December 29, 1915 – March 11, 2010
Personable pastor, peacemaker, lover of song and music, history buff, and helper of the needy, Rev. Lubbert William Van Dellen, 95, passed away peacefully March 11.
Van Dellen was born in Chicago, where he attended Christian grade school and Christian high school. He studied for two years at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mich., then returned to Chicago and held a number of jobs there until drafted into the U.S. Army in 1942.
Van Dellen served in Germany, France, and the Netherlands in the capacity of Supply Sergeant. After the war, he returned to Calvin on the G.I. Bill, graduating in 1951.
Because of a surplus of applications, Van Dellen was not admitted into Calvin Theological Seminary. He studied instead at Western Seminary in Holland, Mich., the theological school of the Reformed Church in America, and was ordained into the ministry by that denomination.
Van Dellen served RCA churches in Worthington, Minn., and Racine, Wis., before becoming a pastor in the Christian Reformed Church.
He subsequently led First CRC of St. Thomas, Ontario; Hammond (Ind.) CRC; Springdale CRC in Bradford, Ontario; West Evergreen CRC in Evergreen Park, Ill.; and New Hope Community CRC in Wisconsin Rapids, Wis.
He retired in 1981.
Van Dellen married Evelyn J. Hendriksen in 1941. She passed away in 2002. In 2003 he married Charmain Powell.
Van Dellen was very much covenantally oriented in his theology, and he saw believers primarily as covenant partners. That was also the source of his deep respect and appreciation for his many godly relatives who held leadership functions in church and society. He was an early proponent of opening all ecclesiastical offices to women.
Van Dellen authored an autobiography titled On the Potter’s Wheel.
He and Evelyn were known for their warm hospitality. Those in need found the Van Dellen parsonage a haven of help and sympathy. Visitors to their churches were quickly sought out and warmly welcomed. Many remember their kindly humor and understanding.
Van Dellen is survived by his wife Charmain and his children: David and Sharolyn (Mc Cormick) Van Dellen, Lubbert and Jayna (Opthof) Van Dellen, and Geneva Van Dellen Castleberg; and by 11 grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild.