 3: 20 “But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Since Jesus Christ purchased us on the cross, we are His.  Our first allegiance is to His government, the Kingdom of God. While we wait for His Kingdom to be fully realized, we thank Him for this government and seek its good. May the Lord bless the United States of America.  

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JAMES WILSON STEPHENS

 

James Wilson Stephens (The Big Guy) went home to be with the Lord on April 3, 2020 at the age of 84. He will be greatly missed by his loving wife of 63 years, Jeanne (Jorgensen) and children; Debby Bartel (Nate), Patti Rosengren (Brek), Linda Stephens, Sharon Cole (Roy), Tom Stephens, Mary Pinkerton, Anne Batchelder, Jennifer Smith (David), Jeannie Stephens-Dood (Wade) and 29 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren, and 2 great-great grandchildren. He called the little ones ‘Cosmo’. Jim was a wonderful Christian and his faith was very important to him. He graduated from Coopersville High School and was a machinist at Burke E. Porter for 52 years. He enjoyed the outdoors, fishing and hunting, and loved to read. He was quiet and reserved but could also be very funny and entertaining. The family wishes to thank Metron of Cedar Springs and Faith Hospice for their excellent care. A Praying of the Rosary and a Memorial mass for Jim will take place at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Marne and will be announced at a later date. Contributions in Jim’s memory may be made to St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Marne.

Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home, Rockford

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BENJAMIN WALL

In loving memory of Benjamin Wall. Our loving husband, dad, grandpa and great-grandpa who joined the Lord nineteen years ago April 30, 2001. 

Spring has come and so are all the memories of loving you. Our lives go on without you but nothing’s the same. We have to hide our heartaches when someone speaks your name. Sad are the hearts that love you, silent the tears that fall. Living our lives without you is the hardest part of all. You did so many things for us. Your heart was kinda and true, and when we needed someone, we could always count on you. The specail years will not return when we were all toghether, but with the love within our hearts a part of us went with you the day God took you home.

Greatly loved and missed by your loving wife, Rosalyn; sons, Dennis (Cindy), Dean (Kristie); grandchildren, Cory (Mandy), Zachary (Angie), Molly (Matt), Emily (Marshall), Nate (Kalli); great-grandchildren, Megan, Cody, Allie, Abbie, Maddie (Alex), Izzy, Tristin, Ashley, Aubrey, Easton, Lilly, Landon Benjamin, and Caleb.

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Lucille Middleton

Lucille Middleton would like to thank everyone for the birthday cards and kind words she received for her 95th birthday. A reminder to not forget your loved ones during such a difficult time. Tough times never last, but tough people do.

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RICHARD DENNIS ROGALEWSKI

April 2, 1987 – February 21, 2020

Richard Dennis “RD” Rogalewski, age 32, passed away unexpectedly on February 21, 2020 in a truck accident in Dallas, TX. He is survived by his wife, Ashley Groom-Rogalewski and his son Kaiden Joshwa Rogalewski, age 7; dearest son of Dennis and Mary Anne Rogalewski; a brother, Dennis and his children and grandchildren; his sisters, Colette and husband Paul Anderson and children, and Rita Rogalewski-Richards and wife Kim Richards; survived by several aunts, uncles and cousins. He is also survived by his mother and father in-law, Donald G. Groom and Centhia G. Fleming and brothers-in-law, Johnathan Groom and family, and Dustin Groom. He was predeceased by his mother, Deborah Phyllis Rogalewski in Pipe Creek, TX (3-2-1990); his grandparents, John and Charlotte Rogalewski of Cedar Springs, MI, and Richard and Margaret Grimes of Sand Lake MI.  Richard owned and operated his own business, A1 Pro-Install, at his time of death. He earned the First Place title in American Junior Golf championship of Texas at the age of 12. He also achieved academic success in his education career. He received a degree as Valedictorian (2010) in Audio Engineering from Media Tech Institute in Houston, TX. He was a happy-go-lucky, family-oriented guy. He enjoyed being down at the coast with his parents and spending quality time with his wife and son. You rarely saw him without a smile on his face, and if you didn’t have one, he would try his hardest to turn it upside down. He was a man of God. A loving son, father, husband and also a friend to the ones closest to him. He is greatly missed and will never be forgotten! We love you! Richard has been cremated and services are pending in Austin, TX, where he and his family resided.

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Thank You

From the Bruce Cooper family, we thank you for your sympathy and kindness at Bruce’s passing.

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