Heritage Reformed Ministries
In obedience to Christ’s commission to be a teaching, learning, praying, working, loving, and evangelistic church, the HRC is involved in a number of denominational and local ministries. They include:
Theological Seminarytop of page
Owned and governed by the HRC, the Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary (established in 1995; hereafter, PRTS) prepares students to serve Christ and His church through Biblical, experiential, and practical ministry. PRTS students come from numerous Reformed and Presbyterian denominations as well as independent Baptist churches. They hail from various countries, such as Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, England, Indonesia, Korea, Nigeria and South Africa.
PRTS offers three programs: a Master of Arts in Religion (a two-year degree, which usually serves as a transitional degree to doctoral work), a Master of Divinity degree (a four-year ministerial degree), and a Master of Theology degree (a degree that involves a year or more of advanced study beyond the ministerial degree and is often taken by students who desire to teach in seminaries around the world). The training in each program is rigorous and thoroughly Reformed. All of the programs are fully licensed by the State of Michigan and aim to be of the highest caliber. PRTS is accredited by the Association of Reformed Theological Seminaries (ARTS) and has obtained federal permission to enroll students from foreign countries.
Presently, PRTS serves about sixty students and is staffed with three full-time professors (Dr. Joel Beeke, President and Professor of Systematic Theology, Homiletics, and Church History; Dr. Gerald Bilkes, Professor of Old and New Testament; and Dr. David Murray, Professor of Old Testament and Practical Theology) and thirty-five part-time professors (including Dr. Sinclair Ferguson, Dr. James Grier, Dr. Michael Haykin, Dr. Hywel Jones, Dr. David Lachman, Rev. Ray Lanning, Dr. Richard Muller, Dr. Robert Oliver, Rev. Neil Pronk, Rev. Maurice Roberts, Dr. Derek Thomas, and Rev. Geoff Thomas).
PRTS houses a 45,000-volume library that includes the Puritan Resource Center, a collection of more than 3,000 volumes by and about the Puritans, in a separate climate-controlled room. The center’s special treasure is a collection of hundreds of antiquarian volumes, many of them rare items with only a few copies known to exist in the world. The center was created to foster study of the Puritans by ministers, seminary professors, and theological students throughout the world.
For a catalog and DVD of the seminary programs, or to receive a quarterly PRTS Update and be placed on the seminary’s mailing list, contact PRTS at 2965 Leonard N.E., Grand Rapids, Michigan 49525; or Mr. Henk Kleyn at 616-977-0599, ext. 120; email@example.com. You may also visit the PRTS website at www.puritanseminary.org.
Elementary and Secondary
Christian Educationtop of page
Most HRC parents make great sacrifices to send their children to our own Christian schools or schools jointly operated with the NRC. Some make use of other Christian schools or undertake home schooling. Few send their children to public schools.
The primary reason for this commitment is that raising covenant children is a solemn responsibility. Parents are duty bound to educate their children in an atmosphere that reflects their Biblical convictions about truth, spiritual life and parenting. Because the world’s presuppositions and philosophy of education are antithetical to the teachings of the church, most HRC parents believe that covenant children should not be educated in a curriculum that is hostile to what they are striving to teach their children at home and at church.
HRC parents do not look for a Christian school that only attaches the Bible to its curriculum and removes the children from an overtly worldly setting. Rather, they seek to educate children in a curriculum that is decidedly Christ-centered and Reformed in its presuppositions, its philosophical outlook, its theological content and its practical outworkings. They look for a school that puts God, man, facts, the universe, existence, origins, purpose, morality, history, aspirations, and absolutes in their proper, Biblical, God-defined contexts.
Missionstop of page
The Heritage Reformed Congregations, in obedience to Christ’s Great Commission to His church, are actively engaged in the propagation of the gospel both at home and abroad. To carry out this sacred obligation, the Mission Committee’s formal statement of purpose is as follows:
The purpose of the HRC missions program is to glorify God and present His character and nature by effectively proclaiming the message of salvation in Jesus Christ throughout the world, in order that lost sinners might be brought to salvation through the blood of Christ (from the HRC Mission Handbook
The Mission Committee has established the following organizational structure:
At present, the primary thrust of the denomination’s foreign mission efforts is to focus on assisting and nurturing young Christian churches in developing countries by providing and improving training for pastors. The HRC sponsors three full-time missionary pastors.
Dr. Arthur Miskin and family are laboring in South Africa where Rev. Miskin is teaching at Mukhanyo Theological College. Rev. Miskin and his wife, Dr. Sonja Miskin, are also utilizing their skills as medical doctors to assist AIDS victims and orphans of AIDS victims via the Masibambisane Community Development Corporation, a nearby humanitarian relief organization.
Rev. Brian DeVries, who is just completing his Ph.D. in missions, is being sent out this summer (2007) to work with Dr. Miskin and teach at Mukhanyo Theological College. Rev. and Mrs. Cees Molenaar and their family are serving the Lord as a missionary family in Zambia. Rev. Molenaar serves as principal at Covenant College, a theological seminary that is supported in part by the Free Church of Scotland (Continuing).
Individuals in the HRC give considerable support to independent mission workers laboring in a variety of places including Mexico, Cambodia, and Indonesia. Prayer is offered regularly that God will send more missionaries and mission workers into the harvest. The need is great (John 4:35; Matt. 9:37–38).
Evangelism & Church Plantingto top
The HRC is engaged in numerous evangelistic and church-planting efforts. Our churches continue to take seriously their calling to spread the gospel, beginning locally. In most congregations, local evangelism committees are zealous in bringing the gospel to the lost in a variety of ways. Current methods include Bible studies, radio ministry, neighborhood Sunday school, Vacation Bible School, tract distribution, nursing home outreach, ministries for the homeless, and jail or prison ministry. Local churches are also encouraged to consider church plants in their own geographical area.
Radio, Tape/CD, Internet,
Audio & Other Outreachtop of page
The HRC is active in radio outreach as a denomination in several cities and, in some cases, in local church areas. Radio programs are aired on a weekly basis, the most effective being in New York City.
“The Tape Room,” which includes sermons of most HRC ministers, is an extensive tape ministry throughout North America. Numerous tapes and CDs are purchased and loaned each year. For a catalog of available tapes, write “The Tape Room,” 540 Crescent, N.E., Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503. Thousands of HRC sermons are also available around the world each month on www.sermonaudio.org, on which several churches post their ministers’ sermons each week. Also, some churches offer live (real time) audio and video streaming of church sermons.
A wide variety of material can be downloaded from our denominational website, www.heritagereformed.com. Some local churches also have their own Web page with archived sermons and are linked to this main website. A few HRC ministers write books and articles for various periodicals, speak at conferences in United States and abroad, and lecture at various seminaries.
The HRC offers youth camps, men’s conferences, women’s conferences, and family conferences on an annual or biennial basis. Youth groups and women’s groups reach out in a number of ways to the poor and needy in local communities. Various local church choirs are active in reaching their communities with God-glorifying music. Several churches are very active in jail and prison ministries.
Publicationstop of page
HRC members promote sound Reformed literature around the world, including:
- The Banner of Sovereign Grace Truth, the official family periodical of the denomination, which is published ten times per year (firstname.lastname@example.org);
- Banner of Truth Tract Mission, which distributes tens of thousands of tracts around the world each year and thousands of sermons to prisoners in various U.S. jails (email@example.com);
- Glad Tidings, the official mission publication of the denomination (firstname.lastname@example.org);
- Gospel Trumpet sermons, written by HRC ministers and printed three sermons per booklet, distributed free of charge;
- Inheritance Publishers (IP), which publishes approximately four out-of-print pocket sermons per year (23,000 booklets per printing) of Reformed ministers from the 16th-19th centuries, and distributes them free of charge around the world (email@example.com);
- Reformation Heritage Books (RHB), a nonprofit organization that publishes two books per month, sells new (3,000 titles) and used books of Reformed and Puritan persuasion at discount rates, and provides free books to seminaries and pastors in Africa and to prisoners. Quarterly catalogs are available (RHB, 2965 Leonard N.E., Grand Rapids, Michigan 49525, 616-977-0599, firstname.lastname@example.org; on-line, www.heritagebooks.org.
Additionally, because the HRC considers reading literature of our Reformed heritage very important, many churches have their own bookstores and libraries. (Though the IP and RHB are, strictly speaking, independent from the denomination, most members of both boards are HRC members.)
Finally, the denomination supports numerous non-denominational ministries, such as Trinitarian Bible Society, Word and Deed, the Wycliffe Society, and various local ministries that reach out to the poor and aged. The National-International Disaster Fund sends out substantial sums of money to people in various areas in the world hit hard by famine or natural disasters.