Calvinist romance

Calvinist Romance

Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell Uncategorized 5 Comments

I have this weird knack of looking for Calvinism-of-a-sort, oddly appearing in pop culture, especially music and sappy romantic love. It’s not a full-time job. Not even a hobby, really. My thesis is that Reformed doctrines like election are actually deeply rooted in an incredible love. Unfortunately election and other Reformed touchstones have been framed more in terms of logic …

Steve Mathonnet-VanderWellCalvinist Romance


the12 editor Uncategorized 5 Comments

by Jim Brownson Brian Keepers is off today. We welcome guest-blogger, Jim Brownson.  Jim teaches New Testament at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan, and is a General Synod Professor of Theology of the Reformed Church in America. Thanks, Jim! I want to invite my denomination, the Reformed Church in America, to think carefully about some of the proposals it …

the12 editorAccomodation

A Pow’r Not Theirs to Give

the12 editor Uncategorized 3 Comments

Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan, to be baptized by him. John would have prevented him, saying, ‘I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?’ But Jesus answered him, ‘Let it be so now; for it is proper for us in this way to fulfill all righteousness. –– The Gospel of …

the12 editorA Pow’r Not Theirs to Give

African Drum Camp

the12 editor Uncategorized 2 Comments

by Elizabeth Vander Haagen Debra Rienstra is away today. We welcome guest-blogger Elizabeth Vander Haagen. She is a spiritual director and pastor of Boston Square Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, along with her husband Jay Blankespoor. They are grateful parents of two  daughters. This month I got to go to West African Drum Camp – every afternoon for …

the12 editorAfrican Drum Camp

Donald Trump and the faith community

James Schaap Uncategorized 7 Comments

The intent of the confab, according to news sources, was love, to bring together hungry Christian conservatives with rowdy Donald Trump, who doesn’t talk a Christian, walk like one, and had never–before running for President–acted like one nor hung out a shingle to be one or be seen as one. He has, bless his soul, only recently come home to …

James SchaapDonald Trump and the faith community

Hot Tamales

Thomas Goodhart Uncategorized 4 Comments

The first time I ever had a tamale was either my junior or senior year in college nearly twenty years ago. The church I was worshipping in used rented facilities—Western Seminary actually—and had the opportunity to use a different rented facility—the former Sixth Reformed Church building in Holland now owned by Hope College (since demolished and repurposed). But the space …

Thomas GoodhartHot Tamales

Leadership Takes Imagination

Jes Kast-Keat Uncategorized Leave a Comment

How often to you let your mind wander in imagination? Do you let yourself daydream? As I ride the subway back and forth from Brooklyn to Manhattan I daydream and imagine new possibilities. I believe imagination is one of the top three values in leadership.  We must take time to nurture our imagination and allow it space to roam. Gloria …

Jes Kast-KeatLeadership Takes Imagination
Synod people

What I Heard (and Didn’t Hear)

Scott Hoezee Uncategorized 7 Comments

As I am leading a seminar out West this week, I am writing this blog before the CRC Synod is over.   And there will be those who disagree with me, having heard very different things than I am about to suggest.   That’s OK.  But allow me to make the following observations: When I first started tuning in to the CRCNA’s …

Scott HoezeeWhat I Heard (and Didn’t Hear)

The Second Time Around, Or, the Arrogance of Presentism

rkoerselman Uncategorized 4 Comments

It is simple, but true. Something that is good can be appreciated again and again. Each time I reread, re-watch, or view again something good, I see something different, think something different, and gain a new insight. For example, as a child, I read and enjoyed Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time. I recently reread the book and picked up …

rkoerselmanThe Second Time Around, Or, the Arrogance of Presentism
spider 2


the12 editor Uncategorized 2 Comments

by Steven Rodriguez I came into the sanctuary in the tissue paper silence of Sunday morning the echoes of the coming congregation already charging the walls a sweatered kid down a playground slide. I came to prepare the table but found it already occupied a dead spider on the communion cloth. At my installation service the minister, addressing the congregation, …

the12 editorSpider