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Trivia question

When was the first “News from Our Churches” published? Answer later in this column.

Minister activities

Rev. Rodney Kleyn, pastor at Covenant of Grace PRC in Spokane, WA was led by God to decline the call extended to him by Immanuel PRC of Lacombe, AB. We are thankful for a clear indication of God’s will and continue to pray for the congregation at Lacombe in their vacancy.

On November 3, Rev. Jon Mahtani accepted the call to be minister-on-loan to the CERC of Singapore. We rejoice with our sister in Singapore in God’s provision of a pastor again.

Prof. Russell Dykstra traveled to Spokane, WA on No­vember 1 to give a lecture on the subject “Blessed Assurance: Reaffirmed by the Canons of Dort.”

Immanuel PRC of Lacombe, AB announced a new trio of ministers from which to call their next pastor, Revs. R. Barn­hill (Peace PRC, IN) H. Bleyenberg (Providence PRC, MI) and M. VanderWal (Wingham PRC, ON). Immanuel called Rev. Barnhill on November 3. We pray with Immanuel that God will soon send them a minister.

Congregational activities

The girls’ group at Providence PRC sold caramel apples recently to raise funds for the Grace Foster Home in India. You could purchase plain caramel, deluxe with crushed pretzel and chocolate drizzle, or deluxe with crushed nuts and chocolate drizzle. I like them plain…one of my favorite treats!

Georgetown PRC invited those in the area to join their 25th anniversary celebration with two special services on Sunday, October 27, under the theme, “Thanking God for Our Treasured Heritage.” Rev. R. Van Overloop (former pastor) preached on Psalm 16:5–6 for the a.m. service and Rev. Haak (current pastor) on verses 8–9 in the p.m. service. Photos, a powerpoint, and various other memorabilia were displayed. We join with Georgetown in thanking God for His gracious care these past 25 years! God is faithful!

There was an interesting occurrence at Faith PRC in Jen­ison, MI recently. On October 27 Rev. Clayton Spronk had the privilege to baptize four babies in one service. That is reason enough to rejoice! But here’s more: all four of the babies are girls; all four babies are twin girls; all four of the babies are related to each other. You see, that happens when sisters both give birth to twin daughters. And the happy grandparents, Larry and Pat Koole, have lots of reasons to smile!

School activities

The Covenant Christian (Grand Rapids, MI) Craft Show and Bake Sale took place recently with over 100 booths of handmade items for purchase, delicious baked items, and delightful breakfast and lunch menus!

The Eastside Christian School held their Stop & Shop in November. They excitedly announced some do-it-yourself classes—everything from designing stainless steel tumblers, little girls’ hair classes, jewelry making, and card making classes. Sounds like the place to obtain gifts for special oc­casions!

Heritage Christian School Foundation’s Evening of Praise was scheduled for November 30, with another wonderful va­riety of music planned.

In Wingham, ON the PRSW Fundraising Committee re­ally went to work! First they undertook a new activity they named “Meatball Mania!” Apparently this had to do with making and selling meatballs, with proceeds going to the school. Then they featured their annual Chocolate Letter Sale, making and selling Dutch milk chocolate letters. You know…tasty meatballs with a milk chocolate letter for des­sert! It doesn’t get much better than that! I wonder if they can be shipped?

By God’s grace the Sioux Falls School Society recently ap­proved a motion to begin a grade school (initially grades K–4) for the 2020–2021 school year. In that light, the Sioux Falls Protestant Reformed Christian School is seeking applicants for an administrator and a teacher. The Board is willing to work together in curriculum development. Interested appli­cants or inquirers can contact Brian Brummel, (assocpredusf@gmail.com or 605-370-2317). This is an exciting time for the parents of Heritage PRC!

Sister-church activities

The Covenant Evangelical Reformed Church of Singapore held a Reformation Day Conference on November 9. Rev A. den Hartog spoke on the Theme “Personal, Practical, Profitable: The Other Work of the Synod of Dort.” All were invited to come and hear about the great Reformation of the church of our Lord Jesus Christ. Coming to celebrate the Reformation Day Conference with them were missionary-pastor Emmanuel Singh and his wife Sonali. They planned to spend one Lord’s Day in Singapore before returning to Kolkata.

The Classis of the PRC of the Philippines took place on October 31 in Provident PRC, Marikina City. Rev. Vernon Ibe led opening devotions and then Rev. John Flores chaired the meeting (by rotation). Three delegates were present from each of the three churches in the PRCP. Classis decided to appoint two new standing committees so that the work of the denomination is now divided up among four committees instead of two. Classis updated its “Rules of Order” with regard to the length of classis meetings and the guidelines for advisors to the classis. Classis clarified the role of the missionaries, deciding that all three could serve as advisors at each classis meeting and that each missionary would serve as an advisor to at least one of the standing committees of the PRCP. Classis had a large, lengthy agenda and was not able to complete its work; therefore, it decided to recess and to meet again on Saturday, November 30 (a public holiday in the Philippines). We are thankful to God for His care of the churches there. May His Word continue to go forth and His church gathered in all parts of His vineyard!

Trivia answer

From all appearances the very first “News from Our Churches” was dated September 22, 1958 and found on the pages of the October 1, 1958 issue of the Standard Bearer. Penned by Mr. John M. Faber, the column hoped to serve as a “means to reach out to the far-off outposts of Redlands, Lynden, and Loveland, drawing them into a closer circle with the rest of our churches, binding us closer in the bonds of love; yea, let it be a means to embrace one another in the communion of the saints.” Later in the column the author states “Everyone is interested in all the activities of all our churches, so, if you want to be in the news, send us the news.” Over 60 years later news is still being made!