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New bishopric serves Paonia

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Photo by Kevin Nelson Paonia Ward bishopric (from left): Darren Harward, Bishop Roswell Checketts, Mike Miller.

A new bishopric is serving in the Paonia Ward of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Roswell Checketts of Somerset is the new bishop, with Darren Harward of Lazear and Mike Miller of Paonia as his counselors.

President Nicolas Taylor of the Montrose Colorado Stake presided at the proceedings on Feb. 24, held in the chapel at 511 Oak Avenue in Paonia. Other leaders and local members of the church were also present.

Bishop Checketts replaces Scott Morley who served as bishop of Paonia Ward since 2014.

A bishopric is as an unpaid volunteer ministry and serves 15 to 30 hours per week typically for a period of five years. They are primarily responsible for ensuring that the spiritual and temporal needs of the congregation are met.

"Kerry and I are so pleased to be back in the North Fork Valley," said Bishop Checketts. "We feel it a great honor to be called to serve the wonderful people in this area."

Paonia includes nearly 400 members of the church residing in Crawford, Hotchkiss, Lazear, Paonia and Somerset.

The ward is one of 11 congregations in the Montrose Colorado Stake. The stake includes approximately 4,000 members in the cities and surrounding areas of Cedaredge, Delta, Gunnison, Hotchkiss, Montrose, Paonia, Naturita, Norwood, Nucla, Olathe, Ouray, and Telluride.

The term "stake" is derived from Old Testament tent imagery in which the "tent," or church, is held up by supporting stakes (Isaiah 33:20; 54:2).

Church services in Paonia Ward are 10 a.m. to noon every Sunday. Visitors are welcome to attend Sabbath Day meetings and weekday activities.

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