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Todd Michael Hill, 54 of White Cloud passed away peacefully, Thursday, April 14, 2016 in his sleep in the arms of his loving wife, Thelma Hill from cancer. Todd was born August 29, 1961 in Grand Rapids, MI the son of Terry and Sally (McCoy) Hill. He was raised in Cedar Springs and spent the last 12 years in White Cloud. Todd was a very loving Papa who loved his grandchildren. He coached his granddaughter Mackenzie’s Pee-Wee baseball team from 2010-12. Todd is survived by his wife, Thelma; children, Rodney, Frances (Rook), Paula (Bobby), Bowzer, (Julia); granddaughters, Rhea, Neisha, Rosie, Jamie, Buffy, Mackenzie, Cadence, Krista and Madison; grandsons, William, Alex, Dustin, Rookie, Paul (P.J.), Shawn; great grandson, Adam (A.J.); father, Terry (Karen) Hill; mother, Sally (Don) Groters; sisters, Terri (Tom) Venman, Traci (Carlos) Beals; brother, Charlie Hill; aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews. Longtime friends, Dan Robinson, Joe (Lisa) Magnan, Amber, Joan Defreese and many other friends from Cascade Engineering, Royal Plastics and Emerald Graphics. The family greeted friends Monday, April 18 at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs where the service was held Tuesday 2:00 pm. Marj Timmerman officiating. Interment Amble Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Lemmen-Holton Cancer Research, 145 Michigan St. NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.

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C-obit-hoekstraRobin H. Hoekstra, 60, of Cedar Springs, died Wednesday April 13, 2016. Robin was born November 17, 1955 in Battle Creek, Michigan, the daughter of Vonna Darin (Ryder) and the late Angelo Darin. Robin was preceded in death by her son, Anthony Fortier on March 19, 1997. Robin is survived by her mother; siblings, Catherine, Angelo, Joseph, Guiliana, Christopher, Antonio, Eugene; her children, Marc (Tracy), Daniel (Sarah), Michelle (Terry), Patrick (Jennifer), Gabrielle (Gage), and Andrew; grandchildren, Austin J., Austin M., Hannah, Emma, Caleb, Ayla, Anthony, Mason, Cooper, Ava, and Landon; many nieces and nephews. Robin’s greatest joy came from raising her children and spending time with her grandchildren. People who had the privilege of knowing Robin remember her for bringing the best out of people and the willingness to go that extra mile for anyone in need. The family greeted friends Monday from 6-8 pm at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs, where a celebration of life was held Tuesday 11:00 am. Visitation began Tuesday 10:00 am. Rev. Ben Vaught officiating. Interment Woodlawn Cemetery, Grand Rapids. The family asks in lieu of flowers a donation be made to the Robin Hoekstra Gofundme.com account in order to support funeral costs and to support her youngest son Andrew Fortier.

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

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From the pulpit: As Christians, should we obey bad rulers?

By Pastor Kristi J. Rhodes

Should we obey bad rulers?

Greetings Cedar Springs Community! I was asked a question recently that I will ask you now.

You can hardly get through a single day without hearing discussion about the upcoming presidential election. I have to say, in all my years (which are many), I have never witnessed such a bazaar journey to the Whitehouse, regardless of who gets in there! There are not many topics more polarizing than politics or religion. So why in the world would anyone open that can of worms? It’s really pretty simple. God has something to say about that.

As Christians, that’s where we get our instruction—from God’s Word—which is the Bible. “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun,” Ecclesiastics 1:9 (NIV). There have been many bad rulers and God’s basic instructions before leaving earth gives us wisdom to live by.

The apostle Paul in speaking to Titus said, “Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate and to show true humility toward all men” Titus 3:1-2 (NIV).

Paul teaches that government’s authority is established by God to keep order on earth. If government lines up with God’s law, then Christians are right to obey it. However, if a human law runs counter to God’s principles, then it is not wrong to disobey. Peter and the other apostles replied: “We must obey God rather than human beings!”(Acts 5:29 NIV). Bottom line is, we must obey the law of the land unless it conflicts with God’s law. Everyone answers to someone, but ultimately, everyone will answer to God. Even while resisting in those areas where government oversteps its bounds, Christians must still recognize the authority of government in its other functions.

The good news is that regardless of who is in the Whitehouse, God is on the throne and always will be! As Christians, we belong to the Kingdom of God, and the Kingdom of God is NEVER in trouble! Hallelujah!

May God richly bless you and yours as you seek to honor Him with your choices.

Pastor Kristi J. Rhodes

Hillcrest Community Church

5994 18 Mile Rd. Cedar Springs, MI 49319

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Thank You

Thank you

The family of Bob Hyrns would like to thank everyone who donated to Hospice, sent cards and attended his memorial.

Alva & Donna Hyrns and family

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Thank you

Thank you

The Family of John Dekraker would like to thank everyone who helped to make his benefit a success last fall. John had a successful transplant January 25, 2016.

We look forward to helping others.

John, Gail Dekraker and family

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In Memory: Betty Jo Stults

In Loving Memory of


November 4, 1938 – April 13, 2012

There are no words to tell you

What losing you has meant.

But now each day brings memories

of happy years we spent.

You’d want us all to smile again

And that’s just what we do.

Every time we reminisce

With loving thoughts of you.

You’re with us when

Each new day dawns.

And when we say goodnight.

Our guardian angel here on earth

And Heaven’s shining light.

Sadly miss by all.


Cheryl & Greg Fisk

Greg Jr. & Pam and girls

Roger & Tasha and boys

Alicia & David and kids

Kristina and girls

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Confident Grace

By Pastor Craig Carter, North Kent Community Church

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need” (Heb. 4:16 NIV).

What’s so amazing about grace? If we are honest, the longer we live and serve the Lord, the more we realize that God’s grace is simply amazing. One of the most profound things about God’s grace is that it invites us to God’s throne with confidence. Notice that the throne we are invited to is not one of judgment, but of grace. The writer of Romans gives us this same picture. He writes, “But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! Again, the gift of God is not like the result of the one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ” (Rom 5:15-17). God provided abundant grace for this life. Now that’s a confidence builder in us all! God says this grace assures us we can reign in life. We can live confidently that if God is for us, who can be against us?

I think it is important to remember that grace is the unmerited favor of God. It is a favor or kindness shown without regard to the worth or merit of the one who receives it and in spite of what that same person deserves. That is why we are invited to come to this throne without hesitation. In the above verse, we are instructed to come to this throne with “confidence.” Another translation says that we may “come boldly” unto the throne of grace. This word “boldly” is the Greek word parrhesia (par-rhay-see’-ah), which literally means to come with an all out-outspokenness, frankness and bluntness. It also implies that we can do so, without fear of some repercussions.

Let me ask you this question. When was the last time you went to God and spoke your mind honestly and openly, without fear of some repercussions? You may be uncomfortable with this, but that’s exactly what God’s grace allows us to do. I find it interesting that people harbor all kinds of thoughts in their heart that they would not even consider speaking with their mouth. Yet, they fail to realize God already knows their thoughts! They act as if they were to verbalize them to God, he would punish them with some consequence. They think a lightning bolt from heaven is going to strike them because they had the audacity to speak their mind to God. I frequently remind people, God is a big boy, feel free to tell Him how you really feel.

Let me challenge you today. Go confidently or boldly to God’s throne with whatever need you have. Do not be afraid to speak your mind to God, because mercy and grace await you. Grace invites you to its throne because it longs to help you.

North Kent Community Church, 1480 Indian Lakes Rd., Sparta, Church Phone #: 550-6398

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Thank You: Lyman Gates

Thank you for the cards and prayers at the death of Lyman Gates. It meant so much!

Thank you.

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Althea B. Welch, 87, formerly of Cedar Springs, went to be with her Lord on Saturday, April 2, 2016 at Christian Rest Home, Grand Rapids. Mrs. Welch was born February 25, 1929 in Rockford, Michigan, the daughter of Arthur and Hazel (Hall) Bliss. She had worked at Wolverine World Wide before becoming a mother and homemaker. She was a longtime member of First Baptist Church of Cedar Springs where she taught Sunday School and Jr. Church for many years. She loved to cook, bake, knit, crochet, and spend time with her grandsons. Surviving are her son, Richard (Linda) Welch; grandsons, David and Jonathan; brother, Arthur (Delores) Bliss; many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Gordon in 2010; sisters, Lois Blakeslee, Lowella Husted, and Barbara Bliss; brother, Leland Bliss. The family greeted friends Tuesday, April 5 at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. The service was held Wednesday 11:00 a.m. at First Baptist Church of Cedar Springs. Pastor Dan Currie officiating. Interment Fairplains Cemetery, Sparta. Memorial contributions may be made to Christian Rest Home or Gentiva Hospice.

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

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C-obit-RinglerBetty G. Ringler, 85, of Cedar Springs, passed away peacefully on Monday, April 4, 2016 at home. Betty was born February 6, 1931 in Staples, Minnesota, the daughter of James and Jenny (Rink) Kubitza. She had worked at the Grand Rapids Herald and was a loving wife, mother and grandmother. She especially loved her grandchildren. She was a member of Mary Queen of Apostles, Sand Lake and their Ladies Guild. She loved watching and feeding birds and playing card games. Surviving are her husband, Basil, whom she married on November 13, 1954; children, Janice (Mike) DeGraaf, Karen (Jeff) Sixbury, Douglas (Darlene) Ringler, Steve (Lisa) Ringler, Bruce Ringler, Chris Ringler; 13 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; sister-in-law, Helen (Chum) Woodard. She was preceded in death by eight brothers and sisters. The family greeted friends Wednesday from 2-4 and 6-8 pm at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs, where a Rosary will be recited at 7:30 pm. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Thursday 11:00 am at Mary Queen of Apostles with Rev. Fr.Lam Le celebrant. Interment Sand Lake Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Sacred Heart Elementary School, Staples, MN.

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

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