Princess Party, Local Author Put Focus on Girls

Written by Ann Byle on . Posted in Local

love lettersThe popular Princess Party at Baker Book House (10:30 am Tuesday, June 13) is more than a dress-up opportunity for author Glenys Nellist. While she'll wear a tiara, she'll also read from her new book "Love Letters from God: Bible Stories for a Girl's Heart" (Zonderkidz).

"Because this is an event specifically for girls, it seemed appropriate to read from this book especially designed for girls," said Nellist, who lives in Rockford.

Justice Conference Founder to Speak on White Privilege

Written by Ann Byle on . Posted in Local

kenKen Wytsma, founder of The Justice Conference and author of the new book "The Myth of Equality: Uncovering the Roots of Injustice and Privilege," will speak at Baker Book House on Wednesday, June 7.

The event, titled "Privilege is Real," is free, though tickets are required. Copies of his new book will be available for purchase at the store.

"We're so pleased to have Ken Wytsma in the store to talk about these important issues," said Darron Schroeder, assistant manager. "These are topics than need to be addressed, especially by Christians."

Zondervan and Gazelle Sports Welcome Legendary Female Olympic Track Star to Grand Rapids

Written by WMCN Editor on . Posted in Local

chasing GraceZondervan, a division of HarperCollins Publishers, and Gazelle Sports have partnered to host one of the fastest American women in history, Sanya Richards-Ross, on Friday, June 2, for a book signing at the Gazelle Sports store in Grand Rapids from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. The event precedes the release of the Olympic gold medalist's new book, Chasing Grace: What the Quarter Mile Has Taught Me About God and Life, and her children's book, Run with Me: The Story of a U.S. Olympic Champion, both available on June 6.

"As a dedicated runner myself, I'm thrilled to host Olympic track star Sanya Richards-Ross in West Michigan," said Tom Dean, VP of Marketing, Zondervan Trade Books. "Runners and non-runners alike can learn from Sanya's dedication and perseverance."

Baker Book House Offers Summer Reading Programs for Kids, Adults

Written by Ann Byle on . Posted in Local

bakerBaker Book House jumps into its Children's Summer Reading Program with a bang this year. The Adventures in Michigan program runs June 1-August 26 and features a wide array of activities and prizes.

"The program is all about promoting literacy at an early age, to encourage kids to read and love books," said Darron Schroeder, assistant manager at Baker Book House.

This year's program puts special emphasis on the state of Michigan, with at least seven Michigan authors visiting the story for special programs. Authors include Glenys Nellist, Crystal Bowman, Gary Bower, Laurie Keller, Tracy Madder, Kenneth Kraegel and Katie Newell.

GRIL Grads Include First Group From Emerge Program

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

gri1A graduation ceremony for the 2017 GRIL graduates was held at Calvin College.Seeded throughout Greater Grand Rapids are a new crop of leaders dedicated to bringing out the best in themselves and others.

GR Initiative for Leaders' (GRIL) 2017 graduates include its first class from its Emerge program, a nine-month curriculum for adults who want to take their leadership skills to the next level and become leaders in their community, according to Denise Fase, GRIL's executive director.

Festival of the Arts Includes Faith-Based Options

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

perryGerald Perry (center) and United Voices of Worship The annual Festival of the Arts in downtown Grand Rapids is celebrating its 48th anniversary June 2-4. And the huge volunteer event comes with a variety of chances to hear a full stylistic range of inspirational music free of charge.

And of course, there are also those church-hosted booths which sell luscious food items while raising funds for their various ministries.

Local gospel singer-songwriter Gerald Perry knows the festival well. "I've sung there for a long time – from my days with the Bethel Pentecostal Choir," said Perry, who in his formative years sang with the noted church group.

Musical Inspiration To Fill the Summer Air

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

jasonJason Crabb sings Aug. 13 in Grand HavenCampgrounds, conference facilities, and other venues in West Michigan are finalizing preparations for their summertime inspirational concert series.

Maranatha Bible Conference in Muskegon, Worship On The Waterfront in downtown Grand Haven, Sandy Pines Lakeside Chapel in Dorr, Gospel Music Barn in Hudsonville, and the Christian Reformed Conference Grounds on Lakeshore Dr. between Holland and Grand Haven all feature weekend concerts that are open to the public on a free-will-offering basis. (Details below).

And for Memorial Day weekend, the music is already underway.

Walk For Life Opportunity to Band Together in Prayer, Support Local PRC

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

prcwalk1Previously, Walk for Life started at Cathedral Square; this year’s begins at La Grave Christian Reformed Church. The Pregnancy Resource Center (PRC) invites the pro-life public to take a walk with them over Father's Day weekend.

The PRC's annual Walk For Life on June 17 is an opportunity for people to band together in prayer, raise needed funds for the pro-life nonprofit founded in 1985 and experience the contrast between light and darkness.

"The Walk is about building awareness and saying to the community, 'We're here,'" said Jim Sprague, the PRC's chief executive officer.

Singer Brings Life to Her Music

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

plumbTiffany Arbuckle Lee (better known as Plumb) watched her best-known song take on a completely new meaning.

Plumb's 2012 power ballad "Need You Now (How Many Times)" - with its Psalm-like longing for God's help - was originally written about her struggles with anxiety, panic attacks and depression.

"But it was soon afterward that my husband and I separated," she recalled of the tumultuous period which her marriage eventually survived. "The meaning actually turned around for me and I became a listener to my own song. I now needed God more than ever before."

Plumb and her band perform Saturday May 20 at Rock the Coast, a two day Christian music mini-festival at the Ottawa County Fairgrounds also featuring David Crowder, Josh Wilson and others.

Molly Klimas Wraps Arms Around Women Caught in Unintended Pregnancies

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

prc 2017Molly Klimas: “I can’t imagine life without her. I have no regrets.” Molly Klimas was 20 years old and on the cusp of starting her senior year at St. Joseph College in Rensselaer, Indiana when she felt the need to keep a white-knuckle grip on the hope she wasn't pregnant.

That was 31 years ago.

Raised in a Roman Catholic family where she is the oldest of eight siblings, Klimas was engaged to her fiancé, Paul Klimas.

Affirmation Is Never Too Extreme

Written by Dan Seaborn on . Posted in Local

dan seabornI remember a night when one of our sons was sixteen-years-old and had told us that he would be home by 10:00. At 10:10, he was nowhere to be seen, and I was starting to get nervous. With every second that ticked on the clock, I worried more and more.

The typical parent, I assumed the absolute worst. I wonder how bad the accident was. Which hospital would he be in? I hope the other kids weren't hurt too.

Concerned, I dialed his cell phone. He answered right away, to my relief. Keeping my voice calm, I addressed the situation. "Son, it's a little later than you said you'd be home. Where are you?"

He hesitated. "Do I have to tell you?" he asked.

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