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Jeff Hodge holds many titles in the community,

Jeff Hodge holds many titles in the community

Jeff Hodge holds many titles in the community. Editor’s Note: Tanett Hodge is a staff writer at J-Ad Graphics. She has been filling in for Elaine Gilbert, who took the holiday off, and when it was suggested that we feature her husband, Jeff Hodge, the pastor of the Nashville Church of the Nazarene, Tanett wrote the following:

Jeff Hodge holds many titles in the community, but at the center of them all is a deep desire to foster relationships and care for people. Since October 2013, he has been the pastor of the Nashville Church of the Nazarene, where he teaches the people of his church how to love God and equips them to love the people around them. “I don’t preach theology; I live the way Jesus would want me to in my everyday life, and treat people the way He would treat them,” Hodge said.

Hodge also is one of two chaplains who serve the Barry County Sheriff’s Office. He strives to be available to the men and women of the sheriff’s and corrections offices whenever they need him, and he serves on the sheriff’s volunteer posse. This year, Hodge joined the Maple Valley School bus drivers. When asked why he would want to do such a thing, Hodge replied, “What better way to get to know the kids and families in my community?” He is building connections and rapport with the students, parents and staff by interacting with them daily.

He works to bring light and hope to the community he lives in, in as many ways as he can. This is why he has been chosen as the Banner’s Bright Light this week. Favorite movie: “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.” Best advice ever received: Work hard, never give up, be accountable, own your mistakes and find solutions instead of making excuses. First job: Grocery bagger at Kroger when I was 18. Favorite TV program: “SEAL Team” Person I most admire: My brother, Ralph “Tres” Hodge, who was also my college basketball coach. Nothing ever shook him. He was a constant example of persistence. Book I’d recommend: “Redeeming Love” by Francine Rivers ... my wife made me read it and it was amazing. Favorite teacher (name, school, town, grade): Mrs. Jackson, my fifth- and sixthgrade English teacher in Mt. Zion, Ill. She was very caring and went the extra mile to get me the help I needed in Language Arts class. Person I’d most like to meet (alive or dead): Jesus, because he could answer all of

life’s questions. If I could have any superpower, it would be: To be made of steel so nothing can keep me down, or being able to be in multiple places at one time. Favorite vacation destination: Seattle, Wash., or anywhere there are mountains. Something about me most people don’t know: I lost my father at age 14. It made me grow up very quickly. Greatest song ever written: “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen. What I’d tell a high school graduate: See above answer for best advice ever received. Best gift I ever received: My wife. Favorite dinner: Sushi and anything with shrimp. My biggest challenge: Wanting to help so many people, but not being able to. If only I could ... go to Israel to see the culture and that I’ve studied so much come alive. What I want for the New Year: Time to spend with my family and a new car for my wife. The greatest president: George Washington. Favorite websites: youTube and blueletterbible.org. Greatest thing about living in Barry County: The lakes. and the people are so down-to-earth and genuine and willing to care for each other.

Each week, the Banner profiles a person who makes the community shine. Do you know someone who should be featured because of volunteer work, fun-loving personality, for the stories he or she has to tell or any other reason? Send information to Newsroom, Hastings Banner, 1351 N. M-43 Highway, Hastings, MI 490

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