Below you will find special highlights of PRC and sister-church news for this first Sunday of the year of our Lord 2022, January 2. As we begin a new year, we praise the Lord for the hope we have in Him and the promise that He will be with us and will go before us. May our worship rise up to our faithful God as a sweet-smelling sacrifice through Jesus Christ our Savior.
Plead my cause, O LORD, with them that strive with me: fight against them that fight against me. ...And my soul shall be joyful in the LORD: it shall rejoice in his salvation. All my bones shall say, LORD, who is like unto thee, which deliverest the poor from him that is too strong for him, yea, the poor and the needy from him that spoileth him? ...I will give thee thanks in the great congregation: I will praise thee among much people. ...Let them shout for joy, and be glad, that favour my righteous cause: yea, let them say continually, Let the LORD be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant. And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long. ~ Psalm 35:1; 9,10; 18; 27,28
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.
- Rev. D. Holstege and family were able to move to Wingham this past week and are settling into the parsonage there. His installation as Wingham PRC's pastor will take place next Sunday, Jan.9 with Prof. R. Dykstra leading the service.
- The Council of Heritage PRC has formed a trio from which to call a new pastor: Revs. Ryan Barnhill (Peace PRC, Dyer, IN), Rev. Erik Guichelaar (Randolph, WI PRC), and J. Marcus.
- This is the time of year when the newly elected elders and deacons are installed into office in the PR churches. May we remember to thank the retiring men who have served and to pray for those entering office, some for the first time. May Jesus Christ, the only King of the church and the chief Shepherd of His sheep, use these officebearers for the proper care and guidance of His people. And we also remind our officebearers of the special resource section for them on this website.
- Classical appointments and pulpit supply for today in the vacant PRCs: Rev. R. Hanko in Covenant of Grace PRC (Spokane, WA); Rev. D. Kleyn in Doon (IA) PRC; Rev. T. Miersma in First PRC, Edmonton, AB; Prof. B.Gritters and Prof. B.Huizinga in Grace PRC; Prof. B. Huizinga and Rev. C.Haak in Hudsonville PRC. We thank the Lord for this blessing of our church federation and the privilege to be able to help one another in this need.
- For those whose in-person public worship may still be limited, 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.
- Did you know that...
- Many of our ministers exchanged pulpits today and helped one another out or received pulpit supply after a busy holiday schedule? Probably not surprising, given the number of services in the last two weeks. And we are thankful they are able to do this. Let us remember to pray regularly for God's patience (endurance) to be given them in all their busy labors.
- Rev. J. Slopsema, of the PRC's emeritus ministers, was installed this morning as an elder in First PRC, Grand Rapids, MI? Perhaps a first in PRC history! We are thankful that he is willing to serve that congregation and the churches in this way too.
PRC DENOMINATIONAL NEWS:
- PRC Contact Committee: The delegation (Prof. R. Dykstra and Elder D. Kregel) to visit our sister church in Singapore, Covenant ERC, returned home safely this past week. This week Tuesday, Jan.4, Prof. B. Gritters and Mr. S. Miedema are scheduled to leave for sister-church visitation with Covenant PRC in Ballymena, N.Ireland. May the Lord grant them safety in their travels and grace for their labors.
- Classis East is scheduled to meet Wednesday, Jan.12, at Providence PRC in Hudsonville, MI.
Three times this past week fresh snow graced the seminary grounds.
PRC Seminary Notices:
- The second semester of the 2021-22 school year will begin, D.V. on Tuesday, Jan.18. The schedule and calendar have been posted on the seminary's website and the PRC website. (see special calendars on the right side).
- Senior Sem. M.Wee has just completed his internship at Faith PRC. He returns for this final semester this month.
- The seminary is open daily (8-5), including the library and bookstore, for our members and friends. The staff is available to assist with any other needs you may have as well. Feel free to call in advance for help with any questions.
- The Fall 2021 issue of the PRT Journal is at the printer and should be ready by the end of January. But the digital editions (pdf and ePub) are now available on the seminary's website. If you want to be added to our mailing list (either print or digital), contact Sharon, the seminary secretary.
- For the latest seminary news and information, visit the seminary's website.
- Covenant ERC, Singapore and her Kolkata, India mission work:
- This past week the sister-church visitors from the PRC Contact Committee (Prof. R. Dykstra and elder D. Kregel) finished their labors and returned to the States.
- From today's bulletin (special new-year message): It is now 2022. We at this time of the year, must especially count our blessings of the past year. We also must remember our sure hope in our Lord Jesus Christ at the dawn of the new year. Hope is having a right perspective of the future. Without hope, without the proper understanding of the future, there will only be anxiety. Hope is seeing that the future is ALL IN FATHER’S HANDS. Not just the joys in 2022, but be assured that trouble, persecution, perplexing trials, suffering and death, all of this too are in Father’s hand. Everything will go according to his eternal decree and plan. Nothing will derail Father’s will. Nothing will stop the footsteps of Christ, and His coming. No forces of darkness or evil plan of man, no gates of hell will prevail against His precious blood bought church. The King of this church, Christ himself will gather, preserve and defend. Not just us collectively as a church, but each and every one of us personally. Do you believe this?
- The last issue of "Reformed News Asia" is October 2021 - #64. Be sure to check it out for the latest news from our sister!
- Covenant PRC, N. Ireland:
- Rev. A.Stewart continues to minister the Word faithfully to the saints in Ballymena. From Sunday's bulletin: Prof. Gritters and Elder Sid Miedema are to be in N. Ireland from 5-14 January. Prof. Gritters will be giving a lecture entitled, “Being the Hand of God: Godly Parenting in an Ungodly World,” on Wednesday, 12 January at 7:30 PM.
- Be sure to check out the lastest edition of "Covenant Reformed News" - December 2021. Follow the link to read the latest profitable articles by Revs. A. Stewart and R. Hanko.
- PRC in the Philippines and her mission work:
- The Kleyns are wrapping up their visit in the States. They are presently in Iowa, where Rev. Kleyn is scheduled to preach in Doon PRC on Dec. 31, Jan. 1, and Jan. 2. They plan to return to the Philippines on Jan. 4, Lord willing.
- Berean PRC bulletin: Rev. R. Smit led the services today.
- Provident PRC bulletin: Elder Bien will lead our worship services today using Video recordings of sermons by Prof. R. Cammenga from PRCA. A live stream of our services will be provided at the “PPRC and Friends” Facebook page.
- Currently, Rev. W.Bruinsma (Pittsburgh PRC, Pennsylvania) is the featured speaker, with focus on a series on Hebrews 11. Today's message is based on Hebrews 11:21 and titled "By Faith Jacob Blesses Joseph's Sons."
REFORMED RESOURCES FOR EDIFICATION, EDUCATION, and EVANGELISM
Have you seen the new format of the Beacon Lights? The January 2022 issue features the new, smaller format but with the same large Reformed content - for young people and for adults!
- Are you interested in learning 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 (downtown Hudsonville, MI) is open four days a week and features Reformed publications, good Christian music, and other practical items (cards, etc.) Come visit the store Tuesday - Friday from 10am-5pm, or Saturday from 10am - 1pm!
This Week's Thought for Contemplation
“As we launch out into another year, there is little visible prospect of a smooth and pleasant voyage. To the natural eye, the clouds are dark and fierce storms seem imminent. The very uncertainty of what the morrow may bring forth, fills many with uneasiness and trepidation.
But how different should be the state of God's children—an all-sufficient Object is presented to the eyes of their faith, from which unbelief derives no comfort. If the poor worldling is concerned with what lies before him, it is the blessed privilege of the believer to be occupied with Who goes before him—the One who is his Captain, his Guide, his Forerunner. "The LORD Himself goes before you and will be with you! He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid—do not be discouraged." (Deuteronomy 31:8).
The Lord has gone before you in the grand decree of His PREDESTINATION. Last year was one of suspense and sorrow, of trial and trouble—and perhaps you tremble at what this one has in store. Well, here is solid comfort. Your future has all been marked out for you! You shall not tread a step which is not mapped on the grand chart of God's foreordination. All your circumstances have been Divinely ordered for you.
Ah, Christian reader, what an immense difference this makes that you are not a child of chance, that your lot is not decided by the caprice of fickle fortune. Infinite wisdom and infinite love have arranged everything. You will go nowhere during 1943 [and 2022!]—but where God has decreed, His "goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting" (Micah 5:2), planning your path, your life. A predestinating God has appointed "the bounds of your habitation" (Acts 17:26). You may be thrust into the furnace of affliction—yet you will not be deserted. You may be brought low—yet it will be for your future blessing. You may be chastened—yet the rod is in the hand of your Father.”
~ Arthur W. Pink (1943) - found in Covenant of Grace PRC's bulletin today