Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Great Lakes Restoration Branches Newsletter

​From: James Bradley

​Winter Newsletter​

Please print as many copies as you need for your branch. Thanks to all of you for your help. I couldn't do it without you!

Because Of Calvary
Jim Bradley


The Anchor

The Great Lakes Restoration Branches


Vol. 4 - 33 Issue 98 Winter 2017

News From Around the Region

Algonac-Atlanta-Dowagiac - Garden City - Lima-Oakwood Otter Lake-Port Huron-Sanilac - St. Johns

“By faith all things are fulfilled: Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God which hope cometh of faith maketh an Anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God.” Ether 5:3b-4

Algonac Branch

By: Val Bradley

“Glory to God in the highest, and

on earth, peace, goodwill toward

men. (Luke 2:14) We enjoyed

many opportunities throughout

the Christmas season to give

glory and praise to our Lord and

Saviour and we continually pray

for peace and goodwill among

men in this new year.

The Children’s Thanksgiving

Program, directed by Cory

Eliason, was held at 10 a.m. on

Sunday, November 13. Opening

remarks were given by Kelli

Williams and then the

congregation sang, “With

Thankful Hearts.” Readings were

given by Cory, Kelli, Val Bradley,

and Angie Elkins. The primary

class (Laurel & Adeline Yaney,

and Briggs, Bryer, & Ames

Eliason) recited Bible verses and

shared what they were thankful

for. They also sang, “Praise Him,

Praise Him.” The Junior High


class (David & Ava Nagy, Daynna

Harm, and Alyssa & Miles

Marcangelo) did readings and

sang, “America.” They also

shared what they were thankful

for. Liz Moses sang, “O Jesus

The Giver.” Todd Moses was the

accompanist for the program and

Nina Powers gave a special prayer

of thanks. Following the closing

remarks by Kelli, the children

passed out thank you certificates

that they had written for each

adult member of our congregation

stating what they appreciated

about them. Thanks to Elaine

Harm and Tina Yaney, the children

looked wonderful in their pilgrim

and Indian costumes, which

added a lot to the program! We

thank Cory for organizing this

program, all those who

participated, and all those who

attended in support of our youth.

We are especially grateful to our

youth, who are such an integral

part of our congregation!

In December, our Community

Outreach Coordinator, Wendy

Holmes, found a worthwhile

project for our branch to take part

in. She called the Port Huron City

Recreation Dept. and was told

about an outreach program called,

“Adopt a Platoon.” Wendy

brought in Christmas stockings

for our members to fill with socks,

stationery, postage, card games &

electronics, travel size toiletries,

etc. Our small branch was able to

fill over 30 stockings! She then

dropped them off at the Port

Huron City Recreation Dept., and

they packaged them up and sent

them to platoons overseas. She

followed up with them after

Christmas and was told that 1200

stockings were donated in 2015,

and this past Christmas, over

2000 stockings (69 boxes!) were

donated. What a wonderful way to

show support to our military

troops! We hope to participate in

this program (& others like it)

again this year.

(Reported by Elaine King)

The Algonac Branch Annual

Christmas Bazaar was held at the

church on Friday, December 2 and

Saturday, December 3. Elaine

King, Wendy Holmes and Marilyn

Canham, with help from their

friend, Tom, unloaded items and

set up for the sale. Tom did an

awesome job hanging all the

Christmas bulbs from the ceiling

to help make the fellowship hall

look magical for the sale. On

Friday, Wendy Holmes, Elaine

King, Connie Burns, Marilyn

Canham, Kim Gilchrist, and Angie

Elkins were there to greet the

customers. As always, we met

some wonderful people from the

community. We got to meet Kelli

William’s replacement at the

Children’s Day Care Center,

Melissa Miller, who was a delight!

She purchased some items for

herself, then returned later that

day to buy enough of our yummy

baked goods for her whole work

crew. We had a good visit with

Melissa (who really misses Kelli!),

and she will continue to hand out

flyers to the students for all future

sales. Kim Gilchrist brought

some of her magnificent paintings

to the sale. She was able to sell a

few of them, which will help out

due to loss of her husband’s job.

She was still able to give the

church a donation. Every year we

get some great sale donations

brought in. The Yaney family

donated a hand-crafted Michigan

tree ornament. After the sale,

Wendy and Elaine were pleased to

receive one of these ornaments

from Tina and Todd as a thank


you for organizing and running

these sales each year. Connie

Burns made several really great

crafts, also, which were a big hit.

Someone also donated some cool

hand-painted bird feeders that

looked like a church. After some

discussion about what to charge

for them, a gentleman came in and

bought every single one of them!

There are always interesting

conversations with our

customers. One lady told us

about a “Cookie Walk” she took

part in and explained how it

works. Who knows ... we may try

that next year? Several ladies

came in and inquired about our

church. As usual, Wendy did an

excellent job explaining our

beliefs and showing them around.

One got to enjoy the beautiful

piano music of Kim Gilchrist as

she was practicing in the

sanctuary. As always, our Bake

Sale was a big hit. The few items

that were left after the sale were

quickly purchased by our own

church family after the service the

next day! We’d like to thank each

and every one who helped out

with this year’s sale. Whether it

was setting up, tearing down,

donating baked goods or gently

used items, all your time and

efforts were greatly appreciated!

This was by far, our best Sale yet!

God blessed us with wonderful

help, many guests, and an

opportunity to witness to the

community and we are grateful.

Hope to see you all next year!

Our Algonac church family had

our annual Christmas celebration

on Friday, December 16. We met

at Dimitri’s restaurant in

Chesterfield. As always, our

Women’s Leader, Nina Powers,

had a small gift for each of the

ladies (candle) and a booklet

titled, “A New Life” for the men.

We also presented Nina with a gift

in appreciation for all she does for

us. We had a good turnout, and

enjoyed good food and great


Our Children’s Christmas

Program was held at 10 a.m. on

Sunday, December 18. It was

directed by Kelli Williams. After

she welcomed the congregation,

Val Bradley did a reading on

“Unwrapping the Gifts of

Christmas,” followed by the

Algonac Quartet singing “Silent

Night.” With Bethany Moses as

narrator, the children reenacted

the story of the birth of Jesus.

Laurel Yaney played the part of

Mary and Briggs Eliason was

Joseph. He also played the role of

one of the kings. Bryer Eliason

was the Innkeeper, and also

played the role of one of the

kings. Their brother Ames, was

the 3rd king. Miles Marcangelo

and David Nagy were shepherds,

and David also played the role of

King Herod. The angels were

played by Ava Nagy, Daynna

Harm, Alyssa Marcangelo, and

Addie Yaney, our littlest angel

(what a cutie!). During the

pageant, the children sang, “Away

in the Manger,” and Briggs, Bryer,

and Ames Eliason sang, “We

Three Kings.” They really sang

with gusto, and touched our

hearts! Other special music was

performed by Todd Moses, Gary

Holmes, and the congregation.

After the pageant Ames Eliason

sang, “Go Tell it on the Mountain”

and “The First Noel” was sang by

Ames and Briggs Eliason. The

congregation sang several

Christmas hymns and then the

children performed “Come and

Ring Those Bells” on the bells ...

always a favorite with our


congregation! The older youth

performed “Joy to the World” on

the bells. We were so proud of

each and every one of our

children ... what a wonderful way

to celebrate our Lord’s birth! A

big thank you to Kelli Williams,

Todd Moses, Cory Eliason, Amy

Nagy, Elaine Harm, Tina Yaney,

and all those who participated

with special music. We were truly

blessed by the ministry of our

children and those who lead them.

December 25 fell on a Sunday this

year, and it was so wonderful to

start our Christmas morning with

the saints! We had a great turnout

and the service began with

heavenly music from the Moses

Trio. Our pastor, Elder Gary

Holmes, brought the message,

which he took from the book of

Luke. He stated that the Lord

chose to have His Son born in a

lowly, smelly stable full of

animals. The shepherds were just

“regular guys” doing their jobs,

and yet God chose to send the

angels to them to tell them about

Christ’s birth. At times, we tend

to put Mary and Joseph on a

pedestal, but they were just

common, ordinary people ... a

carpenter, and a young girl. And

yet ... God chose them for this

glorious role and they accepted

the responsibility! We are just

ordinary people, also ... why

would God choose us? However,

if He could use them, couldn’t He

use us, also, if we let Him? As

Gary ended his sermon, he asked

us to contemplate two things:

What gifts can we give to others at

this season, and what gifts can we

give our Saviour?

Our annual Candlelight Service

was held on Wednesday,

December 28, and was presided

over by Elder Gary Holmes. Gary

gave the welcome and offered the

prayers of invocation and

benediction. Marge Holmes did a

reading, “The Bethlehem Road.”

Gary read from Isaiah 9, and then

played the guitar and sang, “What

Child is This?” He then read

about the birth of Christ, from

Luke 2. The congregation sang a

couple of Christmas hymns, and

Ray Moses sang, “O Holy Night.”

Sheets of paper were handed out

to the congregation and we were

asked to write out what we

thought was the best gift we’ve

received from God and what is the

best gift we can offer to Him.

Todd Moses read the story, “The

Legend of the Christmas Cookie.”

It is a children’s story of a young

boy named Jack who learns from

his generous mother the story

behind the Christmas cookie. The

family who began the tradition of

baking the special cookies gave

them to the needy and shared the

story of the very first Christmas. It

offers inspiration for us to

become cheerful givers and

encourages us to share the true

tale of Jesus’ birth. We then lit

our candles and Marge read the

poem, “A New Dawning.” This

service is always a wonderful way

to reflect on the gifts of Christmas

and to ponder the gifts that we

can share with others in the new

year ahead.

On Saturday, January 7, our

church family was delighted to

attend a special 50th (hard to

believe!) birthday party in honor

of Liz Moses. We enjoyed a

delicious meal of homemade


Chicken Jalapeno Chowder and 3-

cheese bread, and a decadent,

yummy chocolate birthday cake.

She opened gifts and there was

great fellowship. God bless you,

Liz. We wish you the very best in

this next chapter of your life!

Catherine Ward (Mom of Liz

Moses) passed away on February

1. Viewing was held on Sunday,

February 5, from 2:30 – 8 p.m. at

the Gendernalik Funeral Home in

New Baltimore. On Monday,

February 6, a mass was held for

her at St. Lucy Catholic Church in

St. Clair Shores, where she had

been a long-time, active member.

Following a short service at the

cemetery, there was a wonderful

luncheon to honor her at the

Italian American Cultural Center in

Clinton Township. All those who

knew Cathy will miss her dearly.

Our hearts and prayers go out to

Liz, Todd, Bethany, and the whole


Mrs. Catherine Ward

(Mother of Liz Moses & Debra Ward)

Born June 15, 1933

Heavenly Homecoming

Feb. 1, 2017

Prayers would be appreciated for

Tim Holmes, Dick & Connie Burns,

Elaine King, Kelli Williams, Ray

Moses, Gary & Marge Holmes,

Nina Powers, Dave Nagy, Bruce

and Barb Krinkie, and Todd and

Liz Moses & family. We are

keeping you and all the branches

in our prayers, as well.

Feb. 14th Valentine’s Day

Garden City

By: Kurt & Susan Fishwild

Younger Youth Retreat at Garden


Submitted by: Elder Tom


“How do you rob God?” (Malachi

3:8) This was the challenge given

to both the younger youth and

adults at the Younger Youth Fall

Retreat 2016 hosted by Oakwood

Restoration Branch. Words like

surplus, inventory, tithes and

offerings, and accounting were

added to our vocabulary during


the weekend as we were taught

the financial law of stewardship.

Submitted by: Betty Lou Newman

The other words for the weekend

would include “scripture hunts”

(R. Philp), “favorite foods” (J.

Cobb, J. Essenmacher), “outdoor

campfires” (K. Horton), “smores”

(K. Sadler), “swimming” (Lapeer),

“singing” (S. Hood), “chalk talks”

(J. Saylor), “devotions” (B.

Sutton), “CIT time” (S. Johnson),

and the “writing on the wall” (B.


To complete the weekend, Elder

Fred Brown Jr. taught us the

importance of using the Inspired

Version. He used the text “Three

Bibles Compared”.

After providing Ministry of Music

for the 11:00 worship service we

enjoyed a delicious meal thanks

to the Oakwood members.

See you February 24 – 26 at

Garden City for the Winter Retreat.

Christmas Program at Garden City

Submitted by: Betty Lou Newman

If you seek for Messiah and, far

from the way,

You are lost in the darkness or

going astray,

Just stop for a moment; don’t

wander too far,

But look to the light of the

Bethlehem star.

Garden City adults and youth

joined together to present a

Christmas program entitled “In

the Light of the Bethlehem Star.”

Hymns and readings supported

the play “Father’s Journey.”

It is the story of four children

(Israel and Macy Dabbs, Ethan

and Megan Fishwild) whose father

leaves to visit the Christ Child. He

explains the meaning of the

appearance of the new star, his

need to depart, and the reason for

his gift of frankincense. Each of

the children desires to send a gift

to the little boy and each gift is

connected to a Bible story

(Joseph’s coat of many colors,

Jacob’s ladder vision, Elijah and

the widow of Zarepheth’s precious

last meal and oil, and the widow

whose two sons were saved by

following Elisha’s instructions


When the wise man returned, he

gave an account of his adventure

as recorded in Matthew chapter 3.

We were again reminded to “Look

to the light of the Bethlehem star”.

Other News:

Outreach – Members of the

congregation purchased toys and

the congregation took up an

offering on December 4th to help

the “Angels in the Motorcity” with

their Christmas party for low

income families.

Women’s Group

The Women’s Department is

reaching out to members who

miss services. A quick note with a

copy of the bulletin is mailed to

update them on events/activities

of the branch. A CD of the service

is also sent to those unable to


Birthdays are celebrated each

month with a special treat

following the 11:00 service. Thank

you, Kim. We really enjoy this

thoughtful gesture.

Guest Ministers

On January 22, we were blessed

by the preaching ministry of Elder

Tom Essenmacher. Thank you to

Tom and his wife Janine for

visiting us and sharing in a

potluck meal after the service.



By: Kathleen Modders

11/20/16 Thanksgiving Dinner!

Gobble Gobble!! Kathleen and

Mike Modders directed the

younger youth in cooking a

Thanksgiving Dinner for the

congregation. Heather and Parker

Mervyn, Dustin Michael, Chad

Embree and Emma Turner,

Jonathon Modders, Joshua and

Mallory Johnson all helped put

together a wonderful meal.

12/03 Woman’s Christmas

Party! Shawn Ruch brought the

Oakwood women together and

celebrated our Lord Jesus with a

song service, testimonies and a

great lunch. Kathi Havener led the

women in silly Christmas games,

including making Christmas trees

out of red Solo cups. Shawn

Ruch, Kathi Havener, Julie Fox,

Kathleen Modders, Tracy Stokes,

Dawn Modders, Michele Turner,

Helen Brown, Candy McDonald,

and Jamie Moore all attended.

12/04 A Prayer & Testimony

service was held at 10 a.m. With

Elder Fred Brown, Sr. Presiding,

and Elder Fred Brown, Jr.


12/10 The women of the

congregation had a cookie

exchange, hosted by Tracy

Stokes. Cookies were judged by

how they tasted, how they looked,

and how they were packaged. We

were also judged on who had the

ugliest Christmas sweater! Our

wonderful judges were Jay

Havener, Mike Ruch, and Shaun

Turner. Those who made cookies

were Tracy Stokes and her

Mother, Michelle Turner, Kathleen

Modders, Amanda Ruch, Shawn

Ruch, Christine Mervin, Kathi

Havener, and Julie Fox. Shawn

Ruch and Amanda Ruch won first

and second place for taste, and

Kathi Havener won for best

presentation. Christina Mervyn

won for ugliest Christmas


12/10/16 Gingerbread House

Decorating Party! Thank you,

Michelle Turner, for putting this

together for us. All that were in

attendance were Michelle Turner,

Tracy Stokes, Kathleen Modders,

Kathi Havener, Emma Turner and

her friend, Christina and Heather

Mervyn and Amanda Ruch.

12/18/16 Children's Christmas

Program was put together by Jay

Havener. Chad Embree, Jackson

Nagy, Drew Vandenberg, Emma

Turner, Reese Nagy, Cruz Nagy,

Julia LaRowe, and Heather

Mervyn sang in the Youth Choir,

singing Away in a Manger. Jay

Havener shared a story of the

shepherd's experience of the birth

of Christ. Julie LaRowe sang The

First Noel, and Jackson Nagy read

the scripture Mark 10:11-14. Baby

Paighten Marie Gerwald, daughter

of Rebecca and Joshua Gerwald,

was blessed by her grandfather

Elder Edward MacDonald and

assisted by Elder Fred Brown

Jr. Drew Vandenberg then

read a short story about the birth

of Jesus Christ about a

sparrow showing the meaning

of God himself sending his only

son to live as a person so we

could know the right way. Emma

Turner read a poem called The


Dime. Chad Embree read from the

Book of Mormon III Nephi 8:20-

27 Baby Baily Harper Carl,

daughter of Syndney McConnel

and Jared Carl, was

then blessed by Elder Fred

Brown Jr. and assisted by Baily's

grandfather Elder Edward

MacDonald. Elder Edward

MacDonald shared a testimony by

his mother's father in 1930 during

the great depression about a

Christmas tree he got with only

.25 cents in his pocket. Reese

Nagy read a short story about a

lady trying to find a job to provide

for her six children. Christmas

morning, Big Wheel Truck Stop

regulars filled her truck with

boxes of clothing, candy, laundry

and cleaning supplies, and four

brand new tires. The service

ended with signing JOY TO THE


12/25/16 Elder Mick Ruch presided

over a special Christmas Day

service with Priest Mike Ruch

giving a sermon titled Christmas

or Xmas? During the service was

a special administration for

Robert Modders administered by

Elder Jay Havener and confirmed

by Elder Edward MacDonald. Beth

was also administered to by Elder

Edward MacDonald and confirmed

by Elder Jay Havener. Closing the

service, we sang I heard the Bells

on Christmas Day.

12/31 New Years Eve Party 6-12

p.m. Kathleen and Mike put on a

great New Year's Eve pizza

party. Kathleen had everyone

play a couple of games (winter

themed Bingo, Tic- Tac- Toe and a

Memory Game!) She gave out

tickets and pulled one at the end

of the night for a $25 gift

certificate to the lucky one who

had the number! YEAH to Tracy

Stokes! All who attended were,

Shawn & Mick Ruch; Shaun and

Emma Turner; Tracy & John

Stokes; Kathleen, Mike and

Jonathon Modders; Matt,

Christine, Parker, and Heather

Mervyn; Dustin Michael; Kim and

Keith Gilchrist; Chet and Cheryl

Slagor; and Julie Fox. We had

pizza and breadsticks. Everyone

pitched in to take down all the

Christmas decorations. It was a

very fun night had by all who


1/1/17 We had a special New Years

Day service with Elder Jay

Havener presiding and Elder Mick

Ruch preaching. During the

service, Elder Mick Ruch was set

apart as our new pastor for the

next six months by Elder Edward

MacDonald, and confirmed by

Elder Jay Havener. The

Congregation also sang Happy

Birthday to Bev Ruch!

01/28/17 Women’s Dept held a

Prayer Breakfast at 9:30

a.m. Shawn Ruch gathered so

many ladies in on this

Saturday morning. We shared

testimonies and sang a few

hymns, and ate a wonderful

breakfast cooked by Mick and

Mike Ruch, Jay Havener, and

Jonathon Modders. Kathi

Havener, Amanda Ruch, Raven

Franks, Mary Jones, Cheryl

Slagor, Bev Ruch, Bonnie Murphy,

Dawn Modders, Kim Gilchrist, and

Julie Fox attended.

02/05/17 Dawn Modders asked the

Elders for an administration for

Bob at Stone Gate where he is

being cared for. They opened it up

for members to come and support

Bob. We started off in a little room

and so many people came we had

to move to a bigger room. It was


communion Sunday Elder Mick

Ruch presided over the service

Elder Ed MacDonald and Elder Jay

Havener performed the

administration Priest Mike

Modders blessed the bread and

wine. When the administration

was being performed everyone

held hands in a circle around Bob.

Priest Chet Slagor said a prayer,

along with Deacon Kerry Horton

and Elder Mick Ruch. It was quite

a blessing being among Fred

Brown Jr, Shaun Turner, Mike

Danicki, Cheryl Slagor, Mark

Hanna, Lois Porter, Matt Christina

Parker and Heather Mervyn,

Dustin Michael, Jamie Modders,

Jonathon and Kathleen Modders,

Bill Hulse, and Bill Sutton. It was a

very powerful service we closed

the service in Singing Praise God

from whom all blessings flow.

Coming up events:

Julie Fox to coordinate volunteers

for Valentine’s Military Packing


The Younger Youth Winter

Retreat: February 24,25,26 at the


by Betty Lou Newman.

Zion’s Older Youth Winter

Retreat: March 10, 11, 12 at the


by Michelle & Shaun Turner. We

will be starting on the theme, "A

Chosen Land" that will be building

on topics that we will continue

during the Summer Camp. We are

excited to announce that we have

chosen to move our camp to the

Woodlands Campground in Hale,

MI. This will be half the distance

that it was in Hawks, MI. The dates

for Summer Camp are July 9

through the 15th, 2017. We are

excited to see our youth with the

new edition of the Charlotte

Branch youth at both the retreat

and the summer camp.

Upcoming priesthood & wives

dinner in March. To Acknowledge

what they do for the church and

all the members who attend.

Summer Older Youth Camp: July

9-July 15 at the Woodlands

Campground Association through

the Community of Christ 318 S.

Sage Lake Road Hale, MI hosted

by Michelle & Shaun Turner

Summer Younger Youth Camp:

July 16th-July 22nd at Erie Beach

Campgrounds, hosted by Betty

Lou Newman.

Upcoming Birthdays are: 03/04

Jamie Moore, 03/06 Brandon

Embree, 03/10 Heather Mervyn,

03/14 Chet Slagor , 03/18 Cody

Ruch, 03/20 Lilly Konkle, 03/25

Derrick Embree, 03/28 Beth

Everhart, 03/29 Jamie Modders,

03/29 Cheryl Slagor, 04/01 Michael

Ruch, 04/03 Gloria Smith,04/08

Emma Turner, 04/09 Christina

Mervyn, 04/26 Morgan Bean, 04/29

Andrew Konkle, 04/14 Dennis

Smith, 04/15 David Mueller, 04/18

Chris Vandenberg, 04/20 Chris

Nagy, 04/24 Jackson Nagy, 04/26

Rebecca MacDonald, 05/06 Jay

Havener, 05/12 Mary Richards,

05/13 Noame Holcomb, 05/15 John

Stokes, 05/17 Sydney LaRowe,

05/18 Tracey LaRowe, 05/22 Mike

Danicki, 05/27 Eric Slagor, 06/06

Bob Modders, 06/06 Gage Slagor,

06/11 Matt Mervyn, 06/12 Bonnie

Murphy, 06/14 Kim Slagor, 06/16

Beth Fabian, 06/17 Kathleen

Modders, 06/18 Julia LaRowe,

06/24 Shirly MacDonald, 06/25

Chad Embree, 06/27 Cruz Nagy


Otter Lake

By: Susie Daggett

Greetings from the Otter Lake

Branch! We had our Christmas

program on December 25th. It was

good to see so many out on

Christmas morning. Everyone

participated with a story, poem, or

scripture. Kerry Horton gifted the

branch with a Tree of Life painting

by Tracy Stokes. We are very

thankful for our visiting ministry

Brian Daggett, Ed Smerer, Fred

Brown Sr and Rex Monarch.

Port Huron-Sarnia Branch

By: Sharon Smerer

Greetings Saints:

We hope everyone is enjoying

their Winter so far and we pray for

continued good weather. See you

in the Spring!

A little bird told me about one,

Cameron Britz who attends

Western Michigan University. He

is on the Tennis Club and last

year he placed 2nd out of eight

competitors. WAY TO

GO!!! Your Church family is

proud of you. Cameron is the son

of Jason and Carrie Britz and

grandson of John and Barbara


We had two candidates, who were

baptized and confirmed on Nov. 6,

2016. They are William Shamblin,

was baptized by Elder John

DeBell and confirmed by Elders

David Teeple and John DeBell.

Will is grandson of Chase and

Michelle Miller. Lowell Milett, was

baptized by Grandfather, Elder

John DeBell and confirmed by

Elders John DeBell and David

Teeple. Lowell is son of Joe and

Jennifer Milett and grandson of

John and Connie DeBell.

Our Branch had their annual,

election of officers and business

meeting, Nov. 13, 2016. The

congregation has voted Elder Ed

Smerer as presiding elder.

Bulletin person is Chris Kercher.

Women's Leaders are Sherry

Purcell and Carrie Britz. Music

Director is Sue Fagan. Junior

Church is Elder Brian Daggett.

We appreciate your willingness to

serve the Lord.

We have several young people

who sing, Avery, Gillian, Olivia

and their parents Scott and Amy

Bolt, Sue Fagan, and Eldon

Preston, Bill and Jane Hering and

their daughters, Julia Payionk and

Kelly Willoughby. Then we have

those who play instruments,

Lydia and Owen DeBell, Eldon

Preston and Scott Bolt and the

children and their Ringing of the

Bells. Gillian and Olivia Bolt and

Eldon Preston and Jane Hering,

and Chris Kercher play the piano

and Andrew Kercher, plays the

piano and ukulele. We are so

blessed to have such talented



Parents of Betty Milett, Joe and

Jennifer Milett are proud of their

daughter, Betty who

received recognition at the Port

Huron Northern Band Banquet in

November for her

second year, “Marching” with this

incredible organization. Thanks

Much, to Erick

EezeeDaddy Senkmajer, Betty is

still beaming about it! Your

Church Family is also,

proud of Betty. Good Job!!

Maybe, she is taking after her

Mother, Jennifer.

Andrew Kercher, is a Curator, in

Dearborn, Mi. at the Dearborn

Historical Museum. He is right in

his Historical glory. Your Church

Family is proud of your



St. Clair County Community

College honors, more than 1,400

students at St. Clair Co.

Community college taking at least

six credits earned a spot on the

President’s Honors List for the

Fall 2016 semester. To make the

list, students must maintain a

grade-point average of 3.0 or

higher. Our very own College

Students, Gillian Bolt, daughter of

Scott and Amy Bolt,

granddaughter of John and

Barbara Tynan; Evan Kercher, son

of Chris Kercher, grandson of

John and Connie DeBell; Alexis

Parmenter daughter of Jessica

Parmenter, granddaughter of

Brian and Cathy Daggett.

On December 3, 2016 our Ladies

from our Branch were invited to

an, “ Advent Tea,” by

the Wadham’s Grove Community

of Christ. Their theme, was an,

“Old Fashioned Christmas.” They

had several flavored teas, water

and several delicious desserts.

We heard from several people

what their Christmas was like

back when. Of the days when

they went to a one room school

and when they had their

Christmas programs. It was

exciting to recite a poem, or be in

a skit. I remember, my Mom,

made me a dress of white crepe

paper with holly and red berries

for a skit, I was in later that night,

at my school, back when. One of

the ladies mentioned about a ride

on a one horse sleigh ride. Oh,

the memories. It was very nice to

fellowship with the other

Congregation, and oh, the

desserts, YUM!! We also, sang

Christmas songs and played a

game. A very nice time.

December 4, 2016 was the

Children’s Christmas Program at

our Branch, directed by

Jennifer Milett. The theme this

year was, “Christmas,” the

Sunday School Children

colored pictures that were placed

in window panes. As Jennifer

read, the children would place

each colored picture in the

window panes, finishing with

Santa and Our Savior. Very nice!!

Thank you to the Children for their

pretty pictures and Jennifer for all

her hard work.

Betty Milett, won 1st. place for

Sanilac County First Impressions

Contest, for her Artist Poster--

subject was Laughter. She drew a

picture from one of our funniest

Walt Disney World memories.

While waiting for a bus to take her

family back to their hotel a slimy

tree frog decided to land on

Betty’s Dad, Joe Milett’s leg.

While “screaming like a girl,”


Joe knocked it off repeatedly but

it kept jumping back on his leg.

Good job, Betty!!

Too....... Funny, Joe.

In the December 6, 2016 issue of

The Times Herald the Starlites are

in their 18th year and winning

several key victories. The

Starlites are a Competitive Dance

team, they competed at the

Showcase America Unlimited

Dance Competition in Hazel Park,

Mi. Ava Slossar with other girls

from the Pom Division, won first,

in the Starlites Mini Team and

received High Point Award.

The Starlites Youth Team was first

in the Youth Pom Division, taking

home the Ultimate Star rating in

the division. In addition, they

were first in the Jazz, Lyrical and

Hip Hop Division and received he

High Point Award from their Pom

routine. Abby Slossar and other

girls are in the Youth Team.

The Starlite Junior Division are

Allison and Brianna Slossar and

other girls who placed first in

Junior Lyrical, second in Junior

Jazz and third in Junior Pom. The

Junior Team received High

Superior ratings in all categories

and were awarded the High Point

Award for their Lyrical routine.

The Starlites, Senior Team was

first in Jazz and Lyrical and

second in the Pom and Hip Hop

Divisions. The Senior Team

received the Ultimate Star rating

in all four divisions. They were

awarded the High Point Award for

their Lyrical Team. They are

coached by Laurie Charron. The

Slossar girls are granddaughters

of Larry and Debbie Scheffler.

We have had Visiting Ministers,

Elder Kurt Fishwild and wife,

Susan and children, Megan and

Ethan from Amherstburg, Ont. and

Elder Mick Ruch and wife, Shawn

from Grand Blanc, Mi. We have

been so blessed by their

preaching of God’s Word. Our

prayers are for their safety to and

from their home. God’s Blessing!

We even want to thank all of our

Ministers for their guidance and

the preached word.

Our Branch Hosted the Blue Water

League for the Blind, Christmas

Potluck. Priest Bob Harris said,

the Blessing for the food. They

had music playing and they had

raffled off several Christmas Gifts

to all that were present. They

celebrated two birthdays with one

large decorated cake. Everyone,

had a full tummy and good


The Youth of our Branch, on

December 17, decorated

Christmas cookies to give to

the Congregation after the

Sunday’s service. Thank you

Children, they were Delicious!



We received a Thank You Card for

the Christmas Gift Card from our


Presiding Elder Ed Smerer and

wife, Sharon. Thank you to ALL

for the Gift Card. We hope you

have a wonderful and Healthy New

Year. God Bless!

Ed and Sharon



We received a Thank You for the

Christmas Gift Card from our past

Presiding Elder David Teeple and

wife, Barbara who are residing

now in Arizona for the next few

months. He says, “We do miss

seeing you and worshiping with

you. You are in our thoughts and


prayers and we wish you all a

Healthy New Year, spiritually as

well as physically. May God richly

bless you and thank you for being

such wonderful friends.”

Dave and Barb Teeple

We had our first Potluck for the

New Year. Always, good food and

fellowship. We ask prayers for

ALL that are sick and ailing. We

wish you God's Blessings for a

healing. We would like prayers

for those who have lost family

members or friends.


By: Kathleen Palmer

To everything there is a season,

and a time to every purpose under

heaven; Ecclesiastes 3:1

Well here it is winter. Our season

changed from colorful to white.

How beautiful God created each


A youth retreat was held at

Oakwood on Nov 11-13. Emma

Des Jardins attended from our

branch. She gave up playing her

last basketball game to attend.

She loves to go to these retreats

where they are taught the gospel

and have fellowship and fun with

the other children.

A business meeting and election

of officers was held on Nov.20th

with pastor Elder Barent Eliason

in charge. Barent and Barb

Eliason went to their second

home in Missouri for

Thanksgiving. An Eliason

Reunion was held at their son

Peter’s home. Barents brother

Bob and his sister Karen were

able to be there along with their

families. A wonderful time was

had. It was the first time for all of

them to be together at one time.

Barent suffered a serious stroke,

the day before they were to return

to Michigan. It was touch and go

for a while but through God’s

healing hand and thru

administering by the elders, he

was able to return home in

January. He had spent 40 days in

the hospital. He is going to rehab

and recovering very well. Barb

was right there with him as well as

family and friends. The Lord has

work for him to do yet.

A Christmas program was

planned on Dec. 11th, but due to

bad weather had to be cancelled.

We then decided to postpone the

program until Barent and Barb

could be with us. They were

delighted to hear this. Priest Mike

Daniels, Deacon Kerri Horton and

Elder Jim Mc Leod carried on the

Lord’s work while Barent was


We had a Christmas candle light

service, with Deacon Kerri Horton

in charge with singing and

scriptures of Jesus birth.

We have not had a piano player

since Barb was in Missouri and

her bad back problem and Dora’s

health problems until Elder Eldon

Preston volunteered to play piano

when he could. It has been so

wonderful to have piano music

again. We truly are blessed to

have him. Also his wife and


The Peck High School band had a

Christmas concert with senior

Gary Des Jardins playing his

trumpet and junior Maddy Parker


playing the clarinet. Also Sydney

Parker and Emma Des Jardins had

a part in the class Christmas play.

We pray everyone had a Blessed


January was a special time as

Barent and Barb Eliason were able

to return home. Barent was

determined to come right to

church and teach his class, which

he did from memory, as his

eyesight was affected by the

stroke. Truly he is a dedicated

servant of the Lord.

On Jan first, communion Sunday,

Avery Carpenter, granddaughter

of Bev Miller, took her first

communion. It was very special

for her and the congregation.

We have been having prayer

service every other Wednesday

for the winter months at Barent

and Barbs home.

The Christmas Program was held

Jan. 22nd. Dora, Kerri and Kathleen

were in charge, which involved

many. Emma, Brandi and Avery

sang. Denise sang a very beautiful

song. Dora and Kathleen read

scripture from Luke. Brian read a

story with Dora. The women’s

choir sang and Elder Eldon

Preston played the piano. When

church was over we had a

delicious potluck dinner. Gifts

were opened and a gift certificate

was presented to our pastor and

his wife. A wonderful fellowship

was enjoyed by all.

We would like to recognize our

own priesthood for the special

messages they bring to us. Priest

Mike Daniels, Elder Jim McLeod

and Deacon Gary Des Jardins.

We appreciate so much the

priesthood who travel a long way

to bring us the gospel message:

Elder Keith Dabbs and son, Elder

Mike Ruch and Shawn, Elder Ed

Mc Donald and mother Shirley,

Deacon Kerri Horton and Elder

Gary Holmes and Marge.

A very special event happened on

Jan. 23rd, Isabel Oakley was born

to Julia and Keith Albrecht. She

weighed 7lbs and was 20.5 inches

long. Her proud grandparents are

Dora Gutierrez, Lowell Decker and

Great grandpa Charlie Guitierrez.

She was welcomed home by big

brother Mattias. Congratulations

to all.

Barb Eliason had back surgery

Feb. 2nd at Saginaw Cooper

Hospital. After she is released she

will be at Marlette Rehab for a

couple of weeks. We are praying

this surgery was successful and

she will suffer no more with back


Our Mother/Daughter Banquet will

be on Sat. May 13th at noon. The

theme is,”LOVING ANGELS.” We

extend a welcoming invitation to

all who would like to come to

enjoy a delicious noon meal and a

very special program.


Regional Activities for the next quarter

Feb. 24-26 Younger Youth Winter Retreat

Garden City Restoration Branch

Contact: Betty Lou Newman

March 10-12 Zion’s Older Youth Winter Retreat

Garden City Restoration Branch

Contact: Michelle & Shaun Turner

Saturday, April 29, Great Lakes Restoration Branches Spring Women’s Retreat

Algonac Restoration Branch

9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Contact: Val Bradley or Kathi Havener

Saturday, May 13, Mother-Daughter Banquet


Sanilac Restoration Branch

Contact: Barb Eliason or Kathleen Palmer

July 9-15 Summer Older Youth Camp at Woodlands Campground Association

Thru Community of Christ 318 S. Sage Rd. Hale, MI

Contact: Michelle & Shaun Turner

July 16-22 Summer Younger Youth Camp at Erie Beach Campgrounds

Contact: Betty Lou Newman

July 24 – 30 Great Lakes Restoration Branches Reunion

A Joint Branch Crafts Table has been set aside for donations from each Branch, to

contribute to the Reunion Fund. Please contact Kim Gilchrist, Wendy Holmes,

Connie Burns or Elaine King about donations...they should be donated with a

price tag attached at least one (1) week before reunion for those not attending

reunion and those attending can just bring the donations with them.

From The Editor’s Desk - Contact info:

Jim Bradley
69250 Campground Road
Romeo, MI 48065
Email to: zionswatchman@sbcglobal.net


Great Lakes Restoration Branches
2017 Spring Women’s Retreat

Amazing Grace
Date: Saturday, April 29, 2017
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Location: Algonac Restoration Branch
818 Market Street
Algonac MI 48001

Cost: Free will offering
Bring: Your Scriptures, a good sense of humor, and a desire to fellowship and share.

Please let Val Bradley know ASAP if you will attend
Val Bradley: victoriangalval@aol.com

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