News From our Churches

A New Year

With this issue we turn the calendar page to 2017. We give thanks to God for His almighty care and His daily blessings through the past year! Truly God is good to Israel (Ps. 73:1)—and to us. May He guide and care for our churches in the coming year as only the Almighty can do! Praise be to Him!

Congregational Activities

Supporters of Hope PR Christian School in Redlands, CA participated in a doubles ping-pong tournament, with proceeds to the school and goodies like homemade caramel corn, ice cream, and hot cider served for refreshments.

Young People’s Activities

The Young People’s Society of First PRC of Edmonton, AB, Canada recently invited the young people of neighboring Immanuel PRC of Lacombe to join them for an evening game night with snacks and refreshments in the basement of the Edmonton church.

Sister-Church Activities

One of many quotes from the bulletin of Covenant PRC of Ballymena, Northern Ireland includes this:

I send to you two Czech translations. I spent a great time with these articles. When I read and reread your thoughts, I grow in Reformed (biblical!) understanding of our Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you! By the way, I became a book club member of the rfpa.org! I’m looking forward to the book The Reformed Baptism Form by B. Wielenga.—from the Czech Republic

From the latest newsletter by Rev. Martyn McGeown in Limerick, Republic of Ireland, we learn this:

In my last newsletter, I mentioned that I have had some opportunities to witness by writing letters in the local newspaper, the Limerick Post. Between April and July, the Post published eight of my responses to Roman Catholics and atheists. Since then, the newspaper has published three more of my letters (October 22, November 12, and November 26) in response to atheists who attacked the veracity, consistency, and clarity of the Word of God. An atheist has also started a private e-mail correspondence with me in response to what he read in the Post. The letters have been reprinted on the back of the bulletin and on the LRF blog…. Christmas is also coming. Because last Sunday (November 20) Limerick had its annual ceremony of the official “turning on of the Christmas lights” in the city centre, the city was gridlocked with extra traffic. Traffic was so bad that Bill Davies, our oldest member (aged 81) was unable, after driving around the block six times, to find suitable, nearby, on-street parking; so he had to drive home again and missed the evening service. Such is the inconvenience at times of renting a hall in Limerick: parking is hard to find, and it will only get worse as the Christmas shopping frenzy continues. In addition, this year December 25 is on a Sunday, which means that the hall will be unavailable for rent. After I tried unsuccessfully to book a room elsewhere on that day, we have decided to worship in a member’s home on that occasion.

The Session of Covenant Evangelical Reformed Church of Singapore announced that it had nominated Emmanuel Singh to be called as her missionary to Kolkata. A congregational meeting was held on Sunday, December 11, at which meeting the congregation voted to call Emmanuel as their missionary. This procedure followed the requirements of the Church Order, Articles 4, 5, and 9. All voting members (male, communicant members) were to attend the meeting. All others were invited to observe.

The CERC also reported:

Due to the currency crisis in India, the Church Camp in Kolkata, which had been scheduled for 25- 27 November, has been cancelled for now. Our delegation will not be traveling to Kolkata until the situation has settled down, which will probably be in 2017. This decision was made after discussion with Emmanuel and Sudip (the Camp Chairman), who reported that it is very difficult for some people to get food, and very difficult to travel via bus. Society is in turmoil right now. The Church Camp and our delegation’s presence would not do anything to help the turmoil, and may even put added pressure on the people. Let us pray for the saints in Kolkata, including that God would provide their daily bread, and use this as an opportunity for them to teach their neighbors that man cannot live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord.

Minister Activities

Rev. Brian Huizinga declined the call he was considering from Southwest PRC, MI. Southwest announced the new trio of Revs. G. Eriks, C. Griess, and R. Kleyn, with Rev. G. Eriks receiving the call on December 7.

On November 27 Rev. Cory Griess answered the call from Byron Center PRC to be the next domestic missionary. God led Rev. Griess to decline this call and remain as pastor in Calvary PRC.

The congregation at Doon, IA extended a call to Rev. Rodney Kleyn (Spokane, WA) to be the third missionary to the Republic of the Philippines. Rev. Kleyn answered this call on December 18.

First PRC of Holland, MI called Rev. Allen Brummel, pastor at Heritage PRC in Sioux Falls, SD to be their next pastor. Rev. Brummel declined this call on December 11.

Mission Activities

A delegation of the Contact Committee of the PRCA visited the Philippines from December 15-27. The delegation consisted of Prof. R. Dykstra and Rev. G. Eriks. The main purpose of their visit was to continue discussions with our PRCP churches regarding a sister-church relationship between the PRCP and the PRCA. Meetings with all the PRCP officebearers were scheduled for both Saturday, December 17 and Saturday, December 24, to be held in Maranatha PRC at 9:00 a.m. The delegates also preached on their two Sundays there according to the following schedule: December 18—Rev. Eriks in the Berean PRC and Prof. Dykstra in Provident Christian Church. December 25—Rev. Eriks in the PRC in Bulacan, and Prof. Dykstra in Maranatha PRC. May God use this visit for the benefit of the churches there and for His glory!

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1.