James W. Helman
James W. Helman joined the saints in light on Dec. 11, 2019 while surrounded by his family.
Jim had endured a seven-year challenging diagnosis of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). His journey was puzzling to the medical community who worked diligently to give him quality of life. Jim and his family are extremely grateful for all of the professional diligence and compassion of the medical professionals he encountered.
Jim was born Feb. 26, 1949 to Royal Harvey and Betty Josephine (McQueen) Helman in "big, beautiful downtown Goshen, Indiana." Jim graduated from Goshen High School in 1967, received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Goshen College in 1971 and a Master of Divinity from Wartburg Theological Seminary, Dubuque, Iowa, in 1975. Ordination within the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America took place at Trinity Lutheran Church, Goshen, Indiana, June 22, 1975.
Jim was blessed by the opportunity to be called to three congregations in Michigan within his ministry. He served Redeemer Lutheran Church in Owosso from 1975 to 1984, St. John Lutheran Church in Romeo from 1985 to 1988 and Feast of Lutheran Church in Acme from 1988 to 2014. Jim retired in June of 2014, completing 39 years of faithful service to God and his people.
Throughout Jim's career, he believed and emulated servant leadership. He was a man of faith and great love for his family and the people of God. Jim believed in the priesthood of all believers and worked diligently to help those he served to identify and develop their spiritual gifts in order to more fully serve our Lord.
Challenges, hard work, professionalism, compassion and dedication were no strangers to this man. Jim was an innovative thinker, an avid reader, a tenacious student, an intelligent teacher and a loyal friend to many. Over the years he was a leader and participant in many community-based projects as well as work within the church synod.
Jim is survived by his wife, Sharon (Sherri); their two beautiful daughters, Jennifer (Justin) French and Emily (Tanya) Helman; and their son-in-law, Curt Wilson. Jim and Sherri were blessed with six grandchildren, Caden, Grant and Eli Wilson, Cora French and Cameron and Carter Darling.
The love of family, children and grandchildren had been a joy to Jim, and he will be greatly missed.
Jim is also survived by his sister, Beverly Stringfellow; and his brother, John Helman.
Jim was predeceased by his parents.
Visitation will take place from 2 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15, 2019 at Bethlehem Lutheran Church. A celebration of Jim's life will take place at 11 a.m., with a visitation one hour prior to the service, on Monday, Dec. 16, 2019 at Bethlehem Lutheran Church. A luncheon will be held immediately following the service in the church fellowship hall.
Memorial contributions may be directed to Feast of Victory Lutheran Church, 4400 Mt. Hope Road, Acme, MI 49610; or ACTS Acme Thrift Store and Food Pantry, 8925 M-72, Williamsburg, MI 49690.
The family gives great thanks to our God and creator for the gift of this man and to all of his extended family, friends and colleagues who love him.
Please share a memory with Jim's family by visiting his tribute page at www.reynolds-jonkhoff.com.
The Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home and Cremation Services is serving the family.
Published on December 13, 2019


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