MFCA News and Information
December 2020/January 2021
MFCA is in the process of receiving registration for the following RCA Courses which are scheduled to commence on January 4, 2021. All courses will be offered online, using Canvas Learning Management System. Registration material has been sent via email, from Kelly Talsma. If you did not receive this information and registration material, but would like to register for one of the courses, please contact the MFCA Registrar, Kelly Talsma at email@example.com. The courses beginning in January are as follows:
Basic Hebrew Tools and Exegesis – Rev. Dr. Chad Pierce, Instructor
RCA History & Missions – Rev. Dr. Dennis Voskuil, Instructor
RCA Polity - Rev. Dr. Cornelis Kors, Instructor
RCA Standards – Rev. Dr. Wayne Brouwer, Instructor
Credo Spring 2021 Session – Rev. Dr. Wayne Brouwer, Instructor (Pre-requisite: RCA Standards)
Registration material will be sent in early January for MFCA Seminar for Pastoral Formation, an alternative course to the requirement for CPE. The course will be offered online including the intensive closing week. The course commences on March 1, 2021 with the intensive week running May 10-14, 2021.
RCA Worship will be offered this summer in an online format under the instruction of Rev. Dr. Ron Reinstra. The MFCA staff encourage our candidates to consider taking the Worship course, as it may be a once a year offering. The dates for the course offering are July 12-23, 2021 and will include required work through the weekend.
MFCA Certification Committee Meeting (via Zoom) – January 21 & 22, 2021
The MFCA Board of Trustees Meeting (via Zoom) – March 5, 2021
Due to recent changes with the agency and budgetary restrictions, annual in-person meetings with the director are no longer feasible. We ask our candidates to be proactive in initiating communication with MFCA staff as needed. We will continue our regular communication with all candidates, but if you need consultation, clarification, or have specific questions, do not hesitate to contact staff.
· Rev. Dave Schutt – firstname.lastname@example.org
· Kelly Talsma – email@example.com
· Amy White – firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Saviors Corner of Hope Church in Lakewood, Colorado is searching for a Senior Pastor. If you feel this may be a good fit and you are interested in more information, you may contact Amy White (email@example.com) for the Church Profile. You are also welcome to contact the Search Committee Chairperson.
Sponsorship for Dr. Cornelis Kors’ Festschrift
Thank you to all who have graciously contributed to sponsor the production of a Festschrift (a collection of essays) in honor of Cor, who tirelessly served the RCA for 29 years. We at the MFCA have received notice of each of your contributions and want to express our gratitude. For those of you who desire to be a part of the sponsorship, you may still do so.
This festschrift entitled, Shepherding a New Generation of Leaders: Essays in Honor of Cornelis G. Kors, is being edited by Dr. Bradley G. Lewis, and published as part of The Historical Series of the Reformed Church in America.
The MFCA Board of Trustees and staff (Kelly Talsma and Amy White) invite you to become a sponsor of this volume by contributing $50 toward its publication. If we receive your gift by December 31, 2020, your name will be listed in the initial pages as a sponsor, and we will send you a copy.
To make your donation and reserve your book, please do one of the following:
• Mail check:
Reformed Church in America
MFCA/Cor Kors Festschrift
4500-60th St. SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49512
RCA Worship was the last course offered only once a year as a week-long intensive in June. Due to COVID-19, along with the passing of the Rev. Dr. Gregg Mast (one of the RCA Worship Instructors), the intensive was cancelled.
The MFCA had a number of candidates whose only remaining requirement was RCA Worship, therefore, Dr. Kors managed to make alternative arrangements for this course prior to his retirement in July.
RCA Worship was offered for the first time via distance learning and we are grateful to the Rev. Dr. Tim TenClay for stepping up at the last minute. The course is now complete and we await the final grades.
MFCA has determined that “in-person” intensives will no longer be offered. This will include the Seminar for Pastoral Formation, which has historically been offered via distance learning with a week-long in-person intensive to conclude the course. The Rev. Dr. Verlyn Hemmen had to make adjustments this past summer to complete SPF via Zoom. Next year Dr. Hemmen has agreed to teach SPF with the intensive week once again being a virtual component of the course.
MFCA is extremely grateful for the creativity and commitment of all the professors contracted to teach our courses.
Basic Greek Tools and Exegesis / Basic Hebrew Tools and Exegesis – Rev. Dr. Chad Pierce
RCA History & Missions – Rev. Dr. Dennis Voskuil
RCA Polity - Rev. Dr. Cornelis Kors
RCA Standards / Credo – Rev. Dr. Wayne Brouwer
RCA Worship – Rev. Dr. Tim TenClay
Seminar for Pastoral Formation (CPE Alternative) – Rev. Dr. Verlyn Hemmen
Courses & Events
Credo DL- Winter session – Commences October 12, 2020 (Pre-requisite: RCA Standards)
Instructor: Rev. Dr. Wayne Brouwer
Certification Committee Meeting (via Zoom) – October 15-16, 2020
Board of Trustees Meeting (via Zoom) – October 30, 2020
Please contact the MFCA Registrar, Kelly Talsma regarding registration (firstname.lastname@example.org)
For those involved in Candidate Care Teams with the assorted RCA Classes, as well as potential candidates wondering if the MFCA will continue to receive petitions of those seeking the Certificate of Fitness for Ministry (CFM), we offer the following information. This past spring, the General Synod Council voted to dissolve the MFCA, which will require a process. After receiving permission to operate with our reserve funds through approximately March of 2022, the MFCA Board determined that MFCA will continue to receive new candidates. The staff will assist in transitioning any candidates who have been unable to complete the program during this time frame into a new process, which will be established by the PFOB. The Rev. Dave Schutt, MFCA part-time Interim Director, will be actively involved in the decisions made by the PFOB, along with the two RCA seminaries.
At this writing, all three staff, Kelly Talsma, Amy White and Dave Schutt plan to work through the dissolution and to assist candidates in completing the process in a timely manner. We look forward to receiving new candidates and working with classes and candidates.
Director's Travel Schedule
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the GSC staff, which includes the MFCA, will continue to work from home and will not be expected to return to work in any of the RCA offices through December 31, 2020.
All GSC staff travel and gatherings remain suspended, therefore the MFCA Interim Director, Rev. Dave Schutt will not be travelling for in-person consultations. Candidates desiring to have a phone conversation or a face to face Zoom video conference meeting with an MFCA staff member, can do so by contacting Amy White (email@example.com), to set up an appointment.
MFCA Board Appoints Interim Director
The MFCA Board of Trustees is pleased to announce the appointment of an interim director. The Rev. David Schutt will be the interim director as of August 1, 2020. Schutt has served the RCA for many years as a parish pastor and executive for the Regional Synod of the Great Lakes. He was also elected as president of the General Synod in 2004 and was the person to preside over one of the few judicial trails that the General Synod has held in the last couple of decades.
Schutt is a graduate of Western Theological Seminary (1970) and served churches in Otley, IA, Aurora, CO, Eagan, MN, Carmichael, CA and Ripon, CA. He retired from full-time ministry in 2016 after forty-two years.
Schutt has served the MFCA for many years as a member of the certification committee and board of trustees. He was moderator of the board on several occasions and was moderator as the Theological Education Agency (TEA) transitioned to being the Ministerial Formation Coordinating Agency (MFCA). He has done advanced coach training and currently coaches several RCA pastors. Schutt is well-equipped to serve as interim director. He will serve on a part-time basis.
Appointments to meet with Rev. Schutt can be made by contacting Amy White at her email address (firstname.lastname@example.org). All MFCA staff will continue to work from home while the Covid-19 “Stay-at-Home” orders continue. Home for Rev. Schutt is Des Moines, Iowa in the summer and Arizona in the winter.
Courses & Events
RCA History & Missions DL – Commences September 8, 2020
Instructor: Rev. Dennis Voskuil
RCA Polity DL – Commences September 8, 2020
Instructor: Rev. Dr. Cornelis Kors
RCA Standards DL – Commences September 8, 2020
Instructor: Rev. Dr. Wayne Brouwer
Please contact the MFCA Registrar, Kelly Talsma regarding registration (email@example.com)
From Rev. Grant Mulder: We are excited to announce that I have accepted a call to Bethel Reformed Church in Sterling, IL. All of this was in process before COVID and was delayed due to it. We are incredibly grateful for our time at Silver Creek Reformed Church and will miss the congregation and our friends in the community. At the same time, we are very excited about what God is doing at Bethel and look forward to seeing what God has in store for us in Sterling. My final Sunday at Silver Creek will be July 26 and we’ll be moving later that week. We ask for your prayers during this time of transition.
Susan Mulholland will be ordained to the ministry of Word and sacrament on Sunday, July 26th at 4:00 PM; Monocacy Valley Church in Ijamsville, Maryland. One can participate via Zoom. Mulholland is a member of the Classis of New Brunswick.
Congratulations to Nicole Contreras and Ciro Romero, recent graduates of Alliance Theological Seminary in Nyack, NY. Ciro graduated with honors and Nicole was awarded the Beth Kamphausen Award by the faculty; it is an award given to the woman who has been faithful in adhering to God's call in leadership.
Trinity Church in El Monte, California
11804 Hemlock Street El Monte
“Our vision is to become a multicultural community of faith. Our search seeks a bi-vocational, bilingual pastor who possesses multicultural passion and outreach skills that connect the life of the church to the life and needs of the community.”
Those interested may also contact the MFCA for a copy of Pastor Opportunity Profile.
Director's Travel Schedule
GSC staff, which includes MFCA staff, will continue to work from home and will not be expected to return to work in any of the RCA offices through December 31, 2020.
All GSC staff travel and gatherings will remain suspended through September 30, 2020.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic and all travel suspension, candidates who desire to meet with the new interim director can do so by contacting Amy White (firstname.lastname@example.org) in order to schedule a phone conversation or Zoom video-conference.