To our members, subscribers, and readers…
It is often more comfortable to continue to do things we are accustomed to doing in the same way and in the same context. But it is also true that when change is introduced it can be welcomed and enjoyed. Changes are about to be introduced to The Outlook. In this issue Rev. J. Piersma writes about our 50-year history, and reflects on changes in editors, nature of content, change of name and appearance through these years. We believe that these have enabled us to continue to be a viable voice in the Reformed church world, and of interest and help and encouragement to those who have a commitment to the Reformed faith.
As noted in the January issue of The Outlook, Rev. and Mrs. Vanden Heuvel are retiring as editors of The Outlook. They have served in that capacity for the past eleven years, and have given themselves unstintingly to make the magazine a fulfillment of its purpose as expressed in the masthead: “to advocate and propagate this faith (biblical Reformed faith), to nurture those who seek to live in obedience to it, to give sharpened expression to it, to stimulate the doctrinal sensitivities of those who profess it, to promote the spiritual welfare and purity of the Reformed churches, and to encourage Christian action.” But the Vanden Heuvels are not retiring in the sense that they have finished their productive activities; they are about to address and serve a much wider audience, in fact, a worldwide audience as represented in The World Reformed Fellowship (ct. January issue of The Outlook). Their dissemination of information and knowledge will utilize all the modern means of communication and technology to bring together and realize this “fellowship” around the world. We express our heartfelt appreciation to them for all their dedication and labor in behalf of The Reformed Fellowship, especially as editors of The Outlook.
We are grateful to be able to introduce as the new editor of The Outlook the Rev. Wybren Oord, pastor of the Faith United Reformed Church, Olive Center (Holland), Michigan. Rev. Oord graduated from Calvin Theological Seminary with the M. Div. degree in 1986, served two congregations in the Christian Reformed Church, and has been pastor of the Faith URC since 1994. Rev. Oord has served on the board of The Reformed Fellowship for nine years, and is no stranger to the board, or The Outlook. The first issue for which Rev. Oord will have the responsibility as editor will be the May issue. But in view of the “lead time” required to prepare the magazine to be delivered on/or about the first of the month, Rev. Oord is already busy planning the articles for The Outlook for several future issues. The board is happy to welcome Rev. Oord as our new editor and is confident that his work will be of interest and blessing to the readers.
There will also, undoubtedly, be a change with respect to some of the associate editors, and we express our appreciation to them also for faithfully and productively contributing to the blessings experienced by the readers of The Outlook.
There will also be changes in the appearance of The Outlook. Some of the changes will be in the interest of conserving our resources, others to reflect a new period in the history of the magazine. There may be a reduction occasionally in the number of pages in the magazine, but not more than necessary. The new editor is optimistic that it will continue to carry the same number of pages in each issue. The board is committed to the purpose for which the magazine was founded fifty years ago, and is committed also to continue to publish for as long as we have a voice. New departments will be introduced; new writers are being enlisted, while some present editors will continue to write; more news will be included; another viewpoint will be evident. We solicit your continued interest and support. We need input from members, subscribers, and readers.
The Outlook is read around the world. It has a reputation for being a magazine that is characterized by Reformed thinking, and is faithful to the Scriptures. It has strengthened the faith of many through the years, has informed and guided the thinking of many members in difficult times, and has always endeavored to be true to its purpose.
The board has decided to reprint the book of Dr. John R. Sittema With A Shepherd’s Heart, which has been a source of blessing to many since it was first published. Itis now completely sold out. There is a good inventory of books and study material by other authors, as noted on the back of The Outlook every month, and we encourage the use and dissemination of this material as widely as possible. The articles written by Dr. C. Venema on the subject of the end times have been published in book form by the Banner of Truth Trust in a very attractive format under the title, The Promise of the Future. It is available from Mid-America Reformed Seminary, 229 Seminary Drive, Dyer, Indiana 46311. We congratulate Dr. Venema on the publication of this outstanding material!
Rev. Edward Knott is president of the board of Reformed Fellowship, Inc., publisher of The Outlook.