(Yes, we do plan to continue our predecessor’s tradition!) With Josiah Tan’s graduation this spring, what graduate number was he in the PRC Seminary’s history?
PRC News (Denominational)
Classis Meetings: Classis East met on September 8 in Grandville MI PRC. Classis West met in Crete IL PRC on September 29. Look for reports of these meetings in the SB.
Officebearers’ Conference: In connection with Crete PRC hosting Classis West on September 29, the Council decided to host an Officebearers’ Conference the day before on September 28 at the church. The theme of the conference is “Sanctification—the Blessed Work of Christ’s Spirit.” Speakers are Revs. S. Key on “The Spirit of Freedom’’; M. Kortus on “Be Ye Holy: The Doctrine of Sanctification from Leviticus”; and J. Engelsma on “In the Way of Our Obedience.” All are welcome to attend.
Minister Calls: On September 5 Rev. M. DeBoer (Edgerton MN PRC) declined the call from Kalamazoo (MI) PRC.
On September 5 Rev. R. Barnhill (Peace PRC, Dyer, IN) declined the call from Doon PRC.
The Council of Covenant of Grace PRC (Spokane, WA) formed a new trio from which to call a pastor: Rev. R. Barnhill (Peace PRC), Rev. E. Guichelaar (Randolph PRC), and Rev. D. Holstege (Missionary, Philippines).
The Council of Hudsonville PRC formed a new trio of Revs. E. Guichelaar, C. Haak, and D. Lee.
Seminary: On September 15 in Southwest PRC a special worship service was held for the installation of Rev. C. Griess as professor of theology. Prof. B. Gritters, whom Prof. Griess will replace within five years, led the service.
Seminary convocation was also included with a time of fellowship afterwards. And the seminary with its most recent addition (new archives room) and renovations (library and professor offices) was open for viewing—something that was supposed to happen in the Fall of 2020—but you know the rest of that story by now.
Missions (Philippines): Rev. D. Holstege and his family finally received their approval to return to the Philippines after an extended furlough this year. They hope to depart sometime in November.
General: Prof. D. Engelsma’s Reformed Doctrines Class began a new season of study on September 22, in the auditorium of Faith PRC. The class is continuing the study of the Reformed doctrine of salvation, particularly the truth of faith as assurance. The class meets every 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month and all ages are welcome.
PRC News (Congregational)
Covenant of Grace PRC (Spokane, WA): On Friday September 17 the congregation gathered at the church for a special supper fellowship to say goodbye to the Kleyns. Rev. R. Kleyn preached his farewell on September 19 and headed to Grand Rapids, MI the next day.
Faith PRC (Jenison, MI): From September 9-19, Titus Kamps, Rev. C. Spronk, and Pete and Dorothy VanDerSchaaf were in Germany. The purpose of the trip was to witness and rejoice with the saints in the BERG in the installation of Jochen Klautke as their pastor. The installation took place on Saturday, September 11. We too rejoice with the congregation there that the Lord has supplied them with a pastor.
First PRC (Grand Rapids, MI): Meanwhile, on the other end of Rev. R. Kleyn’s trip, his new home church announced the arrival of the family around September 23 and his installation as her next pastor for October 3.
Hope PRC (Redlands, CA): Did you hear the church had to cancel her evening service on September 5 due to a covid outbreak in the congregation, including her pastor, Rev. M. Kortus? We hope no one was seriously ill and they could resume services quickly.
Providence PRC (Hudsonville, MI): On September 5 Rev. M. McGeown was installed as the second pastor in the young history of Providence PRC (Hudsonville, MI), with Prof. B. Gritters leading the service. After the service a welcome program and brunch was held. We rejoice with the saints there in God’s goodness to them and pray that the Lord will richly bless Rev. McGeown’s ministry in their midst.
PRC-Philippines: Our fellow saints in the Far East are suffering through tight pandemic restrictions again, with in-person worship not allowed. Let us remember to pray for them.
Covenant ERC-Singapore: We rejoice in the wonderful news from our sister in the Far East that Cand. Josiah Tan accepted her call (Aug. 15) and was ordained into the gospel ministry by Rev. J. Smidstra on August 22. This is the special notice she had in her bulletin for that Sunday: 22 August 2021. Not just another day in 2021. Ordinary for many perhaps, but for CERC, a momentous day. Certainly, a very special and unforgettable day for our new pastor Josiah Tan. In His perfect time and according to His perfect will, our faithful covenant God has provided us with another under-shepherd today. This day the Lord of the harvest sends forth another servant-shepherd, called and equipped by none other than the Chief Shepherd Himself, to proclaim the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ in and from our midst. While Josiah and his wife Hui Qi are no stranger to us, nevertheless we want to welcome him and his family warmly into our fellowship as our pastor. As Rev Josiah Tan moves in and out among us, may the Lord build up the bonds of love and friendship between us as shepherd and sheep. As we rejoice in the Lord’s provision for our congregation, may He also renew our zeal to bear witness of His grace in saving us from all our sins and be faithful in the work of His kingdom according to the place He has given each one of us in this body.
Covenant PRC-N.Ireland: The church is inviting its community to attend this year’s Reformation Day Lecture on Friday, October 29, entitled “Fulgentius of Ruspe, the Sixth-Century N. African Church and God’s Saving Will.” Sounds like a subject of interest and instruction for all of us!
PR Christian Schools
With all our Christian schools back in session, let’s remember to pray for our administrators, teachers, staffs, boards, and the precious children of God’s covenant. How blessed we are to have these means of spiritual development in kingdom truth and life in Jesus Christ! We’ll have more features on the schools in future news.
Starting this fall is a special workshop series on personal evangelism for young people and young adults, hosted by the Young Calvinists and Young People’s Federation Board. This practical four-part series will cover the why, what, and how of witnessing, featuring small group discussions, activities and several speakers. The workshop will be held at Trinity PRC on September 19, October 3, October 17, and October 31. To learn more and to participate, follow Young Calvinists on Facebook and Instagram, or subscribe at youngcalvinists.org for more details.
Food for Thought
“One other thing we should remember is that the biblical doctrine of hell is not just a matter of theology and of theological debate, but a testimony to the righteousness and justice of God, the necessity of believing in Jesus Christ, and the evil of rejecting and despising Him. The sad thing is, however, that no one will ever be scared into heaven by the Bible’s teaching on hell and hell fire. The only way anyone sees his great peril and turns to Jesus Christ in repentance and faith is by the sovereign work of the Holy Spirit, implanting and giving the gift of faith, and opening one’s ears and heart to the sweet call and good news of the gospel of God’s free grace.” ~ Rev. R. Hanko in the July 2021 “Covenant Reformed News.”
Rev. J. Tan was graduate number 116 in the history of the PRC seminary.