When on November of 1944 our minister, Rev. C. Hanko, made known unto us that he felt that he must accept the call to Manhattan, Montana, our hearts were saddened and we felt for the moment that all was against us, for Rev. Hanko had labored in our midst faithfully for almost ten years and in that time ties had been made that were not easy to break, not alone that Rev. Hanko and family were well liked in the congregation, but his work among us had the result that we became as one unit, loving each other in Christ and seemingly that if that tie would be broken all would be lost and all kinds of dark clouds loomed at the horizon. But the Lord did not leave us and made plain to us that it was His way and we received the testimony from Him that He cares for us and so we became reconciled to our state, knowing that neither God nor His Word would leave us. We were reminded of this fact again when on January 1 Rev. Hanko preached his farewell unto us on the last texts of the Bible. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Very fittingly Rev. Hanko pointed out unto us the wealth of this promise and although we were saddened that this was Rev. Hanko’s last sermon as our pastor we went home assured that our shepherd Jesus Christ watches over us.
In the meantime Oak Lawn sent out a call to Rev. A. Cammenga who in due time let us know that he felt not called upon from God to come to Oak Lawn, and again we sent out a call this time to Rev. M. Gritters, who under God’s guiding felt that he must come over and help us. And so the Rev. Gritters and family arrived in our midst on March 22 and on Friday, March 23 we came together in the church to meet Rev. Gritters and family.
A short program was given by the congregation with some refreshments and a joyful evening was spent by all. On Sunday morning, March 25, Rev. B. Kok installed Rev. Gritters as our pastor after preaching unto us on Isaiah 21:11, 12, and in the afternoon Rev. Gritters preached unto us out of Eph. 3:8, the last part. The unsearchable riches of Christ and pointed out unto us the riches of God’s Word.
And so we are again pastor and flock. May God send His blessings upon us that together we may grow in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. May the loss of Sioux ‘Center be our gain and where the Lord already has supplied Sioux Center with a new pastor we wish them God’s blessing.
During our vacancy we were always supplied with a minister, except two Sundays when students Howerzyl and Hoeksema preached for us. We wish to thank all those who administered to our needs.
John Buiter, Clerk