First Christian Reformed Church in Sioux Center, Iowa, celebrated its 125th anniversary at the end of September. Current pastor Mark Verbruggen and former pastors John L. Witvliet and John Hellinga were all on hand on September 29 to take part in the worship services.
Part of the celebration included “Singing Our History,” featuring songs that had been sung over the church’s history. Songs were selected from each of the CRC’s Psalter Hymnals, including the first English translation of the Psalter published in 1912, the red Psalter Hymnal (1934), the blue Psalter Hymnal (1957), and the gray Psalter Hymnal (1987).
Verbruggen expressed what the anniversary meant to the congregation. “To use a familiar but true cliché, an anniversary is always an occasion to reflect on God’s faithfulness. First CRC exists by the will of God and for the glory of God. God doesn’t need us, but God has chosen to bless us for 125 years, and we hope that this will continue for many years to come,” he said. “I think, from its beginning, First CRC has always been a progressively conservative church. It has always strived to be both faithful to the Scriptures and to understand the gospel’s place in an ever-changing world and society. Through steady and faithful preachers over the decades, it has been led by a positive vision for the kingdom of God and its coming to this world in Christ.”
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