Jennifer Charlene Rogers, age 61, passed away Monday, July 20, 2020 at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, MI. Jennifer was a former Detroit Annual Conference temporary employee, filling in as needed in the conference office. She was very active serving within her local church on various committees and groups. She also served as an officer for the East Winds District United Methodist Women and she filled many roles for the Detroit Conference; serving on the Youth Division and as a trainer for the Protection Team, for example.
In Chicago, Illinois on a wintry day of January 24, 1959, Jennifer Charlene Rogers enhanced the lives of Eugene and Lessie Mae Rogers. She was her father’s “Jenny Cat”. Jennifer was the apple of their eye as she had no problem reminding everyone. She was a standout student at Harlan High School in Chicago, Illinois. Jennifer lifted her voice in song at Gorham United Methodist Church every Sunday. Upon moving to Flint Michigan Jennifer allowed her talents to be shared with the Charity United Methodist Church.
Jennifer who enjoyed learning wanted to make certain that all children were given the opportunity to a decent education. Therefore, Jennifer returned to the University of Michigan where she graduated with her degree in Education. She then took that knowledge and taught throughout the Beecher and Westwood Heights School Districts. Her love and devotion did not end there. Jennifer would uplift, guide, direct, and enlighten thousands of youth as a Sunday School Teacher, Counselor, and Youth Leader.
As one who would not allow her God-given talents to go unused Jennifer joined the Bethel United Methodist Church Choir. She also sang with The Wilker Septet. Jennifer would never show any hesitancy in spreading the Good News. She was a Lay Speaker, Sunday School Teacher, and member of the United Methodist Women. Jennifer would bring forth the Word in her sermons to the children of Bethel UMC on Sunday morning. She even took the Word to other states such as churches in Chicago, Illinois.
If you ever wanted to know about Native American history all you had to do was ask Jennifer. Her knowledge of the history of Chicago was uncanny. She loved history so much that she was one of the “go to” people when any of the Johnson family members had questions concerning their lineage.
One day Flint Michigan started having issues with the purification of their water. Jennifer, always the advocate, immediately stepped in to ensure that the city she loved would have some form of access to clean water. She worked diligently along with her Bethel UMC family on collecting and distributing bottled water for the people of Flint.
So much more could be written about this wonderful, loving, outstanding, caring individual. Unfortunately, time does not permit one to write about the most important part of her life. That part would be the time she spent with you. The things you did together. The moments you spent with her laughing and the tears shared. The secrets told and kept. The phone calls, emails and text messages that always ended with a cheery “Bye.”
Jennifer Charlene Rogers story concluded on the wee hours of July 20, 2020. Her father Eugene Rogers, mother Lessie Mae Rogers, brothers Raymond, Rodman, and sister Gwendolyn unfortunately were not here on that day as they preceded her in death.
The family held a private funeral service at Bethel UMC in Flint, MI. A recording of the service can be viewed on their Facebook page.
Jennifer did leave to cherish her memories her brother Winfred Rogers (Kevin Wilks) of Chicago, Illinois. Four nephews: Lawrence, Pierce, Kwintin and David Wilks-Rogers of Chicago, Illinois who worshipped the ground “Auntie Jenny” walked on. One aunt, Alma Hopson of Flint, Michigan, who Jennifer loved, admired, and considered as her confidant and best friend. Last but not least, a host of cousins, church members, loved ones and friends, as Jennifer never met a stranger. Keep those moments in your heart until the day that we are able to meet again.