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Congregational Activities

From the bulletin of Lynden, WA PRC:

Banket making continues this week Friday. We’ll start in the morning and continue on through the evening. Come whenever you can and stay as long as you can! We can use as many hands as possible! Come with no jewelry, an apron in a bag, and a smile. (If you don’t have an apron, one will be provided. If you don’t have a smile, well, we’ll do our best….) Hope to see you there!

The PRC at Kalamazoo, MI began using their new organ in worship services not long ago.

Young Adult Activities

We hope our young adults plan on celebrating the 25th Colorado Young Adults Retreat from August 14-18, 2017 as it returns to Covenant Heights Camp and Retreat Center in the Colorado Rockies! You will note that the dates and location of this summer retreat have changed, as this exciting opportunity became available. The Loveland PRC Young Adults hope to see you there!

Sister-Church Activities

The Covenant Keepers and Covenant Keepers Seniors of Singapore invite all PRC young adults and young people to attend a camp from December 14-17, 2016. Those who are interested can email Daniel Tang at daniel.tang93@gmail.com. More info about this camp can be found at www.cerc.org.sg/ckckscamp.

In late October the CERC of Singapore arranged the examination of Brother Emmanuel Singh, a resident of Kolkata, India. This examination was with a view to Brother Emmanuel being sent by the CERC to Kolkata, India as a missionary. Pastor Andy Lanning of the CERC provides this background information:

For the past few years, CERC has been working with one Emmanuel Singh, a 37-year-old Indian pastor living and working in Kolkata. Emmanuel had been ordained by an independent Indian parachurch organization some years ago, but he had problems with the Arminianism he encountered there. In God’s providence, Emmanuel came into contact with Rev. Haak through the Reformed Witness Hour online, who then put him in touch with Revs. Kortering, Woudenberg, and Van Overloop. These brothers meet with Emmanuel weekly via Skype to instruct him, and it was largely through their work that Emmanuel came to know the Reformed faith. When our colleagues judged the time to be ripe, they put Emmanuel in touch with CERC to see if we as a church might be willing to oversee his work. After much investigation and prayer, CERC took on the oversight of Emmanuel, including our own meetings with him via Skype and sending delegations to Kolkata.

Almost instantly, we were presented with the problem of how to oversee a foreign man on a foreign field who had no ecclesiastical connection to CERC. We viewed Kolkata as a mission field the Lord had opened to us, but we did not have a missionary to work the field. It seemed obvious to us that Emmanuel was the only one we knew who could labor in India, being the only one who spoke Bengali, but we constantly came up against the question of the nature of our relationship to him. Could we do mission work without a missionary? Could we oversee Emmanuel’s work with no ecclesiastical connection to him? We more and more came to the conclusion that the prevailing situation could not last, and that for CERC to do justice to the mission field in Kolkata, we should seek a way to call Emmanuel as our own missionary.

After much discussion, we decided that the only church orderly way open to us was to have Emmanuel enter the ministry of CERC according to Article 9. We judged this to be the best way, and proceeded to prepare him for his “classical” exam.

I say “classical” because CERC is alone in Singapore, which means that CERC’s Consistory really conducted the exam. To make up for our lack as best we could, we asked the PRCA Synod 2016 for help in examining Emmanuel, and the synod graciously sent help in the form of Rev. Daniel Kleyn and Rev. Bill Bruinsma.

Emmanuel’s examination was conducted October 29, from 9:30 a.m. to around 3:45 p.m. It was a draining day for our brother, but he answered the questions more than satisfactorily. His answers demonstrated a command of, and commitment to, the Reformed faith. CERC’s Session approved the exam and declared Emmanuel eligible for a call to the ministry of the gospel in CERC as a missionary to India. The delegation from the PRCA concurred, and Emmanuel signed the Formula of Subscription. It is difficult to describe the joy that the Consistory and Congregation have today as the Lord has so mercifully led us step by step to this point.

We are thankful, too, for this God-given opportunity to spread His Word in a far-away land.

Rev. Kleyn and Bruinsma also conducted church visitation with the session of the CERC while they were in Singapore.

Evangelism Activities

Rev. Doug Kuiper spoke at Edgerton, MN PRC’s recent evangelism presentation. The topic was: “TULIP, the Reformed Flower in a Theological Garden.”

School Activities

The Federation of Protestant Reformed School Societies will be offering the History and Principles of Reformed Education course this coming winter at the Protestant Reformed Theological Seminary. The instructor is Prof. Russell Dykstra. This course is open to all interested individuals. School Board members, parents, grandparents, teachers, and prospective teachers will benefit from gaining a better understanding of the history and principles behind the Reformed Christian school. The Federation has decided to offer this course at no charge for all participants, so now is a good time to take it in! Classes will be held in the evenings approximately two times per month, from January through May. For more information and registration, visit www.prcs.org.

Denominational Activities

It is quite possible that we will welcome another congregation to the PRC in the near future! A daughter group of Faith PRC in Jenison, MI has begun holding worship services at Heritage Christian School in Hudsonville under the oversight of Faith’s Council. Rev. James Slopsema is scheduled to preach the Heidelberg Catechism each Sunday morning.

Mission Activities

The Classis of the Protestant Reformed Churches in the Philippines was hosted by the PRC in Bulacan on October 31, with Rev. Vernon Ibe chairing the meeting. The work of the Classis was mostly routine. Reports from the two standing committees were received and treated, along with some correspondence from the PRCA (stated clerk of synod, contact committee, and FMC). The above-mentioned reports included a proposed constitution for PRCP mission work, and a proposed preseminary program, both of which were approved and adopted by the Classis. The next Classis is scheduled for February 25, to be hosted by the Maranatha PRC in Valenzuela.

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1.