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PRC and Sister-Church News Highlights for July 25, 2021 *(Updated)

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The following are special highlights of PRC and sister-church news for this Sunday, July 25, the thirtieth Lord's Day of this year 2021.

Psalm 15 1Today 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:

LORD, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill? He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart. ~ Psalm 15:1-2

  • 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 Hudsonville PRC extended a call to Rev. R. Kleyn (Covenant of Grace PRC). We pray for him as he considers this call, that the Lord may make His will plain to him.

  • Having accepted the call to Crete PRC, Rev. J. Engelsma plans to preach his farewell in Doon PRC next Sunday (August 1) and tentatively to be installed in Crete on August 15.

  • From First PRC, Grand Rapids MI: A special congregational meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday, July 27 at 7:30 PM in the church basement to select a minister to call from the trio of Rev. E. Guichelaar, Rev. D. Holstege, and Rev. R. Kleyn. *UPDATE: Rev. R. Kleyn has received this call.

  • From Kalamazoo PRC: 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.

  • Update from Providence PRC (Hudsonville, MI) re her new pastor:
    From Rev and Larisa McGeown: On July 13 Rev underwent a medical examination for the purposes of immigration. We were told that two to three weeks later the results would be sent to the US embassy in Dublin. Assuming no delays, the embassy should have the medical report on July 27 at the earliest. Assuming no further issues, the visa should be issued soon thereafter, but we do not know when. At Rev’s immigration interview on June 24 the officer suggested that travel in “early August” was a “reasonable expectation.” Having done everything at our end, we wait patiently with our daily prayer that the visa might come soon and that we can finally be in your midst. “Now God himself and our Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way unto you” (1 Thess. 3:11).

  • And from Randolph PRC comes this note of encourgement concerning help for Wingham PRC:

    With Consistory approval, Rev. Guichelaar is planning to make a 4-week visit to Wingham, Ontario, from July 19-August 16. The first two weeks will serve as the final two weeks of his vacation time, during which time a mandatory 14-day quarantine will have to be observed. In the two weeks that follow, Rev. Guichelaar plans to lead worship services in Wingham PRC. During those final two weeks, Rev. Guichelaar also intends to offer himself in any way he can to the Wingham PRC.  Wingham PRC has been without a minister for approximately 9 months, and due to border closings has not been able to get any pulpit supply from Classis East since becoming vacant. Rev. Guichelaar is in a unique position to give Wingham PRC pulpit supply since he possesses Canadian citizenship and should have no trouble crossing the border. Planning a trip like this also allows Rev. Guichelaar and his family to visit with family that they haven't been able to see in some time.

  • 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. J.Mahtani and Prof. R.Cammenga in First PRC-Holland; Prof. R.Cammenga and Prof. D.Kuiper  in Hudsonville PRC;  Prof. B.Huizinga and Rev. K.Koole in Kalamazoo PRC; Rev. C.Griess (livestream) and Rev. J.Maatman in Providence PRC. Let us 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 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.

  • Did you know...
    • Rev. J. Langerak is preaching three times today? Besides leading his own services at Heritage PRC (Sioux Falls, SD), including an early afternoon one at 3:00 p.m., he is leading Edgerton PRC's (MN) evening service at 5:30 p.m.
    • Sem. M. Koerner is in Lynden WA for two weeks to lead her services and bring God's Word? Rev. S.Regnerus is on vacation to the east (I believe it was noted that he was preaching somewhere today too!) and Sem. Koerner is taking his place. That makes stops in Doon, IA, Loveland, CO, and now Lynden for the traveling seminary student.

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 (both now living in West Michigan) are eligible for calls in the PRC and her sister churches. Let us remember them in prayer as they await new charges.

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PRC Seminary Notices:

  • Presently, 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. There are always maintenance projects to be completed, including office changes and renovations this year (to learn why, remember Prof. R. Dykstra's change of labor and now Rev. C. Griess').
  • 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.
  • 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) is keeping busy preaching in various PRCs this summer.
  • 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. Plans are underway for his change of labor and residence. 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.

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SISTER-CHURCH/MISSION NEWS:

  • From Georgetown PRC's bulletin today re her work in Vellore, India: PRCV of India: The English church will celebrate his 10th anniversary this Wednesday. Members of our church will participate via zoom. The second wave of Covid has subsided and the church is again gathering for worship. Provisions of rice and other necessities have been distributed to families and orphans during the pandemic. Two babies will be baptized this Sunday. It is hoped that the construction of a church building may begin soon.

  • Covenant ERC, Singapore and her Kolkata, India mission work:
    • From the "Pastoral Voice" in her bulletin today:
      In this morning worship service, we witness the installation of two Elders and the ordination of a Deacon. This is a testimony of the goodness of our Lord Jesus Christ in providing to His church faithful men to serve in the Office of Elder and Deacon. Indeed, our Lord is good to Covenant. Let us continue to pray that the Lord will equip these men and the existing office bearers with the gifts to serve and care for His church. May the Lord be pleased to use them and their faithful labours for the edifying of the saints and that the people of God may grow in faith and the knowledge of the Son of God.

      Session has in the past week, placed before us to consider extending a call to Brother Josiah Tan to be the resident minister of CERC. We call you to commit this matter in earnest prayer before the Lord, seeking His will. The voting members will meet on August 9 to make this call.

  • Covenant PRC, N. Ireland and her Limerick, Ireland mission:
    • From today's bulletin:

      Pastor & Mary fly to the U.S. tomorrow, returning on Tuesday, 17 August. May the Lord watch over and keep all of you while we are apart.

      The farewell lunch for Rev. & Larisa McGeown is planned for this Saturday, 31 July, at noon at Antrim’s Lough Shore Park.

    • 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. (see note above from Providece PRC's bulletin today)

  • PRC in the Philippines and her mission work:
    • 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 Ecija will join us in our worship services thru live streaming at Facebook live, D. V.
    • Provident PRC bulletin: Rev. D. Kleyn will lead our worship services and preach for us today, the Lord willing. The live streaming of our services will be available on the “PPRC and Friends” Facebook page.

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Listen to the Reformed Witness Hour each Sunday - on a radio station near you, on Sermonaudio, or on your favorite podcast - wherever you are!

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  • For the months of July, August, and September Rev. C.Haak (Georgetown PRC in Hudsonville, MI) will be the featured speaker, with focus on his series on the book of Nehemiah. Today's message is based on Nehemiah 3 and titled "The People Had a Mind to Work."
  • 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!
  • The Reformed Witness Hour publishes each month's messages in an attractive booklet. These printed sermons are a great blessing to many and are distributed all over the world, including to many prisoners in the U.S. If you or your Evangelism Committee would like to receive these, let the RWHC know and they will add you to the mailing list (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

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REFORMED RESOURCES FOR EDIFICATION, EDUCATION, and EVANGELISM

Job: God's Sovereignty in Suffering

From the RFPA:  Job: God’s Sovereignty in Suffering by Rev. Ron Hanko is now available and book club agents have placed it in the book club members’ mailboxes. Also now available is the Church Order Commentary by Monsma and Van Dellen. If you would like to purchase either of these books or join the book club, please see your book club agent, (Jon Drnek), contact the RFPA at (616) 457-5970 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or order your copy at rfpa.org.

  • 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 Reformed Book Outlet will be having their Sidewalk Sale on July 30-31.  We will have clearance books, some marked down to as low as $2, 50% off boxed cards, and 25% off everything else!  Plan to stop by the store to check out the sale!
    • 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

Now Jesus deals with the positive aspect of the law, that is, with love. What better way to demonstrate love than to be reconciled to our brother or sister who has a grievance against us.

“If thou bring thy gift to the altar, and rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee, leave there thy gift at the altar and first be reconciled to thy brother and then come and offer thy gift.” Jesus refers to the act of sacrifice. The people would come with their gift (a lamb, a turtle dove) to the priest at the altar for sacrifice. Part of their worship required spiritual reflection. They had to meditate upon their sins, on how they related to God and their neighbor. Upon doing this, if such a person remembers that his brother has a grievance against him, he must first be reconciled.

Jesus deliberately chose to say “hath ought against thee.” Sometimes we have something against our brother. This we are instructed to resolve in Matthew 18. But, here, we either know or imagine that our brother has something against us. We might be in the wrong, as far as he is concerned, and this causes a rupture in our relationship. Probably he is not on speaking terms. He might be avoiding us. We are suspicious that something is wrong. This would be the easiest for us to brush aside, for we could easily reason, “That’s his problem. If he doesn’t like the way I live, let him come to me.” This applies to our home life within marriage, to our dealing with our children, and to our dealings within the church.

Be reconciled to thy brother. Then come and offer thy gifts. The initiative must come from us.. We cannot pray at home; we cannot come to church on the Lord’s, Day; we cannot take the Lord’s Supper, until we are sure that not only am I right with my brother, but he is right with me.

Why is this? The answer is the righteousness of the kingdom of heaven and the law of love that governs its citizens. If we truly love each other we will be reconciled. We cannot be right with God if we are wrong with each other. “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? This commandment have we from him, that he who loveth God love his brother also.” Or listen tab Psalm 66:18: “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.”

God’s love for us is experienced in our love for Him and each other. Anger, hatred, is a barrier in the covenant of love.

The seriousness of this is that we have to deal with God. In verses 25, 26 Jesus illustrates this. If a man has financial difficulty, he ought to deal with his creditors, lest he be taken to court and the judge find him guilty and he be imprisoned until he pay the last cent.

We had better settle our differences here, rather than have to stand before God’s judgment seat in the day of Christ. He has the power of Gehenna, the fires of hell.

How these words must humble us all.

Rather than being self-righteous, let us cling to the cross of Jesus and look to our Lord and cry for His Spirit of love.

The love that reconciles!

Taken from Rev. Jason Kortering's meditation for the November 1, 1990 Standard Bearer - "Love That Reconciles" - also reprinted in the July 2021 SB.

Last modified on 28 July 2021

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