Let’s pray together

George Moss – Bio

George Moss is a Grand Rapids native that has been in church mostly all of his life. His Christian Hip-hop journey started in 1996 as a youth leader at his local church. In the year 2002, soon after graduating high school, George embarked on his first Christian rap tour, and toured regularly over the next three years.

In 2008 George released his first album. His second album was released in 2012. Although all of George has been doing music professionally for years, proclaiming the gospel to millions through his music, he says that he is not a musician. He calls himself a “musicianary”, as in a musician and a missionary. “I was not called to make fans, I was called to make disciples.”, says George. In 2014 he founded Oxen Apparel which he says is the heart of his ministry. Oxen Apparel is a clothing brand whose mission follows that of which Jesus gave to us, discipleship.

George got connected with Bridge Street Ministries early on, towards the start of the ministry. Regularly hosting a concert or lead worship, which he still does with them even today. George joined the BSM board, not because he had nothing else to do, but because he saw the passion that we have for discipleship, and saw that we wanted to go deeper into discipling the youth of our community.

George is passionate about biblical discipleship. Not just the surface level check-in once every now and then, but the deep, bible engaging, hard work discipleship. That passion ignited with a conviction to dedicate ten thousand hours into discipling his own children. George and his wife have 8 wonderful children. Through his non-profit organization, Oxen Team Network, he and his team will soon be hosting online discipleship seminars that will teach others how to effectively go out and make disciples.

Tom DeVries

A native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, Tom DeVries has been affiliated with Bridge Street Ministries for the better part of 10 years now. In 2018 Tom retired from pastoring, after 17 years at Middleville Christian Reformed church. He started pastoring in 1978 under BSM’s own Adam Vanderwell’s grandfather Howard Vanderwell in Cutlerville. During his 40 years in ministry, Tom and his wife moved all over the world, living and pastoring in places like Papa New Guinea and Ohio. Tom was also a high school teacher for 3 years, which he has also retired from.

Next time you come into our space at 1034 Bridge Street, take a look at the wood tables in the café, Tom built those out of reclaimed wood from the renovation in 2020. He also built a large bar type table for our new north side youth center. Some of his hobbies include being a craftsman, building and flying remote-control planes, and tuning pianos. Tom is passionate about his family, Bridge Street Ministries (being a mentor and friend to Ryan over the years), and helping ministries with finances and structure. When asked why he joined the board, Tom said, “I’m passionate about the ministry, and I want to support as best I can.”.

Courtney Porte

Courtney and her husband, Alex lived on Bridge Street and volunteered with Bridge Street Ministries for the first four years of their marriage. It was through their involvement with the BSM community that God ignited a compassion for individuals affected by poverty and a conviction to live in under privileged communities.

 

Today, Courtney, Alex, and their three children live and work on the west side of Chicago in the North Lawndale neighborhood. Courtney is from Zeeland, Michigan and graduated from Hope College with a Bachelors of Arts degree in Communications and Organizational Leadership.

 

Courtney has worked in a variety of nonprofit roles over the years. While in Grand Rapids, Courtney spent four years as a job coach for individuals with chronic mental illness. For two years, she was the Director of a church-founded community center in South Bend, IN and helped establish internal policies and a working Board of Directors. Currently she coordinates foundation and government grants for Breakthrough Urban Ministries, a community-based nonprofit on the west side of Chicago.

 

*Why did you choose to join the board?

“I am passionate about the mission and work of BSM. It was the people of Bridge Street Ministries and the neighbors on the west side that God used almost 10 years ago to spark a life-long direction for my husband and I towards pursuing relationships with people in poverty. I have great respect for not only the outcomes of the work done at Bridge Street Ministries, but the way in which the work is done is very Spirit-led. BSM and the bridge street neighborhood have given so much to me; I was excited to return to support the BSM mission as a Board member.”

George Moss

George Dean Washington Moss III (born September 23, 1982) is an American Christian hip hop musician and founder of clothing line Oxen Apparel. He was a member of Christian hip hop group, UN1ON. His first studio album, All or Nothing, was released by Dreamlight Entertainment, in 2008, with the singles, “Whoa!” and “Transparent”. The subsequent studio album, It’s Time, was released in 2012, from Dreamlight Entertainment. He released, a single, “Set It Off”, in 2015, featuring Steven Malcolm.

John D. Booy

John Booy graduated from Calvin College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in
Elementary Education, with majors in Psychology and Sociology, in 1974.
Following graduation, he began teaching for the Grand Rapids Public Schools at
Beckwith Elementary. He received his Master of Arts degree in Teaching from
Calvin College in 1981 and co-founded The Potter’s House School in the fall of
1981. Mr. Booy continued to teach at Beckwith Elementary while serving, for the
first few years, as the volunteer administrator for The Potter’s House. In 2002,
Mr. Booy left the GRPS to dedicate himself full time to The Potter's House,
working as administrator and superintendent.
In addition to his work at The Potter’s House, Mr. Booy continues to be active in
the community. He has been a resident of the Roosevelt Park neighborhood
since 1975, and he continues to be committed to the safety and betterment of the
neighborhood and school community. This commitment is evident in his service
on the boards of Grand River Preparatory High School; Bridge Street Ministries;
Christian Community Development Association; Roosevelt Park Ministries;
Imagine Foundation; the Housing Rehabilitation Board of Appeals for the City of
Grand Rapids; and the Hoboken Group, a network of leadership from urban
Christ-centered schools.
He is a frequent speaker on issues surrounding Christ-centered urban education
and diversity. His involvement and experience in these issues led him to deliver
testimony in front of the 1995 United States Senate Subcommittee on Children
and Families hearing on “Private Efforts to Reshape America.”
Mr. Booy is an active member of Mars Hill Bible Church. He is also the father of
two boys adopted from India and a proud grandfather to his grandson.

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