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Archive | January, 2021

Have I done enough for Jesus?

Pastor Mike Wittmer

Cedar Springs Baptist Church

233 S. Main St, Cedar Springs

My father-in-law passed away last October. In one of our final conversations, he wished he had told more people about Jesus and that his life had attracted more people to his Savior. He wanted so badly to hear “Well done, good and faithful servant!” (Matthew 25:21; NIV). But he feared that God would say, “After all I did for you, why didn’t you do more for me?”

I understood his concern. We can always do more, speak more, serve more. But I told him that I couldn’t imagine God telling us that. God is not only our Master. If we have put our faith in his Son, then he is also our Father. The Apostle Paul explains, “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith” (Galatians 3:26).

Slaves may cower before their master, but children know they can trust the kindness of a good father. Paul writes, “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, Abba, Father” (Romans 8:15).

Every good father loves his children, though they sometimes disappoint him. Their failures in no way affect his love and acceptance. A good dad does not bring up all the ways his kids have let him down. He embraces his children, no matter what. Why would we think any less of our heavenly Father?

So last October, my father-in-law slipped from earth into the presence of his heavenly Father. One moment his heart and breathing stopped; the next moment he awoke in the arms of Jesus. I imagine there was a long hug, and many tears. How to describe the recognition that one doesn’t measure up, yet is fully accepted anyway? For the first time, my father-in-law felt that he was fully known, and fully loved.

He realized then what we must realize now. The most important question is not Have I done enough for God? The only question that matters is What has God done for me? He loves us so much that “he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). 

There’s only one thing for us to do. Tell Jesus that we have put all our faith in him. Rest entirely in him and what he has done. Then we will hear our Father’s proud affirmation, “Welcome home, child!”

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Gayle Ann Hawley age 72 passed away unexpectedly on Wednesday, January 20, 2021 at her home. She was born on August 29, 1948 in Traverse City, Michigan to William and Leotta May (Wilson) LaFollette. She graduated from Cedar Springs High School and then married George Hawley Jr. in Kent City on March 11, 1972. She was preceded in death by her son, Tom Allan Hawley; her mother, Leotta May Shears; brother, Tom Wayne Smith. She is survived by her husband of 48 years, George Hawley Jr; children, Dan and Jacki LaFollette, Kelly and Randy VandePanne, David and Brenda Pyne, Tony and Amy Hawley; 12 grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; siblings, Gene and Verna Ashley, Bill and Susie LaFollette, Sandy and Derald Rhineberger, Fred and Sharon Shotts, Marty Smith; several cousins, nieces and nephews. As Gayle had wished cremation has taken place and a celebration of life will be held at a later date. 

Arrangements by Hessel-Cheslek Funeral Home, Sparta.

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Shirley Jean (Whisler) Hegedus age 83 of Cedar Springs, died Wednesday, January 20, 2021 at her home. Shirley was born the third of six children on April 23, 1937 in Muskegon, MI the daughter of Henry and Doris (Fairfield) Whisler. She was an accomplished artist in oils, acrylics and pastels, neighborhood mom and Girl Scout leader. She enjoyed crafts, doll making, knitting beautiful sweaters and crocheting afghans. Shirley worked as a secretary at Hilltop Elementary for 26 years, a job she loved. She also loved cruising with Bob in their custom street rods. Surviving are her devoted husband, Bob; adoring children, Robin Hamilton of Cedar Springs, Steve (Chelly) Hegedus of Howard City; precious granddaughter, Samantha Hamilton and her fiancé, Jay Gonyo of Zeeland; sisters, Jeri Cromley, Donna (Rudy) Schaub; special nephew, Tom Cromley; many nieces and nephews; sisters-in-law, Katy (Don) Sauser, Penny (Dennis) Mezzano. Due to the Covid Pandemic no services will be held at this time. A memorial celebration may be planned in the future. Memorial contributions may be made to Lacks Cancer Center, 250 Cherry St. SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503. 

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

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Arnold Alvord

Arnold Alvord of Sparta MI passed away on Sunday, January 17, 2021. He is survived by his two daughters, Kathy Nethaway of Ovid MI and Connie Rohn of Owosso MI; two step-sons, Terry Stuart of Stanwood MI and Michael Conklin of Cedar Springs MI. No funeral services are planned at this time.

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October 21, 1930 – January 30, 2009

In loving memory of our mother and grandmother who passed away twelve years ago.

We will always remember the happiness you brought to our lives.

Mike, Sarah, and Terry, Jane and Nick,

Jenna and Sean, Brian, Luke, Jake and Molly

Posted in MemorialComments Off on MARY S. WELCH

Pirate talk

A pirate walks into a bar with a paper towel on his head.

The bar tender asks, “Hey, what’s with the paper towel?”

The pirate says, “Arrrgh, I’ve got a bounty on me head!”

Posted in Joke of the WeekComments Off on Pirate talk

Hometown Happenings 1/28/21

Hometown Happenings articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name anad phone number for any questions we may have.

Valentine’s Day Kettle Corn Sale

Feb. 13: The Cedar Springs Lion’s Club and the Cedar Springs Women’s Club are having a Valentine’s Day Kettle Corn Sale for $5.00 a bag. Pickup will be at 21 E. Maple St., Cedar Springs from 8 am – 2 pm on Saturday, February 13th. Cash or check only (checks to Cedar Springs Women’s Club). For Pre Orders call or text Janice Hill, 616-862-8456. Profits go to the Cedar Springs Women’s Club Scholarship Fund. #4,5

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Two arrested in shooting

This photo from WOODTV.com shows police on the scene of a shooting last week near Stanton.
Destini Cunliffe, 18, died as a result
of the shooting. Obituary photo.

A teen girl is dead and another was injured in a shooting in Montcalm County last week.

According to the Michigan State Police Lakeview Post, they responded to a shots fired call at a residence near the intersection of Ann and Janet Streets around 2:00 a.m. in Evergreen Township, Montcalm County on January 13. Their initial investigation reported that two females sustained gun-shot wounds.  One was in critical condition and the second female had non-life-threatening injuries.  

Destini Cunliffe, 18, of Greenville, died of her injuries Saturday.

Police arrested two male suspects in the shootings: Nicholas Bauer, 17, of Stanton, and Kevin Bartz, 23, of Cedar Springs.

The men were arraigned on Thursday, January 14 with two counts of felony firearms and two counts of intent to commit murder. Montcalm County Prosecutor Andrea Krause told the Post on Tuesday that an amended warrant was being filed Tuesday afternoon to up the charges to murder since Cunliffe passed away.

According to an article by the Greenville Daily News, Cunliffe was found in the ditch by a trooper, and she had a gunshot wound to the back of her head. The other girl, a 15-year-old from Greenville, showed up at another hospital but was not cooperative with police.

The Daily News reported that Det. Brian Siemen, of the MSP Lakeview Post, testified that the girls reportedly were in a vehicle with several other people and drove to the residence to buy drugs. The two girls waited in the vehicle, and there was some type of altercation at the residence. The other three people came running back to the vehicle and jumped in. Meanwhile, Bauer and Bartz were shooting at the truck, and hit both Cunliffe and the other girl. Cunliffe reportedly fell out of the truck. 

The truck was later found in Grand Rapids, with several bullet holes.

Bauer reportedly told police he shot at the truck with a 9mm pistol in retaliation for those people stealing money from him. Bartz also allegedly admitted to using an AR-15 rifle to fire one shot at the truck.

At press time, the Post was waiting for another update from the Michigan State Police.

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Pretty in pink

Pamela Cooke sent us this photo of her lovely granddaughter, Alexis, and the beautiful snowgirl she made. Alexis is a second-grader at Beach Elementary. Great job, Alexis!

Do you have a winter fun photo you’d like to share with us? Email it to news@cedarspringspost.com, along with a little info about the photo—what’s happening, who is in it, where it was taken, etc. We will print them as space allows.

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Work progressing on fire station

The new Cedar Springs fire station at the corner at 38 N. Second Street, has a projected completion date of April 2021. This view is from Elm Street. Post photo by J. Reed.

By Judy Reed

What is 10,000 square feet, has a hose tower, four bays for vehicles, and is triple the size of what it’s going to replace?

It’s the brand-new $3.5 million fire station for the Cedar Springs Fire Department, which is being built at 38 N. Second Street, between Elm and Cherry Streets. 

Voters approved the project in 2018, and the groundbreaking ceremony was held in May 2020. The projected completion date is April 2021. 

The new fire station will provide added space and equipment necessary to service a growing Cedar Springs population. The Cedar Springs Fire Department serves a 16 square mile area, including the City of Cedar Springs and parts of Nelson Township, and approximately 5,600 residents. The Cedar Springs Fire Department is a fully volunteer/paid on-call fire department providing fire suppression, emergency medical services, rescue and other services. The department is comprised of approximately 20 firefighters and medical first responders.

The new 10,000 square foot fire station will be triple the size of the existing facility on W. Maple Street, providing much-needed space for meeting, training, and equipment storage. It will also be compliant with new federal standards and local code.

Equipment that is currently stored offsite will be brought back onsite, including the old Model A. They will also be able to hold meetings without pulling the trucks out of the apparatus bays.

The new fire station features a nearly 7,000 square foot pre-engineered metal building for the apparatus area with four vehicle bays for fire engines, as well as storage areas for cleaning and storing gear, as well as the iconic hose tower. Directly adjacent to the apparatus bays is a 3,300 square foot office area with a 60-person meeting room, full kitchen, laundry room, office and storage areas, two full bathrooms and two half-bathrooms. The bathrooms will feature instant hot water, which will be a long-term savings since they won’t have to heat a water heater.

City Manager Mike Womack said that his goal is to have the meeting room be available to rent to the public for meetings or special occasions, and that it could also be used as an emergency shelter in case of a power outage. 

When the fire station is completed, it will have come full circle. At one time, the fire department was located on the same property, at the northeast corner of Cherry and Second Streets, and shared space with the old Cedar Springs Library. 

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MDHHS identifies first Michigan case of new COVID-19 variant

Vector of Coronavirus 2019-nCoV and Virus background with disease cells. COVID-19 Corona virus outbreaking and Pandemic medical health risk concept. Vector illustration eps 10

LANSING, MICH. The first Michigan case of new COVID-19 variant, B.1.1.7. was identified by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Bureau of Laboratories on January 16, in an adult female living in Washtenaw County. 

The person recently traveled to the United Kingdom, where this variant originated. Close contacts of this individual have been identified and are in quarantine. At this time two new cases have been identified from close contacts with the person, but it is not known if they are infected with the variant. B.1.1.7. is believed to be more contagious, but there has been no indication that it affects the clinical outcomes or disease severity compared to the SARS-CoV-2 virus that has been circulating across the United States for months. However, a higher rate of transmission could increase the number of people who need to be hospitalized or who lose their lives to COVID-19 should the new variant begin circulating widely in Michigan. 

To date, the virus has been identified in at least 16 other states and jurisdictions in the U.S. This is the only known case in Michigan at this time, however it is possible that there are more that have not been identified. 

“The discovery of this variant in Michigan is concerning, but not unexpected,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health at MDHHS. “We all have a personal responsibility to slow the spread of COVID-19 and end this pandemic as quickly as possible. We continue to urge Michiganders to follow a research-based approach by wearing their masks properly, socially distancing, avoiding crowds, washing their hands often, and making a plan to get the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine once it is their turn.” 

Based on available evidence, current tests and vaccines for COVID-19 also work against this new variant. Protective actions that prevent the spread of COVID-19 will also prevent the spread of the new variant B.1.1.7. 

Michiganders should: 

  • Get vaccinated for COVID-19. 
  • Wear a mask around others. 
  • Stay 6 feet apart from others. 
  • Wash hands often. 
  • Ventilate indoor spaces. 

Viruses constantly change through mutation, and new variants of a virus are expected to occur over time. MDHHS’s Bureau of Laboratories is a national leader in whole genome sequencing for SARS CoV2.

MDHHS identified the variant in this individual’s sample and will continue to conduct whole genome sequencing to quickly identify any variants of interest, including B.1.1.7. Whole genome sequencing allows scientists to examine the genetic material of pathogens, including SARS-CoV-2. Over the past 10 months, laboratories across Michigan have been submitting samples to the state public health laboratory for surveillance to help monitor the emergence of any variants of concern. MDHHS Bureau of Laboratories prioritizes additional specimens for whole genome sequencing when there is increased concern for a new variant of the virus, such as in people with a travel history to places where the variant is known to be circulating.

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Rep. Posthumus sworn in for first term as State Representative

State Rep. Bryan Posthumus (second from right), of Kent County, places his hand over the Holy Bible after he was officially sworn in for his first term as a Michigan State Representative on Wednesday, Jan. 13. He was joined by (from left) Clerk of the House Gary Randall, Former Lt. Governor Dick Posthumus, Krista Beach, Kent Count Clerk Lisa Posthumus-Lyons, Royce Beach, and Elizabeth Heaton. The 101st Michigan Legislature met for session for the first time Wednesday following the ceremony. Posthumus represents residents of the 73rd District, which includes the city of East Grand Rapids and the townships of Cannon, Courtland, Nelson, Oakfield, Plainfield, Spencer and Grand Rapids Charter Township.

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