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RCA – CRC Deacon & Elder Training Opportunity

Where: Hope Church (RCA), 77 West 11th Street, Holland, MI (Between 10th and 11th, River and Pine)

When: Saturday morning, March 10, 2018

What: Learning & Networking Opportunities for RCA and CRC Deacons and Elders

How Much: FREE!!! . . .  if you pre-register (see below)

8:00am-8:30am Registration and Reception. Pre-register by sending names to hollandclassisrca@gmail.com. No charge for this event, if preregistered.

$5 per person at the door for non-registered attendees.


8:30am-8:50am Welcome

Keystone message by Rev. Judy Nelson, President of the Synod of the Great Lakes

9:00am-10:00am Workshops Round 1

Church Security (Sgt Larry Matzen)

The Ministry of Deacons (Jack Kooyman)

The Board of Elders Best Practices Discussion (Larry Schuyler)

The Intersection of Leadership and Management (Eddy Aleman)

10:00am – 10:30am  Break
10:30am – 11:30am  Workshops Round 2

The Ministry of Deacons (Jack Kooyman)

The Intersection of Leadership and Management (Eddy Aleman)

How to Have a Difficult Conversation (Michael Gulker)

Conducting Meetings, RCA Polity, and Serving as Clerk (Leigh VanKempen & Larry Schuyler)

11:30am -12 noon Wrap-up. Rev. Judy Nelson, Great Lakes Synod President
Church Security: A Discussion with Sgt. Larry Matzen, Holland Police Dept.

With the violence that has occurred in churches over recent years, many church leaders are asking if more attention needs to be given to church security. The Community Relations Department within the Holland Police Department has provided resources and informed personnel to assist churches in their evaluation of their level of security and discussion about the topic. Sgt. Larry Matteson will present the issue, discussion topics, and community resources to assist churches with their security plan. Presented at Round 1 only.

The Ministry of Deacons with Jack Kooyman

Those attending either Round will review biblical foundations and implications for the ministry of deacons. They will also learn about ways RCA churches could join in the ministry of the Holland Deacons’ Conference (HDC), including a conversation about how that could work hand-in-hand with RCA efforts. Executive director Jack Kooyman will provide an overview of HDC’s several areas of focus including 1) doing ministry with your community; 2) supporting people with disabilities; 3) equipping congregational members for diaconal ministry; and 4) advocating for justice on behalf of those who are excluded, oppressed, and/or marginalized because of certain identifying characteristics such as their status (e.g., refugees, immigrants, etc.), ethnicity, gender, race, religion, etc.

The Board of Elders: A Best Practices Discussion with Rev. Dr. Larry Schuyler

The responsibilities for the board of elders is set forth in the Book of Church Order. How do the various boards of elders accomplish these responsibilities? Participants are invited to bring their best practices as well as their frustrations and questions to share and to learn from other participants about what is working in their settings. The Classis Coordinator will lead this workshop and offer suggestions as well. Presented at Round 1 only.

The Intersection of Leadership and Management with Rev. Eddy Aleman

Leadership is crucial for the effectiveness of ministry in every church and in every community. There is a difference when consistories function as management boards and as leadership teams. This workshop will focus on the importance of elders and deacons to become leaders in the church. We will be looking at the biblical foundations for leadership found in the New Testament in relation to elders and deacons and their role as leaders working alongside with the pastor leading a thriving church. Those who will attend either Round will be challenged to see their role in consistory as elders or deacons with fresh eyes. Same workshop at both Round 1 and Round 2.

Having Difficult Conversations with Michael Gulker

The Colossian Forum’s mission is to equip leaders to transform messy cultural conflicts into opportunities for spiritual growth and witness. The Forum’s greater vision is for Christian communities to act Christian, especially in the face of conflict.

Michael Gulker is President of The Colossian Forum. He has a long-standing interest in the oft-times contentious intersection of faith and culture and how both thrive best when rooted in worship. Michael has become a leader turning conflict into opportunity for both deeper discipleship and more beautiful witness. The workshop will assist church leaders to have difficult conversations within your congregation. Presented at Round 2 only

Conducting Meetings, RCA Polity, and Serving as Clerk with Rev. Leigh VanKempen & Rev. Larry Schuyler

We will learn together about ways to be both efficient and proper with our meetings through this workshop. Various scenarios will be presented as teaching tools which help us understand both Robert’s Rules of Order and our RCA Polity. Also, tips will be provided to clerks who have particular responsibilities for the functioning of the consistory and the board of elders. Presented at Round 2 only.