Mr. Wigger is an elder in the Protestant Reformed Church of Hudsonville, Michigan.
Our denomination’s missionary in Pittsburgh, PA, Rev. J. Mahtani, reported recently to the members of the fellowship there of his and Rev. D. Overway’s labors in Allentown this fall. There continues to be good progress made in that work. They had ten at a recent Friday evening Bible study, twelve at the first worship service the following Lord’s Day, and eight at the second service. These numbers are small, but Rev. Mahtani reminded the mission in Pittsburgh how few they themselves had had when they started. On this trip the two pastors traveled many miles to visit with saints in four different locations: Schneckville, PA; Hazelton, PA; Haddington, NJ; and Norristown, PA. Because these saints are so scattered, the two men are trying to encourage them to come to a meeting of the minds and decide on one central location, but this is easier said than done. Pittsburgh and Wyckoff are also planning a get-together in the spring or summer of 2004 so that these two groups can come together to get to know the work that is being done in the area.
Our mission in Pittsburgh also celebrated their 6th Annual Reformation Celebration at the end of October. The theme for this year’s celebration focused on marriage and the family. Prof. D. Engelsma spoke Friday evening, October 31, on “The Reformation’s Influence on the Family—Blessing and Bane.”
The delegation of Rev. D. Kleyn, representing our churches’ Foreign Mission Committee, and Mr. Jim Regnerus, representing the congregation of Doon, IA PRC, the calling church, left for a two-week visit to the Philippines in mid-October. The delegation’s work was to include visiting with and giving encouragement to our missionary, Rev. A. Spriensma and his family, as well as the group in Manila, visiting a new group of contacts south of Manila, visiting the group in Bacolod City, and giving speeches at a conference on various subjects for BCGR members and new contacts in the Manila area. The delegation planned to return home on Monday, November 3.
Rev. R. VanOverloop and Mr. Gord Terpstra, as representatives of our churches’ Domestic Mission Committee, along with a delegation from the Loveland, CO PRC, the calling church for Spokane, WA, were there to visit the mission station where Rev. T. Miersma is missionary. Rev. VanOverloop gave a Reformation Day lecture on October 31 under the theme, “Luther’s 95 Theses 486 Years Later.” The delegates visited with the missionary and his family and with the saints of Covenant of Grace PR Fellowship on Saturday, and worshiped with them on Sunday, before returning home on Monday, November 3.
Rev. A. Stewart, our denomi-nation’s missionary to Northern Ireland, and the members of the Covenant PR Fellowship in Ballymena, NI gave two Reformation Day Lectures entitled, “Does God Desire to Save the Reprobate?—Calvin versus Pighuis.” The first was on October 30 in the Omagh Community House, and the second on October 31 at the Ballymena Protestant Hall.
Our missionary to Ghana, West Africa, Rev. W. Bekkering, was also privileged to present two Reformation Day Lectures to the group at Ashaley Botwe. The first was on Friday evening, October 31, from 7:00-9:00 p.m. and the second, November 1, from 10-12 noon.
In news from Singapore we see that Mr. Paul Goh, who recently graduated from our seminary, continues to help out in each of the congregations there. This gives the congregations opportunity to become better acquainted with him. And Paulraj has become the first graduate of the Asian Reformed Theological School. He has returned to his native India, where he will be mentored by Rev. A. denHartog for six months.
Prof. H. Hanko and his wife made a tour of our churches in the west and north this fall. At each stop, Prof. Hanko gave a lecture on the topic of the split of 1953. Their first stop was at our church in Loveland, CO in late September. This was followed by Hope PRC in Redlands, CA on October 3; Lynden, WA PRC on October 17; Immanuel PRC in Lacombe, AB, Canada on October 24; and finally at Faith PRC in Jenison, MI on October 31. At each church he spoke on various aspects of the split of 1953 in our churches and doctrinal issues dealing with sovereign grace. His final lecture, at Faith, was entitled, “Conditional Theology and the Road Back to Rome.”
Prof. R. Dykstra was about as busy as Prof. Hanko this October. By our count he gave three lectures over a three-week period. First he spoke at Dordt College in Iowa, October 24, then at Faith PRC in Jenison, MI on October 30, and finally at South Holland, IL on October 31. At each stop he spoke on the theme, “Tried by Fire: Why the PRC Had to Endure the Split of 1953.”
The Evangelism Society of Covenant PRC in Wyckoff, NJ sponsored a Reformation Lecture on October 24 in their church. Their pastor, Rev. D. Overway, spoke on “What Churches Need Today.”
On Thursday, October 30, the Evangelism Committee of the Randolph, WI PRC hosted a Fall Lecture given by Rev. Dale Kuiper entitled, “Walking in the Old Reformational Ways.”
This year’s combined meeting of the Edgerton, MN, and Hull and Doon, IA Martha/Ladies Bible Societies was hosted by the ladies of the Doon society. It was scheduled for October 30, and Rev. R. Smit, pastor at Doon, spoke on the topic, “Handmaidens of Jehovah.”
The congregation of the Hudsonville, MI PRC voted on November 9 to extend a call to Rev. C. Terpstra to serve as their next pastor. He was elected from a trio that included also Rev. R. Cammenga and Rev. R. Van Overloop.
From a trio of the Revs. C. Haak, S. Houck, and D. Kleyn, the congregation of the Immanuel PRC in Lacombe, Alberta, Canada extended a call to Rev. D. Kleyn to become their next pastor.
Rev. M. Dick received the call to serve as the next pastor of the Byron Center, MI PRC. With Rev. Dick on that trio were Rev. G. Eriks and Rev. S. Key.
At a congregational meeting Sunday, November 2, the members of Faith PRC in Jenison, MI extended a call to Rev. S. Key to be their next pastor.