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Trivia question

How many churches are included in Classis East of the PRCA? And how many in Classis West? Answer later in this column.

 

Minister activities

Prof. R. Dykstra (PRCA Seminary) accepted the call from Byron Center PRC. He was installed on June 27 with Prof. B. Gritters leading the service. The inaugural sermon was preached in the evening, with a short program and refreshments following.

Hudsonville PRC called Rev. W. Bruinsma (Pittsburgh PRC). Rev. Bruinsma was led to decline this call.

Rev. R. Barnhill (Peace PRC-Dyer, IN) declined the call from Wingham PRC.

Kalamazoo PRC also called Rev. R Barnhill. God led Rev. Barnhill to decline this call.

Crete PRC formed a trio of Rev. J. Engelsma (Doon PRC), Rev. N. Decker (Grandville PRC), and Rev. C. Spronk (Faith PRC). From this trio a call was extended to Rev. Engelsma, who accepted it on July 11.

The PRC Synod extended a call to Rev. C. Griess as replacement for Prof. B. Gritters in the PR Seminary as Professor of Practical Theology and New Testament Studies. On July 11, Rev. Griess accepted this call.

The final worship services of Bethel PRC (Roselle, IL) were held on June 27. May the Lord continue to be with the congregation and her former pastor, Rev. D. Lee, as they experience the disbanding of this dear congregation.

We remember in prayer Rev. Dennis Lee, Rev. John Marcus, and their families as they are presently without a charge and wait upon the Lord’s will. We also remember in prayer Rev. Martyn McGeown and his wife as they await final approval from the government so he may come and take up his labors in Providence PRC (Hudsonville, MI). Rev. McGeown preached his farewell sermon in Limerick June 27 and spent the month of July organizing many important matters in preparation for traveling to the USA to take up his work in Providence PRC. Please keep Rev. McGeown, Larisa, and the saints in Limerick and Ballymena in your prayers during this time of transition.

 

Seminary activities

The seminary is now in her summer break. Continue to pray for the seminary in all her needs. The faculty keeps busy with preparation for the next term as well as with other activities, and many of the students return to their summer jobs. The staff is present to assist with any needs you may have. The seminary, including the library and bookstore, are open daily (M-F, 8-5) during the summer months, except for holidays.

Senior seminary student Josiah Tan (Covenant ERC, Singapore) was examined at the PRC Synod (June 8-10), with Synod informing Covenant ERC that they judged the brother worthy to be declared eligible for a call to the ministry. We rejoice with the brother and his wife in God’s goodness and pray that he will soon find a place to serve in Christ’s church. He plans to leave the U.S. on July 13.

The internship of Seminarian Marcus Wee (Covenant ERC, Singapore) started July 1 and will run through the end of the year. He has been assigned to Faith PRC (Jenison, MI) with Rev. C. Spronk serving as his mentor.

Seminarian Matt Koerner (entering his junior year) has been licensed to speak a word of edification in the churches. As of May 30 he has begun preaching in various PRCs, including out west this summer.

Work continues on the Spring 2021 issue of the PRTS Journal. If you wish to be added to the mailing list, please call or email the seminary. (The Journal is free.)

Seminary Conference: What is preaching? What does it mean to preach the gospel? How does one preach the commands of Scripture? What is application in preaching? Make plans now to hear four speeches by the seminary professors, under the conference theme “The Lord Gave the Word: Preaching the Gospel.” The conference will be hosted by Trinity PRC, on the late afternoon and evening of October 28 and 29. More details will follow.

 

Evangelism activities

The Young Calvinists hosted a speech on “Personal Evangelism,” given by Seminarian Josiah Tan at Hudsonville PRC on June 30. Refreshments followed. All were encouraged to bring a friend, and enjoy this important message!

 

Congregational activities

The congregation in Lynden, WA changed the times of their worship service on June 27 to 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. This was due to the forecast for record high temperatures there. While average temps for that date are in the upper 70’s…all forecasts indicated God would warm up the area to about 105 degrees. Lynden PRC is not air-conditioned. So Lynden could do as missionary pastor Rev. Daniel Kleyn has often done—issue a warm welcome to those in attendance! A taste of Redlands, perhaps!

 

Young People’s activities

The Western Young People’s Retreat took place June 28-July 2 at Camp Sanders in Idaho. The theme of the retreat was “Restraining My Feet from Evil,” from Psalm 119:101. Rev. R. Hanko and Rev. M. De Boer from Edgerton PRC (MN) were scheduled to speak. We pray that God might have used this retreat for the spiritual growth of all who attended and also as a time of fellowship to build up and strengthen one another in the Lord. Oh yes, it was warm!

 

Senior retreat!

Save the date for the 2022 Senior Retreat to be hosted by Grace PRC. The dates for the retreat will be September 20-23, 2022. It will be held at the Blue Gate Garden Inn and Conference Center in Shipshewana, Indiana. More information and details to follow.

 

Trivia answer

There are 19 churches in Classis East of the PRC, and with the loss of Bethel PRC in Roselle, IL there are now 14 churches in Classis West. Membership totals continue to be about twice as many persons in Classis East than there are in Classis West. More trivia next time.

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1.