Mr. Wigger is a member of the Protestant Reformed Church of Hudsonville, Michigan.
As churches we have much to be thankful for. Without any doubt, one of those blessings is our Theological School. From our very beginning we have been blessed with faithful professors who, in turn, have been instrumental in training our churches’ many faithful pastors.
I was reminded, recently, of just how great a gift our seminary is when on September 12 our Seminary Convocation took place at the Southwest PRC in Grandville, MI, just a stone’s throw away from our seminary. Even though school had been in session for about two weeks already, the Convocation officially served to set the tone for the coming year.
Southwest’s sanctuary was comfortably full, but by no means completely full (there would be room for you next year). The Hope Heralds provided the special music; the audience sang a couple of Psalter numbers; and Professor R. Decker, professor of Practical Theology and New Testament Studies at the seminary, addressed the gathering, speaking on II Corinthians 4:6, 7, under the theme, “A Priceless Treasure.” Prof. Decker looked at those verses and applied their truth to our seminary in four distinct points. First, our seminary has a theological, doctrinal treasure. Second, it teaches its students that every aspect of our worship is a treasure, especially the preaching, since it is the chief means of grace. Third, the seminary teaches the treasure that we have in godly living. Pastors are called to apply the truth of God’s Word to the way we live. And finally, these treasures are in earthen vessels. Professors and students alike are totally dependent on the sanctifying grace of God.
You might also be interested to know that this year there are five full-time students in our seminary, but no first-year students. In his second year: Mr. William Langerak; in their third year: Mr. Rodney Kleyn and Mr. David Overway; in his fourth year: Mr. Angus Stewart, a member of our sister church in Northern Ireland, the Covenant PRC; and Mr. Paul Goh, a special student from our sister churches in Singapore.
Prof. Decker concluded his remarks by reminding us to pray for our seminary. It is, after all, our seminary. He also reminded us that the next few years will be years of change at our seminary. The four professors are getting older, a couple of them looking at retirement. So not only pray for more students, but also pray for more professors.
On the day before the September 6 meeting of Classes West, at the Randolph, WI PRC, an officebearers’ conference was held, having for its theme, “Understanding the Old Testament Scriptures.” Prof. R. Decker gave the keynote address on the subject, “The Key to the Biblical Understanding of the Old Testament.” There were three sectionals, one led by Rev. R. Cammenga on “Preaching Old Testament History: Method and Application”; one led by Rev. W. Bruinsma on “Covenant or Covenants? An Examination of the Historical Development of the Covenant”; and one led by Rev. B. Woudenberg, “The Law and Practical Preaching.”
A recent bulletin from our Hudsonville, MI PRC reminded their congregation how important it is to keep up with the work of our churches. The announcement read, “Did you know that Synod 2000 made a decision about life insurance policies as gifts to the churches, about ministers in the Social Security program, and budgeted $30,000 for radio broadcasts for 2001? See pages 52 and 65 of the new Acts of Synod and Yearbook. Pick up your copy if you have not yet and be informed about our churches’ labors together.” Have you picked up and read your copy yet?
The Foreign Mission Committee and Hull, IA PRC, the calling church to Ghana, have given their approval for the building of a nice permanent structure for the mission in Ghana to worship in. They also approved a plan that would allow Mr. and Mrs. John and Judy Bouma, who have served as missionary helpers to Rev. R. Moore since shortly after his arrival in Ghana, to go home to the USA for a short break and then return until the completion of the building or until April of next year.
Rev. J. Mahtani, our churches’ home missionary to the Eastern States, planned to preach in Fayetteville, NC on September 17 for the Fellowship there. While there, he also planned to conduct a mid-week Bible Study on September 20 and meet with members of the group and attempt to make some contacts in the area.
This fall Prof. H. Hanko, of our seminary, is once again teaching a very popular catechism class for young adults in the West Michigan area at the Hope PRC in Walker, MI. If you are a young adult living in the area we would strongly encourage you to attend. Besides the obvious benefit of the study of God’s Word, this class also serves as a way for young adults to meet. This fact was made evident this past August when Prof. Hanko was asked to marry a young couple, both members of ourchurches, who had met at his class. If it can happen once, it could happen again.
Rev. Doug Kuiper, pastor of the Byron Center MI PRC, declined the call he had been considering to serve as the next pastor of our vacant Randolph, WI PRC.