Summary of Classis East

We give thanks to God that Classis East was able to convene on Wednesday, September 9, 2020. Sincere thanks is also directed to Byron Center Protestant Reformed Church for graciously and capably hosting the meeting of classis. In order to meet legally and safely, classis declared that its meeting was “essential to execute the business of Classis East,” and it adopted restrictions concerning who were allowed to be present at classis. Unfortunately it was not possible for visitors to observe the public deliberations of classis in person.

Rev. G. Eriks served as chairman of the meeting, appointing the committees of pre-advice, and presiding over the deliberations of the delegates.

Some of the routine business of classis included approving reports of the stated clerk, Classical Committee, and church visitors.

A classical appointment schedule was adopted for four vacant churches in Classis East: Cornerstone, Hudsonville, Kalamazoo, and Providence. This brings to mind the need to remember in our prayers to ask God to send forth more preachers into our churches. Let us also remember in our prayers the Wingham congregation, a fifth vacant church in Classis East, whose pastor will soon be moving to the First PRC of Edmonton. Border restrictions between the U.S. and Canada will likely complicate providing pulpit supply for our sister congregation.

Rev. Cory Griess was appointed to serve as the Moderator for Wingham during its vacancy.

Questions were asked of the delegates of each consistory to make sure that the consistories are properly governing the churches and to offer the assistance of classis to any consistory that might have a need (see Art. 41 of the Church Order).

Classis approved the expenses of the meeting totaling $1,941.

Other matters classis treated included:

  • Classis received two overtures to Synod 2021 (from two churches) to plan a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the PRCA in 2025. Classis approved the overtures and forwarded them on to Synod 2021.
  • One protest against a ground of a decision was sustained. Classis agreed with the protestant that the two points of explanation supporting the particular ground were in error. • One protest was declared legal but not sustained by classis.
  • Three protests were declared illegal because they were against decisions that have been treated by synod.
  • One letter asked classis to reconsider an appeal that had been declared illegal at an earlier classis. Classis ruled that the letter was not legally before it because it was not a protest against a decision, nor an appeal, nor an overture.

Classis accepted an invitation from the delegates of Grace PRC to host the next meeting of Classis at 8:00 a.m. on January 13, 2021.

Rev. Eriks thanked the delegates for their work and for their cooperation in doing the work of classis and closed the meeting in prayer. Classis adjourned around noon on Thursday, September 10.

In Christ’s service,

Rev. C. Spronk

Stated Clerk, Classis East