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Michigan Area thanks Bishop Deb

On Friday, June 10, a grateful Michigan Area blessed Bishop Deb for her journey to retirement.

Tributes by friends and colleagues, a delightful video, and the presence of family made the Friday morning celebration of Bishop Deb’s ministry a time of joy.

The time of remembrance and appreciation was guided by Genie Bank, Chair of the Area Episcopacy Committee. Other members of the Committee—Rev. Laurie Haller, John Wharton, and Koom Cho also shared words of blessing and gratitude.

The video, “Bishop Deb, a lifetime of ministry,” featured her parents, the Rev. Dr. Lyle and Betty Lieder, husband Brad, episcopal colleagues Gregory Palmer, Sharon Rader, Donald Ott, and Bishop Deb herself. One especially apt comment from Don Ott: “She has a gift to have good thoughts with few words at right moments.” The video may be viewed on


Kudos were offered by Iowa friends Rev.s Len and Diane Eberhart; Clergy Assistants Rev. Melanie Carey and Rev. Dr. William Dobbs; and Administrative Assistant Deana Nelson.

Judy Johnson, a member of Greensky Hill United Methodist Church, played a ceremonial drum during the proceedings.

Saying, “Look back with graciousness and thanks for all your great and quiet achievements in the Michigan Area,” Genie Bank presented a peace pole for the Kiesey’s new home with inscriptions in Lakota Sioux, Spanish, Korean, German and English.

Bishop Deb admitted to being a “bit overwhelmed.” Then she concluded, “Today the conferences are in a place you have wanted to be for decades. It has been a gift for me to be the one to lead you.”