News

This Week's PRC and Sister-Church News, May 24-30, 2020

Matthew 28 20Today, May 24, is the twenty-first Lord's Day of 2020; we may note the following news and information concerning PRC congregations, the Seminary, sister churches, and mission fields.

We rejoice with those PR congregations and fellow saints who have begun and may begin worshiping publicly again, though it be with tight restrictions yet (smaller numbers, social distancing, masking, etc.). Some in Canada and in Michigan are beginning for the first time today (and in the weeks ahead), while in other parts (Indiana, Iowa, and Loveland, CO, for example) some are continuing with varying numbers of the congregation.

As many of our congregations and fellow believers (including our sister churches in the UK, the Philippines, and Singapore) continue to experience the temporary loss of this freedom, we pray for grace to wait on the Lord and to be content in His way until these restrictions are removed. And may we together - from church sanctuary and from home - through Jesus Christ and by His Spirit continue to worship our faithful Father, from whose love we can never be separated.

O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.  (Psalm 95:1-3)

QUOTE OF THE WEEK:

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the LORD forever: for in the LORD Jehovah is everlasting strength.”

Our text is part of a song, sung by God’s people. It reflects upon the coming day of God’s deliverance of His people. It is sung in the midst of troubles that must yet be faced. The theme of the Book of Isaiah is that “Zion shall be redeemed by judgment” (Isa. 1:27). This means that the wicked will be punished, but also that God’s people will be chastised for their own good. How desolate she shall stand in this world. God’s people must be reminded of the deliverance that will be seen and experienced. We hold on to the promise of God that He will build a strong city with salvation as its walls. The gates of that city must be opened up for us that we may enter in and enjoy the security. If the gates are shut, the walls will not be helpful. It is through the Lord Jesus that we have access. The church as a righteous nation enters the city by Christ’s atoning sacrifice on the cross. There we receive perfect safety and will dwell forever.

~ Rev. A. Spriensma, "Peace in the Storm" (one of the special meditations he is writing for the PRC website at present)

  • For those who may still be limited to house worship, these PRCs are live-streaming services today (whether full or partial). You are encouraged to worship with one of these congregations: Byron Center PRC at 9:30 AM and 5 PM (EST); Calvary PRC at 9:30 AM and 6 PM CDT;  Crete PRC at 9:30 AM and 5:30 PM CDT; Doon PRC at 9:30 AM and 5 PM; Faith PRC at 9:00 AM and 5:30 PM (EST); First PRC-GR at 9:30 AM and 5:00 PM (EST); First PRC-Holland at 9:30 AM and 5:00 PM; Georgetown PRC at 9:30 AM and 5:00 PM (EST); Grace PRC at 9:30 AM and 5 PM EST; Hope PRC-GR at 9:30 AM and 5:00 PM (EST); Hope PRC-Redlands, CA at 10 AM and 5 PM (PST); Hudsonville PRC at 9:30 AM and 5:30 PM EST; Hull PRC at 9:30 AM and 6:00 PM; Loveland PRC at 9:30 AM and 6 PM MST; Lynden PRC at 10:00 AM PST; Pittsburgh PRC at 9:30 and 5 PM EST; Southeast PRC at 9:30 AM and 5:00 PM EST; Southwest PRC at 9:30 AM and 5:30 (EST); Trinity PRC at 9:30 and 5:00 (EST); Zion PRC at 9:30 AM and 5:30 PM (EST). There are also many audio sermons that you can access on this website for your further use.

  • On May 17 Cornerstone PRC (Dyer, IN) voted to extend a call to Rev. R. Kleyn (Covenant of Grace PRC). May the Lord grant him the plain knowledge of His will as he considers this new call.

  • On May 18 Rev. C. Haak received the call from Kalamazoo PRC.

  • Rev. E. Guichelaar (Randolph PRC) is considering the call to First PRC of Edmonton, AB (received May 3). We pray for clear guidance from the Lord as he considers this call.

  • On May 3 Rev. J. Mahtani accepted the call to Hope PRC-GR. Lord willing, he will be installed on Sunday June 7, with Rev. C. Haak leading the service.

  • The Council of Unity PRC has formed a new trio from which to call a pastor. It consists of Revs. G. Eriks, C. Haak and E. Guichelaar. A congregational meeting is scheduled for June 17, 2020, 7:30 PM, Lord willing.

  • The Council of Grandville PRC has formed a new trio for minister on loan to Singapore: Revs. G. Eriks (Hudsonville PRC), E. Guichelaar (Randolph PRC), and R. Kleyn (Covenant of Grace PRC).
  • Rev. John Marcus and his family arrived safely in the Grand Rapids, MI area this past week. As he awaits a call within the PRC, may the Lord give him work to do and contentment in His way.
  • Did you know... that
    • Faith PRC is hosting another online Singspiration tonight at 7:30 p.m.? All are invited to join in and sing praises together to our God and King!
    • the "SB" is back in print? From the RFPA this week comes this good news: We are happy to report that restrictions on printing have been lifted and the three back issues of the Standard Bearer (April 15, May 1, and May 15) have been printed and mailed out this past week. The June issue should also arrive very close to its usual date. While you wait for the hard copies to arrive in the mail, you can still read the three back issues online for free (https://rfpa.org/pages/the-standard-bearer).
    • our home missionary, Rev. A. Spriensma, is writing short meditations for the PRC website - just for these present times and circumstances? Two more were posted this past week (cf. above). Be sure to look them up and read them for your spiritual profit!

DENOMINATIONAL NEWS:

Special note re PRC Synod 2020: The Board of Trustees and the Council of Trinity Protestant Reformed Church (the convening church for Synod 2020) have been forced to make restrictions on the meetings of the synod of the Protestant Reformed Churches which begins its meetings on Tuesday, June 9, 2020. The Coronavirus pandemic and the consequent Executive Orders of Michigan’s governor make it necessary to limit the attendance at synod’s meetings to “those whose in-person presence is strictly necessary” (Executive Order 2020-77) to conduct the business of synod, i.e., the delegates, the advisors, the staff of Trinity PRC, the appellants and protestants, which number shall be no more than 35 persons. Those who attend must observe COVID-19 safety protocol. Attendance at the pre-synodical worship service on Monday, June 8, is limited to the delegates, the advisors, the Council members of Trinity PRC and their spouses, but it will be live-streamed. We accept this as the will of our heavenly Father for the meetings of this year’s synod, and ask that you remember the meetings of synod in your prayers.

Front May 2020 3PRC Seminary News:

  • The seminary has completed its second semester and has entered its spring/summer break. Some of the plans the professors and students had for the summer have changed due to COVID-19, but there are other activities that are hoped can be carried out Continue to pray for faculy, students, and staff as we continue our labors this spring and summer.

  • Due to the COVID-19 restrictions (stay-at-home order now entended to June 12), seminary is open only for essential operations at this time. The staff can try to assist you with any needs, however. Call or email the seminary with your important needs.
  • The Spring 2020 issue of the PR Theological Journal is now available - in digital (pdf and epub) form only at present. Our printer has informed us that it will be a few weeks before the print edition can be produced.
  • Future Teachers and Ministers: Information for the 2020 PR Scholarship Fund essay competition is now available. Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to receive the essay topics and submission requirements. Completed essays must be submitted by May 30th.

CERC ProfRD 2020 1
Prof. R. Dykstra giving a meditation at a fellowship dinner earlier this year in Covenant ERC, Singapore (taken from her last newsletter).

SISTER-CHURCH NEWS:

  • Concerning our sister church in Singapore, Covenant ERC, the following may be noted from her bulletin today:
    • With the phase release of the Circuit Breaker, we will still need to do live streaming of our services until further notice. Pray for Brother Josiah and the elders as they bring the word of God to us every Lord’s Day.
    • Grandville PRC, the calling church for our Minister on Loan (MOL), has indicated that they are now able to call a congregation meeting as the lockdown in Michigan has been relaxed. However, in view of the various measures put up by the Singapore Government to fight the spread of COVID-19 virus, Grandville PRC is concerned how it would affect the calling of the MOL. Pray to this end that God will open doors for the MOL to come to Singapore.
    • The April 2020 newsletter - Reformed News Asia #59 - was published and posted last week. You may find it on this page.
  • Concerning our sister church in Ballymena, N. Ireland, Covenant PRC,  the following may be noted:
    • Rev. A. stewart continues to lead the services via live-stream.
    • Read the latest CPRC newsletter - February 2020!
    • Read the new May 2020 issue of the "Covenant Reformed News"!
    • Sadly, given the uncertainty caused by the coronavirus (in God's sovereign decree), the British Reformed Fellowship (BRF) Conference has been rescheduled to (basically) the same week next year. Thus the BRF Conference will not be taking place in 2020. Instead, it is rescheduled to 10-17 July, 2021. Same venue: Castlewellan Castle (http://castlewellancastle.org/). Same theme: Union With Christ. Same speakers: Prof. Engelsma and Rev. Lanning (USA), with John Perkins (England) giving the special lecture. For more on the BRF, see https://www.britishreformed.org/

  • Concerning the PRC in the Philippines, the following may be gleaned from the bulletins of the Berean PRC, Bulacan PRC, Maranatha PRC, and Provident CC:
    • Congregational and Denominational News:

~ Berean PRC: Rev. V. Ibe will lead us in our worship services today via live-streaming on our Facebook page. Our brothers and sisters in Gabaldon, Nueva Ecija will join us today in our worship services via Facebook live, the Lord willing.

~ PRC of Bulacan: The members of the congregation continue to worship at home. Rev. J. Flores is doing a short devotional each night via Zoom.

~ Maranatha PRC: Rev. R.Smit  will lead us in both Worship Services live-stream via Facebook . Maranatha Protestant Reformed Church at 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. D.V. Metro Manila is now under the Modified Enhancement Community Quarantine (MECQ) up to May 31, 2020. Please STAY AT HOME. A number of public transportations are allowed in the City of Valenzuela with corresponding rulesand regulations.

~ Provident PRC: Rev. D. Kleyn will livestream for our family worship at home today in the morning and evening. Morning: https://youtu.be/ZCdE3wAPRi0. Evening: https://youtu.be/dVS5yRE2IJM. The Wednesday Bible study will meet at 8:00 pm. All are welcome to join on Zoom with meeting ID #949-958-1046. We will finish our study of Revelation 7 and proceed to chapter 8, Lord willing.

~The Classis’ meeting of the PRCP will be held on June 12, 2020, that is next month; however, the consistory of each churches is asked to cancel the meeting and will be rescheduled on the available dates either July or August of this year.

~ And for more on the life and work of our "sisters" in the Far East read the news under Philippine missions.

  • 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 also.

good news afflicted
Do you desire some good gospel good news in these troublous times? Read this resource for peace and comfort in Jesus Christ.

SPECIAL NOTICES:

  • Would you like to learn more about the PRC and her doctrines and practices? Are you in need of some pamphlets and/or articles 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.

  • Psalter 1912 2Psalter music available FREE: the entire collection of Psalm Choir videos and CDs is currently available free. With many PRC members and fellow saints worshiping at home due to the present pandemic, these are a valuable resource. You may find the playlists on YouTube here. And, all volumes of the Psalm Choir CDs may be found here. These too can be used for family or personal devotions, as well as for personal comfort and peace in seasons of fear and distress.
     
  • The Reformed Book Outlet is temporarily closed for the safety of our volunteers. If you need to place an order or have questions, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We will not be answering the phone. Thank you.

RWH Logo 2019

  • Listen to the Reformed Witness Hour each Sunday - on a radio station near you or on Sermonaudio wherever you are!
    • Continuing this month, Rev. R. Kleyn (Covenant of Grace PRC in Spokane, WA) has some special messages based on the end of Hebrews 10. Today's message is titled "Why Go to Church?" based on Hebrews 10:25. Listen to the broadcast on the station near you or visit the links provided here to listen to this program.

    • From the Reformed Witness Hour Committee:

~ The Reformed Witness Hour Committee wishes to remind everyone that you can receive their bi-monthly newsletter via email simply by signing up at http://eepurl.com/gikNsL.  Each newsletter contains information about places around our globe where the RWH is downloaded; news about the RWH’s witness on the radio and via the internet, printed booklet, and CD and links to many popular and relevant RWH messages.

~ A Spanish edition of the RWH has been produced and may be found on this YouTube channel (PRC Espanol). Why not check it out - and help spread the word!

 adult bible 1

ESPECIALLY FOR PRC Young People and Young Adults:

  • PRYP Convention News: With heavy hearts Georgetown PRC and the Federation Board have decided to postpone the 2020 Young People’s convention until next year. Due to the current conditions in our country, getting 500 -600 people together in one location does not seem wise at this time. The Fed Board would like to adhere to the guidelines put out by the government and we do not want to have the parents weigh the benefits of sending their child to the convention against the risk of exposing them to this virus. Georgetown PRC is planning to host the convention next year.
  • From the Beacon Lights staff: Due to our printer not being able to print the magazine right now because of COVID-19, we have decided to put the May issue of Beacon Lights on our website, free of charge, for anyone who wishes to read the month’s issue. Visit us at beaconlights.org to read the issue, which will be published on May 1!

  • The Western Young People's Retreat - Update! Lynden and Spokane Young People's Retreat is still being tentatively planned for July 14-17, 2020, at Camp Sanders in Tensed, Idaho. The facility director thinks that the camp will be open and running by then. For registration information or other questions please contact Rev. Rodney Kleyn by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  • Colorado Retreat: Registration for the August 3–6 Colorado Young Adults’ Retreat opens tomorrow at www.lovelandprc.org/retreat. Registration will be open for one month, or until capacity is reached. Post-high young adults are welcome to join us August 3-6 for a young adults retreat in the Rocky Mountains. Pastors Key and Guichelaar will speak for us on II Timothy 1:7, as we learn to be more 'Brave and Bold in the Faith'.

  • Future Teachers and Ministers: Information for the 2020 PR Scholarship Fund essay competition is now available. Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to receive the essay topics and submission requirements. Completed essays must be submitted by May 30th. 

  • The latest issue of the young peoples' magazine, Salt Shaker, is available (from Singapore!). Find the March 2020 issue here.

PRF Leyte 2018
PR Fellowship in Albuera, Leyte, where services have begun again (see note below)

PRC MISSION NEWS:

Domestic Labors:

  • 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.
    • Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, his present travels and activities are quite limited. The ongoing Bible study in Dorr, MI led by our missionary is currently postponed also.
    • But, he has been writing short meditations for the PRC website. You may find those here.
  • Limerick Reformed Fellowship News:
    • Rev. M. McGeown continues to lead the services via live-streaming during the UK's lockdown. He recently accepted the call to Providence PRC in Hudsonville, MI. Plans are being made for him to complete his labors in Limerick and move to Michigan as soon as it is possible, but it could be many months before that happens.
    • A new Limerick RF Newsletter was published this month (May). You may find that here.

    • (From the PRC Contact Commitee) Our sister church, the Covenant Protestant Reformed Church in Northern Ireland, reports that they have decided to close the mission station in Limerick, Ireland that they had been overseeing for the past ten years. ...We submit this disappointment to the good providence of God who is alone wise. Remember the saints in Limerick and Rev. McGeown in your prayers.

Philippine Missions:

  • Berean PRC News: This congregation continues to work in Gabaldon, Nueve Ecija (the saints join Berean PRC services via live-stream during this time of confinement).
  • PRC of Bulacan News: The Consistory reports this week that they have begun public services again in the PR Fellowship in Albuera. Rev. J. Flores plans to lead them by Zoom today (morning service only).
  • Maranatha PRC News: 

    The missionary work in Sipalay, Negros Occ is temporarily cancelled due to the Enchancement Community Quaratine (now extended through May 30). Let us pray that the Lord will end this plague and let His work of preaching and teaching be continued.

  • For more on life and activities in the Philippines from the personal perspective of the missionary's, visit the Kleyn's blog, the Holstege's, and the Smits!

We remember in prayer the needs of these busy pastors and missionaries in the Philippines, especially in these difficult days of COVID-19  quarantine. May the Lord of the harvest give them grace to carry on as best they can and be encouraged in all their labors.

India:

  • Let us remember to pray for the Lord's blessing on Georgetown PRC's labor in Vellore, India. The saints in that part of the world are experiencing severe restrictions too.
  • Let us pray for our sister church's work (Covenant ERC in Singapore) in Kolkata, through Rev. E. Singh. The body of Christ in that place is also deeply affected by the pandemic. Let's be in prayer for these fellow saints too. This update was in CERC's bulletin today:

We are thankful that God has preserved our brethren in CERCI in Kolkata through the Super Cyclonic Storm Amphan which landed in Kolkata this past Wednesday & Thursday. Rev Singh’s house has sustained some severe damages to the roof of a room and the outside walls of certain parts of the building. Rev Singh managed to contact all the saints and they are all well except one family where the roof of the house was blown away by the cyclone. They are now staying with their cousin near to where they live. Continue to pray for God’s provisions for the needs of our brethren amidst the COVID-19 virus pandemic situation.

Myanmar:

  • We also remember Hope PRC's (Grand Rapids, MI) support of and involvement with Rev. Titus' work in Myanmar. 
Last modified on 25 May 2020

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