The Minutes of the Classis of Holland


The Minutes of the Classis of Holland



The minutes of the Classis of Holland which met in the home of Elder Broek, Holland Township. By rotation, Rev. K. S. Van der Schuur became the president and the Rev. Albertus C. Van Raalte was elected to the office of "permanent Clerk, in order that regular recording of the minutes may be promoted." p. 44 Rev. Van der Schuur received a call to the Grand Haven church "which had been brought to ruin by the incapacity of a perverse but no longer existing consistory; that he might seek in that place to bring about unity and the election of a new consistory." p. 44. Van der Schuur has been serving the congregation in "South Holland", a group apparently existing on the south side of Holland city. There was a suggestion that the group merge with the Graafschap church. Elder H. Krans of Zeeland asked if whether or not the church order of Dort had been adopted. Van Raalte spoke against the organizing of a congregation in Groningen. The people living in that area are close enough to either the Holland or Zeeland congregation. In article 8, it is reported that Van Raalte heard from the Rev. John Garretson, "Cor. Sec'y of the Home Missionary Society" who wrote encouragingly about the welfare of the settlement and the education of youth. "That also the Hon. Mr. Frielinghuizen [sic], one of the foremost pillars in the house of God, greatly favored and advocated this plan" [in regard to education]. Article 9 reports on the union with the Old Dutch Church of North America [now the RCA]. "We humbly desire not to put to shame the confidence bestowed upon us, but, as is our bounden duty, so to conduct, ourselves that we shall be an ornament to the Dutch Reformed Church, by earnestly seeking the glory of God and the welfare of our neighbors." p 53 Van Raalte is charged with the commission to make known these sentiments "upon any suitable occasion..." In Article 10, A.C.V.R. reported that the Separatists established a school in Amsterdam and then goes to explain the purpose of the Seceders "who seek to uphold the genuine Reformed Church,..." The explanation in this article is an excellent summary of the Seceder position as written by Van Raalte. At the same time, Classis prays that the Seceders will "be delivered from that narrow, self-pleasing sectarian spirit." p. 54




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 Minutes of the Classis of Holland