2014-06-14 / News

Fred Zobel Takes Over Ministry at Mackinac Island Little Stone Church

By Katherine Ranzenberger


Reverend Fred Zobel and his wife, Mary, are eager to be on Mackinac Island for the summer to lead Little Stone Church. This is their first summer on the Island. Rev. Zobel is replacing Dr. Vince Carroll, who served as pastor of Little Stone Church for nearly 10 years. Reverend Fred Zobel and his wife, Mary, are eager to be on Mackinac Island for the summer to lead Little Stone Church. This is their first summer on the Island. Rev. Zobel is replacing Dr. Vince Carroll, who served as pastor of Little Stone Church for nearly 10 years. With 30 years in the U.S. Navy and 10 years traveling the country in a recreational vehicle, the Reverend Fred Zobel and his wife, Mary, are ready to settle down and enjoy their time on Mackinac Island. He is the new pastor of Little Stone Church.

Rev. Zobel looks forward to working and living on the Island. He and former pastor, Reverend Vince Carroll, were acquainted from their days in the Navy.

The Zobels are living in the parsonage, and this is the first time they have lived in a house in 10 years. Instead, they have traveled the country, working with churches and visiting their three daughters in Wisconsin, Virginia, and Arizona.

“It’s a nice change,” Mrs. Zobel said of the house. “It’s such a lovely house. There’s more room than we know what to do with.”

The couple has lived in a number of communities, including Washington, D.C., California, Hawaii, and Japan. Rev. Zobel retired from the Navy in 1999 and then served a congregation in Pensacola, Florida, until 2005. The couple spent the next decade traveling, and during that time, visited Reverend Carroll and his wife Molly on Mackinac Island and fell in love with the area and the people.

“It’s been a great, warm, and generous welcome,” Rev. Zobel said of their arrival on the Island this spring. “We’re making it a point to walk around and meet people.”

The two consider themselves a “pastoral couple” rather than a pastor and his wife. Their aim is to talk with people they meet and spend time interacting in the community each day. Rev. Zobel said it was an important part of sharing ministry in the Navy.

“It’s important for the church and community,” he said. “It provides lively worship services. This church has a history of good services. It is really well organized. It has a lot of good committees and has good leadership.

I’m really free to do the pastoral stuff.”

“What a great thrill to be here,” he said. “It’s a neat place to live, a neat type of place to do ministry.”

Mrs. Zobel added, “This is another new adventure for us, [with] the flexibility to go out and see people.”

Little Stone Church holds services every Sunday from May to October at 10:30 a.m.

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