At the request of Paul G. Schrotenboer, General Secretary of the Reformed Ecumenical Synod, I am calling attention to this North American Regional Conference of the Reformed Ecumenical Synod. I am doing so as a matter of information and because of the interest of our churches in the RES. Our synod has on more than one occasion expressed interest in sending observers to the RES upon due invitation. Because this regional conference, though not of a synodical nature, is nevertheless related to the RES, I deem it of interest to our churches and our people.
As far as the idea of the conference is concerned, I learn from Dr. Schrotenboer’s letter the following: “The idea of the conference was born at the 1963 Synod of the RES when the delegates sensed that North American Christians, especially those who share like precious faith, should confer, listen unitedly to expositions from the Word in today’s era of ferment, and draw closer together as they strive with one mind and heart for the faith of the gospel.” I take it, therefore, that this conference is strictly of a non-ecclesiastical nature. As far as information is concerned, I can pass on the following items:
1. The conference is scheduled for July 26-28 at “Knollcrest” (Calvin College’s new campus) in Grand Rapids.
2. The theme, to be developed in various speeches and a panel discussion is “Christ or Chaos.”
3. Speakers and panelists are from various denominations. They include several Christian Reformed men (Dr. J. Nederhood, Dr. Gordon J. Spykman, among others); Dr. Jerome De Jong (Reformed); Edmund P. Clowney (Westminster Seminary); Dr. J.G. Vos; Dr. G. Aiken Taylor (Southern Presbyterian), and others.
4. Fees range from $14.00 for lectures only to $24.00 to cover lectures, meals, and lodging.
5. The conference is open to general attendance. Dr. Schrotenboer writes: “This is an ecumenical conference for participants of many church communions, for theologians, evangelists, ‘laymen’, missionaries and pastors. The topics will challenge all and will be too difficult for none.”
6. Although this is not stated in his letter, I would suggest that anyone interested may write to Dr. Schrotenboer for an informational folder and for a registration form. Many, if not all, of our ministers have already received this information. The General Secretary’s address is: Dr. Paul G. Schrotenboer, 729 Upper Gage Ave., Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
I will not make any kind of prediction as to what one will hear at this conference; nor do I intend to make any advance judgment. I only want to suggest that since our churches have expressed interest in sending observers to the RES, this would be an opportunity to observe and somewhat “to get the feel” of the RES in an unofficial way. From this point of view, it would be good if some of our ministers and of our membership could see their way clear to attend. Personally, I intend to do so if I can fit it into my summer schedule, D.V.