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Loretta Ruby Bullard

1926 – 2024

Loretta Ruby Bullard was born December 30, 1926, in Oklahoma to William Alfred Midgley and Eva Alnita Green Midgley. She passed away May 22, 2024, at age 97.

The seventh of ten children, Loretta lived through fifteen presidents and was on the sixteenth when she died. She lived through the Depression, recessions, and five wars: World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

Though Loretta finished only the eighth grade, she attended an adult education program and received her GED when she was 65.

Loretta raised children and grandchildren along with many nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends. She was a caretaker by nature and lived for her family. The biggest accomplishment of her life was showing her family how to be a true, faithful servant of our Lord.

Loretta lived her life for God, the church, and her family. She was a mentor to so many in the Church of God (Seventh Day) in Wister, Oklahoma, and served as a trustee there for several years. Loretta made and sold many fried pies and held numerous garage sales, and she donated quilts for fundraisers for the church. Loretta was an inspiration to the young and the old. She will be missed.

Loretta was preceded in death by her parents; husband Herman; sons Curtis and David, and J.D. Delap; sisters Vina, Opal, Margaret, Ann; brothers Charlie, William, Moss, and Dee.

She is survived by daughters Eva Alexander, Bonnie Prigmore, Lynn and Alan Shelbourne; daughter-in-law Sandy Bullard; brother Maurice Midgley; grandchildren Jennifer, David, Curtis, Dee, Charlie, Jeremy, Dustin, Katie, Jessie, and Davey; great-children Mackenzie, Gracie, Haylee, Kasen, Kobi, Taylor, Ava, Kabella, Kamden, Ronni Belle, and Callen; great-great grandchild Charlie; special friends Donna Bush, Linda Delap, and Frances Nelson, as well as numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Donna Carpenter

1924 – 2024

Donna Wiley Carpenter was born April 19, 1924, in Bakersfield, California. Like her husband, she reached the age of 100, then passed away soon after on May 11, 2024.

Soon after her birth, Donna was adopted by loving parents in Eagle Rock, California, a community of Los Angeles. She came into the Church of God (Seventh Day) after meeting and marrying Andy Carpenter. They were married in 1947, and Donna was baptized into Jesus Christ around that time.

In 1966, Andy and Donna helped establish the Ontario Church of God (Seventh Day). She was an active member, involved in children’s ministry, the women’s group, and various projects.

Donna was known for her hospitality — always ready to have people over to her home. She enjoyed writing poems and short articles about her walk with God. She was published in WAND magazine, as well as the Ontario church newsletter.

Andy passed away in 2012, but Donna was present for the fiftieth anniversary celebration of the Ontario church in 2016. She is survived by her son, Larry (Sandy) Carpenter, daughter Colleen O’Brien, daughter Gena (Mike) McKibbin, daughter Grace (Jim) Eggebeen, and son Paul (Georgia) Carpenter. She also leaves behind ten grandchildren and sixteen great-grandchildren.

Homeschoolers, Unite!

I write this article as one who has earned a master’s degree in education from the University of Southern California and secondary education teaching credentials from the State of California and the State of Oregon. I have taught students within three public school districts. Both my parents were public schoolteachers, as were one of my brothers and my wife. Despite that involvement, I am delighted that each of my three children and their spouses are homeschooling their children.

In some school districts within the United States, children are taught traditional values and subjects, but far too many of our schools have become indoctrination centers of our increasingly anti-God society. The news has shown student demonstrations on college campuses against Jewish people, and supporting terrorists who wish to exterminate them. Online videos reveal university students unable to answer basic questions about the geography and government of their own country. They violently protest in favor of issues and ideologies they know even less about.

Many families within our General Conference have decided that their children are far too valuable and vulnerable to entrust to public schools. They have concluded that “Caesar’s” schools are designed to produce students who share Caesar’s values that often contradict biblical values. Therefore, parents have removed their children from public schools and enrolled them in private schools, or have chosen to educate them at home. Cooperatives of homeschoolers are springing up everywhere as parents and Christian educators band together to provide educational opportunities in line with Christian values and classical methods and subjects.

Other GC leaders and I support these parents and others who desire to follow their example. We hope to build a repository of information, available to anyone, of homeschool organizations, materials, and methodologies. If you are a homeschooler interested in helping us build this, please email your information to contact@cog7.org.

— Loren Stacy

GC President

Women’s Emphasis Sabbath 2024

March was a joyous month, with various women’s groups participating in Women’s Emphasis Sabbath. Early in the month, groups from Saginaw, Michigan, and Fort Wayne, Indiana (Bowser), took part. Completing the month, United CoG7, Lanham, Maryland; Fort Wayne (Lafayette); Grand Rapids and Holland, Michigan; Passaic, New Jersey; and Ossining, New York, shared their hearts for the honor and glory of God.

This year’s theme, “Declutter Your Heart,” was shared in different ways, all concluding that worshipping in Spirit and truth should be at the center of our hearts.

Thanks for your great participation in the Northeast District! We look forward to seeing what 2025 has in store. In the meantime, keep serving!

Giving Hands.

At the 2023 GC Convention, the Women’s Bazaar raised funds for the Giving Hands ministry that feeds the homeless. This ministry began with Sister Maurene Brown and other sisters from the CoG7 in Kingston, Jamaica. Their home-cooked meals are distributed to those in need.  For $250, about 75 people can enjoy a meal for three months. 

Retreat planning.

The Youth Retreat Planning Committee met March 8-9 near the event location at Camp Toccoa, GA. District Youth Director Jon Unzueta (standing) gave a presentation to the committee members: Joel and Sharon Modeste, Walter and Lilly Apen, Cesar Medrano, Keila Hernandez, Yanci Cartagena, and Jo Allison Krome, administrative director. The retreat will be held December 20-22, 2024, and will feature speakers Moises and Pete Capetillo.

Helping marriages.

On March 16, the Albuquerque, NM church hosted a service focusing on marriage. Speakers (and brothers) Aaron and Fresca Ochoa, from Phoenix, AZ, presented a workshop to the congregation. They enjoyed beautiful and meaningful sermons, as well as interactive activities and games for the couples. 

Laredo women.

The Laredo, TX CoG7 experienced an amazing women’s service on March 9. Their theme was “Transformed,” based on Romans 12:1, 2 and following the CoG7’s Women’s Emphasis for this year. Thank you to all the sisters who participated in this day.

Pastors’ retreat.

We give thanks for the pastors’ retreat that took place March 8-10 at Camp Tejas in Giddings, TX. Everyone felt the Spirit of the Lord moving. Speakers were GC President Loren Stacy, Brother Ramon Ruiz, and Brother Loren Gjesdal. Pastors, leaders, and many more attended and enjoyed wonderful worship. They all returned to their congregations motivated and willing to serve the Lord. The three sermons inspired the men to continue making themselves available for the work of the Lord, for visitors, for fellow ministers, and for those the Lord will call to His vineyard.

El Paso women.

On March 9, women from the Tree of Life church in El Paso, TX, held a service to honor the Women’s Emphasis theme. They enjoyed beautiful worship and fellowship and focused on how to be transformed in the eyes of God.

San Antonio women.

The Women’s Emphasis service in San Antonio, TX, took place March 23. The women’s group of the Ceralvo congregation had a wonderful time with a fellowship luncheon, followed by a Spirit-led worship service, a devotional, and an activity. They also thanked God for their pastor’s wife, Eva Salazar. A special thanks to Maria Antonia Macias for leading the service, Jessica Pila for presenting a beautiful devotional, and Judith Salazar for leading and guiding the painting activity.

Amazed in Oklahoma

The Oklahoma Women’s Retreat, held March 22-24 at Dover Camp, was simply amazing! Sixty-four women attended and shared blessing after blessing, encouraged that “Jesus . . . My Refuge, My Strength” will be a firm statement to hold on to daily.

The Friday night meal, prepared by Jerad Ullrich and son, Patrick, started the weekend off with praise and uplifting encouragement. Moises and Pete Capetillo joined them and assisted with the remaining meals, and other gentlemen (husbands) helped out in the kitchen. Our thanks to you all for the graciousness with which you served.

On Friday after our evening meal, Sister Gail Anklam brought us together with a get-to-know-one-another ice breaker. It was followed with a devotion to begin our Sabbath worship. The praise team led worship in song throughout the weekend. We were blessed with all the songs — some new, some familiar. Beautiful voices blended in praise!

On Sabbath, Sister Wanda Taylor presented three workshop sessions, all with Psalm 28:7 as key verse. The weekend was so blessed and the fellowship sweet. Thanks to everyone who came!

Baptisms.

With great joy, we share the great news of our fellow “newborn” brethren in Christ who joined the body of Christ through baptism. Alejandra Avalos and Laura Hernandez were baptized April 20, 2024. These sisters said goodbye to the old man and hello to their new creation in Christ. On April 6, Leonard Kelly, Zulybeth Reynaga, and Jair Herrera were baptized as well. Our prayers are with each one of these. We can’t wait to see what our Lord and Savior has in store for their new lives!

District board.

On March 10, the West Coast District board convened for its annual meeting in Ontario, CA. The day before, board members worshipped alongside the Ontario church brethren, followed by a delightful meal shared with both Ontario churches. Let’s continue to keep our district leaders, their families, and local churches in our prayers.

Baptisms.

There is joy in heaven when a sinner repents! We rejoiced with the angels on April 13 in Canyon Lake, AZ, as we welcomed to God’s flock our brothers and sisters in Christ (L to R): Dulce Larazola, Allison Moreno, Dasha Beiza, Amanda Botello, Josue Rios, and Tevin Blevins.

Quarterly service.

Churches in Arizona gathered on March 23 for their quarterly service, hosted by the Phoenix church. Filled with praise and worship, the event served as an opportunity for believers to come together in fellowship and unity. Superintendent Larry Zaragoza delivered a powerful message, imparting the Word of God and igniting hearts with spiritual nourishment. Following the service, the host church provided a delightful meal for everyone to enjoy.

Anniversary Celebration

The Church of God (Seventh Day) “Roca Eterna” in Escondido, CA, celebrated its thirteenth anniversary on March 23.

It began in 1998 but briefly closed after eight years when Pastor Alejandro Baez moved. In 2007, the church restarted when Brother Felipe Orduño and his wife, Areli, were called to serve. Minister Heber Vega supported the mission and Sabbath school during those years.

On March 19, 2011, the congregation was officially designated a church by Superintendent Larry Zaragoza. Last year, Minister Felipe Orduño passed the pastoral role to Brother Gabriel Pérez, who graduated from a ministerial seminary in Mexico and is studying at Artios to obtain his license in the US. This celebration is a reminder of the rebirth and perseverance of the congregation throughout its history.

“Reign Revival” youth rally.

The Eugene/Springfield CoG7 hosted their first youth event during spring break, March 28-31. More than 40 youth, young adults, and youth leaders attended. Using the theme “Run to the Father,” various speakers covered the topic of leaving the world behind and truly trusting in our heavenly Father. Youth participated in times of worship, fellowship, and community outreach.

Annual GC Leadership Meetings

Each year in April, President Loren Stacy and Executive Director Jody McCoy host GC Leadership Meetings in Denver. The first day (Sunday) is an everyone-together meeting of our district superintendents, Ministries directors (Artios, Publications, and Missions), heads of our GC departments (Communications and IT), president of our Ministerial Council, accountant, office manager, and other key personnel. This allows for sharing and collaboration among all of these key Conference leaders.

On the second and third days (Monday and Tuesday) the president and executive director continue meeting with only the district superintendents. This year these meetings took place April 14-16. The photo is of some of those around the table during the Sunday, April 14, meeting.