At the time these lines were being written, Redland’s congregation was meeting for the purpose of calling a minister from a trio consisting of Rev. R. Harbach, Rev. G. Lanting, and Rev. M. Schipper.
In looking through the Sunday bulletins, from which comes the greater share of news from this column, I ran across the following interesting item from the “Requested Announcement” section of Hull’s January 30 bulletin:
“Our congregation’s history is to be included in the centennial book of Hull. If any of you have old pictures of the history of our congregation (former ministers, activities, church building, etc.) please inform the pastor.”
Church bulletins from east to west have been carrying announcements concerning activities sponsored by the young people, in their attempt to raise money for the 1972 Young People’s Convention. In California there was a Spaghetti Supper; in Colorado, a Baked Goods Sale (two of them, in fact—and within three weeks of each other); and in Michigan, an Auction and a basketball game featuring “the married men of Holland, Hope, and Hudsonville vs. the married men of First, Southeast, and Southwest.”
The convention, you perhaps recall, will be held in Loveland. The Young People’s Society there has chosen the, theme, “Come, Lord Jesus,” fromRev. 22:20. The three speeches, as well as the discussion-groups, will treat various aspects of the truth of the last things.
Our young people are engaged, incidentally, in other activities, as well—activities less conspicuous, perhaps, than the sponsorship of basketball games, but of very real importance, nonetheless. A committee of young people at First Church, for example, takes care of the recording of the services, and the supplying of the tapes to the shut-ins and others who are unable to attend the services.
That service, by the way, has been offered, also, to others, who are not members of First Church. We refer to a “News and Views from First Protestant Reformed” bulletin, sent by the Church Extension Committee to homes in the immediate vicinity of the church. One paragraph in that bulletin reads as follows:
“At First Protestant Reformed, we regularly make tape recordings of the sermons preached. These are brought to our shut-ins who request this. However, we do want to offer this service to those outside of our church. We have a committee of young people who would be pleased to bring over the taped sermon—and if necessary, a recorder on which the tape can be played. If you should be interested, we would invite you to call the pastor that arrangements could be made.”
Another bulletin, that of South Holland this time, contains a paragraph which also reflects favorably on the attitude of some of our young people—as well as on the pastor, needless to say, It would be a mistake, I think, to paraphrase the paragraph, or to quote only excerpts; so, here’s the whole thing:
“The pastor will be teaching a class in the Essentials of Reformed Doctrine in his study, at the request of a young brother of the congregation. This class is scheduled tentatively for Monday evening at 6:45 P.M. Any others who wish to attend and become familiar with our Protestant Reformed viewpoint are cordially welcome. Every effort will be made to schedule this class at a time convenient for those who wish to attend.”
The pastor, by the way, is Rev. Decker.
At the risk of appearing lazy, I’m going to quote a little more, from that same January 30 South Holland bulletin.
“The consistory is beginning the annual family visiting. We will be basing our discussions on I Peter 3:1-12 and Ephesians 6:14 under the general theme ‘The Covenant Family.’ We pray that through this means we may be strengthened in the faith and knit together in the love of Christ.”
The practice of announcing, in advance, the theme to be considered during the visits to the various homes of the people of the congregation—is that an innovation in our churches? Perhaps not; but in the two years that I’ve received bulletins from most of our churches, I encountered no precedent. Whatever the case may be, it strikes me as being worthy of imitation.