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A report is made at the meeting of the General Synod of the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church in North America (RCA) of the "Western Department" by the Board of Domestic Missions, John Gosman, chairman and pastor of the Reformed Church of Hudson, New York. Excerpts from the report: The missionaries speak particularly of the necessity of sustaining our enterprise at Grand Rapids, not only on account of the importance of the place, but also because a large colony of Hollanders, consisting of some three thousand souls—to which, during the present season, there will be large accessions—have located themselves in that vicinity. Other denominations are using active measures to bring them under their influence, while we, who are of the same origin, springing from the same branch of the Reformation, and adopting the same standards, are doing nothing but exposing them to be swallowed up by men of every name and every creed. These settlers are for the most part men of property and of the highest moral and religious character, and have come over with strong preferences for the Reformed Dutch Church. (p. 425) At the conclusion of the report, it was made known who had been elected from the double slate to the Board of Domestic Missions. The list contains some of the most distinguished members of the RCA: Thomas De Witt, Isaac Ferris, Mancius S. Hutton, George W. Bethune, Abraham Messler, John Garretson, William J. R. Taylor, Isaac N. Wyckoff, James Romeyn, and Theodore Frelinghuysen for a total of 24 men. John Garretson later became the executive secretary of the board with whom Albertus C. Van Raalte had much correspondence. The whole report indicates the struggles of the RCA to enlarge its mission work in the United States in spite of limited funds and personnel.




Brooklyn, New York


Description of the document by Dr. Elton J. Bruins.

About the collection:

Elton J. Bruins, long-time professor in the Department of Religion at Hope College, spent years collecting documents by and about Albertus C. Van Raalte, founder of Holland, Michigan and early patron of Hope College. Documents were gathered from dozens of public and private collections, making a nearly exhaustive collection of Van Raalte's writings and reflections. It is these documents that make up the "Van Raalte Papers."

Digitizing the Van Raalte papers was supported by the Dutch Culture USA program by the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York. The project was done in partnership with Heritage Hall at Calvin University, which also digitized its Van Raalte collections.


The Acts and Proceedings of the General Synod of the Ref. Prot. Dutch Church in North America, convened at Brooklyn, L. I., September, 1848, New-York: John A. Gray, 1848, pp. 424-428.

Report of the Meeting of the General Synod of the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church in North America