Rita Sue (Ranager) Carpenter went to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Monday, March 27, 2023, while surrounded by her loving family. Sue was born in the Central Community of George County, MS, on June 19, 1941, to the late Theodore R. and Mildred Cochran Ranager.

Sue was a lifelong and devoted member of East Moss Point Baptist Church, where she was actively involved in many areas of the church’s ministry. As youth leaders together, Larry and Sue mentored several generations of young people, pointing them to Christ and filling their lives with love and laughter. Sue served in Gideons International Auxiliary on both the local and state levels. She served in Public Health working for the MS State Department of Health for 29 years. Sue will be remembered for her love of Christ, her quest for JOY, her servant’s heart, her love for her family and friends, and for her wonderful sense of humor and adventure.

Left to cherish her memory are her loving husband of 61 years, Larry Carpenter; children, Deanna Wetterer, Dwayne (Angela) Carpenter, David Carpenter, and Donna Sue Medina; grandchildren, Jennifer (Jordon) Zirlott, Dana (Brittany) Wetterer, Miriah (Justin) Phares, and Savannah (Matthew) Towles; great-grandchildren, Andrew, John Luke, Rowan and Ella Claire Zirlott, Bly, Magnolia “Nola” and Cypress Phares, and Elizabeth Rose “Ellie” Wetterer; and brothers, Joe Henry Ranager and Julian (Evelyn) Ranager; along with a host of other relatives and friends.

Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 30, 2023, at Heritage Funeral Home in Escatawpa, MS. The funeral service will be held on Friday, March 31, 2023, at 3:00 pm with Bro. Richard Crews officiating. The family will accept friends from 2:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. prior to the service. Interment will be held at Serene Memorial Gardens with her grandsons, Dana Wetterer, Jordon Zirlott, Justin Phares, and Matthew Towles, and family friends, Pat Fell and Richard Canfield, serving as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers will be her great-grandsons, Andrew, John Luke, and Rowan Zirlott.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Sue’s memory to Gideon International-Moss Point Camp, P.O. Box 1027, Escatawpa, MS, 39552-1027.

“Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her…Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” Proverbs 31:28 & 30

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WEDNESDAY, 3/29/23

Bill Kendrick is scheduled to have surgery at some point today.  I am thinking probably around noon but my guess could be wrong.  Regardless, pray for Bill.  Pray the surgery will go well.

Here are the arrangements for Deanna Wetterer’s mother, Sue Carpenter.  Visitation with family tomorrow, 3/30, from 5:00PM until 7:00PM and then from 2:00PM until 3:00PM on Friday, 3/31.  The celebration of life service will take place on Friday, 3/31, beginning at 3:00PM.  Visitation and service from Heritage Funeral Home on Highway 63 in Moss Point, MS.  Pray for the Carpenter family.

Spoke to Nanette this morning.  Her father, Terrel Brooks, remains in CCU as they did not get a room ready for him yesterday.  He is doing ok but the tubes are aggravating him.  They will remove those today.  If no room becomes available, Terrel will be discharged tomorrow.  Keep praying for Terrel & Marie.

Elizabeth Sessions’ surgery yesterday was a success.  Pray for her now as she goes through the recovery process.

I do not have an up to date update on Clinton Stringfellow but do ask that you join me in continuing to pray for him.

Obviously, Myrtle Bowden continues to need our prayer support.  Pray for Sammy and the family too.

Keep praying for Michelle Fore’s mother.  I am thinking she may go back to her home within the next day or so.  She has been staying at Lee & Michelle’s.  Pray for this situation.

Continue to pray for Buddy Brewer, Gayla Dyess and Robert Baria in their respective situations.

One of Ann Clark’s sisters-in-law, Midge Broome, passed from this life.  The service takes place tomorrow, 3/30, in Richton, MS.  Pray for Midge’s family.

Regular schedule on our campus this morning and evening.

I received a card from Jerry & Gloria Whitmore with great words of prayer support and encouragement.  Thank you Jerry & Gloria for your kindness to me.

Stacy & Gayla, thank you for the eggs!  Nice gift!

John Milton Ladnier replanted my garden this past Saturday afternoon.  What a great friend!  Did the twins help?  Are you serious!  Hiring them was like losing four good men!  Just saying!

I pray that you will have a great Wednesday with Jesus.




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TUESDAY, 3/28/23

This entry is intentionally late as I wanted to visit Myrtle Bowden before posting.  Lisa and I visited with Sammy & Myrtle this morning.  Myrtle is weak but very, very determined to keep fighting this malignancy and a lady of tremendous faith!  Keep praying for Myrtle and family.

Elizabeth Sessions is scheduled to have surgery this afternoon.  Pray that all goes well.

Clinton Stringfellow had a successful heart ablation yesterday.  If all goes as planned, he will be discharged from the hospital today.  Pray for Clinton!

Terrel Brooks remains in CCU but “could” be moved into a regular room at some point today.  I suspect they may keep him in the hospital a tad longer this go around.  Terrel looks good and says he feels good.  Keep praying!

Michelle Fore’s mother is presently staying with Lee & Michelle.  The plan is for her to home where someone will be with us 24/7. Pray for Michelle’s mother and the family as they walk through this difficult time.

Deanna Wetterer’s mother, Sue Carpenter, entered Heaven late yesterday afternoon.  The family will make the arrangements later today.  Pray for Larry and family during this time.  Sue fought long and hard.  She is now at rest.

Bill Kendrick is facing surgery soon.  Not sure of the specifics at this point but it is coming.  Pray for Bill!

How about some great news?  Angie Bentley got an “all clear” from the doctor yesterday after they reviewed her PET scan.  Said he would see her in a year for her annual check-up.  Praise the Lord!  Angie is giving God the glory!

Regular schedule on our campus tomorrow morning and evening.

They are voting on our campus today.  Not sure what it is about but I did see the word “fire” being used.  Just hope it is not me they are voting to fire!  Just saying.

Folks in the south end of the state need to drive safe and stay dry today.

Missionary Mark Mast is in the upper part of Canada this week doing ministry.  Pray for him!

Miss Maxine, here are my average blood pressure numbers from Sunday, 3/19, through Saturday, 3/25: 127/75 with a resting heart rate of 57.  At this point this week, those numbers are even better.  Thank you for your concern and prayers.  The Lord is blessing and I am doing well.  JZ just wants to build a house and I just want to drive!  Just saying!

I pray that you will have a great rest of your Tuesday with Jesus.

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MONDAY, 3/27/23

Clinton Stringfellow is scheduled to have a heart ablation today.  Pray that all will go well and that his heart will stay in rhythm.  Clinton is a fine gentleman and a great member of the Friendship family.

Miss Vinnie Brewer’s son, Buddy, spent a couple of days in the hospital last week in order to receive some medication via iv.  He is at home now taking his medicine orally but is not doing the best.  Pray for Buddy.

Terrel Brooks had a tube inserted into his chest last night.  They drained three liters of fluid from his lungs/heart area.  He is now in CCU and Nanette tells me that he looks much better than he did Saturday night.  Keep praying for Terrel & Marie.  This family understands the power of prayer!

Myrtle Bowden remains at home and continues to need our prayer support.  Myrtle has had some tough days recently.  Please keep praying!

Michelle Fore’s mother has been placed on hospice care.  She is obviously not doing well.  Pray for her along with Michelle & Lee as they help provide care for her.

Angie Bentley is supposed to get the results from her PET scan today.  Join me in praying for a good report!

Deanna Wetterer’s mother, Sue Carpenter, is very low physically in her battle with cancer.  Pray for Sue, Larry and the family.

Chuck Rockwell did not have a heart cath last week.  It has been rescheduled but I do not remember the date.  Pray.

Gayla Dyess and Robert Baria both have new dates scheduled for their respective procedures.  At the moment, I do not remember those dates but do ask you to pray for them.

Dale Ellerman is scheduled to have surgery this Friday in Birmingham.  However, that could be postponed.  Hopefully, Dale will find out today.

Pray for the folks in Mississippi and Alabama who were affected by the tornadoes this past Friday night.  Especially pray for those who lost loved ones.

Wow, we had a really good day in our services yesterday.  Brad always does a nice job with leading our music.  The trio of Dede, Ian & Sienna did an excellent job last night.  Leslee did her usual great job in the morning service.  The preaching may not be much but the music is spot on!

Work day on our campus this Saturday, April 1, beginning at 8:00AM.  Yard work, garden work and soccer.  Come join us!

Miss Maxine, I will get to your request this week – I promise!  All is well!

I pray that you will have a great Monday with Jesus.


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It is now 6:30AM.  Scott Fontenot called with an update.  Terrel has pneumonia which is obviously a big part of the fluid build up around his heart.  They have put Terrel on a ventilator in order to help with his breathing and to help him from being so restless.  He also has a UTI which has caused him to be very confused.  Keep praying, please.

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It is 2:30AM and I just spoke to Marie Brooks via the phone.  Terrel was admitted to the hospital last night and has been placed in ICU.  Marie has been told that his situation is “touch and go” due to a build up of fluid around his heart and other issues.  The family will be able to see Terrel around 5:00AM.  Please join me in praying for Terrel, Marie and family.  Pray for a miracle!

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FRIDAY, 3/24/23

Angie Bentley will have her PET scan this afternoon.  Continue to pray for a good result.

No significant change for any of the other folks for whom we have been praying.  Just keep praying!

The Friendship family will host a service at the Mission of Hope tonight beginning at 7:00PM.  Charles Grant will be bringing the Word and his family will be leading the musical worship.  Everyone invited to attend.

Our Spring 2023 soccer season begins in the morning.  Pray for this ministry as the season begins tomorrow and will end in May.  Pray that it will ultimately be all about Jesus.

I have been blessed to spend time on Tuesday and yesterday with my Mama.  Eddie & Sue brought Mama to Orange Beach for the week so we met them in Mobile Tuesday afternoon and then in Wilmer yesterday afternoon.  One of my goals in 2023 is to see Mama in person at least once each month.  January was easy and February was possible because of her birthday gathering.  March was going to be a challenge so Eddie & Sue decided to help out by bringing Mama here instead of Lisa and me having to drive to Hartselle.  I am very grateful!  Yes, April, May, June & July will be a bit challenging too because of the restrictions on my driving.  However, Lisa and I will work something out during those months and then I will be able to, if necessary, do solo trips up and back in the same day for the remaining five months.  God is faithful.

It has been nice to have my first cousin, Tony, here since Wednesday.  He is the cousin I am closest to on that side of my maternal family.  He will head North tomorrow.  Pray for traveling mercies for him.

I pray that you will have a great Friday with Jesus.

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THURSDAY, 3/23/23

The Lord blessed us with a really good day in our services yesterday.  I am very thankful to Him for these blessings!  We serve an awesome God!

Angie Bentley goes for a PET scan tomorrow afternoon.  Join me in praying for good results.  Richard and Angie are such good members of the Friendship family.

Clinton Stringfellow remains scheduled for a heart ablation on Monday, 3/27.  Keep praying for Clinton.

Myrtle Bowden is scheduled to see the doctor on Monday, 3/27.  She continues to have much pain and needs our continued prayer support.

Liz Whalen saw her doctor yesterday and is now scheduled to have surgery on Tuesday, 4/11.  Keep praying for Liz.

Dale Ellerman is scheduled to have surgery in Birmingham on Friday, 3/31.  Continue to pray for Dale.

Gayla Dyess is waiting for confirmation of her new date for surgery.

Robert Baria is waiting for confirmation of his new date for the nerve procedure on his shoulder.

Michelle Fore continues to recover from her recent surgery.  Michelle’s mother received a less than desirable report from the doctor recently.  Pray for Michelle and her mother.

Pastor Johnny Maxwell is doing better physically.  Keep praying for him, please.

Bro. Abel will travel to Houston, TX for a dental appointment this Monday, 3/27.  Yes, Houston.  Did you say dental appointment?  I did.

The opening ceremony for our soccer leagues takes place tonight, 3/23, on the soccer complex.  League games begin this Saturday, 3/25.  Pray for this ministry.

Our Easter 2023 weekend looks like this – our buses will run on Saturday, April 8, and we will have classes/service for our children fifth graders and below.  Classes will begin at 9:00AM and the morning will conclude with a giant egg hunt at 10:30AM.  Children must attend classes and services in order to take part in the egg hunt.

Also, there will be a class for our youth and adults on that day.  It will begin at 9:00AM in the auditorium and will be taught by Bro. Jerry Hovel.

Easter Sunday will see us have two worship services – 8:00AM and 10:00AM.  There will be drinks and light refreshments served during the hour in between these services.  Details TBA.

I pray that you will have a great Thursday with Jesus.


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WEDNESDAY, 3/22/23

Let’s begin with really good news.  Terrell Brooks was discharged from the hospital yesterday.  An eighty-six year old man has quadruple heart by-pass surgery and is discharged from the hospital five days later.  Praise the Lord!  Pray for Terrell as he continues to recover!

Joey Switzer’s surgery yesterday morning went well.  He had a tear in his knee and a good bit of stuff that needed to be cleaned out.  Pray for Joey to “behave” during this recovery time!

Gayla Dyess was scheduled to have surgery today but that has been postponed due to an upper respiratory issue.  Keep praying for Gayla.

Robert Baria as supposed to have a nerve procedure done on his shoulder this morning but that has been postponed too.  Robert is in a lot of pain.  Pray for Robert!

Angie Bentley is scheduled to have a PET scan this Friday, 3/24.  Pray that she will get a great report.  She is faithfully trusting the Lord!

Keep praying for Myrtle Bowden.  She is home and is battling through some tough days.

Also, keep praying for Clinton Stringfellow as he awaits his next heart procedure.

Heather Baria’s mother is having some serious health issues.  Pray for her and the family.

Pastor Johnny Maxwell of Priceville, Alabama was taken to the hospital yesterday following some health issues.  He was discharged last night but needs our prayers.  Pastor Johnny is a living miracle and a great friend.  Pray for Pastor Johnny and his wife, Sharon.

Speaking of friends, please continue to pray for Kristie Potts in Michigan as she battles a malignancy.  She and her husband, John, are great folks!

A huge “thank you” to James Clark of Brightspeed for getting our internet and phone service repaired yesterday afternoon.  It is a temporary fix but at least we have service.  Thank you, James!

Regular schedule on our campus today – morning and evening.

I pray that you will have a great Wednesday with Jesus.


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TUESDAY, 3/21/23

Dale Ellerman will be going for his pre-op stuff today.  Pray for Dale as he drives to and from Birmingham.

Joey Switzer will be having knee repair surgery this morning.  Most likely, he is facing knee replacement surgery some years down the road but this procedure will buy him some time.  Pray for all to go well.

Gayla Dyess will be having surgery tomorrow, 3/22.  Pray for a successful surgery.

Robert Baria will be having a nerve procedure done in the morning.  If this does not work, he will be facing shoulder surgery in the very near future.  Pray for this procedure to work.

Terrell Brooks continues to do well.  The expectation is that he will be discharged from the hospital tomorrow.  Praise the Lord!  Keep praying for Terrell.

Continue to pray for Clinton Stringfellow and Myrtle Bowden.

Regular schedule on our campus tomorrow – morning and evening.

We will have a special Easter Saturday, 4/8, with our buses running their routes, classes for our children up to the fifth grade followed by preschool church and children’s church.  A huge egg hunt will end the day.

Our Easter schedule will see us have two worship services – 8:00AM & 10:00AM.

I pray you will have a great Tuesday with Jesus.

P.S. – Yesterday’s entry was late.  Today’s is way early as I am in the office using the internet.  Our internet and phone service at the house is down for the count.

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