News From Our Churches

Our church in Kalamazoo, Michigan, extended a call to Rev. Woudenberg of Lynden, Washington, to be their pastor. Kalamazoo’s trio consisted of Rev. Woudenberg, Rev. Slopsema (Edgerton, Minnesota), and Rev. Van Overloop (Hope, Grand Rapids). Rev. Kortering was granted an extension of time in which to consider his call from Redlands, California, due to vacation time and the meeting of Classis West the first week in September. 

Rev. Marvin Kamps was scheduled to be installed as the pastor of our church in Doon, Iowa, on September 10. Rev. Kamps preached in Hull, Iowa, for Rev. Kortering on September 5. Seminarian Ken Koole spent most of the summer in Doon ministering in that congregation. 

The Reformed Witness Committee in Northwest Iowa and Minnesota is busy with another project to continue their work in the area. Plans are being made to publish in the Doon Press a condensation by Professor H. Hanko of chapters taken from his book on the parables. These will be published separately in pamphlet form for distribution. 

The Randolph, Wisconsin, bulletin reported that a monthly gathering of the Young Married Couples (we call such a gathering a Mr. & Mrs. Society in the ‘East’) of the congregation has been proposed and has been well received by those contacted. It has been proposed that “Marriage” be the subject for study, with Rev. Engelsma’s book on marriage serving as a basis for discussion. A ballot was taken as to a preference on meeting time with the result that one Sunday evening per month will be scheduled for this new ‘gathering.’ Other of our Mr. & Mrs. Societies have used Rev. Engelsma’s fine book on marriage as a guide in their discussions. 

The Grand Rapids area Sunday School Teacher’s Mass Meeting is scheduled for October 1st at Southeast Church. Mrs. Gertrude Hoeksema will speak on “Teaching Bible Stories to our Covenant Youth.” Mrs. Hoeksema is well qualified to speak on this topic by virtue of her many years experience as a Christian School teacher. I have a suspicion that Mrs. Hoeksema was asked to speak on this topic because of the writing project with which she has been busy for the last several years. With the aid of a grant from the Federation of Protestant Reformed School Societies, Mrs. Hoeksema spent a year writing a 346 page 1st grade Bible curriculum. Presently she is working on a classroom Bible study guide for the 2nd grade. Her plan is to complete a series of guides for the elementary grades which would give a unified, Reformed, treatment of the Bible—something which we have not had until now. 

There has been a good deal of activity in our Protestant Reformed schools of late. One year ago a new Protestant Reformed school was opened by our people in Redlands, California. This year another new school opened in Hull, Iowa. The following is from the Hull bulletin of August 29: “Tomorrow morning will be a significant day in our congregational life as the doors of our school will open for the first time. Much planning and work has made this possible for us, but we know that without God’s Fatherly care it could never have been realized. Let us humbly thank Him for providing for us the building, the materials and furnishings, the teachers, and above all else the grace whereby we parents have come to see the need. We seek His guidance that the benefits of these labors may continue from generation to generation.” 

Our schools in Walker, Michigan, and South Holland, Illinois, are in the process of constructing an additional classroom on each of their buildings. South Holland is increasing its teaching staff as well. The Covenant Christian High School Society met on August 18 to consider adding a physical education wing to their building. This proposal was rejected by the Society. The Adams St. School Society will have a special meeting on September 30 to consider purchasing land which would make relocation of Adams School possible in the future. 

I think the note that was placed in the Grand Rapids area church bulletins to mark the beginning of the school year at Covenant High school can well apply to all of our schools—that as we begin another year of covenant instruction we wish to express our earnest desire that you remember us (that is, the board, the faculty, and the students) in your prayers before the throne of grace. With the blessings of our Father in Heaven, our efforts will surely not be in Vain.