WGVU Morning Show – Telling Your Story (October)

We were joined by a legend in the studio for our October Telling Your Story segment on the WGVU Morning Show with Shelley Irwin. At age 77, Karel Wolters is still performing incredible tricks on waterskis with the Grand City Show Skiers, and he’s not stopping anytime soon! Click on the link below to hear the whole interview:

Telling Your Story (October)

Expanding Our Services

On the heels of our office expansion, we will be expanding our grief support programming, music therapy services, and community education services in the coming year. Emmanuel Hospice Executive Director recently sat down with the Grand Rapids Business Journal to share our plans to provide quality care to a growing number of patients and families in our community. Click on the link below to read more:

Grand Rapids Business Journal Article

A Program for the Living

Did you know that a program exists to help people live their best life until the very end? Nicole Sharpe, our Director of Community Outreach, shared the benefits and features of hospice care in a recent MLive article. Having open, honest, and early conversations can ease the burdens at the end of life, and make it easier on the whole family. Click the link below to read more:

A Program for the Living

WGVU Morning Show – Telling Your Story (September)

We were joined by Dr. Dan Gowdy and Melissa Schmidt from Sunset Retirement Communities for September’s Telling Your Story segment on the WGVU Morning Show with Shelley Irwin. Sunset is hosting a Centenarian Celebration, where they will be celebrating their residents who are over 100 years old. They recently gathered wisdom and advice from these seniors, which they shared on the program. Listen below to hear more:

Telling Your Story (September)

One Good Thing – Cardmaking Group

The Emmanuel Hospice cardmaking group was recently featured on WZZM’s One Good Thing segment. This group of women give their time, energy, and resources to recycle beautiful cards for our patients and families. Their thoughtfulness and creativity is the kind of story we need more often in the news!

One Good Thing

Knowing When to Call Hospice

There is sometimes a stigma associated with calling hospice, because patients and families don’t understand the extent to which hospice care can help. In a recent MLive article, Emmanuel Hospice Admissions Coordinator and Hospital Liaison Jennifer Radaz shares the benefits of hospice, and discusses when it’s the right time to call. Click on the link below to read more about hospice care:

Knowing When to Call Hospice

WGVU Morning Show – Telling Your Story (August)

Karin Schmidt joined us in the studio for August’s Telling Your Story segment on the WGVU Morning Show with Shelley Irwin. Karin shared stories from her many years of working with horses, and what brought her to the United States and eventually led her to start her own horse barn. Listen below to hear more about how Karin loves building bridges and helping others in every part of her life:

Telling Your Story (August)

Supporting the Family at the End of Life

Emmanuel Hospice Social Worker Jenny Kellogg recently shared why it can be so difficult for family and friends to have a conversation about end-of-life issues with someone who is dying. She also offers four practical ways we can offer support to a loved one. Click on the link below to learn more about being supportive during challenging times:

Supporting the Family

New Volunteer Coordinator

Emmanuel Hospice is proud to welcome our new Volunteer Coordinator, Jackie Chandler. Jackie brings over 8 years of program development and volunteer experience to our team, most recently at Porter Hills Village. We’ve also recently added a new Administrative Assistant, Jacqueline Malinoski, and a new RN Case Manager, Kristy Cusack, to our team. Read more about these exciting additions below:

New Volunteer Coordinator

WGVU Morning Show – Telling Your Story (July)

On July’s Telling Your Story segment, Shelley Irwin interviewed Edith “Betty” Piepenbrink, a beautiful and spunky 96 year old. Listen below as she shares memories from growing up in the 1920s, playing a lifetime of golf, and what it was like to be back on the golf course at the LPGA earlier this summer:

Telling Your Story (July)

WGVU Morning Show – Telling Your Story (June)

WMU grad students Colette Chapp and Corey Youngs joined our June Telling Your Story segment on the WGVU Morning Show with Shelley Irwin. They are part of an immersion program at Clark on Keller Lake, where young grad students live alongside seniors in the retirement community. Listen below as they share stories and lessons they’ve learned while bridging the generational gap:

Telling Your Story (June)

LPGA Wish Fulfilled

At Emmanuel Hospice, we are passionate about creating experiences that help our patients live life to the fullest with the time they have remaining. Thanks to the generosity of Meijer, Emmanuel Hospice patient Edith “Betty” Piepenbrink will be able to fulfill her wish of getting to the fairways one more time. Click on the link below to read more about Betty’s VIP experience at the Meijer LPGA Classic:

Wish Fulfilled

Office Expansion

We have recently completed an expansion of our office to accommodate eight new team members who have joined our organization in the past 6 months! We’re excited that this new space provides the base and resources for staff to continue to provide quality care for patients. Click on the link below to read more about how we’ve grown:

Emmanuel Hospice Expansion

Volunteers are the Heart of Hospice

On the first Wednesday of every month, a group of volunteers gather to make handmade cards for our patients and their families. Other volunteers meet with patients to capture memories, stories, and life lessons to share with their family and friends. These are just a few examples of how our volunteers are truly the heart of hospice. Click on the link below to learn more about how to join our amazing team of volunteers:

Volunteers are the Heart of Hospice

WGVU Morning Show – Telling Your Story (April)

This month’s Telling Your Story guest on the WGVU Morning Show with Shelley Irwin was Sheila Bartle, a former English teacher who has spent retirement helping others share their life experiences. Listen below as Sheila describes the power of telling stories and finding meaning in our lives:

Telling Your Story (April)

National Healthcare Decisions Day – Time for a Serious Talk

National Healthcare Decisions Day (April 16) might just be the perfect time to have a conversation about how you want to live. Bob Eleveld’s end-of-life experience illustrated the power of truly living, and dying, in your own way. We were honored to walk alongside Bob and his family as they showed why these conversations are so important. Click the link below to read more about Bob’s journey:

Healthcare Decision Day

The Important Role a Social Worker Plays at Emmanuel Hospice

Recently, some of our staff shared their experiences as hospice social workers. Emmanuel Hospice social workers help navigate difficult end-of-life conversations, educate families on the dying process, and help our patients experience joy at the end of their lives. Click on the link below to learn more about the importance of our social workers:

The Important Role of Social Workers

Volunteers Needed!

Emmanuel Hospice is in need of volunteers. For more information, please click on the link below.


A Patient’s Wish

Emmanuel Hospice patient, Phyllis Ryerson, asked if she could see and pet a horse one last time. We said yes, and made it happen for her. With the help of Deb VanderBand, Executive Director of Equine Assisted Development of the Great Lakes, Phyllis was able to spend an afternoon with her son, petting and feeding horses. Clink the link for the full article.

A Patient’s Wish

WGVU Morning Show – Telling Your Story (February)

Emmanuel Hospice volunteer Marilyn Stephens appeared on the WGVU Morning Show for a special Telling Your Story segment to read portions of a love letter that her Father wrote to her Mother in the 1930s and memories from their real-life romance. Listen below for Marilyn’s touching story:

Telling Your Story (February)

As seen in the Grand Rapids Press and online at MLive.com

Emmanuel Hospice’s Director of Bereavement Services, Heather O’Brien, explains the basics on the best way to cope with death and the loss of a loved one.

Healthy grief January 2017 REV

As seen in the Grand Rapids Press and online at MLive.com

Lee Ausema, Emmanuel Hospice chaplain, explains his role in end of life care and tending to the spiritual needs of our patients.

Spirituality – TripTik

 GRTV’s Non-Profit Showcase

Our Executive Director provides answers the most commonly asked hospice questions in this GRTV interview.

GRTV’s Non-Profit Public Service Announcement

Click below to learn how Compassion is our Calling

WZZM 13 – Senior Wellness

Here we discuss how to live well with a serious illness, and answer questions about palliative care.


WOOD Radio

This 60-second educational spot aired on WOOD Radio in the Spring of 2015. It describes our philosophy of hospice care – “How do you want to LIVE?”


WZZM 13 News

  • In the Winter of 2016, our Director of Community Outreach – Ryan Goodwin discussed how we can celebrate life through positive preparation.

Click here to learn the five steps everyone should take to have “The Talk.”

  • In Spring 2015, our Director of Community Outreach – Ryan Goodwin was featured on WZZM news to explain our passion for Advance Care Planning.

WZZM senior wellness



WGVU Morning Show

Tune into the WGVU morning show on 88.5/95.3 with Shelley Irwin on the second Tuesday of every month to hear “Telling Your Story”. This compelling show features stories from the lives of residents and staff of Emmanuel Hospice, St. Ann’s, Clark, Porter Hills and Sunset, fortified with a captivating theme.




Faith Magazine – “A mother’s life-lessons reach beyond the grave.”

Emmanuel Hospice was honored to care for Judy and her family. Read this inspiring story of Judy’s legacy as told by her daughter.



MLive Article Explains Our Commitment to Those Grieving in West Michigan

Emmanuel Hospice, in collaboration with three other hospice care providers and GVSU, created We Remember – an interfaith memorial event in September 2015. Read more about this powerful event here.

Religion 101 – WGVU Radio

In August 2015, our Executive Director – Sara Lowe was invited to describe our passion behind the “We Remember” event. Click here to listen to this interview.

WZZM Article Highlights Another Hospice Collaboration – Bridging the Gap

Emmanuel Hospice joins other hospice providers and GVSU to connect West Michigan health care providers with specific needs of the interfaith community at the end of life. This event titled “Bridging the Gap” will feature a special panel to discuss the interfaith needs of five belief systems. Click here to learn more.

WZZM 13 News

In Fall 2015, our Executive Director – Sara Lowe and Music Therapist – Miranda Eden were featured on WZZM news to highlight National Hospice Month, and describe many benefits of our music therapy program.