Christian 03
Official Obituary of

Lynn A. DeMoss

December 25, 1934 ~ February 25, 2024 (age 89) 89 Years Old

Lynn DeMoss Obituary

Lynn Allyn DeMoss, age 89, died on February 25, 2024, at Clark Retirement Community in Grand Rapids after a short illness.

Lynn, a Christmas baby, was born in Wabash, IN. When he was eight months old, he left the Lower 48 with his parents, educators with the Bureau of Indian Affairs, to live in Alaska until evacuation after Pearl Harbor in 1942. Those first eight multicultural years provided Lynn with a profound and abiding love for all God’s people.

After four years back home in Indiana, Lynn moved, with his parents and sister, to Big Rapids, MI in 1946. His junior high and high school years were a time of making many lifelong friends. Year after year, Lynn faithfully attended all-school reunions in Big Rapids as a member of the Class of 1952. He was honored as Alumnus of the Year in 2013.

After his freshman year at Ferris State University, Lynn transferred to the University of Michigan, where he graduated in 1956. He became an active member of Wesley Foundation at Ann Arbor First Methodist Church. Just weeks before his death, he took great delight that his beloved Wolverines won the National Championship.

As a young adult, Lynn experienced God’s call to ministry at Lake Louise Senior High Institute, a Methodist youth camp near Boyne Falls, MI. He enrolled at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, IL in 1956. There he met Lois Likes, who was to become his wife. Lois had served as a short-term missionary in Algeria. Inspired by Lois and others, Lynn took a break from seminary. He served three years in the Belgian Congo with the Methodist Board of Global Ministries, teaching in the secondary school at Mulungwishi. Thus began a lifelong love of Africa and involvement in mission.

Lynn married Lois on July 23, 1960. He graduated from G-ETS with a Master of Divinity in 1963. He served Bethel Methodist Church in Elkhorn, WI, Coleman Faith and North Bradley Methodist churches before the family grew to welcome Jeffrey and Jennifer. Over the next 31 years, Lynn served as the senior pastor of Fremont Methodist, Albion First UMC, Muskegon Central UMC, Grand Rapids First UMC, and Lansing Central UMC. From every pulpit, Lynn preached out of the depth of wisdom and faith that he received “sitting on a park bench with God.”

Lynn was active in leadership in the West Michigan Conference of The United Methodist Church. He received an honorary doctorate from Adrian College in 1982. His children, Jeff and Jen found life partners, marrying Heidi Diehl and Dan VanderPloeg. Grandchildren joined the family circle in 1996 (twins David and Drew) and 2010 (Delaney).

Lynn married Kay Starbuck Lukins on August 29, 1993. He retired from parish ministry in 1997 and moved back to Muskegon. Retirement offered new opportunities to share God’s love, both in ministry together at Muskegon Central UMC and as representatives of the General Board of Global Ministries in West Michigan. The couple made five trips to Africa to teach and lead job creation programs with women. Lynn also organized work projects in Lithuania and Chile. He visited 55 countries before making his final trip home.

Other pastimes included reading World War II non-fiction and poetry and relaxing at the DeMoss cottage at Lake Louise Christian Community. After moving to Clark Retirement Community in 2015, Lynn preached as a member of the chaplaincy team of Grand Rapids First UMC. Playing cards (his slogan was, “No mercy!”), trips to the Soo Locks, and teaching and community involvement at Georgetown UMC all provided special joy.

Lynn was preceded in death by his parents, Lowell and Helen (nee McCarty), wife Lois (nee Likes), and aunts, Emily McCarty and Mabel Conrad (nee DeMoss).

He is survived and lovingly remembered by his wife Kay, son Jeffrey and wife Heidi (nee Diehl), daughter Jen and husband Dan VanderPloeg, grandsons Drew and David DeMoss, granddaughter Delaney VanderPloeg, sister Rachel Edwards, cousin Shirley Lanum (nee Veneman) and many beloved nieces and nephews.

A Celebration of the Life and Ministry of the Rev. Lynn DeMoss will be held at First United Methodist Church, 227 Fulton Street E, Grand Rapids, MI, on Saturday, May 11, 2024. Visitation 10 am, worship 11 am, and luncheon after. Memorial gifts may be made to the Clark Retirement Community Benevolent Care Fund, 1551 M.L.K. Jr St SE, Grand Rapids 49506, or Lake Louise Christian Community, 11037 Thumb Lake Rd, Boyne Falls, MI 49713.

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May 11, 2024

10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
First United Methodist Church
227 E Fulton St
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Guaranteed delivery before the Visitation begins

Celebration of Life
May 11, 2024

11:00 AM
First United Methodist Church
227 E Fulton St
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Guaranteed delivery before the Celebration of Life begins


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