The following are special highlights of PRC and sister-church news for this Sunday, July 18, the twenty-ninth Lord's Day of this year 2021.
Today on this new Lord's Day, as members of Christ's body and bride, the church, we gather publicly in worship to bring our praise and thanks to our triune God for all His gifts, especially the gift of salvation full and free through His Son. Through the work of our Lord's Spirit may we give our glorious God the honor due His name. May these words of the psalmist be ours:
The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good. The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one. ...Oh that the salvation of Israel were come out of Zion! when the LORD bringeth back the captivity of his people, Jacob shall rejoice, and Israel shall be glad. ~ Psalm 14:1-3,7
- If you are new to this website and are interested in the PRC, we invite you to join us at any of our services (morning and afternoon/evening). For congregations, locations and times, visit this page.
- Last Sunday Rev. J. Engelsma (Doon PRC, IA) accepted the call from Crete PRC (IL). From Doon's bulletin today we learn some subsequent details: Rev.& Courtney Engelsma and family plan to move the week of August 2. Rev.Engelsma plans to preach his farewell sermon in the evening service on August 1. Tentative plans are for him to be installed as the pastor of Crete PRC in the morning service on August 15.
- Also last Sunday Rev. C.Griess (First PRC, Grand Rapids, MI) accepted the call to serve as professor in the PRC Seminary, replacing Prof. B. Gritters in the area of Practical Theology and NT Studies. According to First's bulletin today, Rev. Griess plans to give his farewell on August 8.
- Hudsonville PRC's Council has formed a new trio of Rev. R. Kleyn [Covenant of Grace PRC], Rev. E. Guichelaar [Randolph PRC], and Rev. R. Barnhill [Peace PRC]. The congregational meeting is tonight. *UPDATE: Rev. R. Kleyn received this call.
- From Kalamazoo PRC's bulletin today: The consistory presents to the congregation a trio of ministers consisting of Rev. Carl Haak, Georgetown PRC; Rev. Matt DeBoer, Edgerton, MN; and Rev. Dennis Lee, formerly of Bethel PRC, Roselle, IL. Lord willing, a special congregational meeting is planned for Sunday, August 1, following the evening service, to vote to extend a call to one of these men.
- Still Totally Depraved? Come and hear a lecture by Prof. David Engelsma on this very timely topic. Friday, July 30 at 7:30 PM at Fair Haven Church, 2900 Baldwin St. Hudsonville, MI. Sponsored by Trinity PRC. Lecture will not be live streamed or recorded. Plan to attend.
- Classical appointments and pulpit supply for today in the vacant PRCs: Rev. M.DeBoer in Crete PRC (IL); Prof. D.Kuiper and Prof. B.Gritters in First PRC-Holland; Prof. R.Cammenga and Rev. M.DeVries in Hudsonville PRC; Sem. M.Koerner and Rev. C.Griess in Kalamazoo PRC; Prof. B.Gritters and Rev. D.Noorman in Providence PRC. What a privilege and blessing of our church federation it is to be able to help one another in this need!
May we also remember to pray for all the needs of these vacant congregations, including Wingham PRC, which cannot receive pulpit supply from the U.S. at this time (pandemic travel restrictions).
- For those who may still be limited to house worship, whether completely or partially, we invite you to visit the PR churches page and follow the links to the websites where the churches' livestream may be found. Or you may visit the selected audio sermon page and listen to one of your choice there.
PRC DENOMINATIONAL NEWS:
- PRC Synod 2021: The delegates and advisors met from June 9-17. For the daily reports on synod's work and decisions, visit this page. The printed PRC Acts of Synod 2021 and Yearbook is being worked on and should be available sometime this summer.
- Synod 2021 instructed the Stated Clerk to include in his letter to the churches a notice of the urgent need for seminary students (Art. 73). The urgency arises from the number of vacant churches, the need for our denomination to fulfill the calling of home missions, the age of some of our older ministers, and the next potential graduate from our seminary is two years away. Let us remember this need for men to proclaim the good news of forgiveness in Jesus Christ in our public and private prayers. Also, consistories should always be ready to encourage any young man in your congregation who has some of the gifts for the ministry
- Revs. D. Lee and J. Marcus are eligible for calls in the PRC and her sister churches. Let us remember them in prayer as they await new charges.
PRC Seminary Notices:
- The seminary is in her summer break. Continue to pray for the seminary in all her needs. The faculty keeps busy with preparation for the next term as well as with other activities, and many of the students return to their summer jobs.
- Student news: Marcus Wee (entering his senior year) has begun his internship at Faith PRC (Jenison, MI). Graduate and Cand. Josiah Tan and his family returned to Singapore this past week, where his session just made a significant decision (see under Covenant ERC news below). Aaron Van Dyke (Faith PRC) has been granted admission to the seminary and will begin his first year this fall. Matt Koerner (entering his junior year) has been licensed to speak a word of edification in the churches. As of May 30 he has begun preaching in various PRCs, including out west this summer.
- The seminary, including the library and bookstore, are open daily during the summer months, except for holidays (M-F, 8-5). The staff is present to assist with any needs you may have.
- In June the PRC Synod extended a call to Rev. C.Griess (pastor of First PRC, Grand Rapids, MI) to serve as professor in the PRC Seminary, replacing Prof. B. Gritters in the area of Practical Theology and NT Studies. On July 11 he announced his acceptance of that call. We thank the Lord for His leading and pray for Rev. Griess, his wife, and family as they will face this change of labor and life in the months ahead.
- Coming this Fall! Seminary Conference: What is preaching? What does it mean to preach the gospel? How does one preach the commands of Scripture? What is application in preaching? Make plans now to hear four speeches by the seminary professors, under the conference theme "The Lord Gave the Word: Preaching the Gospel." The conference will be hosted by Trinity PRC, on the late afternoon and evening of October 28 and 29. More details will follow.
- For the latest seminary news and information, visit the seminary's website.
- From Georgetown PRC's bulletin today re her work in Vellore, India: India Update: The Vellore PRC had their first in person service in several months. They met in their regular meeting place - a room on the second floor of a building that they have rented for many years. Some came in person, others joined via live stream. They still plan to build their own church building but, obviously, this is on the back burner during this time of COVID. The GFH continues to get visits from local authorities for various reasons. Each time they come, they are impressed with the love and care shown to these children as well as the very careful record keeping. Kasthuri has trained some of the older children to help with accounting and record keeping.
- Covenant ERC, Singapore and her Kolkata, India mission work:
- From the "Pastoral Voice" in her bulletin today:
Session met this past Thursday and unanimously voted to nominate Candidate Josiah Tan as the candidate for the extension of the call to be the residential minister of CERC. We rejoice immensely and marvel at how God in His infinite goodness and mercy has provided and equipped our brother for the work of the ministry. Praise the Lord! Two weeks of approbation follows and 9 August will be the date set for the 2nd Extra Congregation Meeting for the congregation to vote to extend the call to Candidate Josiah Tan and to approve the minister’s remuneration package. Our brother will thereafter be given 6 weeks to respond to the call. If our brother takes up the call before Rev Smidstra leaves for USA, an ordination service could take place by 22 August, D.V. Please pray earnestly that the Lord’s will be done.
- From the "Pastoral Voice" in her bulletin today:
- Covenant PRC, N. Ireland and her Limerick, Ireland mission:
- Rev. A. Stewart continues to minister the Word to the saints in Ballymena.
- Be sure to check out the latest edition of "Covenant Reformed News" (June 2021). Follow the link to read the latest profitable articles.
- Limerick Reformed Fellowship: On July 4 the final services were held for the saints there, led by Rev. A. Stewart. Rev. M.McGeown is making final preparations to come to the U.S. the beginning of August, D.V.
- PRC in the Philippines and her mission work:
- The last Philippines' Newsletter may be found here.
- Berean PRC bulletin: Rev. Ibe will lead us in our worship services today, D.V. FYI, live streaming of our worship services will be available on Berean PRC Facebook page. ...The saints in All of Grace Protestant Reformed Fellowship (AGPRF), Gabaldon, Nueva Ecijawill join us in our worship services thru live streaming at Facebook live, D. V.
- Provident PRC bulletin: The elders will lead our worship services today using video recordings of sermons from the PRCA. May God equip and strengthen them for this. Next Sunday Rev. Kleyn is scheduled to preach for us. The live streaming of our services will beavailable on the “PPRC and Friends” Facebook page.
- The last Philippines' Newsletter may be found here.
- As the month of July has begun, the radio speaker has changed to Rev. C.Haak (Georgetown PRC in Hudsonville, MI), whose series on the book of Nehemiah is being featured for the rest of the summer. Today's message is based on Nehemiah 2:11-20 and titled "Come, Let Us Build."
- Listen to the broadcast on the station near you, on your favorite podcast (Google Music, Spotify, and iTunes), or visit the links provided here to listen to this program. Are you are regular listener? If not, why not start today!
REFORMED RESOURCES FOR EDIFICATION, EDUCATION, and EVANGELISM
- Want to learn more about the doctrines and practices of the PRC? Or, are you in need of some pamphlets and/or articles published by the PRC for use in evangelism and/or witnessing? Or are you simply interested in growing in your faith and walk with the Lord? Visit the Resources pages of this website and the PRCA Evangelism page for a complete list of materials available in digital format or by order from the publishing church.
- Do you need some catechism materials for use in your church or family? The PRC publishes catechism materials on Bible history and Reformed doctrine, for children of all ages. Visit this page for more information.
- For sound, distinctively Reformed literature on a variety of subjects and for all ages - including church history and Bible study materials - visit the Reformed Free Publishing Association website or stop in at their Jenison (Michigan) location.
- The Reformed Book Outlet is open and you are welcome to shop the store in downtown Hudsonville (MI). The RBO is running their annual Summer Reading Challenge for both kids and adults, from June 22-August 21. Stop by the store to pick up a sheet to fill out and return for a prize! Just a reminder that our hours are now Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 10-5 and Saturday 10-1.
This Week's Thought for Contemplation
Excerpt from Rev. W. Langerak's word study article tited "Exceeding."