william - domestic missionary - photographer - poet
 

william wrote his first poem in 1967, while still in high school. It was written in German, as best he could, because that was one of his favorite classes. It was about love. Following only a handful of writings, it was not until 1973, a year after graduating from Michigan State University, that he wrote about God. He did not have a religious upbringing, and it would be another dozen years before he would go looking for God in earnest. 

 

In 1985, after a metaphysical experience hospitalized him, the poetry floodgates opened, and continued for most of the next decade. In 1983 (below left photo) william was still taking pictures with a small Kodak Instamatic camera. But, by 1990 (below right photo), he had become fairly proficient with a Canon 35mm camera he had purchased 4 years prior in 1986 after his 17 year marriage ended in divorce. Photography was now a central theme in his life. But he decided it was his desire for it "to remain a small business, and a big pleasure, rather than becoming a big business, and a small pleasure." So, his career focus remained on operating his State Farm Insurance office, begun in 1975. 

 

The search he started in 1985, culminated in 1988 on August 28th when he was baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, in a northern Michigan river by Pastor Richard Kennedy, a personal friend. Richard, and another friend, Tom Coby, had been at lunch with william earlier in the year when the topic of baptism came up. At first william balked at the idea claiming he had already felt baptized by fire those past few years. Why would he need to go through some ritual to validate his relationship with God? After much discussion leaving william unswayed, Tom leaned over to him, looked him in the eyes, and said, "Jesus thought it was important enough to have it done to Him." That was the end of the debate. william turned to Richard and asked, "when can we do this." 

Six years later, in October 1994, william would be leaving his 20 year State Farm career, to start the Teaching & Sharing Center as the official physical location of a touch of william, plus the various other aspects, and activities, related to his walk with God, utilizing primarily his photography, and poetry, plus responding to whatever else he felt God called him to do. In the early years, he did not refer to himself as a domestic missionary, and struggled whether to call what he was doing a ministry, or a mission. When asked about it, he would often say he saw himself sort of as a troubleshooter, going where God directed, and doing whatever God asked. Throughout the course of over two decades, however, he found that people accepted his role more easily if he simply referred to himself as a domestic missionary. As close as any other description, it was an understood concept that others felt comfortable with. Over the first five years, the T&SC changed and evolved as God guided things. However, a touch of william remained fairly constant, particularly with the distribution of william's Poetry & Pictures books. Everything else grew under the spiritual focus of a touch of william. Then, at the end of 2004, from the consensus of a group of advisors william utilized for big decisions, he filed the paperwork for the creation of the Teaching & Sharing Center[s] non-profit corporation to be effective January 1, 2005. Pastor Richard McKenzie, and Pastor Paul Pretzlaff rounded out the three incorporators required by law at the time. a touch of william, along with Cherokee Bill's Teaching & Trade Center (which had developed as a major focus of william's activies under God's guidance), became an Independent Affiliated Ministry of the corporation. 2006 introduced a major health issue when it was determined william needed quadruple by-pass open heart surgery. The operation was performed on March 13th. Exactly five months later on August 13th (below left photo, right image from 15th), thankful to God for his health, william was back enjoying nature and taking photographs. 

 

In 2015, a touch of william, Cherokee Bill's Teaching & Trade Center, and most of william's mission assets at the Teaching & Sharing Center of Grand Ledge were merged into a new branch of the Teaching & Sharing Centers non-profit called william's works. As the volunteer director of the branch, william, plus his wsharing website, continues functioning as an independent domestic missionary utilizing the william's works platform provided by the organization. 

What began as the sharing of his photography and poetry, reached a peak in 2020 with a program highlighting the heart of all that had been done in the preceding 26 years. The In His Steps book by Charles Sheldon, Peace Pilgrim materials, and Matthew 6 beginning at verse 24, have had a huge impact on all aspects of william's activities and decisions. The above link will take you to the new In His Steps groups page in william's website. Additional information about the other dynamics of william's outreaches can be found by clicking on the wsharing.com links below. 

 
wsharing website
 
 

The wsharing website site was begun in November 2002 to showcase the philosophies, photography, and poetry, of william, along with his various missions and ministries. It remains his personal website, a primary tool helping william's works, a touch of william, and Cherokee Bill's Teaching & Trade Center outreaches. 

From 2005 until 2010, as a part of the a touch of william/Cherokee Bill's Trade Center Independent Affiliated Ministry agreement with the Teaching & Sharing Centers non-profit organization, william created (non-compensated) and hosted the web pages of the T&SC corporation within the wsharing site (wsharing.com; wsharing.org; wsharing.net). In 2010 the Teaching & Sharing Centers pages were transferred to the new URL set up for the organization (www.tscenters.org). The wsharing website, although still an independent piece of william, and his work as a domestic missionary, began playing a supporting role for the new william's works branch housing a touch of william and Cherokee Bill's Teaching & Trade Center in 2015. 

Rather than duplicating pages, the tscenters.org and wsharing.com sites are considered complimentary to one another. Information typically is located on only one of the two sites. This is especially true of links pages and listings, which are quite substantial on the wsharing site. 

 

atow primary page   CBTC primary page   wsharing home page