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Thoughts & Inspiration

 When something bad happens, you have 3-choices:  you can either let it define you; let it destroy you; or, you can let it strengthen you!

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As the beautiful leaves begin to fall and we start to prepare ourselves for the busy holiday season ahead, please take a few moments to reflect on all of the blessings in your life and give thanks for all that God has given you.

Brenda K. Malpass & Nancy Sherman



Just a reminder…..if you have an announcement or notice you would like to share in the newsletter, please get it to the office or contact Brenda or Nancy.



Every Wed:

Bible Study/Ruth Circle – 10:30 am (Fireside Room)

Choir – 6:30 pm (church)


Deacons Meeting:  11/14  – 6:00 pm

Cancer Group:  11/16 – 1:00 pm (Fireside Room)

Ruth Circle: 11/1 – 10:30 am (Fireside Room)

Session Meeting:  11/20 – 6:00 pm

MOPS:  11/13 & 11/27 – 9:30 am


Deacons Meeting:  12/12 – 6:00 pm

Ruth Circle:  12/6 – 10:30 am (Fireside Room)

Session Meeting: 12/18 – 6:00 pm

MOPS:  12/11 – 9:30 am


Deacons Meeting:  1/9 – 6:00 pm

Session Meeting:  1/15 – 6:00 pm

Ruth Circle:  1/3 – 10:30 am (Fireside Room)

MOPS:  1/8 & 1/22 – 9:30 am



Tuesday & Wednesday: 10:00–3:00 pm; Thursday:  10:00–noon

207 Williams St.  –  P. O. Box 341  –  East Jordan, MI 49727

231-536-2941 – email:  firstpresej@att.net

Website: www.presbyeastjordan.org


 Just For A Season

Julie Dowty, Commissioned Lay Pastor

A Time for Everything

 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:

  a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,

 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,

 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

This scripture has become a dear comfort to me these past few months. We can endure anything with God’s help knowing that it is just for a season. Things change constantly. What was a challenge a month ago can be a blessing the next. The struggles that we endure are only for a season.  Acceptance and reliance on God’s strength and comfort during these seasons is vital to our success and attitudes.

Right now our family is going through a rather challenging time.  An 85 year old member of the family is trying to maintain independence but the reality of her season is she is no longer independent.  It is up to Allen and I (and thank God for my Mom’s heart and service) to be the caretakers and decision makers for her.  The struggle is in the lack of acceptance to admit that it is time to let go, and let God!  This is a very hard thing to do for all of us! We need to trust God with the necessary decisions.  But, this scripture gives me comfort; comfort that God will handle our challenging season and any other season that may come along when we allow Him.  We need to seek out His discernment for our lives and rely on Him daily.  When I don’t seek God’s guidance for my life, I am declaring that I know better than God.  I can tell you that my will has led me astray many times in the past. God knows better than I, and makes the best decisions for my life.  Since he gave us free will, it is up to me to pray for and choose His perfect guidance.

Our church in East Jordan is going through a season of transition.  This scripture can be a comfort to us all in this matter also.  We will get through this challenge through prayer and discernment of God’s will, strength and love.  Worship and the church is all about God.  It’s not about us.  It’s about God’s will for the church’s future, not our agendas.  During this season we have the opportunity as the body of Christ to prayerfully call in the Holy Spirit’s guidance.  Let’s band together in love, prayer and discernment.  Let’s set aside our wills and personal agendas and rely on the perfect will of God.  There is a fresh, new, promising season ahead.  God will lead us to it, if we let Him.

Stewardship Time

In the humdrum of life, I have failed to provide enough lead time for proper planning of our stewardship Sunday. In fact, I was reminded of the need to do something by an email from the Presbyterian Outlook magazine. The opening paragraph of the article reads “Right smack dab in the middle of what is stewardship season for many churches, the lectionary provides us with a gospel lesson talking about money.”  The story is well known to all of us. The Pharisees were trying to trap Jesus by asking him if it is lawful to give tribute unto Caesar.  Jesus responds that they are to render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s and render to God the things that are God’s.

The article was written by Jill Duffield, Outlook editor. Unfortunately, there’s not enough space in this newsletter to duplicate the entire article.  I am “cherry picking” a few of her paragraphs hoping to capture a bit of her message.

“Rightly render to Caesar, paying taxes, putting a check in the plate, being law-abiding upright Pharisee and citizen does not get us off the hook for giving to God what belongs to God.  Recognizing that Jesus-told truth reorders our priorities and should make us look at our coins differently. The man sitting across from me was worth more than the quarter in his pocket but his circumstances conspired to tell him otherwise. The church, our protocol and policy, I, my posture and privilege, conspired to communicate otherwise, too”.

“Following Jesus is never about transactions.  Imitating our Lord is always about relationships, with God and one another. Go ahead, give Caesar the tribute, pay the taxes, but give God what belongs to God-your heart, soul, mind and strength, loving God and your neighbor as yourself.”

If we were all to do this, I’m confident that we would have more than enough money to finance the operations of this church and to greatly expand our giving to mission causes. We would also have more than enough volunteers to serve as elders, deacons and to fill various committee positions.

Please prayerfully consider your commitment of time and money. You will have the opportunity to make your pledges on Sunday, November 12.

Ken Visser, Treasurer


Members on the Move

On August 20, 2017 Shirley Butcher moved into the Delta Retirement Center in Lansing to be closer to her daughter Kathy.  Shirley has been a very active member of the church since December 1988 when she became a member via transfer from her former church.  Shirley has served as a Deacon and Elder several times, as well as being active in the weekly Bible study group and Ruth Circle.  She has always volunteered to step forward to participate in any function that she could whether it was performing in a skit, being a liturgist or visiting the shut-ins, Shirley always showed up with a smile on her face.  We wish Shirley the very best as she moves into the next phase of her new life, she will be missed.

Delta Retirement Center

201 Mall Drive, So., Apt. #44

Lansing, MI 48917

Telephone:  517-763-2007            Email:  sbutcher27@gmail.com

Cell Phone:  231-222-0238 (although she said she doesn’t use it much because she can’t hear it!)


Deacons Corner

The end of summer means that we are saying “goodbye” to many of our members and friends as they head south. The Deacons are making sure that we let our church family know we will miss you when you leave! During your last Sunday at church, we will take a moment during the announcements to recognize you. If you do not already have one of the beautiful ceramic tiles depicting the church, you will receive one of these to take with you to help remind you that you will be missed! Please let either your deacon or the church office know when the last Sunday before you leave is. That way we can all say, “God be with you ‘til we meet again”.  While you are away this winter, it is hoped that your deacon will remain in contact with you.

We now have a year ‘round knitting coordinator as well as our “snow birds”, Dorothy Archer and Lorna Peebles.  Phyllis Childs has stepped up to help us out in the winter months. Instructions for making a shawl are included in this newsletter and we will also soon have available instructions for several different patterns of “prayer squares” which are for your pocket or purse. Dee Small has been instrumental in finding some great patterns which even beginners can do! We hope to make these squares available in our sanctuary as well as other locations like Crossroads and The Depot.

As deacons of this church we continue to serve in our many and varied capacities. We have fewer hands now (from 12 to 6 deacons), but will strive, with God’s help, to “serve the Lord with gladness”.

Susan Kinloch, Moderator


Prayer Shawl Knitting Directions

Yarn:                3 skeins of Lion Brand Homespun, or one that is similar

Needles:          Use size 13, 15 or 17, which ever provide a loose weave and makes the project go fast

To begin:         Cast on 63 stitches

Pattern:            Knit 3, purl 3 to the end of the row; repeat this pattern until your piece measures approximately 130”…..cast off.

Note:  Be sure to set aside enough yarn (if you choose) to make a fringe for both sides.


Prayer for beginning your work:

Creator, I ask a blessing from all who have come before me, whose hands have been instruments of creation and beauty.  Provide cover and warmth for themselves and those they loved; who have felt, as I will feel, the yarn in their fingers; who have seen, as I will see, the growth of the fabric; who have heard, as I will hear, the click of the needles.  Bless this yarn and those needles.  May the shawl be a sign of your healing presence.  May it warm those who are weary, surround those who suffer, and encircle those who are in pain.  May your gentle touch reach out to heal and light this day.  Amen

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It is with sadness we say goodbye to Jean Peterson who passed away on October 23, 2017 at Grandvue Medical Care Facility.  Jean has been a member of this church since 2007.    Jean’s gentleness, bright smile and kind words will be greatly missed by everyone.  A funeral service was held on October 26th at the Penzien Funeral Home with Pastor Donald Kinloch performing the service, and the Deacon’s hosted a luncheon at the church following.

Session Updates

July, 2017

  • Session approved providing communion to shut-ins on communion Sunday after worship.
  • The financial review done by John Fought from Presbytery was accepted.
  • Session approved the selling of Red Sweater Project items through the church.

August 2017

  • Session accepted Cal Gotts resignation from Session

September 2017

  • Session approved request for interested youth to attend Springhill Camp in January 2018.
  • Session approved moving Communion for the month of December to December 10, so that a Pastor would be available.

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By:  Susan Kinloch

First Presbyterian Church does not have a large membership, but sometimes there are people we do not know.  If we are “new” to the church, we may not know some of the ways someone has enriched or served the church with their time or talents.  This is the inaugural article of “Who’s Who”.  Each edition of the Messenger will highlight someone who has been instrumental in blessing the life of our church. Larry and Patti Spence will be featured in this edition.


We have not seen Larry and Patti at church for some time due to health issues which both are experiencing. However, they are managing well with some in-home help and do appreciate visits.  Both have been active in our church for many years, and we are grateful for the time and talents they have shared with us.


Here are only some of the things they have done:  The most visible talent shared is the beautiful stained-glass window in the Fellowship Hall (pictured below).  This was designed, made and installed by Larry. The church has display cards with the window pictured as well as Larry’s explanation of the design.  (If you do not have one of these in an acrylic stand, please let the office know so we can give you one!) Larry has also used his woodworking talents to make the in-church mailboxes and he provided crafts for the Advent Happening for several years. Larry and Patti have served as both Deacon and Elder and together they shared in a music ministry outreach.  Patti has also helped with our Sunday School program.

We miss seeing them in church, but hopefully we will think of them every time we see that amazingly beautiful stained-glass window.

Thank you, Larry and Patti, for the many ways you have blessed this church!


Youth News

We have many plans in the works for Youth Group this year.  In addition to our weekly study, we are planning some service projects and outings beginning with a “Raking Project” for congregation members/families on Sunday, October 22nd following Worship.  If you would like the Youth to rake your lawn, please contact me.  Part of what makes the Youth program so strong is the congregation’s support and involvement.  If you are wondering how you can get involved here are a few ideas:

**Volunteer to be a helper with the Christmas Pageant

 **The youth is planning something new this year: A progressive dinner: Saturday, December 16th.  We’ll meet at the church at 5:00 pm and “progress” from there!  We will go to 3 members’ homes to share in appetizers, main course, and dessert, as we read and share the narrative of Jesus’ birth at each destination. You can be a part of it by sponsoring us into your home for one of the courses.  If you would like to host us and enjoy the fellowship of the season with our youth, please contact me (contact information below).

**We are always in need of drivers to our events. I would like to have a list of volunteers to offer driving assistance.  If you would like to be on the list, please write to the church firstpresej@att.net.

We are considering a cabin experience this winter.  If you would like to host us at your cabin for an overnight please contact me (contact information below).

We are going to Spring Hill Camp on the dates of Jan. 12-Jan. 14th.  If you would like to be a driver or a chaperone, please contact me. You will be in awe over the teachings, praise music and the enthusiasm of the kids for the Lord!

Thank you for your support and your hearts for our Youth.

Please feel free to contact me via email or phone with any questions:

bcpcce@yahoo.com, 231-645-3213 (cell) 582-3739 (home).

Yours in Love and Service,

Julie Dowty, Youth Director


  Fun Facts! 

Five fun things you might not know about people in your church family……………

Denny Archer

  1. My Grandfather, William H. Archer, was sexton for the Presbyterian Church. In the late 60’s, I took over the duties and shoveled the church sidewalks for a few years.
  2. My father, William B. Archer, was an engineer on the East Jordan & Southern Railroad, and I am one of the engineers at the Buckley old engine show.
  3. Back when the church had a steam boiler, one cold winter weekend the boiler would not shut off. So, I got up at 3:00 am and shut down the boiler so the sanctuary temperature would be close to 70° for Sunday morning worship service.
  4. When the sound system was installed, speakers had to hang down from the rafters. Jeff Cook volunteered me to climb the ladder and hang the speakers while he graciously held the ladder so I would not fall!
  5. I was probably the last one to climb the bell tower to inspect the bell and grease the bell supports.

Jeff Cook

  1. My brother & I share the same birthday…..19-years apart!
  2. I have always loved boats and living on the lake in Northern Michigan; however, I cannot swim!
  3. I taught at Flint U of M for the UAW.
  4. I enjoy hunting and snowmobiling.
  5. I like old movies…..anything with Bogart!


Delicious Delights from Debbie

With chilly weather approaching, we tend to get hungry for some hearty food.  I first tried this recipe years ago when attending a card party potluck.  The lady who made it was kind enough to share, and so I share with you!

Bean Casserole (Serves 12)

½ lb sliced bacon, diced

½ lb ground beef

1 cup onion, chopped

1 can (28-oz) pork & beans

1 can (17-oz) lima beans, rinsed and drained

1 can (15-16 oz) kidney beans, drained

½ cup barbecue sauce

½ cup ketchup

½ cup sugar

½ packed brown sugar

2 Tbl mustard

2 Tbl molasses

1 tsp salt

½ tsp chili powder

Cook bacon and beef until brown.  Drain, then transfer to a greased 2 ½ quart baking dish (spray with Pam) and add the rest of the ingredients.  Cover and bake at 350 for 45 minutes.  Uncover and bake 15 minutes longer.   I have also made this in a crock pot and either way, it is simple and delicious.  Serve with some nice crusty bread and your little tummy will be very happy indeed!


Birthdays in November

1:  Aubrey Skrocki                                3:  Sally Cyr                             5:  Allyson Camiller

9:  Whit Armstrong; Ashlee Mumich    10: Shelly Malpass-Raymond     11: Dan Payne

13: Marie Shepard                                18: Kris Snyder                         20: George Small; John Rhode

21: Sarah Malpass                                23: Natalie Malpass                  29: Kelly McGinn

30: Jim Archer

Anniversaries in November

3:  Dennis & Marilyn Jesiek                  23:  Cal & Gayle Gotts              24:  Bob & Judy Bryan

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Birthdays in December

5:    David Stone; Ken Kline                          8:    Elizabeth Kooistra                   9:    Matthew Mumich

10:  Lou Thumser                                             12:  Dee Small                                    14:  Karen Kline

16:  Pastor Donald Kinloch                            25:  Abby Hawley; Donna Kline; Tad Malpass

27:  Brenda L. Malpass                                   29:  Cele Malpass

Anniversaries in December

9:  Pastor Donald & Susan Kinloch                             15:  Kay & Loren Hughes

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Birthdays in January

5:  Ben Archer; Kelly Curnow; Everett Malpass                                 7:   Bob Bryan

11: Christina Kooistra             13:  Linda Snyder; Bryson Spence        15:  Ryder Malpass

16:  Andrew Malpass               19:  Wessley Gotts; Alexis Curnow      20:  Ted C. Sherman; Cynthia

23:  Jean Peterson                   28:  Lyle Shipe; Mason Malpass                                               Burrows

30:  Stephanie Buckholz; Liliana Snyder                                              31:  Amy Boal

Anniversaries in January – NONE

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Prayer & Concerns

Prayers for members:  Lyle Shipe, Ken Kline, Mary Jason, Larry Spence, Ken Kline, Joy Hettig, Lillian Martinek

Prayers for family and friends of members:  Pete Zoulek, Barb Dowty (Allen’s mother), David Waterson (nephew of Ken & Donna Kline); Mary Kraemer; Nancy LaCroix; Lori Ivester; Bob & Evon Pluister; Sookie Ostrander (friend of Shelly Malpass)

Those with cancer or chronic issues:  Children/Youth:  Casey Gardner, Adults:  R.G.V., Olive Brown, Laura Freeman, Lorraine Hawley, John Doidge, Charlene Brennan, Angie Skop, Martin Rebec, Tom Reid Jr., Jack Peterson

Our nursing home residents:  Connie Gillespie


…….Our Congratulations………

Our warmest welcomes goes out to REMY BARTLETT CHAPPUIES, a son born to Evan and Samantha Chappuies on August 16, 2017.  Remy was 7lbs. 2 ounces at birth and joins his brothers Owen, Liam and Emmett at home.  Congratulations also to Great-grandparents Duane and Debbie Chappuies.


Abbie Hawley passed the State of Michigan bar!  Our congrats to you, Abbie!


Thank You so much for your amazing generosity in the donation of school supplies to our Elementary School Teachers!  Knowing that there are community members like you helps make the job of teaching our young ones so much easier.  Your willingness to give up your time and to gather all the supplies shows how important the young learners of tomorrow are!  Thank you again for your support.                        Mary Anderson, Carla Winteringham & EJES Staff


On behalf of the East Jordan Public Schools & Health Services…..THANK YOU SO MUCH for your recent, generous donation to Health Services.  It is greatly appreciated & all items will be put to good use!                           Patti Fuller & Alice Thumser



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  • Grandvue Service – Sunday, November 19th at 4:00 pm. Feel free to join us worshiping with our amazing “elders of the community”!  You will be blessed.
  • Ruth Circle has resumed. HOWEVER, the meeting “date/time” has changed.  It will be meeting the first Wednesday of each month at 10:30 am in the Fireside Room.  All ladies are welcome!!!
  • Hanging of the Greens – Sunday, December 3rd.
  • Advent Happening – Sunday, December 10th.
  • Christmas Pageant – Sunday, December 17th.
  • Christmas Eve Service – 5:00 pm. Bring your family & come and enjoy an evening of Christmas readings and carols, concluding with a candlelight service.  This is a beautiful way to celebrate the birth of our Lord.  Remember……


  • OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD shoebox project – boxes are available, along with suggested packing lists for the specific age group. Ruth Circle is overseeing this project; so, if you have any questions, please contact Nancy Sherman.  DEADLINE:  November 12th!