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Professor Herman Hanko has received a call from our church in Redlands, California, to serve as their pastor. The Redlands trio also included Rev. James Slopsema and Rev. George Lanting. 

Rev. Dale Kuiper, pastor of our church in Lynden, Washington, declined the call extended to him by our Hope Church in Walker, Michigan. 

Rev. James Slopsema has declined the call to be missionary in the Mt. Vernon, Washington area. Our church in Lynden is the calling church for this field. Lynden has formed a new trio consisting of Rev. Kenneth Koole, Rev. Marvin Kamps, and Rev. John Heys. 

Again we observe that news travels a long way to go a short distance. The news that Rev. John Heys has announced to his congregation in Holland, Michigan that he, with the approval of his consistory, has decided to seek emeritation at the next meeting of Classis East was printed in bulletins of our churches on the east and west coasts, but not in any bulletin of our Michigan churches received thus far. 

The work of erecting a new church building for our congregation in Wyckoff, New Jersey has begun. The December 23 bulletin of our Covenant Church reports that visible progress is finally being made on the building project. The excavation has been completed and the footings poured. The carpenters will probably be at work framing the building by the time this issue appears in print. 

The Annual Congregational meeting of our church in Pella, Iowa was held after the morning worship service on Thanksgiving Day. Each of our churches has some unique practice or custom. The scheduling of their congregational meeting seems to be unique to Pella. 

Rev. Engelsma spoke at the annual Christmas Chapel of our Christian Day School in South Holland, Illinois on December 20. The congregation of our South Holland Church was invited to attend. 

The Protestant Reformed Young People’s Federation Board sponsored a Christmas Singspiration after the evening service in our Hudsonville Church on Sunday, December 23. 

The Covenant Christian High School Alumni Choir presented a Christmas concert in First Church on Sunday evening, December 16. The program was titled “A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols.” Each of the nine sections of the program began with the reading of an appropriate scripture passage (beginning with Genesis 3 announcing the Redeemer’s work and concluding in the 9th lesson with John 1) and following with one or more songs by the choir. The audience was asked to sing with the choir on several of the songs. The printed program was actually a booklet containing some original art work and the text of each of the songs. This beautiful program was a fitting and appreciated addition to the Christmas season. 

The congregation of our Covenant Church in Wyckoff has scheduled their annual potluck supper for January 11. 

Rev. Meindert Joostens, pastor of First Church in Grand Rapids, was unable to preach on December 16 because of a severe sore throat. The doctor later thought he had mono. On December 24 the doctor diagnosed the illness as hepatitis and prescribed four weeks of complete rest. During all of this, one of the Joostens children had the chicken pox, and Mrs. Joostens is due to give birth to a child very shortly. 

First Church in conjunction with the Mission Committee of our churches is sending Rev. and Mrs. Wayne Bekkering and Mr. and Mrs. Glare Prince as emissaries to Jamaica in January of 1980. The primary reason for this visit is to make preparations for the calling of a missionary to Jamaica after the 1980 Synod. Rev. Bekkering is making the trip in order that he may acquaint himself and his wife with the Jamaican mission field. He will then be better able to decide a call to Jamaica should he receive one. Rev. Bekkering and Mr. Prince will be investigating housing and transportation for a missionary. In addition, they will attend the Classis meeting of the Jamaican Churches, visit the various churches and attend to the needs of the people. This visit will be from ten days to three weeks in duration. 

—KGV