Rev. Bill Bruinsma, pastor of Pittsburgh PRC (Pennsylvania) begins his four-month service for the RWH program, as he starts a new series on Paul's first letter to the Thessalonians (cf. schedule of messages below).
October 1 - Thanks for the Church, I Thess.1:1-4
October 8 - Followers of the Lord, I Thess.1:6-8
October 15 - Entrusted with the Gospel, I Thess.2:3-4
October 22 - Receiving the Word of God, I Thess. 2:13
October 29 - God's Saints: The Crown of Rejoicing, I Thess.2:19-20
You are encouraged to listen to these important messages and to let others know about them too. Help spread the word about the Reformed Witness Hour, now in its 76th year of broadcasting the truths of God's sovereign, particular, efficacious grace!
Use the attached flyer (pdf) to spread the news of these important gospel messages!
Classis West met on Wednesday, September 27, 2017, in Hull, IA PRC.
Rev. Nathan Langerak (Crete PRC) served as chair, and Rev. John Marcus (First, Edmonton PRC) as clerk.
The newly appointed Stated Clerk of Classis West, Rev. Josh Engelsma, has now completed his first official public report, which now follows, along with some pictures sent in from various observers.
While Classis West did not officially convene until Wednesday, September 27, two noteworthy events took place the day before.
The highlight of the day was the examination of Pastor-elect Matt DeBoer (Edgerton, MN PRC). After careful examination in all branches of theology and the main subjects of practical theology (cf. picture above).
Classis West voted unanimously to approve the brother for ordination into the ministry of the Word and sacraments in the PRC, and informed the Council of Edgerton PRC that she may proceed to his ordination and installation. That will take place Friday evening, Sept.29, at 7 pm (CT) in Edgerton PRC.
We rejoice with Pastor-elect DeBoer and his wife and their families and thank God for His sustaining grace evident during the examination.
Pastor-elect Matt De Boer (with wife Kelsey) receiving his classical diploma from Rev. N. Langerak
Some of the (young) audience in attendance at Classis (local Christian school children).
On Tuesday, Sept.26 an Officebearers' Conference on the Five Solas of the Reformation was held, also in Hull PRC (cf. flyer below). If you would like to listen to the speeches on each of the solas, visit this special Sermonaudio link.
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Dear saints in the Protestant Reformed Churches,
The new “church season” has started in Limerick. On September 12, something momentous occurred, the first ever catechism class for a second-generation member of the LRF! Sebastian Kuhs, the first child that I baptized (March 23, 2012), is now old enough for catechism, for he is now six years old. So that he is not in a class by himself, we are also including Jason Watterson, the second child that I baptized (December 23, 2012), who is joining him, although he is not quite as old as his fellow catechumen (he will be five years old in November, DV). Since both children are homeschooled, which also began this year, I teach catechism on Tuesday morning at the Kuhs’ house. This is a very exciting time, to see the covenant youth ready for formal catechetical instruction.
Two first-time catechumens:
Jason Watterson (left), Sebastian Kuhs (right) with Rev. M. McGeown
In addition, Chester and Dale Mansona are in a pre-confession class on Saturday mornings. We are currently studying the Belgic Confession. (Because they come from a Baptist background in the Philippines, they were never baptized as children, so we hope to have baptism at some point, DV). On top of that, due to the wonders of modern technology, I am catechizing my nieces via the internet: Anna is studying Old Testament History for Juniors, while Lily and Hope are studying Old Testament History for Beginners. We are currently on Lesson 3.
We enjoyed many exciting activities in the period between June and September. First, on June 18, I baptized Jonas Watterson and preached on “Foolishness Bound in the Hearts of Our Children” (Prov. 22:15). Second, we finished family visitation, using the text of Proverbs 23:23, “Buying and Not Selling the Truth.” Third, near the end of July, Alana Schipper (Southwest PRC) and Rev. Heath and Deb Bleyenberg (Providence PRC) were in Limerick. It was good to spend a few days visiting some of the sights of Ireland with them before I headed to the USA for my annual vacation. Rev. Bleyenberg preached for the LRF on July 30. Fourth, from August 1-17, I was in the USA, during which time I attended the Young People’s Convention (my prowess at turkey-hunting was placed on public display by the Turtle Cammandos! If you do not understand the reference, ask Holland’s YPC banquet committee), spent some time with (some of) Larisa DeJong’s family, preached four times in three different congregations, and caught up with many friends in the faith. As usual, I thank you for your fellowship, your hospitality, and your interest in, and prayers for, the work of the LRF!
Rev. McGeown with Rev. Heath and Deb Bleyenberg and Alana Schipper at Blarney Castle, Cork
I have started a new series from the book of Acts, “The Coming of the Holy Spirit of Christ.” So far, I have preached on Acts 1:8; Acts 2:1-3; and Acts 2:4-13. This week, we begin to study Peter’s sermon on the Day of Pentecost. We also had a “Back to Basics” lecture on “The Christian Church” last Saturday (September 23). Our Muslim friend Saeed still attends these lectures, which are designed to be introductory to the Reformed faith. (Speaking of lectures, the last lecture I gave in Wales on July 6 attracted only 4 people. Since the topic was “Christian Humility,” I suppose that was humbling. It was, however, nice to spend the day with the Harris family whose son Joshua was also at the Young People’s Convention, his third, I believe).
In our Bible study, we are edging ever closer to the end of Romans. (We are currently near the end of chapter 15). By the next newsletter, DV, we will have chosen a new book to study. We have also nearly fin-ished Daniel with the Mansona family. (At our next meeting, we plan to study chapter 12).
I am planning another visit to the USA soon (October 24 to November 8). The seminary has asked me to speak at the upcoming conference on the Reformation. My speech, “The Reformation’s Recovery of Right Worship,” is scheduled for Saturday October 28 in Faith PRC. A week later, DV, I will give the speech at a mini-conference (Rev. Key, Prof. Cammenga, and I will speak) in Loveland PRC in Colorado. Since I have never been to Colorado before, and since three of Larisa’s brothers live in Colorado and are members of Loveland PRC, Larisa and I are greatly looking for-ward to visiting Loveland (November 1-7).
Do honor the conferences in Michigan (October 27-28) and/or Colorado (November 3-4) with your presence.
In Christian love,
Rev. Martyn McGeown
On this final Lord's Day of September 2017 (Sept. 24) we note the following news and information from PRC congregations, denominational committees, and mission fields.
The installation of Rev. Doug Kuiper as professor of church history took place this past Wednesday, September 20, at Faith PRC in Jenison, MI. For more on this significant event, visit this page.
Missionary-pastor D. Holstege leading the 7M pastors' meeting (Dec. 2016) - cf. note below.
Rev. Holstege will preach both sermons today and teach the Church Order from 10:15-10:45. Rev. Kleyn will preach for Maranatha PRC today.
This Wed, at 7:30 pm, Rev. Holstege will teach the Canons of Dordt, Head 5, Art. 12-13. “This certainty of perseverance…is the real source of humility, filial reverence, true piety, patience in every tribulation, fervent prayers, constancy in suffering and in confessing the truth, and of solid rejoicing in God…”
This Saturday at 9:00 am, Rev. Kleyn will teach the catechism class for the children. The children should prepare lesson 15 in the OT History for Juniors.
A Reformation Day Conference is being planned for Tuesday, October 31. The theme is “Reformation 500: The Anniversary.” The speakers will be Rev. Holstege, Rev. Kleyn, and Rev. Smit. The conference will be held in Provident Village in Marikina, starting at 8:00 a.m. Registration is Php 50 per person. All are welcome. Please plan to attend, and please invite others to attend, too. A sign-up sheet will be available soon. [cf. flyer below]
Let's remember these busy pastors and missionaries in the Philippines in our prayers daily. May the Lord of the harvest give them grace for all their labors.