"Rejoice" with Rejoice!
Eciting things are happening at Rejoice Community Church in Le Mars, IA. Over the last year they have expereienced renewal, growth and a new sense of purpose in the community. They have reached out to many different needs in the area and the response has been enormous both in community involvment and member involvment.
Here is an interview with Pastor Tony De La Rosa as he talks about the ministry in Le Mars.
Cana of Fort Dodge
A creative space where:
Cana is a Christ-centered ministry to enhance the community of Fort Dodge and the surrounding area. At Cana, in a cafe-like setting, you are challenged to find the 'cause within you" and seek ways to fill that need wherever God has placed you.
Cana is God-Space.
Mel Vos Retires after serving Pleasant Prairie for 27 years!
Mel and Carolyn Voss are enjoying a well deserved retirement. Mel served Pleasant Prairie Classis for 27 years, and was a member of Pleasant Prairie Classis for 46 years. It's great to see both Mel and Carolyn looking so happy and well. Congratulations,
Power Connection hosts nearly 1,000 middle schoolers
Nearly 1,000 middle school students from across the Midwest arrived on the campus of Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota, for the Heartland Synod's summer youth gathering, Power Connection. From 7pm on Friday night until noon on Sunday they had the opportunity to hear, feel and experience the love of Christ through awesome music, drama and message.
Peder Eide and his band led a powerful time of worship. Emory Colvin, from Nashville, Tennessee, opened minds through drama while Jeniffer Dake, also from Nashville, poured out the love of Jesus through life stories and scripture. It was a unique opportunity for students to hear the gospel story in a new way that moved many to take the first step of accepting Jesus into their lives as their Savior and Lord.
Power Connection is not just a weekend retreat it continues long after the event ends. This year 2 mission projects were chosen: Hope for the City, a Minneapolis based organization that provides many services to the local community, and Feed My Starving Children, another Minneapolis group who packs nutritious meals and ships them all over the world to poverty stricken countries. Not only did these groups receive the Power Connection Mission Offering, they also had nearly 500 middle schoolers provide hands on work to pack food, sort clothing and share in their mission as a special Power Connection work camp held earlier in the week.
Here are some of the participants explaining the projects for the mission offering.
For more videos and information about Power Connection and other Heartland Synod Youth opportunities please visit the synod's youth website @ synodyouth.org.
GENERAL SYNOD 2013
I have had the privilege of attending the last 6 General Synods, as a classis delegate, a member of the General Synod Council which serves as the Exec. Board, and as a synod delegate. I would like to report to you on Synod 2013 as held at Central College in Pella on June 20 to25.
As always, the daily worship services were powerful and kept us looking to Jesus as we began the work for the day. They were led by Mike and Elizabeth Hardeman, formerly of Alton, and now in Plano, TX. In addition, there were some choices in educational presentations for delegates to learn more in their own areas of interest. These included topics in leadership, church music, local mission, engaging more volunteers, deep change within, etc.
We heard reports from all the Commissions, Committees, and special assignment groups. The Synod took action on many recommendations from last year’s Synod as well as those coming from Classes. All of this action, along with a full Synod report, can be found by going to www.rca.org/synod.
The finances were thoroughly reviewed and the RCA is financially solid and doing great work with the dollars collected.
We heard addresses from General Secretary Tom De Vries, President Tom Smith from Rock Valley and Vice President Carl Boersma from Brookings. VP Boersma was elected President for the next year. Greg Alderman, formerly of Sioux Center and now at Carmichael, CA was elected VP.
A big highlight was hearing of over 40 areas the RCA and the Christian Reformed Church in North America are working together in mission. It signed a Memorandum of Understanding with World Renew for Disaster Response and affirmed a plan to merge the RCA and CRC insurance plan. These two denominations are doing great work by eliminating overlap and magnifying our dollars together. In addition, the two will be appointing a joint working team to explore more areas to work together.
RCA Global Missions unveiled a “One for the World” focus emphasizing mission efforts around compassion, the next generation, and the nations. The delegates worked together to build 1,000 World Vision School Kits for a school in Central Iowa and Nicaragua. I highly encourage you to view the One for the World video on the RCA website.
We celebrated the end of the 10 year program, “Our Call. This included planting more than 300 new churches, having many churches engage in revitalization, many developing new discipleship training, leadership training, pastor support networks, emphasizing local and global missions, all the while placing more emphasis on becoming multiracial.
After attending several synods and serving you and the RCA in different ways, I can truly say that we have a very dedicated staff, we are spending our money wisely and we are following our mission which reads:
The Reformed Church in America is a fellowship of congregations called by God and empowered by the Holy Spirit to be the very presence of Jesus Christ in the world. Our shared task is to equip congregations for ministry – one thousand churches in a million ways doing one thing – following Christ in mission, in a lost and broken world so loved by God.
STARS After School Program
Humbling Adventure to Oklahoma
Hope Reformed Church works through challenges with interim pastor
Rev. Dave Poppen accepted the opportunity to serve as an interim pastor in George, Iowa. He's not the first Poppen to be a pastor here. His grandfather, Rev. Otto G. Poppen served Hope Reformed in the 1918-1927 era. Dave's father, the late Rev. George Poppen was born in George during this time.
Dave spoke in a special video interview about being an interim pastor and what impact that can have on a church that may be experiencing some difficulties. As an interim he has the opportunity to help facilitate change that can lead to enhanced ministry and growth.
Rev. Aaron Punt from Western Theological Seminary to First Reformed Church, Slayton, MN.
Rev. John De Graff from Calvary Reformed, Monroe, SD, retired to Rapid City, SD.
Rev. Lewis Ford from Western Seminary to Hope Reformed Church, Montevideo, MN
Rev. Bob Zirkelback to Otley Reformed Church, Otley, IA.
Rev. Mike Drew from Portage, MI, to Crossroads Community Church, Estherville, IA.