Corry resident Paul Meerdink is grateful for his 96 years.

During that time, he met and married his wife, Vera (Legters) Meerdink, raised four daughters, experienced success in several areas of business and has served in almost every capacity of the First United Methodist Church of Corry — where he and his wife have been members for 73 years.

And Meerdink is quick to credit God with every opportunity and door that has been opened to him.

“I have failed him many, many times, but he has never failed me,” Meerdink said. “And I hope I don’t fail him on Sunday.”

In two days, Meerdink will deliver a personal message during the 8:15 and 11 a.m. services at the First United Methodist Church, 650 Worth St.

He will be speaking from the heart, and to keep from giving too much away, Meerdink would only say his message will focus on small moments.

“I’m convinced it’s not the big things in life that count, it’s the little things,” he said.

The Rev. John Zimmerman, pastor of the First United Methodist Church, is inviting all members of the community to Sunday’s worship services to hear Meerdink’s sermon.

“We both feel that he has one more message and that God is leading the way,” Zimmerman said.

Speaking to Sunday’s church audience is something Meerdink has been praying about since his 95th birthday.

That day happened to fall on a Sunday last year, and during the worship service, Zimmerman unexpectedly called Meerdink to the front of the sanctuary to say a few words.

See the Journal's Friday, September 4th edition for full story.

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