Category Archives: My Life

Superbowl Memories

I know where I was on Super Bowl Sunday 1988, I was at Lutheran Hospital, Wheat Ridge, Colorado in the Maternity Ward

What was I doing, resting up after delivering a healthy baby boy.

Brett Thomas Stipe had been born to Rev. and Mrs. Thomas R. Stipe and we were enjoying “Superbowl Fever” in the maternity ward as our beloved Denver Broncos took on the Washington Redskins.

We had faithfully served as chaplain and wife for the 1987 Bronco season and were overjoyed as our beloved Denver Broncos entered their second Superbowl bid.  We had been to the Superbowl the year before and endured the loss to the New York Giants at the Rose Bowl and we had high hopes that it would all end differently in 1988.

Unfortunately, we were not to be rewarded–by half-time our hopes were diminishing and by the fourth quarter–all fans had evacuated my hospital room.  Alas Superbowl 22 was not to be Elway’s day.

But on the other hand–Tom and I had reason to rejoice–our one and only son–had been born, what an incredible blessing God had bestowed upon us!

Thomas is today a photojournalism and videography major at Metro State University in Denver, he plays bass and is gifted like his father with a keen ability to articulate before audiences.  He makes us proud every day of his life.   Happy 24th Birthday Thomas!

I love you, Mom

Meanwhile…Memories of Superbowl 1988 from

Washington Redskins vs. Denver Broncos

Date: January 31, 1988

Host City: San Diego, CA Stadium: Jack Murphy Stadium

National Anthem: Herb Alpert

Halftime Entertainment: Chubby Checker and The Rockettes

Final Score: Washington-42 Denver-10

Denver’s second consecutive trip to the Super Bowl would be marred with similar results. Ultimately, they would chalk up another L in the Super Bowl column, in a game they came into as the favorite. John Elway and the Broncos jumped out to an early 10-0 1st quarter lead, yet were countered in the 2nd quarter in a record setting way. Doug Williams would rewrite the history books beginning the in the second quarter. Beyond the social avenue he opened being the first African American QB to play in a Super Bowl, he would become the first QB to throw for 4 TDs in a single quarter as well as a half. The Redskins defense was electrified by the offensive production, and were able to contain Elway for the final 3 quarters. Williams would go on to win the MVP award, throwing for a total of 340 yards and 4 TDs.

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Turn your kid’s used clothes & gear into extra $$$ and take the opportunity to help kids with Down Syndrome

Avery Park Children’s Consignment Event
Avery Park Children’s Consignment Sale is a 3-day event that takes place twice a year in the Spring and Fall.

We partner with local families that want to sell their children’s brand name high-quality items for a better return than a             garage sale or consignment shop. All of our items are in “excellent” condition, yet sell at a great discount, making it a shopping opportunity not to miss.

An extra incentive to participate in this sale is that a percentage of every purchase goes to The Research Center for Down Syndrome at Stanford University School of Medicine.

In 2007, the Stipe family was gifted with the addition to our family of our beautiful Avery Grace. She is a wonderful, talented and perceptive four year old girl who just happens to have Down Syndrome. This sale is named for Avery and is meant to be a vehicle for mom’s to recycle their near new children’s clothes and gear with the hope of making extra cash in these economically strapped times. Avery’s parents face extra financial responsibility because of Avery’s disability and know that many families face similar kinds of challenges; as a result Jennifer Stipe Mouttet decided in 2011 to spear head these annual sales as a source of relief to many young families.

The first of these sales will be held the weekend of September 16, 17 & 18 at Crossroads Church of Denver, in the Learning Center Gym.

Why Should I Consign?
If you are a mom, grandparent or caregiver you know how much money you spend on your children. They grow out of clothing, toys and gear so quickly, just to find it cluttering up your home. Have you ever tried selling your kid’s items at a garage sale only to “give away” your child’s seldom-worn clothes? Why not go through all of the things that your children no longer need, prepare them, enter and tag them using our automated website, drop them off, and let us do the rest.

As a consignor, you will:
~Earn 70% of your sales. If you refer 5 new consigners, earn 75%
~Pay a one time consigner fee of $10
~Shop before the public at our pre-sale event
~Relax at home while we do all the work
~Receive a check 7-10 days after the sale ends

Why Should I Volunteer?
Volunteers who work one 3 hour shift will:
Earn 70% of their total sales.
Shop before the public at the volunteer pre-sale Thurs. from 7:30pm – 9:00pm

Volunteers who work two 3 hour shifts will:
Earn 75% of their total sales.
Be the FIRST to shop before the public at the volunteer exclusive pre-sale Weds. Sept . 14th from 5:00pm – 7:00pm (pass is for one person + spouse or grandparent)

Sellers love our events because they can sell their children’s items without the hassle of having a garage sale or using Craigslist. Shoppers love our events because they get one-stop shopping for all of their children’s needs. Volunteers love our events because they get to shop first!

For more information on this event go to

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Where Were You in the Seventies??? …My Jesus People Memories and Why Jesus People Reunions Rock On!

Tom and Maryellen Stipe during the Jesus Movement

When most people search back through the annals of their memories and remember the life changing passages in their lives they often think back to high school or college.

They remember the schools they attended, the relationships they had there, and the music that played in the background.

But when I think back on my life molding times—I am different.

I’m different because it was not the hallowed halls of an educational institution that profoundly shaped me. I am not without an educational alma-mater but the influence that sent me on my life course did not come from there.

What profoundly formed my life was a spiritual time—a special period of “God history.” And the spiritual environment, the spiritual experiences and the relationships that I tasted then are the elements that make up the indelible imprints of my young adulthood.

I consider myself fortunate to be one of “thousands” of so-called “Jesus freaks”– individuals whose teens and twenties were dominated by no less than Jesus himself. We are an unusual bunch, who when thinking of “where were you in the seventies?” don’t think of a school or a stadium, or even a war, but instead think of three words—The Jesus Movement.

The Jesus Movement was a culture unto itself—a counter-culture expression contrasting a youthful society gone mad. By the grace of God, at a time when evil raised up a banner extolling free sex, drugs and eastern mysticism, the Almighty raised up a standard of His own. To a generation looking for love in all the wrong places God lifted up his Son and His Divine love and thousands including me flocked to Him.

There was never a time before or has there ever been a time since when God moved so dramatically on young people. It was “revival” –and a spiritual Wind moved across a generation whisking tens of thousands into its influence. My life was dramatically changed by that Wind and my choice for a mate, my calling, and my lifestyle were cast in its wake.  I chose to follow Jesus and I have never looked back.

As a result, the story of my youth will never be encapsulated in a yearbook. Instead, the saga of my young years is tied to a dynamic people—the Jesus People—and their culture.

Yes, we had our own culture. We had our own brand of religion, with its own liturgy and a new spiritual jargon. We had our own dress; our own music and we even had our own folk heroes.

It was the music, which was a new type of sacred song that was the most defining element of our “spiritual culture.” And the music was pioneered by an elite group of young minstrels. The band that was at the epicenter of the musical awakening taking place was a group of redeemed “rockers” called Love Song.

The young guys who made up Love Song were unlikely “Levites.” They were not the beneficiaries of a long religious heritage, like the worship leaders of old; instead God drafted them off the street.  They came out of the “hippie” culture they were called to juxtaposition and God gave them inspired songs for the spiritual climate he was creating. They became the “pied pipers” of the movement, calling young participants to follow The Master.

Tom Stipe preaching in "Tent" at Calvary Chapel during the Jesus Movement

As I said, we also had our own folk heroes, these were teens that God raised up from amongst us to take the forefront leading the new sacred gatherings we were initiating. Jesus music concerts were one of the staples of the spiritual life of the Jesus People and they were almost always punctuated by the messages of young evangelists.  I married one of these evangelists/folk heroes and nearly forty years later we are still making disciples.

I never went to one of my high school or college reunions, but through the years I have attended several “Jesus People Reunions.”  These events are extremely popular because they help true “Jesus People” to remember the happenings that for most of us eclipsed everything else in our young lives. We have a chance at these gatherings to sing the old songs, to raise our hands in the same holy ways and to consider once again the spiritual truths that have always been so important.

These reunions, while misunderstood by many, are immensely clear in their importance to those who actually lived through the Jesus Movement. They are meaningful and bring to our remembrance the sacred times that carved out our personalities and determined our futures. At these events we have an opportunity to savor the spiritual essence of a time gone by while we worship the Savior who’s always the same and who we will always love!

On September 15th at 6:30, Crossroads Church of Denver will host the Love Song Reunion Tour with Chuck Smith; also on hand will be hundreds of Jesus People who actually lived through that incredible time in history. I will be there with my husband Tom Stipe. Tom and I moved to Denver in 1976 to plant a Jesus Movement type church in Colorado. We were on staff with Chuck Smith from 1970 until 1976 and during that time Tom was the staff evangelist in charge of the Saturday Night Maranatha Concerts.

We invite you to come and join us for what we are sure will be a life-changing concert with Love Song and Chuck Smith. If you are a Christian who dates back to the Jesus Movement days please come ready to be part of a heart warming reunion and if you are one who wants to just come and check out what you have heard about this incredible band please feel welcomed. I am sure no one will go away without experiencing a blessing and a dose of God’s love. God’s love in abundance was one of the hallmarks of the Jesus Movement and it’s the same yesterday, today and forever!

For a taste of the time, I’ve included the following excerpt from an article from a local newspaper of the period. This posting is a part of just one of the many articles that I have collected that reported on the spiritual happenings in the tent that Calvary Chapel called home during the Jesus Movement. This particular piece is one of my favorites because it captures the preaching of my husband Tom Stipe.

Sunday March 31, 1974 Long Beach Independent, Press-Telegram (from article “Jesus on Campus”)

Tom Stipe, the folk hero of Calvary Chapel comes on after the large, youthful congregation has warmed up with an hour of moving ballads interspersed with deep-bass, hand-clapping Jesus rock from the musicians of Love Song, one of the chapel’s nationally known rock groups. He’s wearing faded jeans, a blue work shirt and tousled, shoulder length hair. Stipe is a showman, but he mocks his own showmanship, dropping into a Southern preacher drawl that delights the teenagers.

“Now when ah got saved, ah wasn’t falling into the depths,” he drawls. “Ah was into the whole party thing in pursuit of fun—you know the kinda guy who is driving around at three in the morning to see it anybody is still awake…” Laughter rocks the light-flooded chapel.  It’s Saturday night and it’s the biggest Jesus show around. For local high school and college students, it’s the Southland’s religious mecca.  They come driving down to South Santa Ana from as far as the San Fernando Valley and San Diego.

“Now, everybody thinks they can get more from Pier One in Newport Beach than from Jesus Christ,” Stipe preaches. “They think they can get more action on Long Beach Boulevard or Pacific Coast Highway than from the Lord…Before I got saved I always thought that if you became a Christian, you’d become like a stone, You know,” he says, dropping into a deep, moronic voice. “duh I am a Christian.” And people would just roll you around. (Roars of laughter). Well let me tell you what it’s really like…”


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Memorial Day is for Remembering

Memorial Day is for remembering…and every year as our nation observes this day, I pause and remember the expensive price that was paid for our freedom.

And like so many others I reflect on the very personal price that it cost my family.

I was first made aware, as a small child, of the reality that liberty does not come cheap.  When I was born my family was still acutely feeling the effects of losing one of their own on a field of battle.  As a  child I vividly remember my grandmother’s grief over the loss of her son.

My Uncle Ted was an MIA in the Korean War and was not found for 17 long months.

He was finally located on a lonely Korean beach where he had been hastily interred. His family was told that my Uncle Ted was killed during a beach assault while rushing off a troop carrier. He was 20 years old.

The Korean War is often called “The Forgotten War” but it will never be forgotten by my family.

Gratefully, it only lasted three years, June 25, 1950 – July 27, 1953, but for those who lost loved ones there, it was three years too long!

What you may not realize is that The United States Armed Forces suffered 33,665 Americans killed in action in “the forgotten war” in Korea.

As I have researched my uncle’s military history and the record of his death on the Korean War Project Website, I have found that he died in the deadliest battle of that entire war.

The Battle of the Pusan Perimeter which lasted from August 4, 1950-September 16, 1950, was won at the price of 3,603 American lives. It was very early in the war but this battle would prove to be the most costly in terms of casualties and my Uncle was one of those killed in action.

My father and my other uncle, Joe, also served in the Korean war.

And in fact, I was born while my father was away serving in the U.S. Navy many thousand of miles away from home.

I honor the fighting men of our nation who gave their last full measure of devotion for our freedom. I also honor those who gave valuable years of their young lives in service to our country!

THANK YOU for your sacrifices!



9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, Army

Hostile, Died (KIA)
Date Of Loss: September 1, 1950
Location of Loss: YONGSAN, SOUTH KOREA

Born: August 21, 1930

Comments: Private First Class Groeneveld was a member of the 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division. He was Killed in Action while fighting the enemy in South Korea on September 1, 1950.

Korean War Project Key No: 11547

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Honoring Dad on Father’s Day

Today is a day for honoring fathers.  I have a wonderful Christian father.

And a wonderful Christian husband who is the father of my children.

 I am doubly blessed!

 My husband is not perfect but in building a family and raising our children he has always sought the wisdom and power of the Lord and I couldn’t have asked for more.

 Many years ago he wrote this stanza in a song called “Family Ties” and it sums up his humility and dependence on Jesus.   

I’m not good at walk’in on the water,

Or turning water into wine,

But I’ll keep a family fed,

With the help of the one Who did.

Two hearts make a family tie.

I am grateful that my husband knows the True Source of life and all wisdom and I honor him today for his solid uncompromising commitment to our Savior.   Tom’s focus on following Jesus and putting Him first has been a wonderful example and made him an awesome father for over thirty-five years.  Thank you, honey for a job well done!

The Bible makes it clear that we should honor our fathers.  Commandment number five of the Ten Commandments is: “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you. Ex 20:12 (NIV).

Today we celebrate a national holiday for dads, but it has not always been that way, the history of a day set aside to honor fathers is only about a century old.

 The History of Father’s Day

 The first known celebration of Father’s Day was on July 5, 1908 in Fairmont, West Virginia, where it was commemorated at William Memorial Methodist Episcopal Church South – now known as Central United Methodist Church. Grace Golden Clayton is believed to have suggested it to her pastor after a deadly explosion in nearby Monongah in December, killing 361 men.

 It was also during a sermon in 1909 that Sonora Smart Dodd became inspired by Mother’s Day. After the death of her mother, Sonora and her siblings were raised by their father William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran. Sonora wanted to show how thankful she was to her father and, because William was born in June, she worked to have the first Father’s Day celebrated on June 19, 1910.

In 1924, President Coolidge recommended that Father’s Day become a national holiday.

President Johnson designated the third Sunday of June to be Father’s Day in 1966.

It was not until 1972 that President Nixon instituted Father’s Day as a national observance.

Info for this section was taken from– for more on the history of Father’s Day and inspiring storys of contemporary dads follow this link:

Happy Father’s Day

Feel free to comment and share why you honor your Dad!

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