Summary of Recent Classis Meeting
Classis Central US of the URCNA
April 8-9, AD 2019
Two overtures, lots of reports, and an emeritation occupied the delegates of Classis Central US as they gathered Monday evening and Tuesday morning at the Rock Valley, United Reformed Church.
The most significant overture for the life of the churches was a proposal to divide the classis into two classes using the Mississippi River as the dividing line separating the proposed new classes. Such a division had been proposed a number of years ago but not approved. This time it again failed to gain majority support as delegates considered the increased work load involved in doubling the number of classical functionaries from the same pool of men and conducting exams with half the number of ministers and elders participating. The anticipated loss of fellowship with those we have come to love dearly as brothers also played a factor in the defeat of the measure.
The second overture passed without any opposition. It amended the Rules of Procedurefor the classis by adding that all appeals at classis need to be adjudicated according to the new Guidelines for Appealsadopted by Synod Wheaton 2018, now appearing as Appendix 8 to the Church Order.
An update was received on the work of Army Chaplain, Major Andrew Spriensma who is now engaged in a 18 month counseling degree program at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina.
Written reports were received from the mission outreach in Chicago Heights and the church planting work in Quito, Ecuador. The churches of classis were urged to continue to support these two mission outreaches with their gifts and prayers.
We were pleased to receive fraternal greetings from Mr. Ron Vanderswag of classis Manitoba of the Canadian Reformed Churches and Rev. Dr. Maynard Koerner of Classis South Central of the Reformed Church in the US.
Classis received reports from its representatives on the various federation committees and conducted elections for a few classical positions. Two alternates were elected to the Church Planting and Advisory Committee (CPAC) and a church visitor and alternate church visitor were elected for the East side of the classis. Advice was given to four consistories in matters of church discipline.
Classis concurred in the decision of the First URC of Oak Lawn, Illinois to grant emeritation in June to their pastor, Rev. Ted Gray. He has served in the ordained ministry for 34 years in three denominations. He plans to retire to a home in Crowne Point, Indiana and hopes to be of service to the churches in various capacities as opportunities may arise.
The next meeting of Classis Central US is slated to start Monday afternoon, September 9, 2019. The consistory of DeMotte has been designated the convening consistory with the church in Pella hosting the event. Two candidacy exams are anticipated, Lord willing.
Classis wishes to express its sincere appreciation to the members of Rock Valley United Reformed Church and their pastor, Rev. Joel Vander Kooi for their gracious hospitality, and to Rev. Alan Camarigg for his able leadership as chairman.
For further information, contact Rev. Ralph A. Pontier, Stated Clerk of Classis,
by telephone at 641-230-3880 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org