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John D. Bailey

May 24, 1957 – February 10, 2023

Pastor John D. Baily, after a noble battle with Parkinson’s disease, passed away at home with his wife Karen at his side.

John was born in Cadillac, Michigan to Merritt (DeVere) and Betty (Hawkins) Bailey on May 24, 1957. The family moved when John was 2 making their home in Buena Vista.

John began his higher education at Delta Community College. He received a BA from Spring Arbor, a Master of Divinity from Methodist Theological School in Ohio, and a Doctor of Ministry from Ecumenical Theological School. John was ordained an Elder in the United Methodist Church in 2003 and served five congregations in Michigan.

John had worked as DJ for local radio stations for 16 years before finally answering God’s call to ministry. His work in radio helped to perfect his speaking voice which, he was often told, could be “easily heard” even by the hardest of hearing in the congregation.

He had an infectious smile and a great sense of humor which endeared him to many. He had the ability to discern which battles to take notice of and which ones to pass over which served him well during two church-building projects.

He always loved dogs. He learned to love a cat. He was passionate about animal rescue. He wouldn’t watch the commercials about abused and neglected animals without crying.

He will be fervently missed by his wife of 29 years, Karen. His children Sarah and Aaron, stepchildren Paul, Joshua, Elizabeth, Michael, and Rachel, 19 grandchildren, one great-granddaughter, his sisters Lorraine and Christine. Many nieces, nephews and cousins and his cat Gus continually watched over him.

He was predeceased by his parents, infant sons Matthew and Eric, brother-in-law Dean and his beloved dog Charlie.

A celebration of his life will be held at Bethany UMC, 353 East Vienna St., Clio, Michigan on Saturday, February 25, 2023 with visitation beginning at 10:00, and service to begin at noon. Rev Bruce Judy to officiate. Light lunch to follow.

Memorial contributions can be made to an animal rescue in John’s name. Please do not send flowers.

*Bailey, John D. (Karen) – [(FE) FL 1999; PE 2000; FE 2003] Custer, South Liberty, W OH Conf 1996; Ossineke, Hubbard Lake 1999; Ossineke 1/1/2005; Seven Churches United Group Ministry: Gaines, Duffield 2005; Clio: Bethany 2010; Romeo 2015; Cheboygan: St. Paul’s 2017; Medical Leave 11/1/2020.

Last Updated on February 22, 2023

The Michigan Conference