Thursday, March 21, 2013

Everett A. Smith - his early years of service to God

I wish I had asked my Grandfather how and when he came to his decision to become a member of the Methodist clergy but I did not.  He was always my Grandfather, the minister.  A strong man of faith who was the smartest person in the world who I knew. He seemed interested in everything which was current... current events, the state of religion, people.  He was a prolific reader about the government, news, business and religion.  He spoke with a strong clear voice and there was no doubt that he knew what he was talking about.

Everett 's father, Alvin died in 1925 when Everett was a mere 21 years old.  Certainly not enough time to have learned a life time of lessons from him.

This photo is of Everett and a coworker at an Automotive plant on Dort Highway in Flint in the late 1920's or early 1930. It appears that Everett worked in the Auto industry as his father did until shortly after Lucille died in January of 1931.

Everett and Lillian Losee had been married on August 28, 1923. Lucile was born on October of 1924.  This is of Everett, Lillian and Lucile was taken at 761 Whitherbee Street in Flint.  I would guess that it was taken in the spring of 1925.  I am not familiar with this address so I assume that it was a rental that they lived in in the early days of their marriage.  It might be interesting to see if I could find this house some day. They would later have a small home built on Term Street near the home built by Alvin and Cora and Uncle Frank.
Lucile died on March 21, 1931 at Hurley Hospital of strep before the days of penicillin.
 These two events were devastating to Everett. It was at this time that he decided to go to Albion College Seminary program to become a minister. He attended school for about a year. He lived in Albion while Grandma and Dad remained in Flint on Term Street.  I remember seeing notes which Grandpa sent to his wife and son while he was at school.  He spoke of his studies and how he missed his family reminding them that it was only for a short time and then they would be back together again. The notes were written on cards the size of postcards but looked more like recipe cards.  

After completed his training, he began his ministry at a Methodist church in Flint.

Everett's temporary license to administer communion, baptisms marriages and preach the gospel.

Everett's permanent License

Everett's second church was the Genesee Methodist church located in Genesee, Michigan.  He began to serve as pastor in September 1933 shortly before receiving his final credentials. 

This photo was taken of the Smith family while Everett was at the Genesee Church.  It is the church  was Harold's childhood church where he attended Sunday School and made many friends.

Genesee Church
Everett served the Genesee Methodist church for several years.  My Grandmother saved many items related to Grandpa ministry including a program from the Genesee Re-Dedication service in 1940. She also saved many newspaper articles. In one such article it states " The beautiful church and parsonage located in the quiet and thriving community of Genesee was built by the local citizens  in 1903 and dedicated to the Methodist Protestant Church.  This edifice which has served the community for 37 years underwent  an extensive redecorating and renovating program this summer and was rededicated in the name of the Methodist Church.  The work consisted of remodeling of the auditorium, redecorating of the church parlors, paint for the exterior of the church and parsonage and installation of a new heating system which included air conditioning."

 I did not realize that you could get air condition in 1940.  And in the days of internet and computers, it is sometimes hard to believe that these little news clipping she saved were the best vehicle of communicating in that day and age!  Everett was a very well liked minister and served the Genesee church and the surrounding community well.  

Bulletin saved from the Re-dedication Service - 1940

In 1936, Everett took on the pastoral responsibilities for the Richfield Center church while still serving the Genesee church. At the Richfield church like the Genesee church, Everett over saw major renovation projects while he was the pastor. The chancel renovation on the Richfield church was completed in the winter of 1940-1941. Renovations updates included new chancel chairs, drapery, pulpit lamp, flags, a cross and new candle holders for the alter. The Re-dedication services in Richfield was in 1941. The church was 60 years old. It was originally built in 1879.
Everett would be reassigned to the Marine City Church  on January 22, 1943.

This photo is of the Smith Family as they prepare to leave the area to go to Marine City.  Harold is now a teenager.

Happy Hunting,


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