My name is Mike Desotell and I am a pastor in the United Methodist Church (UMC). I have been in ministry in one way or another for almost 20 years, spread over several different denominations. I spent the bulk of that time working with youth and young adults. Four years ago I was appointed to St. Matthew’s UMC in Ypsialnti, MI. After two years there I was appointed to another church, Cherry Hill UMC in Canton, MI. So, if you are good at math, you will have deduced that I am the pastor of two churches. It is a challenge at times but I love every minute of it.
My wife, Bri, is also a pastor. She serves at Ypsilanti First UMC (Ypsilanti). She is brilliant and funny and a great mom to our children. We have three children together. Our oldest, Michaela, has just started second grade. She loves learning, dancing, anything Harry Potter, and Bohemian Rhapsody. Our youngest is Braeleigh. She is not in school yet but she is looking forward to it. Recently she started taking ballet lessons. Both of these girls are as brilliant as their mother and, for better or worse, they have my sense of humor.
Our middle child’s name is Carl. Carl was born April 2, 2012, and passed away on November 8, 2013. When he was about 10 months old he became very ill. A trip to the emergency room revealed that he had Leukemia. He spent the next 9 months fighting that dragon with a smile on his face the entire time. Though he is no longer with us physically we try to honor him every day. We keep Minions (from Despicable Me) all over the house in all sorts of art. Avengers paraphernalia is also not hard to spot in our home. He loved both of those movies a whole lot.
Carl will always be a big part of our lives.
My mom, Grandma Cathy, also lives with us. She moved in when Carl was diagnosed and helped to keep everything running at home for Michaela while Bri and I took care of Carl. After Carl passed away she stayed with us feeling called to be with our family and help us learn how to live again. Grandma Cathy takes care of our childcare needs as well as running the house. Freeing Bri and I to be the best pastors we can be without having to figure out daycare.
In our house there is always room at the table. As such, we have two college students who live with us: Kenny and Iman. Kenny was once a youth group student of mine who moved to the area to attend college. Iman is from Gaza and is working on her Masters Degree in Women’s and Gender studies.
Add to that our wonderful friends who are in and out of our home all the time and you get a glimpse of how full our lives are. For that we are truly grateful.
Originally published at revmikeumc.wordpress.com on December 12, 2017.