[soul]ful living

De-clutter your heart, mind, soul, schedule, and home…to make space for God.

Join women from around the city for this day retreat – Saturday, February 26, 9am-3pm.

For details on breakout sessions, location, etc. click on the images below.

meal night

Meal Night is cancelled tonight (1/14) as the Bergman’s are under the weather.

Our next meal night will be Friday, January 28 at the VandeVegte’s home.  Click here for a map.  Hope to see you then!

here for a map.

no cancellations!

SUNDAY — 12/12

Nothing has been cancelled.  Here is the line up for this morning:

10:30-11:00 – Brunch with New Life Church (just bring yourself!)

11:00-12:15 – Worship

12:15-12:30 – 2011 Budget meeting (anyone is welcome to join us)

Hope to see you soon!

Worship In Unity

Last spring a conversation began among some of the local churches about how we might live together in unity.
One result of that effort was the decision to worship together at Christmas.
People from Alger CRC, Seymour CRC, Tabernacle and the Branch will gather this Sunday from 5-6PM at Alger CRC.
Childcare is provided.
And for 20-30 minutes afterwards you’re invited to go caroling in the surrounding streets.


This Christmas…give a gift that will change the world. Read more


If you’d like a child-free place to do some wrapping of gifts while enjoying great conversation with other Branch women, then join us at Lynell Shooks home (2657 Jefferson 49507). Tuesday, Dec. 14 at 7:30 bring your gifts and some wrapping paper. Or just come for the mingling. We’ll also be doing a cookie exchange so bring 4 dozen or so of your favorite cookies to share and you’ll go home with 4 dozen different ones.

good news?

This Christmas season we’ll celebrate the birth of Jesus, and for good reason.  But the announcement of a newborn king 2000 years ago wasn’t good news to everyone.  For some, it threatened their very existence; for others, it was a declaration that turn their lives upside down (and then some).

So what about today?  What does Jesus’ birth mean to us?  Is it good news?

Join us as we view the story through the eyes of its characters.

November 28: King Herod

December 5: Zechariah and Elizabeth

December 12: Mary

December 19: Joseph

food baskets

Over the next few weeks we’ll be collecting food — putting them into holiday food baskets — and delivering them to local families.  You can participate by bringing a specific food item to the Branch, helping us assemble the baskets, or delivering them to the families.  To sign up or get more details, email chris@thebranchonline.org (all food must be collected by Sunday, November 21)

Beneath the Tree

At our core is the belief that creativity is a gift from God — a gift to be celebrated and highlighted whenever possible.  This weekend we’re spotlighting creativity through an event called Beneath the Tree.  This in-home-art-sale gives local artists a chance to sell their work, and it gives the Branch a chance to raise money for CREATE (our annual arts camp).

The tour runs Friday (10am-9pm) and Saturday (9am-3pm).

Maps, directions, and more details can all be found here: http://beneaththetree.info/tour.html


she is a ministry at the Branch for all women.  Whether young, old, married or single — it is a place to connect, have fun, share life and grow in faith.  Mark your calendars for these upcoming events — we hope you can join us.

Friday, Nov. 12 she::shops

Beneath the Tree – Meet at Hanna Brennan’s home (2318 Blaine Ave. SE) at 6 p.m.  We will ride together to shop at some of the houses in the tour.  We will end up at Mindi Freng’s house for snacks and conversation.

Tuesday, Dec. 14 she::bakes

Holiday wrapping party/cookie exchange.   Bring your gifts to Lynell Shooks’ home (2657 Jefferson Dr.) and let’s do some wrapping together.  We’ll also be doing a cookie exchange so bake your favorite kind and go home with a variety of treats.

Saturday, Jan. 15 she::eats

Breakfast @ the Branch 9 a.m.  Let’s kick off the new year together.  There will be a time of worship, community building, and a speaker.  More details to follow.

Friday, Feb. 11 she::relaxes

Spa night – Meet at Mindy Law’s house (7497 Whistlepipe Ct., Byron Center) at 7 p.m.  Bring your favorite nail polish and we’ll pamper our feet and hands.  Feel free to bring a favorite snack or treat to share.

Fridays @ 1PM (beginning November 6)  she::grows

A women’s bible study taking place every Friday at 1 p.m. to study Beth Moore’s  “A Woman’s Heart, God’s Tabernacle.”  Please contact Hanna Brennan if you’re interested  drewandhanna@gmail.com


The next gathering is October 8, 7PM, at the Beltline Bar for dinner.  This is a great chance to meet other women, share life and good food.  Questions, or want to RSVP? Email Mindy (mindymlaw@gmail.com).

Guys Night Out

The plan for this oh-so-manly event is simple: frisbee golf followed by food (and just to be clear: if you’ve never thrown a frisbee in your life you’ll do just fine. Trust us. This is not a particularly impressive group of frisbee golfers)

Meet at Old Farm Park (Old Farm Park – 2291 Embro Dr SE – Kentwood, MI) at 5:30.

If you can’t join us for frisbee golf, but want to meet up for food, give Chris a call and we’ll let you know where we are at: 322.1317. We hope to see you!

simply Christian

To borrow N.T. Wright’s words, “Being a Christian in today’s world is, of course, anything but simple.  But there is a time for trying to say, a simply as possible, what it’s all about.”  In this series, it is our aim to do just that.  Join us on Sundays as we explore just what it means to be Christian.

Also, we hope you’ll plug into a short-term small group, joining others in exploring what this series means for our lives. Groups begin the week of Sept. 26 and will meet for five consecutive weeks. To sign up, e-mail chris@thebranchonline.org
Women’s Group: Sunday evenings (Sept. 26, Oct. 3, 10, 17, 24)
Men’s Group: Wednesday morning, 7AM (Sept 29, Oct. 6, 13, 20, 27)
any-and-everyone group: Sunday evenings

Ice Cream (9/1)

Our last taste of summery-sweetness is Wednesday, September 1st.  Join us at 7PM for a scoop at Sundaes in the Heights (located on the corner of Alger and Eastern).

Meal Night (8/27)

Picnic tables.  Summer breezes.  Great food.

Join us for the opportunity to connect with others this Friday at the Dragt’s home.  Click here for a map. The fun starts at 6ish (emphasis on ‘ish’)  Come whenever you can — stay how ever long your schedule allows.   We hope to see you.

Meal Night (8/13)

This Friday meal night goes on the road: we’re headed to Jonny B’z.
This new hot dog restaurant is anything but ordinary (don’t think boiled dogs and stale buns).
And….if you’re not a hot dog lover, there are other options too (including vegetarian ones).
You can either….
  • Meet us at the restaurant (click here for map) at 6:30PM, OR…
  • Meet at the Branch at 5:50 — we’ll catch the 6:11 bus (the Branch will pay bus fare)
To help Jonny be ready for us, please let us know if you’re planning on coming: chris@thebranchonline.org

Hands Across the City

There’s a massive movement happening this Saturday to renew and improve our city’s parks.  To join in the effort (everything from building a playground system to spreading mulch) check out: http://grandrapids.rethinkchurchevents.org

Ice Cream!

Mackinaw Island Fudge.  Superman.  Cookies and cream.  Need we say more?  Join us tonight (July 28th) at 7PM for a scoop, a conversation, a summer evening at its best.  Sundaes in the Heights is located on the corner of Alger and Eastern.

CREATE 2023!!!

Join us June 20-22, 2023 from 6:30-8:30 pm for 3 nights of creativity and fun! Thursday night will end with an Open House for parents and friends to see what the kids have been up to all week, as well as an opportunity to join in the creative fun!

CREATE is an art camp for kids entering K-8th grade. Each child chooses one age-appropriate class to attend for those 3 evenings. They spend their time creating, getting to know one another and having fun. We love coming alongside kids as they tap into their own unique creativity – even when they don’t even know that creativity exists! Scroll down for the class list and descriptions.


For the latest updates, be sure to like our facebook page (facebook.com/CreateGR).

Class Options for Grades K-1:

EXPLORING TREES: Calling all tree-huggers!! Exploring Trees is a class focused on creating art that resembles trees, uses elements from trees to make new things, and playfully recreates the birds who love trees! We will use yarn, sticks, and cardboard for this tree-loving fun.

NAILED IT! (Baking Challenge)


Class Options for Grades 2-4:

CREATE WITH COLOR: Make Art that celebrates your unique self. We’ll use markers, paint, colored paper and more to make crafts that show who you are and what you love.

HYDRO DIPPING: Join us as we take thrift store finds with unique character and  plain, boring items and bring them to life in a whole new way! We will transform them using spray paint and water to make unique pieces fit to your personal aesthetic. Come be part of the fun! As seen on TikTok.

YARN & BRACELETS: In this class we will learn how to make yarn with drop spindles and then make bracelets with our yarn.


Class Options for Grades 5-8:

LEARN TO SOLVE A RUBIX CUBE: We will teach you the four fundamental parts of cubing and we will supply you with your own cube to practice and learn on!

EMBROIDERY: Embroidery is a relaxing way to use fabric and thread to create images of just about anything. Join us for a class where you will learn basic embroidery stitches and create a simple embroidered piece of art. You can build upon these basic skills to create more detailed pieces with practice.

ZINE-MAKING: Zines are self-published, often handmade, magazines! Learn to create fun little booklets to express yourself and share your stories, poetry, art, or fandom!

PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY  If you love portrait photography, learn multiple ways to light a portrait image to create a dramatic effect. Gear needed: Digital camera with removable media (SD Card, Compact Flash, etc).  DSLR preferred.

Meal Night – July 9

Tonight, we’d love to have you join us for a relaxed meal and conversation — capped off with a summer campfire.  Come anytime after 6PM, stay as long as you’re able.  And while you’re welcome to bring something to pass, it is definitely not required. For a map, click here. We hope to see you there!.