Synod 2015 - Press Release

Synod 2015 - Press Release
The pre-Synodical Prayer service was held on Monday, June 1, 2015, with Rev. D. Kranendonk as minister of the calling church, Oxford FRC, leading the service. The text for the service was Revelation 2:1. "....These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks." The theme and points of the sermon were: The One in the Center: 1. His Breath-taking Splendor; 2. His Star-holding Power; 3. His Light-Giving Presence. The sermon put Christ in the center of the service and was the repeated prayer for the synod meetings.

During the pre-Synod service and throughout the sessions of Synod, reference was made to the recent sudden death of Dr. Kuldip Gangar. It began with the first song at the Prayer service, Psalter 281. "Mindful of our human frailty, Is the God in Whom we trust…." At various times, prayers were made for the family Gangar. Synod also sent to Mrs. Judy Gangar and family a letter expressing our condolences and included a cd copy of Synod 2015 Prayer Service. Synod approved the expressed intentions of the Outreach Committee to continue with the Punjabi ministry, however that may develop in the future under God’s blessing. A complimentary copy of the Devotional Commentary on the Gospel of Matthew by Dr. K. Gangar was given to each consistory on behalf of the Outreach Committee.

Following the service the delegates met to elect the executive. Chairman: Rev. David Kranendonk; Vice-Chairman: Rev. Jack Schoeman; First Clerk: Rev. John Koopman; Second Clerk: Rev. Joel Overduin.

The first day of Synod focused on the candidacy examinations of Students Ian Macleod and John Procee, with the joyful outcome that both men were accepted as candidates for the ministry and now eligible for call. We pray the Lord to bless these brothers and soon to use them mightily as ministers of the gospel in our churches. That same day Dr. David Murray was approved as FRC instructor at PRTS. Student Ken Pennings will have a seven week internship in the West under the mentorship of Rev. John Koopman and Rev. Jack Schoeman.   Mr. Young Jae Lee (Grand Rapids FRC) and Mr. Mark Wagenaar (Vineland FRC) were accepted as new students for the ministry.   Mark will be starting his seminary training and Young Jae (who has been attending PRTS for some time already) has been given summer assignments including leading services for five Sundays as directed by Theological Education committee.

Each day of Synod the delegates were privileged with extended opening devotions. On Tuesday  Dr. G. M. Bilkes led us in meditating on Luke 5:5 especially the words, "nevertheless at thy word." Wednesday's opening devotions were led by Rev. D. Lipsy minister of HRC in Burgessville, speaking on the prayer of God's people in Nehemiah 9.  On Thursday morning Rev.  W. Wullschleger, minister of Zeewolde CGK led us in focusing on Luke 14:12-24.               
Living in the "perilous times" (II Timothy 3:1) that we do, the need for prayer and setting aside a time for prayer in our homes and churches was emphasized throughout our Synod meetings.  "Thy kingdom come" --"that is, rule us so by Thy Word and Spirit, that we may submit ourselves more and more to Thee; preserve and increase Thy church; destroy the works of the devil, and all violence which would exalt itself against Thee; and also, all wicked counsels devised against Thy holy Word." --Heidelberg Catechism QA 123  
We had representatives from various churches give brotherly greetings including from the Hersteld Hervormde Kerk, Christelijke Gereformeerde Kerken, Heritage Reformed Congregations, Orthodox Presbyterian Churches, Presbyterian Reformed Church, and United Reformed Churches. The exchange of speeches at Synod are a heartwarming highlight of each year's synod, especially hearing of the Lord's work in these other federations and the common love and devotion for the Lord and His church and kingdom.

Synod agreed to be involved in an interdenominational Psalter revision committee. Also, after a lengthy, wholesome, brotherly discussion, it was decided to have the Publications Committee appoint a subcommittee to investigate the feasibility of a supplementary Psalter using contemporary pronouns.
Rev. Ken Herfst's work as mission worker sponsored by the denominational FRMI committee is coming to a conclusion at the end of 2015. In the Summer and Fall season he hopes to complete his studies for his doctorate, and his months of granted furlough and repatriation time. We are thankful for Pastor Ken Herfst's many years of service in Guatemala serving as missionary and Professor of Theology. Rev. Herfst has since accepted a position as Assistant Professor for Ministry at Redeemer University-College in Hamilton starting in December 2015.

Rev. Christo Heiberg sustained an examination at Synod making him eligible to be called by Mitchell FRC, as was requested by them. Presently Rev. Christo Heiberg is minister of Zion United Reformed Church in Sheffield, Ontario.

Synod 2016 meets, God willing, on June 6-10 with the calling church being Pompton Plains FRC and the host church Dundas FRC.

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