I’ve been waiting to spotlight this guy for a very long time. There is no one who has served more faithfully for so many years and in so many ways than Mike Schafer. While thousands have benefited from his talents over the years, Mike is so far behind the scenes that outside of the staff, it would be hard to find a hundred people who know him.
Far as I can tell, it started back more than 16 years ago when Mike would arrive at the GCC (General Cinema Corporation) to set up portable lighting for the stage. You see, when they built the cinema, they didn’t think they needed stage lighting. That was until GCC (Granger Community Church) came along. Arriving hours before the service every weekend, Mike would assure that our visitors could actually see the activities on the platform, then stick around afterwards and help pack everything up week after week, year after year.
In 1996, when we branched out to a Saturday service in the public schools, there were a lot of technical “issues” that needed to be resolved. That expansion wouldn’t have happened efficiently with out Mike’s creative gifts and a whole lot of that special commodity he gives so freely-Time.
Mike is the unknown special projects agent as well. Say we need to blow something up (yes-at church, multiple times.) Mike has a license to do that. Need a 16 foot clock to spin for say-A Christmas Story-“Let’s call Mike”. Here’s an idea from a big dreamer from the arts department-“what if we build a giant star, light it up and have it cross the auditorium for an effect on cue”. Or, “how about we about if we fly a remote controlled helium balloon to deliver a note”-guess who got the call. Here’s one: Q) “Do we know anyone who has access to a Segway we can use on stage”? A) Mike owns one! “I’ve got an idea”-says an arts staffer-“what if we shoot lasers across the stage during the daVinci theft scene”? Need some heaters for the Baptism pools? “Let’s ask Mike”…this is starting to sound like a Life Cereal commercial.
What ever it is, fill in the blank but conclude it with “lets call Mike” and you’ll have the desired result. What a Rock Star. Mike had the foresight to petition for the catwalks in the auditorium. My, we could not even come close to doing what we do with out the capacity the catwalks added. Sure glad someone suggested that.
When we launched a remote campus in Elkhart, we needed technology at that cinema as well. Guess who took that on? When the decision to move the Elkhart Campus to the RV Hall of Fame was made, a revamp of the electrical system required the services of someone special-someone very special-my guess is we didn’t have to call-he just showed up and did it.
I’m just going to say it out loud-and give him the honor he has merited-you Mr. Schafer are now Sir Michael Schafer.
Rats-did I forget to mention that Mike and his wife Sharon’s hearts are about as big as our God he serves? Over the years, they’ve probably taken in fifteen kids from some difficult situations; mentored, loved and offered strength and a foundation to their lives changing their eternity forever. Details details.
Thanks Sir Mike