News From Our Churches

January 5, 1960 

Rev. G. Vanden Berg declined the call from Hull; Rev. R. Veldman declined the calls from Randolph and Grand Haven. Edgerton’s trio consists of the Revs. R. Harbach, R. Veldman and B. Woudenberg; Randolph’s trio includes the Revs. H. Hanko, M. Schipper and G. Vanden Berg. 

Seminarian J. Kortering, temporarily stationed in Hull, exchanged pulpits with Rev. G. Van Baren, of Doon, the afternoon of Jan. 3. Rev. Van Baren thereby was privileged to install the office bearers chosen to serve the congregation of Hull. 

The Young People’s Societies of Hull and Doon have decided to meet in joint sessions in the coming year, meeting alternatingly in their own churches. This decision was reached that the young people might enjoy the benefits accrued from larger gatherings. 

Prof. H. C. Hoeksema was elected to the chair in the Men’s Society of First Church. He will lead the society in the discussion of the Book of Galatians, and in the after recess study of the Belgic Confessions. 

Excerpt from Holland’s bulletin of Dec. 27: We welcome Rev. Lanting into our midst as he officially takes up his labors among us. We pray for the blessing of the Lord upon his labors, and that we may receive him as a gift from God’s hand and as the mouthpiece of our Lord Jesus Christ in our midst. 

The Ladies’ Aid Society of Redlands has donated a pulpit Bible to be used in their public worship services.

Rev. H. Veldman delivered his first lecture as the pastor of Redlands Church, Wednesday, Dec. 9. The lecture, sponsored by the Men’s Society, was on the subject, “The Signs of the Times in Our Daily Lives.” 

Rev. G. Vos, of Hudsonville, suffered a severe sore throat which prevented his conducting services Dec. 20. Elder H. Zwak conducted reading service in the morning, and Missionary G. Lubbers preached for them in the afternoon.

Hudsonville’s Mr. and Mrs. Society was host to the Men’s and the Ladies’ societies of their church at their Christmas week meeting. After the Bible discussion the host society rendered a musical program. The congregation of Hope was privileged to hear an exposition of I Peter 4:8 by their pastor on the first Sunday of the new year. Would that we all would resolve to heed the admonition therein as our “New Year’s resolution.” 

Among the host of greeting cards received at the home of Rev. and Mrs. H. Hoeksema was one addressed to Prof. H. Hoeksema, Prot. Ref. Seminary, Grand Rapids; Mich. The sender: Yosuji Morii, of the Kyoto Reformed Church, Kyoto, Japan. He evidently is the minister of that church for in the card he expressed his appreciation for the “works” of the Rev. H. Hoeksema which he was studying with much satisfaction. It seems that Yosuji Morii agrees with the words of Joseph Addison, “Books are the legacies that a great genius leaves to mankind which are delivered down from generation to generation as presents to the posterities of those who are yet unborn.” 

January 5 was the date of the Office Bearer’s Conference held in First Church. Prof. H. C. Hoeksema spoke on “The Calling of the Elders as Watchmen on the Walls of Zion” specially treating that aspect of his rule over the preaching of the Word, and over the church. The speaker, upon the authority of the Catechism, Neth. Confession, and the Church Order, defined the position of the elders as co-equal with the ministers of the Word, having the double duty of watching upon the walls of Zion in regard to the preaching and to the discipline of the church. The elder’s rule over the preaching was described as that of preventing error and false doctrine from gaining entrance, and that of maintaining sound doctrine to the spiritual edification of the flock of God. He further exhorted the elders to be diligent in giving counsel to the ministers in regard to the needs of the flock that the preaching may be most effective towards their growth in grace and in the knowledge of God. Further, that the rule of the elders is only through, and accompanied with, the Word of Christ. “Thus saith the Lord” is the content of the elder’s message in all his instruction and disciplining of the members of the congregation. And finally, that Family Visitation, in the Reformed system, is the duty of the elders, which when properly conducted should serve to instruct, encourage and exhort the flock of God to walk in a new and Godly life which is the fruit of their regeneration. The subject of the speech was so broad that the several aspects were only touched upon and might well serve for subjects of future conferences. 

The Hope Choral Society rendered their annual Christmas program, Dec. 27. The program was given after the evening service to a capacity (wall-to-wall) audience, and was a fitting climax to the season’s activities celebrating the Birthday of the King. 

From the Jan. 5th issue of the Grand Rapids Press:“The Michigan Supreme Court upheld the right of the so-called Rev. Herman Hoeksema faction to retain control of the First Protestant Reformed Church . . . . The ruling upholds retired Superior Court Judge Thaddeus B. Taylor in a decision several years ago in which he ruled in favor of the Hoeksema consistory because Classis East . . . had decided in favor of the Hoeksema group in a doctrinal dispute leading to a contest for the property . . . .” 

. . . . see you in church. 

J.M.F.