The meeting of Jan. 5, 1944 was opened by Rev. H. Veldman in the usual way. The churches were all represented by two delegates except Randolph, which had sent only one. After the credentials were received, classis was declared constituted. From then on Rev. R. Veldman wielded the hammer and Rev. H. Veldman recorded the minutes.
The president speaks a word of welcome to the delegates, including the delegates from Classis west who are present for the examination of Cand. W. Hofman. These delegates, the Revs. A. Cammenga, M. Gritter and G. Vos, as well as Rev. D. Jonker were given advisory vote.
Classis decided to conduct the examination of Cand. W. Hofman according to the schedule the Classical Committee had drawn up. They advised that the sermon be preached in the morning and the rest of the examination held in the afternoon.
Immediately, therefore, after the minutes were adopted Cand. Hofman preached a sermon on Prov. 10:28. He spoke on the theme:
The Hope of the Righteous—Gladness
As sermon committee the Revs. J. A. Heys and M. Schipper were appointed. Later in the day, before classis proceeded with the rest of the examination, this committee reported and advised classis “to accept this work of Cand. Hofman as abundant evidence that God has given him the necessary qualifications to labor fruitfully in our midst as a minister of the Word of God.” Classis expresses that it concurs in this advice of the committee.
After the sermon had been delivered by Cand. Hofman, classis took up the matters referred to in the minutes.
The stated clerk reports that he has carried out all the work assigned to him.
Hudsonville now presents her appeal to the next synod. Classis decides to appoint a committee to formulate an answer and report at the next meeting of classis. The Committee: The Revs. H. Hoeksema and A. Petter and elder N. Yonker.
A letter from Rev. P. De Boer, who had accepted the call to Redlands is read and received for information. The stated clerk is instructed to answer this brother.
Rev. J. De Jong is appointed to the Committee for Devotional Literature for our boys in the service in the place of Rev. P. De Boer. This committee is given the right to ask our churches for a collection in order that they may be able to defray the expenses connected with this work. In the near future they expect to publish another booklet containing brief meditations furnished by the ministers of Classis West.
A consistory protests against a decision of the former Classis. A letter from a certain brother, referring to this same matter, is read and received for information. Classis decides to maintain its decision in this matter and to motivate its advice by sending this consistory a report of a committee that had given advice in this matter at the former classis. Classis also expresses its sorrow to this consistory for its negligence in furnishing them with the necessary grounds for its advice in this matter. The brother referred to above will also receive a copy of this report.
The report of the Church Visitors showed that the Lord is blessing our Churches, that He is qualifying the office bearers for their duties and that through their ministry He is building up His people.
Holland came with a request for one, and Randolph came with a request for three classical appointments. The following committee is appointed to arrange for these: Rev. C. Hanko, Rev. B. Kok they present the following schedule, which was adopted by classis: RANDOLPH: Jan. 9, Rev. J.A. Heys: Jan. 1G, Rev. B. Kok: Jan. 23, Rev. C. Hanko. HOLLAND: Jan. 16, Rev. A. Petter.
An instruction from Fuller Ave. to raise the assessment for our Fund for Needy Churches, in order that some of our ministers may receive a raise in salary, does not carry.
The examination of Cand. Hofman is continued in the afternoon session according to the following schedule:
1. Dogmatics—Theology and Anthropology—Rev. H. Veldman.
Christology and Soteriology—Rev. A. Petter.
Ecclesiology and Eschatology—Rev. J. De Jong.
2. The confession—Rev. H. Hoeksema
3. Controversy and Bible knowledge—Rev. G.M. Ophoff.
4. Practica—Rev. B. Kok
After the examination is finished and a favorable report is received from the delegates of Classis West, Classis decides to advise the Consistory of Holland, who had requested classis to examine Cand. Hofman, to proceed with the ordination of Cand. Hofman.
Classis decides to present Cand. Hofman with a classical diploma. The officers of Classis will see to it that this is carried out.
Cand. Hofman is asked whether he subscribes to the Formula of Subscription. He answers in the affirmative. The chairman then notifies Cand. Hofman that he has successfully completed his classical examination. He further addresses a few fitting words to him. Classis then rises to sing the Holland doxology, whereupon Rev. H. Hoeksema closes with a word of thanks to God.
A protest of a brother against his consistory is read. The answer of the consistory and the answer of the brother to this letter are read. These letters are all received for information.
It is moved and supported to sustain the protest of the brother. An amendment is made, that the brother make a heartfelt confession to his consistory for having separated himself from the church. The amendment and the motion as amended were adopted.
Another letter is read of a brother who protests against the action of his consistory. The consistory’s answer is also read, and both are received for information.
Classis decides to express its disapproval of the brother’s disorderly walk; and further decides to declare, not that we desire to dispose of the brother, but to advise him that he must walk with his grievances in the orderly way.
Fuller Ave. asks for permission to erase the name of a baptized member from the rolls of the church. After receiving the information that this member has been labored with for a long time and that she continually neglects all the means of grace, permission was given to do so.
Holland asks classis to advise them on how to proceed with a discipline case. Classis advises that Holland should decide this matter for themselves.
It is decided to hold the next meeting of classis in Fuller Ave. the first Wednesday in April.
The stated clerk is instructed to thank the ladies for their catering services.
The questions of Art. 41 of the Church Order are asked and satisfactorily answered.
The committee for Byron Center reports that they had received no request from that Consistory. Classis decides to continue the committee.
The minutes are read and approved. Classis decides to adjourn. Rev. G. Vos closes with a word of prayer.
D. JONKER, Stated Clerk