Covenant East Classis

This year’s classis meeting was held at Peace Reformed Church in Garner, IA. Peace Reformed Church was established in 1878, a time when congregants came to church using horses rather than automobiles, and there was no such thing as the incandescent or florescent light bulb. Pastors were compensated with meat, eggs, milk and feed for the cows and chickens they kept. Much has changed since then, but one thing remains the same at Peace Reformed Church, the commitment to preach the whole counsel of God.

On Monday evening, at our pre-Classis meeting, Elder Dennis Luquette led us as we discussed the topic of “Dealing with Difficulties in Ministry” with a specific focus on how we counsel others.

On Tuesday morning, after President Dennis Luquette opened with a devotion from Luke 24:13-35, the 39th meeting of Covenant East Classis began with 9 ministers and 9 elders in attendance. We were joined by Elder Roger Gallimore, current President of the RCUS Synod.

Elder Dennis Luquette was re-elected as Classis President, Rev. Steve Altman as Vice President, and Rev. James Grossmann was elected as Stated Clerk. Rev. Steve Carr, the outgoing clerk, was commended for serving in that role since 2017.

This year Classis held two examinations of men seeking to be received by Covenant East Classis, Rev. Breno Macedo and Mr. Matthew Dawn.

Rev. Breno Macedo, who currently serves as pastor of Messiah’s Independent Reformed Church in Holland, MI, sat for his orthodoxy and intent exam. Rev. Macedo’s exam was considered satisfactory and, after he read and signed the oath of licensure, he was given the right hand of fellowship by the members of Classis and his name was added to the roll of Classis as a Minister of the Word.

Mr. Matthew Dawn, who presently serves as an elder at Peace Reformed Church, Garner IA, sat for his licensure exam in the areas of piety, historical philosophy, apologetics, prolegomena, theology proper, anthropology, Christology, soteriology, ecclesiology, eschatology, English Bible, ecclesiastical history, and hermeneutics. On Tuesday evening Mr. Dawn delivered a sermon from Proverbs 3:5-6 entitled “Trust and Obey Is the Only Way.” Both his licensure exam and sermon were considered satisfactory and, after he read and signed the oath of licensure, he was given the right hand of fellowship by the members of Classis and his name was added to the roll of Classis as a Licentiate.

Also in attendance was Mr. Andrew Hennen, a prospective student for the ministry who plans to begin his studies at Heidelberg Seminary in the fall. We are thankful that God is bringing men into our midst who desire to preach the word, in season and out of season, to the glory of God.

We had no fraternal delegates at this meeting; however, we did enjoy a visit from Mr. Jim Iwema, a representative of Reformed Missions Services (RMS), who provided us with good information for us to take back to our congregations.

On Wednesday morning Rev. Breno Macedo encouraged us all, from Revelation chapter 5, that when we find ourselves being overwhelmed by the pressures of ministry, the question we should be asking is not, “Is it (the ministry) worth it” but rather, “Is He (Jesus) worth it?” To which we were all stirred up to answer heartily, “Amen, He is worth it!”

The remainder of Wednesday was spent hearing the parochial reports of ministers, the reports of permanent and standing committees, and reports from the elders as to the health of their respective congregations.

The saints at Peace Reformed Church went above and beyond in making sure all our needs were taken care of while we were there. Truly it may be said of them, “God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister” (Hebrews 6:10).

Rev. Christopher Campbell

Growing the RCUS, Part 1

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