A month ago, on May 1st, New Brunswick Seminary offered a special event, a presentation by David Waanders on the occasion of his retirement as Professor of Pastoral Care and Director of Admissions. Davidâ€™s role at First Reformed Church was well reflected by the number of church members in attendance that day.
It was a remarkable lecture in many ways, because it helped us representatives from the church to extrapolate some of the problems of daily life and put them into a larger perspective. Small membership numbers, growing pains on the road to greater inclusiveness, the dichotomy between what is academic standard and what we believe as lay people in the pews â€“ all this was reflected in Davidâ€™s account of a lifetime as professor within the Reformed Church in America.
Especially moving among many signs of appreciation was the witness from Korean students who enjoyed Davidâ€™s openness towards other cultures and ethnic backgrounds very much. This witness provided a great outlook for the future, as our world seem to shrink rapidly, and we find ourselves ever more in situations that require compassion and sensitivity towards members of different cultures.
We wish David the very best for his retirement. We are grateful for the many moments during which he has applied his wider experience in our particular church setting, and we look forward to many more such moments in the years to come.