Updates on Victoria, Conference, and PRTS

We covet your prayers as yesterday my niece, Victoria, and the family received discouraging news. The surgeons changed the dressings and were not pleased with how the new skin was developing. The dressings will need to be changed every day now and ointment applied. The family was so hoping that today Victoria would be able to return home for good, but this will now be delayed. We trust that our heavenly Father knows best and we commend Victoria and her family into His merciful hands.

My wife and I had a wonderful time this past weekend at Grace Reformed Baptist Church in Rockford, Illinois. God was in the midst of us. The conference went very well, and the 200 attendees drank in God’s Word eagerly. Their questions, love, appreciation, and book-buying spoke volumes about this church. Seldom have I spoken at a conference this size that radiated such a pathos of being in the Word and living on the growing edge of God’s grace. God is clearly blessing the work of their dear pastors, Dale Smith and Steve Tigner. Love abounds between the pastors and the flock, and also among the flock itself. It was so refreshing to hear the people tell us how much they appreciate their pastors and their church.

Last night Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary held its annual Fund-Raising Dinner. Chris Hanna, our Director of Development and Marketing, served as MC for the evening. He interviewed three of our students who gave testimonies of what PRTS has meant to them. Dr. Michael Barrett, our Academic Dean, gave a fitting address, based on Exodus 17, on “Advancing the Kingdom.” He stressed how that advance depends on (1) the unity of service, (2) on knowledge, and (3) on the power and promise of God—and applied the whole in a moving way to Bible-based, faithful seminary work.

I then gave an update on the seminary’s present needs and our vision for the future. Presently, $2.3 million of the $2.8 million needed has been raised in gifts and pledges for the proposed addition. Though this is very encouraging, the Operation Fund is now low. ATS Accreditation hopes to be achieved by February of 2014, after which PRTS hopes to begin a Ph.D. program, God willing. We are most grateful for and humbled by God’s evident continued blessing on our seminary. Soli Deo Gloria!