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Presentations and Interviews

"Als een probleem maar wordt besproken, is het al goed," an interview by Henk Maasen. In Medisch Contact 56, nos. 27/28 (13 July 2001): 1052-55. (James C. Kennedy)

"Christian Reformed Church/Reformed Church," two lectures, Second Christian Reformed Church, Grand Haven, Michigan, 22 and 29 April 2001. (Elton J. Bruins)

"Dutch Euthanasia Policy and Practices," Faculty Colloquium, Hope College, Holland, Michigan, 7 March 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

"Early Hope College History as Reflected in the Correspondence of Rev. Albertus C. Van Raalte to Rev. Philip Phelps Jr., 1857-1875," paper, 13th Biennial Conference of the Association for the Advancement of Dutch American Studies, Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 22 June 2001. (Elton J. Bruins)

"Faith and Learning Issues at Hope College," First-Year Seminar, Hope College, Holland, Michigan, 2 October 2000. (Elton J. Bruins)

"Historic Holland, Michigan," two lectures, Holland Senior Leader Program of Evergreen Commons, Holland Museum, Holland, Michigan, 26 September 2001. (Elton J. Bruins)

"Historic Third Reformed Church," remarks, dedication service of historical marker, Third Reformed Church, Holland, Michigan, 16 September 2001. (Elton J. Bruins)

Van Raalte met Phelps for the first time in 1857. Although the Phelps family had visited the Holland Colony on their western tour in 1856 and Mrs. Van Raalte had entertained them, Van Raalte himself was not in Holland at that time. During Van Raalte's fund-raising trip in 1857, he stayed with the Phelps family in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, a village just north of New York City. Phelps, a graduate of the Albany Academy, Union College, and the Theological Seminary at New Brunswick, was serving as pastor at the First Reformed Church. The congregation was generous in its giving to the cause which Van Raalte represented.
Van Raalte took a liking to young Phelps, then thirty-one years old. Correspondence between Van Raalte and Phelps and an association between them continued from 1857 until a year before the death of Van Raalte in 1876. As is reflected in this correspondence of eighteen years duration, 1857-1875, Van Raalte and Phelps became very good friends. Van Raalte's personality did not lend itself to close friendships, and it appears that during his lifetime Phelps and Rev. Anthony Brummelkamp, his brother-in-law in the Netherlands, were his closest friends. The friendship of Van Raalte and Phelps proved to be crucial because working together to advance the cause of education in the Holland Colony depended on their close collaboration.
From "Early Hope College History as Reflected in the Correspondence of Rev. Albertus C. Van Raalte to Rev. Philip Phelps Jr., 1857-1875" by Elton J. Bruins.

"History of Holland, Michigan," lecture series, Elderhostel, Camp Geneva, Holland, Michigan, 7-8 and 14-15 May 2001. (Elton J. Bruins)

"Lillian Van Raalte Lampen: The Embodiment of the Van Raalte Family Ideals," remarks, funeral of Lillian V. R. Lampen, Third Reformed Church, Holland, Michigan, 28 August 2001. (Elton J. Bruins)

"Memory and War: The Dutch and the Second World War," lecture at opening of Holland Museum Exhibit, Holland, Michigan, 15 March 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

"De naoviteit van de geplande dood," interview by Bastiaan van der Wal. In CV Koers, August 2001, 18-22. (James C. Kennedy)

"Nederland door de ogen van een Amerikaan," interview by Mirjam Hollebrandse. In Visie 32 (5-11 August 2000): 4-7. (James C. Kennedy)

"The 150th Anniversary of the Union of the Classis of Holland with the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church," presentation, Classis of Holland meeting, Holland, Michigan, 27 September 2000. (Elton J. Bruins)

Radio interview on Dutch emigration records, Holland, Michigan, 11 March 2001. (Robert P. Swierenga)

Radio interview on euthanasia, Holland, Michigan, 15 April 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

Radio interview on morality in the Netherlands, Dutch Public Radio, 14 August 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

Radio interview on President Clinton, Dutch Public Radio, 29 October 2000. (James C. Kennedy)

Two radio interviews on the attacks of September 11, Dutch Public Radio, 12 September 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

"The Reformed Church in America: Its History, Nature, and Connection to Hope College," Hope College faculty seminars, Holland, Michigan, 30 May and 5 June 2001. (Elton J. Bruins)

"A Religious History of Hope College," lecture, Pepperdine University, Malibu, California, 18 May 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

"Role of a Teacher-Scholar at a Christian College," panel discussion, Hope College, Holland, Michigan, 23 August 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

"'Sociaal kapitaal kan ineens op zijn,'" interview by Marcel ten Hooven. In Trouw, 12 September 2001. (James C. Kennedy)

"The Third Generation and Dutch American Studies, 1960-2000," keynote address, 13th Biennial Conference of the Association for the Advancement of Dutch American Studies, Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 22 June 2001. (Robert P. Swierenga)

The IRM story involves the nexus of money and religion in the Christian Reformed Church in North America (CRCNA). This small, close-knit denomination, the product of Dutch immigrants in the nineteenth century, stretches from coast to coast and is held in place by the strong glue of Dutch ethnicity. But the glue has its price - the financial undoing of many congregants and church agencies, and a nasty legal fight that has heightened a spirit of disunity plaguing the denomination in recent years.
In short, the IRM affair was an unholy mess that tore apart a tightly-bound church body and gave it a very public black eye because of the litigation. The implicit trust that had bound together the Dutch Christian Reformed community from coast to coast was seriously damaged. That trust had caused the problem, in the first place, but in the end that same trust helped the Court to resolve the affair with fairness and integrity. Time heals all, and the acrimony has largely died down between the Christian Reformed Church leaders and those members who believed the resort to the secular courts was morally wrong and fiscally foolish.
From "'Unholy Mess': The IRM California Real Estate Investment Debacle in the Christian Reformed Church in North America in the 1990s" by Robert P. Swierenga.

"'Unholy Mess': The IRM California Real Estate Investment Debacle in the Christian Reformed Church in North America in the 1990s," paper, "California Dreams" conference, Roosevelt Study Center, Middelburg, the Netherlands, 6 October 2000. (Robert P. Swierenga)

"The West Michigan Dutch," lecture series, Elderhostel, Camp Geneva, Holland, Michigan, 7-8 and 14-15 May 2001. (Robert P. Swierenga)

Christian Schools have also had a huge impact on our churches. I can quantify one aspect - membership. When Ebenezer Christian School and Timothy Christian School opened their doors about 100 years ago, the Reformed and Christian Reformed churches on the Old West Side of Chicago were nearly equal in membership - each with about 1,000 souls. Today Reformed church membership on the Far West Side is less than one-fourth that of Christian Reformed church membership. Could it be that Christian day school education has made the difference in maintaining a Reformed presence in Chicagoland?
From "Why Timothy?" by Robert P. Swierenga.

"Why Timothy?" address, Timothy Foundation Heritage Dinner, Drury Lane Theatre, Oakbrook, Illinois, 12 October 2000. (Robert P. Swierenga)

"Eeen zwak intern compas," interview by Fokke Obbema, 23 December 2000. (James C. Kennedy)