Rev. Jacob Hasper, 90, an eloquent preacher as loyal to friends and parishioners as he was to their Savior, and a church leader of thoughtful initiatives, passed away May 30 from natural causes.
Hasper was born in Chicago, where he attended the Englewood Christian School, Roseland Christian School, and Chicago Christian High School.
After graduating from Calvin College with a speech major, he entered Northwestern University, Evanston, Ill., as a graduate student in the speech department. He discontinued his studies there, however, when he felt a call to prepare for the gospel ministry.
He successfully completed his studies at Calvin Theological Seminary in 1947. During the last five years of his studies, Hasper taught speech and English at Calvin College. He also directed several thespian productions for the school.
Hasper served the following Christian Reformed congregations: New Era (Mich.) CRC, 1947; Trinity CRC, Grandville, Mich., 1950; Seymour CRC, Grand Rapids, Mich., 1953; Midland Park (N.J.) CRC, 1962; Bethany CRC, Bellflower, Calif., 1970; Pillar CRC, Holland, Mich., 1976. He retired in 1986.
Hasper will be remembered for his unflinching faith in his Savior, his patience, his gentle sense of humor, the joyful hope in his preaching, and the tenderness of heart with which he ministered to the needy and lonely.
In denominational circles he was respected for his grasp of Reformed theology, his organizational skills and understanding, and the determination with which he supported Kingdom enterprises. He served on many denominational boards and was one of the founding members of the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee.
During his retirement years he served as a visiting pastor for Bethany CRC in Holland, Mich.
Among his hobbies were woodworking, fishing, sailing, and gardening.
Hasper was preceded in death by his wife, Gladys, and by son-in-law Anton Fredrick Borst. He is survived by his children Mary Borst, Ruth and David Vander Hart, Carol and Steve Karrip, and David and Lana Hasper, and by five grandchildren.