A small but mighty staff helps to keep Maple connected. These people have answered the call to use their gifts to further Maple’s mission. You will find the staff here at Maple UMC to be friendly and ready to help. If you have ANY questions about Maple, contact us and we will point you in the right direction for your answer.
Reverend Linda D. Stoddard
Rev. Linda Stoddard is Pastor at Maple United Methodist Church. You’ll find that Rev. Linda is a warm and welcoming person with a compassionate heart and sharp mind.
Rev. Linda has more than 40 years of experience in the pastorate, having served three parishes prior to her part-time appointment to Maple in 2008. She was also part of the chaplain staff at Battle Creek Health System (now Bronson Healthcare) for almost 20 years. In addition to leading the congregation at Maple, she is currently a volunteer in the Honor Guard at the Veterans Cemetery in Fort Custer. Rev. Stoddard has written two books – one of poetry and one a collection of Lenten messages. She is a frequent public speaker throughout the Battle Creek area where she has lived since 1983. To read more of Rev. Linda’s thoughts, visit her daily Facebook post.
Roger Sweet, Accompanist
The accompanist for Maple United Methodist Church is Roger Sweet. He graduated from Charlevoix High School and Albion College with further graduate work at the University of Michigan and McCormack Seminary.
His church music career started at the First Presbyterian Church in Adrian, Michigan as organist and choir director. In 1964, he became the Minister of Music at First Presbyterian Church in Battle Creek, where he was organist and directed four children’s choirs and the adult choir. Under his guidance the church also formed a drama group and a sacred dance choir.
After 13 years at First Presbyterian, he retired from full time church music to direct the Battle Creek Community Chorus for 28 years. There, Roger transformed the annual Christmas concert of the Chorus, called ‘Make We Merry’. It grew from a small beginning at the KCC student center to the Federal Center Ballroom with 7 performances each December with audiences of well over 2,000 people.
Roger continued a part-time association with local churches, serving as organist/choir director at St. Mark Lutheran Church, Pennfield Presbyterian, and First Baptist. He also spent nearly 15 years teaching and playing organ in Ireland and England.
Roger grew up on a farm north of Rochester, MI and the out-of-doors is still his favorite place to be.
Laurie Lotter, Administrative Assistant
The Administrative Assistant at Maple United Methodist Church since 2014 is Laurie Lotter.
As a life-long Methodist born and raised in Dowling, Michigan, she spent the first part of married life following her husband, a U.S. Marine, around the United States. They finally settled back in Battle Creek over 20 years ago. She is a graduate of Davenport University and has been in office administration for over 30 years. In her spare time, Laurie enjoys scrapbooking and card making, quilting, reading and vacationing with her husband.
Jose Caballero, Custodian
Our custodian at Maple United Methodist Church is Jose Caballero. He has been a member since 2014 and has held the part-time position since 2005, while also employed full-time at Tenneco.
Jose and his wife, Stacy, have been married over 20 years and occasionally they visit his family in Veracruz, Mexico. In his spare time, Jose like to grill.