August 2018 ~ Newsletter
Welcome Captain Johnny and Captain Kerry Bartsch
Though change can be difficult, perseverance will bring joy and serenity. It is an important part of all of our lives, and recently we have experienced a change at The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC). We are excited to announce that Captain Johnny and Captain Kerry Bartsch have accepted the call to serve as Administrators at the Grand Rapids ARC.

As Administrators the Captains will be taking on a host of responsibilities, which includes working with The Salvation Army Family Stores. Our 8 Western Michigan Family Stores fund our 6 month Adult Rehabilitation Program in Grand Rapids. They will also be working alongside men and women in the program, encouraging them in daily growth, sharing the gospel with them and leading worship and devotion during Sunday morning chapel services.

Captain Johnny expressed his thoughts about the opportunity to help and encourage people during his journey at the ARC:

"I think it's happening right now. Coming alongside and encouraging one another and seeing the Holy Spirit work in people's lives."

Captain Johnny and Kerry Bartsch have served a combined 10 years with the Salvation Army and have been officers for the past 6 years. Most recently, they served 2 years together at The Salvation Army Corps and Community Center in Michigan City, Indiana. They first served as officers in Wichita, Kansas for 4 years, making this their third assignment as officers, and their first assignment at an ARC.

The Salvation Army played an important role in Captain Johnny and Captain Kerry's lives--even before they committed to making service their vocation, according to Captain Kerry.

"I grew up going to The Salvation Army youth programs and going to their summer camp every year . . . we got married at The Salvation Army camp in East Troy Wisconsin . . . so The Salvation Army had this huge theme in our lives."

Married when they were each 21, Captains Johnny and Kerry will be celebrating their 16 year anniversary on August 17th. They have 3 daughters who are 13, 11 and 4, and their names are Gracie, Selah, and Chloe. Captain Kerry explained that she enjoys a variety of family activities such as biking, kayaking, campfires and picnics. Captain Johnny enjoys anything that involves working with machines, particularly welding/fabrication and working with cars. They both agree that most of their free time, however, is best spent enjoying outdoor activities as a family.

When answering a call to serve somewhere new, it is hard to imagine what may be achieved, improved or accomplished. Captain Johnny and Captain Kerry conveyed, however, that seeing men and women graduate the program, and make lasting change, is something they wish to encourage and be a part of while they serve here:

". . . coming alongside each individual and encouraging them as they're on that journey. I just want to make sure that [we're] doing everything [we] can to help someone make it all the way through, and assimilate back into life outside of this place."

The beneficiaries and staff at the Grand Rapids Adult Rehabilitation Center are excited to work and grow with Captains Johnny and Kerry Bartsch. We are eager to see what God's mighty power will accomplish within them and through them. We also want to say thank you to Captain Johnny and Captain Kerry: Thank you for your work with The Salvation Army in the past, and thank you for your willingness to follow the Lord and go where he has led you today. So from all of us here at the Grand Rapids Adult Rehabilitation Center:

Welcome to the family!
Beneficiary of the Month
Every month The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) recognizes one beneficiary who has shown a strong willingness to do what is needed to be successful in the program. We would like to congratulate the Beneficiary of the Month for the month of May: Clifford C.

Clifford's work therapy assignment is to clean and maintain the 3rd floor of the ARC. He keeps a happy and positive attitude while he works, and is always quick to make someone laugh.

We asked Cliff what his life was like before he came to the Adult Rehabilitation Center and he shared part of his story with us:

". . . jail, cops, a lot of people not wanting to upset me. A lot of people not having faith or trust in my word. . . all in all, I was a weak, stubborn, scared drunk that hid behind the bottle so I didn't have to look inside my own dark closet where I put the things I didn't want to feel."

Currently, Clifford is on level 5 of The Salvation Army program and will soon graduate on August 8th. Clifford's sister was the push that he needed to come to the ARC and--although Cliff was reluctant to enter the program--he made a choice to complete what he started.

"I was ready after a week to leave [because of] this place and it's rules. I had to get over the the thought that you [are] better than the work task assigned. I soon realized that it's not the task that shaped me, it's my attitude."

As mentioned, Cliff currently does his work therapy on the 3rd floor of the Adult Rehabilitation Center. He has various areas that he is responsible for maintaining, and does a great job keeping things presentable and clean. Previously, he worked in one of the Salvation Army Family Stores. He also spent time sorting clothes on the clothing line in the Adult Rehabilitation Center warehouse. He enjoys the responsibilities he has now and says that the best part is the numerous compliments that people give him about the work he does.

Clifford explained that before committing to the program, he didn't practice expressing his feelings to anyone and that he did not invite others to share their feelings. He feels he's made tremendous progress and when he graduates he would like to give back in anyway that he can. Clifford is passionate about helping others who have suffered from addiction and he wants to do that by talking about God's word and the hope he found in spite of what he's been through.

We are extremely proud of the initiative that Clifford has taken in keeping a good attitude, for his desire to give what he has been given and for making the decision to complete this program in order to maintain a healthy, sober lifestyle.
Thought of the Month
Neither death, nor life . . . shall be able to separate us from the love of God.
Romans 8:38-39
There is nothing that can separate you from God. The mistakes you make and the sins you commit after you have accepted Christ Jesus do not separate you from God. He will convict you of these sins so you can confess them, be forgiven, repent of them, and make a change in your future behavior . . . But these sins do not separate you again from God. God told His people that even if they disobeyed Him and experienced all the negative consequences, He would still be there when they turned to Him.

~Charles F. Staney
Upcoming Sales
August 11th - Plainwell Anniversary Sale (Plainwell Location)
September 3rd - Labor Day Sale (Nation Wide)
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