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News from the PRC and Sister Churches for the Week of December 2, 2018 *(Updated)

Isaiah 7 14On this forty-eighth Lord's Day of 2018, December 2, we provide the following news and information concerning PRC congregations, the Seminary, mission fields, and sister churches.

CONGREGATIONAL NEWS:

  • Last Sunday, November 25, Grandville PRC voted to call Rev. S. Key (Loveland,CO PRC) to serve as the next minister-on-loan to the Covenant ERC in Singapore. We pray for the Lord's guidance as he weighs this call with the one he has from his current congregation.

  • The Council of Immanuel PRC (Labombe, AB) has announced a new trio from which to call her next pastor: Rev. Bill Langerak (Southeast, MI), Rev. James Lanning (Hull, IA), and Rev. Martin VanderWal (Wingham, ON). The congregational meeting to vote on this will take place TODAY. *UPDATE: Rev. Bill Langerak has received this call.

  • The Council of Trinity PRC (Hudsonville, MI) anounces a new trio from which to call a pastor: Rev. J. Engelsma (Doon, IA), Rev. G. Eriks (Hudsonville), and Rev. W. Langerak (Southeast).

 DENOMINATIONAL NEWS:

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*Footings and walls poured this past week for new seminary addition

PRC Seminary News:

  • *Work has begun on the seminary addition project that will house the new PRC archives and two offices during the professor transition period in the next few years. For more updates, visit this blog post.

  • Seminary is now entering its fourteenth week of classes in this first semester. Continue to pray for the professors, students, and staff as they busy themselves in the work of training men for the gospel ministry.

  • The internships of Seminarians Matt Kortus and Jacob Maatman began July 1. Sem. Kortus is interning at Trinity PRC under Rev. N. Decker and the Council there. Sem. Maatman is interning at Hudsonville PRC under Rev. G. Eriks and his Council. The internship program runs from July 1 to December 31.

  • The PRC Synod 2018 took a decision urging “the churches and the pastors in particular in their public prayers to pray the Lord of the harvest for able, faithful, and devoted pastors and teachers (Ephesians 4:11) for us and our children, as well as for the gathering of the elect out of the nations (Matthew 28:19).” A number of ministers are nearing the age of emeritation, and the number of students in the seminary at this time will not be sufficient to fill the upcoming needs of our churches either in our own congregations or in the work of missions. Please remember this urgent need in your prayers and encourage young men whom you observe to have the gifts to consider the ministry.

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  • The Seminary faculty along with Trinity PRC Evangelism Committee are busy implementing plans for a Spring 2019 conference to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the great Synod of Dordt, 1618/19 - 2018/19. The following updates are being given:
    Dordt 400: Did you know November 13 1618, 400 years ago, the Synod of Dordt began and didn’t conclude until nearly 6 months and 154 meetings later?! Are you familiar with the preceding history that led to this lengthy meeting? Do you know the week by week events that happened during the Great Synod? Follow that history and join the blog at Dordt400.org to view the weekly events  Synod of Dordt. Stay up to speed in light of Seminary's conference April 25-27 2019.

    Dordt 400 Writing contest:  Don’t forget that the conference also includes a writing contest with great prizes!  Sign up and submit your essay by January 15 at the conference website Dordt400.org

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*The lastest issue of "Covenant Reformed News" is available (cf. below)

SISTER-CHURCH NEWS:

  • The PRC now has an official sister-church relationship with the PRC in the Philippines, confirmed at this year's synod! We rejoice in this evidence of the Lord's blessing on the work in the Philippines and of the unity of Christ's church, which He gathers from all nations, tribes, and tongues. The Classis of the PRC in the Philippines recently made a significant decision relating to Theological training for future ministers of the Word. This is the note that was sent out:

“For your information, the Classis of the PRCP decided on October 31, 2018, that theological instruction of prospective students for the ministry of the Word and Sacraments in the PRCP should begin in August 2019, the Lord willing.  To this goal, Classis approved the recommendation of its Committee 1 that the 3 PRCA missionaries (Rev. Holstege, Rev. Kleyn, and Rev. Smit) be appointed to serve as an initial faculty to assist Committee 1 with the necessary preparations and arrangements for the start of a Protestant Reformed theological training. Currently, much planning and preparation are underway regarding curriculum, instructors, location, and finances.  Many of these plans will need to be approved by the Classis in February and June 2019 so that there will be more announcements as August 2019 approaches. Committee 1 and the missionaries covet your fervent prayers to our heavenly Father that He may bless us with the grace and wisdom necessary as we work towards the start of instruction to prospective students next August, subject to His will.”  

  • Concerning our sister church in Singapore, Covenant ERC, we may note the following items (From her bulletin today):
    • "Last Sunday, Grandville PRC congregation had voted to extend the call to Rev Steven Key to be the Minister-on-Loan to Singapore. Rev Key is currently the pastor of Loveland PRC, Colorado. He has 3 weeks to consider this special call and prayerfully seek God’s will. Do remember to commit Rev Key in yours and your family prayers. Pray that the Lord will make His will plain to Rev Key so that he answers the call with a clear conviction of heart. Let us continue to wait patiently upon the Lord who knows our needs and will send us the man of His choosing in His perfect time."

    • Her latest newsletter (OCTOBER 2018) - Reformed News Asia - was recently posted and may be found on this page.

    • The latest young peoples' magazine, Salt Shakers, was received and posted recently (September 2018 - cf. image above). Check that out on this page.
  • The PRC also has a "corresponding relationship" with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) of Australia. We remember these brothers and sisters in our prayers and labors too.

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*A great place for Christmas gifts - cards, music, and books!
(cf. below)

SPECIAL NOTICES:

  • *Have you visited the Reformed Book Outlet in downtown Hudsonville, MI recently? If you or a friend are interested in spiritually edifying music, as well as in Bibles (and Bible study materials!)  and other Reformed literature, do so, or visit their website. Here is the notice of their December specials: "The Reformed Book Outlet in Hudsonville is having a December sale. Books, Bibles, and Bible covers are 25% off MSRP. We are also going to be open until 8:30 two nights in December, Monday December 10 and Monday December 17. Lastly, we are going to be doing a weekly drawing. Prizes include a book, gift certificate, Bible, and a CD. You must sign up each week."

  • Looking for Reformed literature and a solid Reformed and biblical magazine to read? Visit the Reformed Free Publishing Association's website (www.rfpa.org), where you will find information on books in all major Christian categories, as well as on the bi-monthly periodical, the Standard Bearer.

  • If you are in need of some pamphlets published by the PRC for use in evangelism and/or witnessing, visit the PRCA Evangelism page for a complete list of materials available in digital format or by order from the publishing church. Looking for items on worship in the PRC? Visit this page for more information.

  • You can now listen to the Heidelberg Catechism and the Belgic Confession on audio! Visiit the links provided to hear the Catechism and the Confession read. It's another excellent way to learn the Reformed faith and memorize these Reformed creeds.

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  • Don't forget to listen to the Reformed Witness Hour each Sunday (on radio or on the Internet)! Today Rev. W. Bruinsma (pastor of Pittsburgh PRC) gives a message based on Psalm 65:4 - "The Goodness of God's House" (which you may listen to at this link)

  • The RWH has a new, updated website! Please visit reformedwitnesshour.org to watch our introduction video, view pictures and audio from our history, and read and listen to almost 20 years of past radio broadcasts! If you haven’t visited the RWH website recently, now is an excellent time to familiarize yourself with this important radio-internet ministry of the PRC.

  • A new Spanish edition of the RWH is being produced and may be found on this YouTube channel (PRC Espanol). Look for new messages each week - and help spread the word!

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ESPECIALLY FOR PRC YP and YA:

  • Advance notice! The Loveland Young Adults Retreat is scheduled to occur March 18-21 at the YMCA. The speakers will be Rev. S. Key and Rev. R. VanOverloop. The theme is "Ambassadors for Christ", based on the text II Corinthians 5:20. More details to come.

  • Are YOU a subscriber to the PR Young People's magazine, the Beacon Lights? Visit the website and learn how to become one!

  • The latest young peoples' magazine of Covenant ERC in Singapore, Salt Shakers, was received and posted (September 2018 - cf. image above). Check that out on this page.

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*See the note below about a special mission trip of Rev. Titus in Myanmar this week (bottom of list)

MISSION NEWS:

  • Remember in prayer our home missionary, Rev. A. Spriensma, who continues to labor in the West Michigan area and beyond through Byron Center PRC, the calling church. From her bulletin today we find this reminder: "The Dorr Bible Study will meet this Thursday, December 6 at 7:30 PM. We will be studying the last part of John 3. All are welcome to join us at the library and bring friends and neighbors.!"

  • From the bulletin of Georgetown PRC today we learn this concerning her work in India and the most recent delegation:
    • Pastor and Mary Haak returned home this past Tuesday from the PRCV of India. “We were greatly blessed and much encouraged by our visit. There is growth in grace and truth in the PRCV, expanding opportunities for training area pastors, fervent love for Reformed Truth, and true compassion and love shown to the children of the GFH.  Our love for the brothers and sister in India grows with each visit. Their joy in and love for the gospel of God’s grace is an example to us.”
    • Note from Pastor Raj: “We were much encouraged by your visit. We continue to depend on God for the needed grace to continue to serve Him by serving His people in spite of several challenges. It is the Reformed Faith that makes us comforted. Thanks you so much for all your love and compassion in supporting our life and work. We love to serve the Lord more and more.”
  • Don't forget to follow the Kleyn's blog on life and activities in the Philippines. And that also includes the Holstege's! And don't miss out on the Smits once again too!

  • From this Sunday's bulletins of the Provident Christian Church in Marikina and the Maranatha PRC in Valenzuela, the Philippines we find the following notes concerning their pastors as well as concerning our missionaries and their labors today and in this coming week:

    • Provident CC:
      • Rev. Holstege will preach in the first service today. Rev. Kleyn will preach in the second service.

      • The Wednesday night class will meet this week at 7:30. We will discuss the history of the Fall of Man into Sin and the Mother Promise.
      • December 28, 2018 is the commemoration of the 400th year anniversary of the Synod of Dordt and the conference will be hosted by the Provident Christian Church(Reformed) at 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Rev. D. Holstege wil speak on Dordt and the Doctrine of Grace, Rev. V. Ibe on Dordt and Preaching of the Gospel and Rev. R. Smit on Dordt and its concern for faithful Sabbath keeping. Moderator is Rev. D. Kleyn. RFPA books on sells. Registration is P50. Please invite someone with you.

    • Maranatha PRC:
      • Today our pastor, Rev. L. Trinidad will lead both services.
      • Next week: Rev.R. Smit plans to lead both services.

Let us continue in prayer to the Lord for the fulfillment of the needs of these busy pastors and missionaries in the Philippines. May the Lord of the harvest give them grace to be faithful and encouraged in all their labors.

  • *Do not forget Hope PRC's (Grand Rapids, MI) support of and involvement with Rev. Titus' work in Myanmar (June 2018), visit this page. From Hope PRC's bulletin this week we learn of a special trip of Rev. Titus this week:

"This week Wednesday, Rev. Titus and Cer Te will depart for a one week trip to the Rakhine State, which is 700 km or twelve hours by car from Yangon. They plan to visit three villages with churches that are interested in joining the Protestant Reformed Churches in Myanmar. Remember to pray for safety and fruit on this effort in Myanmar also. “Thanks be to God, which put the same earnest care into the heart of Titus for you. For indeed he accepted the exhortation; but being more forward, of his own accord he went unto you” (2 Cor. 8:16–17)."

Last modified on 05 December 2018

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