News From Our Churches

Our Southeast Church in Grand Rapids has called Professor Herman Hanko to be their pastor. 

Rev. John Heys, who is now in Christchurch, New Zealand, and Rev. Robert Harbach, in Victoria, British Columbia, have written of late. Both of these ministers and their wives very much appreciate the mail they have received fromStandard Bearer readers. Rev. Heys writes, “We look eagerly every day for our mail lady, yes a mail lady on a bicycle to deliver our mail, and news from our churches is always most welcome.” Rev. Heys also writes about the area in which he is now working: “From our newspapers and even from short wave radio—which is beamed to every corner of the earth for our servicemen on the American Forces Radio and Television Service—we have heard of your cold and blizzards. But the summers here are not as warm as at home (Holland, Michigan, USA). The summer average is only 72 degrees F. The nights can be quite cool, and the mornings cloudy; but in the afternoon it can really be warm, and the sun is powerful. One thing we have to get accustomed to is that the north wind brings us warm weather—from the equator—and the south wind brings us cold from the South pole. Quite different. They tell us that the weather settles down to real warm summer weather in February.” New Zealand may not have as warm a summer as we do in the mid-west, but 72 degrees sounds very good—it is about 7 degrees on a Michigan February evening as these lines are being typed. 

Rev. Heys also writes a bit about his schedule. “Our week here begins with Sunday School first on the Lord’s Day and then the A.M. service at 11:00 A.M. The evening service is at 7:00 P.M. Monday night is school night; and I have been teaching Hebrew Grammar. On Tuesday evening we have a Bible Study and Prayer Meeting at which I deliver a ‘meditation’ for about 45 minutes. Thursday is Catechism day; and every other Friday we meet with a group of young people from various churches who are interested in the Reformed Truth. Next Friday, the Lord willing, I will speak to them for the sixth time on the Holy Spirit and His work in the Church. After an hour of instruction we have question hour; and usually we soon forget the subject of the night and get into such matters as election, in fact the five points of Calvinism. Some of these young people, both young men and young women are found coming to the services on Sunday.” 

In addition to Christmas cards and letters, Rev. Harbach writes that he even received a crock pot of cheese from Houston, Texas. Rev. Harbach continues to be busy with preaching, leading Bible Study classes, giving an occasional lecture, making personal contacts, writing his little paper called the ‘Calvinist Contender’ in which he is now engaged in an exposition of the five points of Calvinism and in producing a weekly radio program, “Bible Truth Meditations” (KARI-AM, 550, Saturday, 10:45 A.M.). Rev. Harbach writes, “In many ways, only eternity will tell or reveal all the fruit of our radio, publications, and tape ministries under God’s blessing. How wonderful it is that we may have a part in this blessed work of spreading the good word of God! May it all continue to go out to the ends of the earth.” 

The Isabel bulletin informs us that although Rev. Marvin Kamps and Mr. Dewey Engelsma had intended to leave for Singapore this month to labor with a group of young people there, their trip has been postponed. 

The services conducted as church extension work in Bradenton, Florida, by our First Church, have continued. Rev. Arie den Hartog, pastor of our Covenant Church in New Jersey, preached there for three Sundays, concluding with February 4th. In a newsletter to the congregation of First Church, Rev, den Hartog writes, “It is our conviction that the Lord is blessing the work there (Bradenton) and showing us an open door to labor for the gospel. We do not say there are no difficulties connected with the work. Nor do we know what the Lord’s purpose may be as far as possibilities for establishing a church. Presently however there is much reason to continue the work. This is especially true because of the good attendance at the worship services. We therefore want to encourage you to continue to support this work through your prayers and offerings.” Rev. den Hartog has been followed by Rev. Kenneth Koole, pastor of our church in Randolph, Wisconsin. Rev. Koole will be followed by the pastor of First Church, Rev. Meindert Joostens. 

A quote from Spurgeon carried in the Redlands bulletin: 

“Your strength is seen in what you stand for; your weakness in what, you fall for.”