News from our Churches

Trivia question

Regarding the prior trivia question about surviving original members of the PRCA, responses are coming in nicely. As of November 1 we are awaiting responses from eight churches and the number of surviving original members is holding at eight also. We will keep you updated as things change.

According to the yearbook chart contained in the PRC Acts of Synod, how many of today’s PRCA churches were organized before 1930? Answer later in this column.

Sister-church activities

From the bi-monthly report of Rev. A. Stewart and the Covenant PRC in Ballymena, Northern Ireland comes this comment: “We and the saints in the CPRC are looking forward to Prof. and Mrs. Engelsma tomorrow morning. We replaced the two broken garage doors at the manse, and bought a large, new bed and sheets for our spare bedroom. We want to avoid the problem of Isaiah 28:20: ‘For the bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it: and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it.’” Good plan, Rev. Stewart!

The Classis of the Protestant Reformed Churches in the Philippines met November 1 at Maranatha PRC. The Contact Committee delegation of Rev. R. Smit and Elder Dave Kregel also met with them at that meeting.

The CERC in Singapore is holding their Covenant Keepers’ Camp 2017 from December 19-22 at the Aloha Layang, Sea View Bungalow 1. Please visit their website http://ckckscamp.weebly.com or write to them at ckckscamp2017@outlook.com for more information. PRC youth 13+ are warmly invited to join them!

Congregational activities

The congregation at Lynden, WA PRC voted to remodel and repair their parsonage, with flooring, cabinetry, and the kitchen being some of the main focuses of attention.

The Activities Committee of Providence PRC in Hudsonville, MI planned a Rook tournament recently with refreshments served. The game Rook just seems to signify “intensity.” Congratulations to the winners!

As Remembrance Day (Canada) was approaching, plans were being made for the annual Edmonton PRC Car Rally, one of the sure signs of Fall!

Denominational activities

Classis West of the PRCA met in special session on November 29 in Lynden, WA to examine pastors-elect B. Feenstra (Lacombe) and S. Regnerus (Lynden). The latter was scheduled to be ordained and installed on December 1.

Evangelism activities

The Evangelism Committee of Immanuel PRC in Lacombe, AB, Canada held a conference on witnessing with Rev. Allen Brummel and Rev. Angus Stewart as speakers. The conference was well attended by the Lacombe and Edmonton congregations. Copies of the speeches are available by contacting immanuelprcevangelism@gmail.com.

Pastor Wilbur Bruinsma of Pittsburgh, PA PRC spoke on the topic “John Huss: His Life, His Teachings, His Death” for the Reformation lecture held in their church.

On Reformation Day, the consistory of the Wingham, Ontario, Canada PRC sponsored a lecture by their pastor, Rev. Martin VanderWal, with a question and answer period and refreshments following. The speech was entitled: “Justification by Faith Alone: The Heart of the Reformation.”

Rev. Brian Huizinga from Hope PRC of Redlands, CA traveled recently to our congregation in Spokane, WA to present the speech “Evangelism Driven by the Five Solas.”

Rev. Erik Guichelaar, pastor in Randolph, WI PRC pre sented the lecture “Martin Luther’s Struggle for Peace and the 95 Theses.”

Crete PRC sponsored a lecture by their pastor Rev. Nathan Langerak entitled “Martin Luther: A Christian’s Quest for Assurance.”

Loveland, CO PRC held a Friday-Saturday Reformation conference with speeches given by Rev. S. Key, Rev. M. McGeown, and Prof. R. Cammenga.

The Siouxland area churches also attended a Friday-Saturday Reformation conference with speakers Rev. David Torlach, Prof. R. Dykstra, and Prof. B. Gritters.

Young people’s activities

Young Calvinists hosted a gym/game night at Covenant Christian High School in Grand Rapids, MI on a Saturday recently. Pizza and beverages were provided. There were volleyball, basketball, and board games. Additionally, there was an opportunity to serve in the afternoon of that day with the Special Needs Group. Young people were invited to socialize and assist some of the special needs members of our churches with fishing at the Wassink’s. An enjoyable combination. Hopefully, they caught a lot of fish!

The annual Michigan Young People’s Thanksgiving mass meeting was held on November 19 at Grandville PRC, with Candidate Dave Noorman presenting the speech.

The annual Doon PRC Young People’s Survival Run was completed in fine fashion, another sure sign of Fall!

School activities

Those at Covenant Christian HS (Grand Rapids, MI) and their families were a busy bunch at the end of October. On the 28th the Craft Show was held with over 100 handcrafted booths to shop from and a variety of homemade and gourmet items to eat! The proceeds benefited the band and boosters programs at Covenant. Then on Sunday evening, the 29th, the Covenant choirs presented their program at Jenison Center for the Arts. Supporters also attended the joint band concert of Covenant and Heritage bands on Reformation Day, at Hudsonville Fine Arts Auditorium. “Make a joyful noise, all ye lands!” And we are sure they did!

On November 17 the 6th annual Christian Education Lecture sponsored by the Association for PR Education was held in Sioux Falls, SD. Rev. Cory Griess spoke on the topic “The Need for Protestant Reformed Schools in a Postmodern World” at Heritage PRC.

Covenant Christian School supporters in Lynden, WA made and sold banket (an almond pastry) as a fundraiser. These delicious items are always a big hit!

Minister activities

The Councils of Zion PRC of Hudsonville, MI and First PRC of Holland, MI were advised by Classis East to proceed with the ordinations of Rev. Joseph Holstege and Rev. Justin Smidstra, respectively, which took place in late October. We rejoice in the gift of these pastors to our sister congregations.

On November 5, Southwest PRC voted to call Rev. J. Engelsma (Doon PRC).

Rev. Andy Lanning, pastor of the Covenant Evangelical Reformed Church in Singapore announced his acceptance of the call to Byron Center, MI PRC.

First PRC of Grand Rapids, MI has called Rev. Brian Huizinga, pastor at Hope PRC of Redlands, CA to be their next pastor.

Trivia answer

The chart says nine of our present PRCA churches were organized prior to 1930, six in Classis East and three in Classis West. More trivia next time.