MET IN SESSION, SEPT. 7, 1949 AT SIOUX CENTER, IOWA
Rev. L. Doezema called the brethren together, after having them sing Psalter No. 30 and reading from Psalm 27 he offered prayer. The credentials showed delegates from all congregations, Doon being of necessity represented by two elders and Bellflower by its pastor alone. Rev. Howerzyl is chairman for the day and Rev. Doezema takes care of the minutes. After the usual preliminaries Classis considers an instruction from the Edgerton Church and almost a like one from Pella Church to the effect that there be another mimeographed Sermon Book drawn up by Classis West, including also the special occasion sermons. Classis decides to table this matter until its next meeting.
Then there was an instruction from Oskaloosa consisting of three parts. Part I requests that the reports of the Theological School and the Mission Committees be included in the Agenda of Synod and that the Stated Clerk of Synod be so instructed. The matter was adopted and Classis decides to send it through to the Synod. One of the grounds motivating this instruction is: “Thus our consistories as well as Synodical delegates could familiarize themselves with the content of said reports before coming to Synod. As it is at present the delegates must read and digest a report often 15-20 pages long in the few days of Synod”. Part II of said instruction reads: “That the preparation and printing of the Acts of Synod, together with the Yearbook, be placed in the hands of the Stated Clerk, and that the Clerks of the Synod be instructed to deliver as soon as possible after Synod, a typewritten copy of each of their concept minutes, and, that a committee of Synod be appointed to approve these Acts before publication”. One of the grounds motivating this instruction is: “This work belongs properly to the domain of the Stated Clerk.” Classis adopts this as her own.
Then came Part III of this instruction which reads as follows: “That Synod reverse its stand taken in 1949 regarding the official copy of the Acts of Synod. The decision taken (last year) relieves the Stated Clerk from the task of transcribing the Acts in the official record book, implying that the printed Acts will be considered the official copy. We therefore request that this decision be reversed and that the Stated Clerk be instructed to copy and keep a permanent record which will be considered the official Ac Is. Grounds for this instruction: “Items are often excluded from publication in the Acts because of their personal nature. Examples of this could be given from the Acts of 1949. These would be found nowhere in the future. There will be no official record of such decisions or of the decision to elide them from the printed Acts. Classis makes also this part her own and decides to send it on to Synod.
Doon’s consistory, happy at the prospects of after while having a minister of her own again, requests that a Special Classis or a Classis Contracta be called for the purpose of examination of her pastor-elect, Homer C. Hoeksema. After appointing a committee to enlighten the Classis as to what a Classis Contracta really is, Classis decides to call a Contracta and it expresses that we understand in this case that the neighboring churches called to the Contracta are those of Iowa and Minnesota and that the other churches are free to attend. The Contracta will be held Sept. 28, 9:30 A.M., at Doon, Iowa. Cand. Homer C. Hoeksema will preach onand be examined in the usual branches.
Pella’s consistory came with an Instruction saying: “If we reach March 6, 1950, it will be just twenty-five years ago that, at the combined meeting of the Consistories, the Act of Agreement was signed and the Protestant Reformed Churches officially had their beginning. And since that same month marks the founding of the first Protestant Reformed Church beyond the River, in Iowa namely, we may well count the year 1950 as an anniversary year and March 6 as the date. In view of this fact of history should not our Classis call upon the various churches to commemorate this fact in one way or the other?” Classis adopted this in the main and appointed a committee to draw up a schedule suggesting an appropriate celebration. The committee suggested that: we thus commemorate in one of the divine services March 5. Further that there be a celebration thereof during that same week, by each congregation locally or by grouping of the congregation in each locality at which time the events concerning the founding of our churches could be brought to mind by speeches, essays, songs, etc. Classis adopts this together with the suggestion to publish an Anniversary Booklet. Classis East to be acquainted with this decision in hopes that she will make a like decision.
Redlands kindly invited Classis to hold its next session there. Classis thanked them for their kind invitation but expresses, that it would not be wise to have cur Spring gathering there. For Church visitors: the California ministers do that work in Calif.; Revs. Vermeer and Vis in Montana and for the Iowa-Minn. territory there were elected the brethren: Revs. A. Cammenga and P. De Boer with A. Petter alternate. Doon is given classical appointments for Sept. 18 and 25. Committee for the Anniversary Booklet: Revs. A. Cammenga, J. Van Weelden and A. Petter. Rev. Vermeer thanks the ladies for the excellent service they rendered at dinner and lunches. Hull is chosen as the next place of meeting, the date, first Wednesday in March.
Before adjourning Classis decides that the Classical Committee make arrangements for a Commemoration meeting on the evening before the next Classis. The President thanks the brethren for their fine cooperation. After singing from ps. 69 Rev. A. Petter closes with prayer.
M. GRITTERS, Stated Clerk