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Tag Archive | "Cedar Springs United Methodist Church"

New pastor at Cedar Springs United Methodist Church

Pastor Larry French joined Cedar Springs United Methodist Church as a Local Licensed Pastor (LLP) on July 1, 2020. His start in ministry was as Director of Youth Ministry at Chapel Hill UMC in Portage, and as Director of Emerging Ministries at Milwood UMC. His most recent appointments before coming to Cedar Springs was as Pastor at Gobles and Almena United Methodist Churches. 

Larry and his wife Sharon have been married for 23 years and have three daughters, Amy, Morgan, and Haley. Larry and Sharon enjoy Christian camping and have led summer camps for both Middle School and High School youth at Wesley Woods and Lake Louise camps respectively. Larry is passionate about fighting food insecurity and mission work in the local community as well as across the country and abroad. Please feel free to text/call Pastor Larry at 616 -551-9280 or email him at pastorlarryfrench@gmail.com.

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A Place for God to live

Rev. Bill Johnson

Cedar Springs United Methodist Church

140 S. Main St., Cedar Springs ï 616.696.1140

Where is God now? 

King David wanted a house where God could live. If he got his way, Yahweh would no longer have to live in tabernacle-tents, but in a Temple. The Lord deserved the best. David wanted to build a house for God for all good intents, and in gratitude for what God had done for him. But God spoke to the prophet Nathan, “tell David thanks but no thanks.” God preferred a spiritual house. 

For Christians, the text in 2 Samuel 7:8-16 is often understood as an Advent season reading, because encased in it is the mystery of God’s coming to earth to live not in a building, but in human form. Yet with Easter and Passover still vibrating, these words of Nathan take on new light. 

Writing in the Journal for Preachers1 during the recent Holy Week, William Brown commented on the emptiness in our sanctuaries this Easter: “By abandoning our sacred gathering places, we are not abandoning the gospel. Far from it. We are testifying to what the white-robed messenger announced at the tomb, ‘He is not here.’” Brown continues, “Perhaps these are the words we should proudly display on our church marquee signs, ‘He is not here.’”

Church buildings have a significant meaning and function, make no mistake. We convene as faith communities because the Holy Spirit finds communion when pilgrims come together for worship. There is strength found in the sacraments. There is spiritual growth through reflection over the stories from the Old and New Testaments. And even in the time of fellowship over snacks, there is encouragement as bridges are built and barriers fall. It is good and right to have places for holy gathering. There is great grief when the community cannot meet in their familiar sacred space. 

But this year we can’t. We must not. If we want to save lives, we will refrain from gathering for a while. And that leads us back to the prophet Nathan. No church building, however well-intentioned and beautiful, fixes God at this place or that. The Spirit moves as it wills. God shows up when people bear witness when their lives say, “He is here,” And where is he? He is in the sacrifice of those who go to work every day right now; the medical teams, the grocery store employees, the truck drivers, the fast-food servers, the first responders, the generous outpouring of financial help, and in the prayers of those who in their devotion, make a holy space in their lives. 

1Journal for Preachers, Holy Week 2020, An Easter Meditation Amidst Pandemic, The Life-giving Emptiness of This Easter. William P. Brown, Decatur, Georgia.  

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Help stock the Cedar Springs food pantry


Edward Jones is collecting food now through Nov. 15

Would you like to have a chance to really make a difference in the community?

Buy a few extra items when you buy groceries this week to donate to the local food pantry and drop them off at our local Edward Jones branch.

The Cedar Springs Community Food pantry, located at the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church on Main Street, works in conjunction with North Kent Community Services. The pantry feeds hundreds of local families each year, and depends on the community to help restock their shelves, especially during the busy fall and winter months. One local business spearheads a drive each year to do just that.

Edward Jones, 4027 17 Mile Road, Cedar Springs, hopes to collect 2,500 pounds of food for the pantry before November 15. They went over their goal last year, so let’s help them meet it again this year! They started this annual food drive in 2010, and over the last eight years, they’ve collected over 14,000 pounds to benefit our neighbors in need.

Non-perishable foods can be dropped off at the Edward Jones office Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

Suggestions for the pantry include boxed or canned meals such as soups, hamburger helper, macaroni and cheese, rice, pasta, spaghetti sauce; baking and pancake mix; and canned meats. Personal care items such as bar soap, laundry soap, shampoo, toothpaste, and toilet paper will also be accepted, but not weighed. No cash donations accepted.

Call 696-9370 for more information.

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Community focus opportunity

The Cedar Springs Post welcomes letters of up to 350 words. The subject should be relevant to local readers, and the editor reserves the right to reject letters or edit for clarity, length, good taste, accuracy, and liability concerns. All submissions MUST be accompanied by full name, mailing address and daytime phone number. We use this information to verify the letter’s authenticity. We do not print anonymous letters, or acknowledge letters we do not use. Writers are limited to one letter per month. Email to news@cedarspringspost.com, or send to Post Scripts, Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.

As the new school year begins, we want to include prayers for safety and success for all involved throughout our community.

Learning is a gift from God. As we begin this new school year, we give God thanks that he has given us thanks to learn many things in many ways.

Loving God, sometimes the new school year seems exciting or scary or both. Help us to remember to show our thanks for your gift of learning by doing our best everyday. We ask that you bless our schools, teachers, classmates, volunteers, friends, and administrators. We ask that you bless those who prepare our lunches, those who drive us to school, and those who keep our schools safe and clean. 

We ask God’s blessing on this new school year that it may be a time when we appreciate and fully use God’s gift of learning, Amen. 

Ann Scott

Cedar Springs United Methodist Church

Posted in Post ScriptsComments Off on Community focus opportunity

Painting donated to local church

By Ariadne Winquist/Schuldt

Roger Norton, husband of the late local artist Pat Norton, has donated a meaningful painting from Pat’s collection to the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church.

The painting depicts a small church on Neebish Island that they attended.

Roger met Pat Cook, one of 12 children raised in a lighthouse on Neebish Island, in Sault Ste Marie, while he was attending college at Northern Michigan. Neebish Island is located on the St. Mary’s River.

Roger brought Pat back to Cedar Springs, where she graduated from high school, and they were married. They had three children, and they all attend CSUMC.

To help with finances, Pat became a renowned beautician in the area, who enjoyed painting on the side. Painting got into her blood, and when Roger got a teaching job in the Sault, they moved from Cedar Springs back to her home area, where she painted full time. She was an acclaimed artist, known for her lighthouses and ships. However, she also became known in many other areas, such as flowers and portraits.

On top of teaching, Roger also had a part time job just framing her work. Pat also held classes in her studio in the Sault and Wisconsin. Her paintings have been juried award winners all over the United States.

Pat often painted a mood or a feeling of a freighter rather than the exact detail and developed a technique unique to her best work.

She was a great teacher, and died in 2001 at the age of 70. 

Roger’s parents, Harold and Florence, were Cedar Springs natives and had two children, Roger and Alice. Alice Norton Powell Anderson is also a well-known artist in the area.

Pat’s work will be dedicated on Sunday, July 1, at the CSUMC and will also be on display at the Cedar Springs Public Library in the near future.

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Give blood, win a tank of gas

Weather, sickness creates urgent need for blood donations

An urgent need for blood donations could result in a full tank of gas for blood donors. For the rest of February, Michigan Blood is raffling off five (5) $50 Speedway gift cards each day. Anyone who donated blood that day, whether at a mobile blood drive or a donor center, could win.

“We always have fewer blood donations during the winter,” said Alicia Barry, manager of community relations for Michigan Blood, “But the bad weather has forced some blood drives to shut down or kept donors from driving out. That, combined with all the sickness that’s been going around, has pushed our levels even lower than usual.”

There is currently an urgent need for all blood types, but O-Negative blood, the universal donor, is especially needed.

Beginning Tuesday, February 13, and running through Wednesday, February 28t, five donors will be drawn from a daily raffle to win a $50 Speedway gift card. The winners will be chosen and announced the next day.

Any healthy person 17 or older (or 16 with parental consent) may be eligible to donate, although there are height and weight restrictions for people 16 to 18 years old. Anyone 19 and older must weigh at least 112 lbs. Blood donors should bring photo ID. To schedule an appointment, please call 1-866-MIBLOOD (642-5663), text MIBLOOD to 444999, or schedule online at miblood.org.

Places you can donate blood through the end of February:

Cedar Springs: You can donate at The Cedar Springs United Methodist Church, on Tuesday, February 20. The church is located at 140 S. Main St. The blood drive goes from 12:30 to 7 p.m. and is held in the gym. You will need to call Michigan blood to make an appointment or schedule online.

Grand Rapids Area Donor Center

1036 Fuller Ave NE

Sundays: 7am – 2pm (appointment only)
Mondays through Thursdays: 8am – 7pm
Fridays: 6am – 1pm
Saturdays: 7am – 2pm

Grandville Donor Center – Grandville United Methodist Church

3140 Wilson Ave
Wednesdays: 7am – 2pm (appointment only)
Thursdays: 12pm – 7pm
Saturdays: 7am – 2pm (appointment only)


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Barbara Jean Rowland age 88 of Cedar Springs died Monday, February 5, 2018 at her home. Barbara was born November 7, 1929 in Grand Rapids, Michigan the daughter of Rodney and Ruth (Fry) Colby. As a mother raising her kids, she always attended the functions they were part of. In 1982 she opened along with her husband and two children Rowland Warehouse in Cedar Springs and the Public Warehouse in Greenville. She was a longtime member of the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church and her greatest love was singing in the church choir. She was always busy and enjoyed many activities with her friends. As she lost her sight in past years many of those friends picked her up for choir and to take her to dinner. Surviving are her children Douglas (Sherry) Rowland, Laurie Rowland, Jeffrey Rowland, Jim Rowland and Jodi DeRuiter; grandchildren, Robert Harwood Jr. and Anne Harwood, Libby (Scott) Zeeb, Chad Rowland, Andrew Rowland; great-grandchildren, Bobby Harwood, Jameson Zeeb, Darcy Zeeb. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Rex in 2008; daughter Marcia. The family will greet friends Thursday, February 8 from 5-7 p.m. at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs where the service will be held Friday 11:00 a.m. Pastor Bill Johnson officiating. Interment Elmwood Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church.

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

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Jim P. Scott

Jim P. Scott 78 of Cedar Springs passed to Heaven on Thursday, December 28, 2017. He was born January 9, 1939 in Grand Rapids, MI the son of Glenn and LoVern (Paravantes) Scott. He graduated from GR Union in 1957 and the MSU Ag Tech Program in 1959 and 1962. He was a member of the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church. Jim loved his family and doing anything he could to help others. He enjoyed his work with his company, J.S. Electric; disaster work with the Mennonite Disaster Service, being outdoors and working in his shop where he created many lovely pieces. He liked to spend time visiting with family and friends, travel, music and a good potluck meal. He learned from many and taught skills and wisdom throughout his life. A man of strong Christian faith, he lived his beliefs through his willingness to serve – his family, church and anyone in need. Surviving are his wife, Ann whom he married on June 24, 1960; children and grandchildren, Tim and Dorothy Scott, James, Lilly and Allison; Amy and Judd Galle, Glenn, Ruth and Lindsey; John Scott and Amy Nahley, Robert, Jadarius and Mimi; in-laws, Carolyn and Mike Reed, Gene Michaels; nieces, nephews and cousins ; the extended Pratt and Carlson families; and almost son, Dick Johnson. He was preceded in death by his parents, parents-in-law, Ralph and Alice Pratt; brother, Toby; sisters-in-law, Terry Scott and Linda Michaels. Jim’s family wishes to acknowledge and thank the staff of Clark Retirement Community for the loving and competent care he received in the nearly three years he lived there. The family will receive friends Friday, January 12 from 2-4 and 6-8 pm at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. A memorial service will be held Saturday, January 13 at 11:00 am at the United Methodist Church, 140 S. Main St, Cedar Springs with visitation beginning at 10:00 am. Pastor Bill Johnson and Mary Ivanov officiating. Private interment Courtland Township Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the United Methodist Committee On Relief (UMCOR) for disaster relief through the Cedar Springs UMC or Mennonite Disaster Service, 583 Airport Road, Lititz, PA 17543.

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

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Christmas fund distribution


Due to the generosity of the late Evelyn Cossin, there are limited funds available again this year to assist some families in need for Christmas.  The funds are available only to families living in the Cedar Springs city limits. Please send or bring letters requesting assistance to: Cedar Springs United Methodist Church, 140 S. Main St., PO Box K, Cedar Springs, MI 49319, C/O – Church Secretary. 

 All letters should include some brief summary of your need for assistance and a phone number you can be reached at. All letters MUST include a contact number to be considered. Letters must be submitted and post marked and received no later than, Friday, December 1. 

**Note: If awarded some assistance, we will notify you of your pick up times of 10 a.m.-noon on Wednesday, December 13 at Cedar Springs UMC. 

All letters received will receive some notification of acceptance or denial of assistance.

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Betty Jean Kilts, 86 of Grant died Saturday, November 4, 2017 at Spectrum Health – Butterworth Campus from injuries sustained in an automobile accident. Betty was born May 20, 1931 in Sand Lake, Michigan the daughter of Nathan and Rachel (Simmons) Wall. Betty and her late husband, Norman had owned and operated the “Chicken Coop” a popular dance spot in the 1960’s. She retired from Keeler Brass in the early 1990’s. Betty was an active member of the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church and had been a member of the Order of Eastern Star. She enjoyed cooking and was known for her famous Mac & Cheese and Banana Cake. She loved music, playing croquet and dice and had enjoyed her cottage on Berry Lake in Cadillac. She was very active and driven and was the glue that held her family together. Surviving are her children, Diane (Dan) Christie, Rick (Ruth) Kilts, Connie (Joe) Watson, Liane (Dennis) Drier; 9 grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; special friend, Vance Miller and his children, Becky (Jack) Kokx, AJ Miller; sisters-in-law, Lois Kilts, Barbara Wainright; many nieces and nephews; family friend, Penny VanDenHout. She was preceded in death by her husband, Norman in 2000; 4 brothers and 2 sisters. The family greeted friends Tuesday, Nov. 7th at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs where the service was held Wednesday. Pastor Karen Sorden officiating. Interment Solon Township Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church.

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

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Intandem Credit Union
Ray Winnie


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