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Emeritus Educator Randy Jones died peacefully on November 16, 2018 surrounded by dear friends. Our thoughts are with his family during this time. 


Rev. Henry "Harry" Munro Bruen, Jr., 82, of Sevierville, went to be with the Lord on Wednesday, October 31, 2018. He was a graduate of Blair Academy, Princeton University, and Princeton Theological Seminary. Harry became a Presbyterian Minister and began his ministry in Sitka, Alaska. He then went on to become a Supervisor in Clinical Pastoral Education until his retirement. Harry enjoyed building and flying airplanes, and belonged to the Experimental Aircraft Association. He was a master craftsman and especially enjoyed wood working. Harry was a loving husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend, who will be missed by all who knew him. He was preceded in death by his parents, Clara and Henry Munro Bruen, Sr.; and his sisters, Anna Klerekoper and Harriette Davis. Harry is survived by his wife of 40 years, Charlotte Mobley Bruen; children, Rachel Bruen Sloan (Kevin Sloan), Harry Bruen III (Stephanie Bruen), Brett S. Okhuysen (Lisbeth Alfaro), Catherine Feenstra (Ron Feenstra); grandchildren, Lawson Bruen, Isabella Bruen, and Annaleisa Bruen; numerous nieces and nephews; and a host of loving extended family members and friends. A private family gathering will be held to celebrate Harry's life. Online condolences may be made at www.atchleyfuneralhome. com


Reverend Robert David Leas, of East Tawas, entered the higher life on Saturday, September 15, 2018 at Tawas St. Joseph Hospital in Tawas City, age 84. Robert was born on December 12, 1933 in Indianapolis, Indiana to Ralph and Ina (Abney) Leas. He graduated with the class of 1952 from Noblesville High School in Indiana. Robert earned a Bachelor's Degree with honors in history from Indiana University in 1956. During his junior year at IU, he participated in a study abroad program at the American University of Beirut, where he developed a lifelong interest in and love of the Middle East. In 1957, Robert studied at the Faculté de Théologie in Montpellier, France. He earned his Master's Degree of Divinity in 1961 from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, Illinois, and the same year was ordained in the Presbyterian Church. His first call as a Presbyterian minister was to Collegiate Presbyterian Church in Ames, Iowa, with later pastorates at First Presbyterian Church in Franklin, Indiana and Eastminster Presbyterian Church in East Lansing, Michigan. His pastoral career also included over thirty years in clinical pastoral education (CPE) as an educator and CPE Supervisor, training seminary and chaplaincy students in hospital settings in Park Ridge, Illinois; South Bend, Indiana; Saginaw, Michigan; and Ft. Wayne, Indiana, until his retirement in 2002.  Read full obituary here


Rev. Kenneth Joseph Siess , Age 86 of Edina, Minnesota died on August 24 following a progressive illness.  Born October 2, 1931 in Seymour, Indiana to Clarence and Marie (Dau) Siess. Preceded in death by wife, Ellie. Survived by children, Timothy, Jonathan (Candy), Matthew (Linda), Daniel, and Elizabeth (Michael) Edwards-Siess; 10 grandchildren.  Funeral service Saturday, September 8, 2018 at 11 AM ~ Mt. Olive Lutheran Church, 3045 Chicago Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55407. Visitation Friday 4-8 PM at Mt Olive Lutheran Church and 1 hour prior to service.


William (Bill) A. Derstin died peacefully August 8, 2018. He was born on October 12, 1933 in Perkasie, PA to Abram N. and Ruth H. Landis Derstine. 

Bill graduated from the former West Pottsgrove High School in 1951, Heidelberg College, Ohio in 1955, and from Lancaster Theological Seminary, PA, in 1959. He received a degree in pastoral counseling from Crozer Theological Seminary, PA, in 1969. In 1952, he met Dolores (Dolly) Lamm while both were campers at Camp Mensch Mill, PA. During the summers they worked on staff at Camp Fernbrook; they were married in 1957

He was a parish pastor for nine years, serving the congregations of Lemasters Charge in Mercersburg and Emmanuel United Church of Christ, Penns Creek, before becoming supervising chaplain at Sleighton School for Girls, Darling, PA; Wesley Medical Center, Wichita, KS; and Christ Hospital and Medical Center, Oak Lawn, IL. He was Vice President for Religion and Health at South Suburban Hospital, Hazel Crest, IL. He retired in 2001 and moved with Dolly to Pleasant Hill. During that time he traveled the US, Europe and Costa Rica with Dolly, enjoyed his grandchildren, and volunteered at Pleasant Hill UCC.

The Rev. Dr. William R. Loesch died at his home in Dorchester on Saturday, June 16, 2018.            

He is survived by his three daughters and son: Melanie Loesch; Cathy Loesch; Cynthia Loesch-Johnson (and husband Jeffery Johnson); Christopher (and wife Shannon), and their four children. He is also survived by his former wife, Martha Sanchez, of Dorchester, the mother of their children, and his twin brother, Rev. Dr. Robert Loesch, a United Church of Christ clergy living in Springfield, MA, and four nieces and a nephew.

Born in West Palm Beach, Florida, he lived with his family in several states during World War II, including Melrose, MA, and high school in Glen Ridge, NJ.  He graduated from Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio, in 1963 with a B.A. in Sociology and Psychology, and Andover Newton Theological School with a Master of Divinity in 1968, and Doctor of Ministry in 1976.  He was ordained into the United Church of Christ fifty years ago in Roxbury in 1968.  He was a member of the adjunct faculty at Andover Newton Theological School, Harvard University, Emmanuel College, and Northeastern University School of Nursing.  


Former ACPE Member Charles "Chip" Moody died on June 21, 2018. Pastor Moody completed his CPE residency through the Spring Grove Hospital Center (inpatient psychiatric) and Francis Scott Key Medical Center in Baltimore, MD, from 1983-85.  Most recently, he was the Vice President for Student Development at Phoenix Seminary.

A Celebration of Life was held at 1000 on Saturday, 30 June, at Grace Community Church, 1200 E. Southern Ave, Tempe, Arizona, 85282.



Rev. Nancy Piggott's father, Bill Wright, died in Needham, MA on Friday, November 2, 2018 at the age of 95.

The Rev. Thomas “Tommy” S. Rogers, III’s (Illinois) father, Tom Rogers, died on Tuesday, October 30, 2018. Tom was a financial advisor who could set his own schedule which gave him lots of time to spend with Tommy as he was growing up. It was a gift to have a father who defied gender roles and cherished being the primary caregiver while Tommy’s mom focused on her career. Tom and his beloved wife Betty were married nearly 42 years and supported each other wholeheartedly in their careers and in life. They are a model that Tommy seeks to follow in his marriage to his husband Jason. Tom’s funeral was November 3 in Oklahoma City. Tommy preached and presided at the funeral.

Rev. MaryBeth Hayes’ father died this past week.  John A. Hayes, Jr, 83, from Bloomfield CT, died on October 21, 2018 at home surrounded by MaryBeth, her partner Nan and her mother after a long struggle with multiple medical problems.  A Memorial Service for John will be held at Bloomfield Congregational Church, 10 Wintonbury Ave, Bloomfield CT, on November 17, 2018 at 3 p.m.  

Edith Finsaadal’s mother, Therese, 91, died peacefully September 21, 2018 with Edith’s sister and brother at her side. Therese’s great granddaughter, named after her, spent about an hour with her after she died. Edith treasures the attached picture because it marks her mom’s passing with dignity, care and respect. Pictured are red roses, a lit candle, a traditional Norwegian handmade linen doily, and little Therese, 10, stroking her gently. 

Thinking of You

Earlier this week (September 20) we received the following message from Cary Melvin, ACPE Certified Educator at Cape Fear Valley Health System in Fayetteville, NC, recently impacted by Hurricane Florence: 

Thank you for your [Steve Goss] voicemail message. It has been pretty rough the last few days. We are surviving and in some cases thriving. Our staff, including me have been pulling some tremendously long hours within the hospital. We suspended our CPE program for the past ten days because we did not want to jeopardize any of our eight students who were already impacted by this storm event. Six of our eight students were directly in the path of this storm event. Thanks to God none of them were bodily injured. Two live in Wilmington, two in Sampson County, and two in Lumberton/Pembroke areas. Today seems to be more normal than any other day since the news broke of this storm. The staff have been super in their response to the events caused by Florence. We are extremely blessed that things were not any worse than what has been and is currently.

So, we thank the God of creation for His grace and mercies toward us. The community where the Church I pastor was hit very hard but there was only one related death that I know of at this moment. Again, I am grateful for wonderful stewards who kept me informed. I just happy to be alive and well through what could have been a more catastrophic event.