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Christ in the City 2017

Blessed are the Peacemakers: Dualities in the Christian Faith

In the letter to the Colossians, Paul writes "Christ himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together." What would it look like for Christians to trust that all things hold together in Christ Jesus? Heaven and earth, wealth and poverty, church and state, man and woman; these aspects of life and faith are constantly being pulled apart, but Christians are called to live into these dualities in a different way; to follow Jesus' words from the sermon on the mount, "Blessed are the peacemakers." So this summer, we will take a look at how Christians can make peace with these dualities and in so doing be the “sign, instrument and foretaste” that Lesslie Newbigin urges the church to be. He writes, "The church is the bearer to all the nations of a gospel that announces the kingdom, the reign, and the sovereignty of God. It calls men and women to repent of their false loyalty to other powers, to become believers in the one true sovereignty, and so to become corporately a sign, instrument, and foretaste of that sovereignty of the one true and living God over all nature, all nations, and all human lives. It is not meant to call men and women out of the world into a safe religious enclave but to call them out in order to send them back as agents of God’s kingship.

Join us as we are led to think, discuss and explore how all things truly hold together in Christ Jesus as a witness to a watching and dividing world. 

Faith and Politics

Anyone who has ever been to a dinner party or family gathering knows the emotion and passion packed within the topics of faith and politics. This tension often causes many of us to refrain from discussing these topics all together.

We believe part of our call to join in reconciliation as God makes all things new is to enter into these often tough spaces with grace and love. It is precisely a people of faith who can come together to heal broken culture and dialogue.

Join us as we come together to learn about and discuss the intersection of faith and politics throughout our country’s history and within today’s current political climate. Come prepared to listen, learn, and share with a spirit of humility and grace with one another.

Pillar Church Activity Center

200 East 14th Street Holland, MI 49423

Saturday 15 April, 10am-noon: Kristen Deede Johnson — God’s heart for Justice and US Political History

Kristen (PhD, University of St. Andrews) is associate professor of theology and Christian formation at Western Theological Seminary. She teaches and writes in the areas of theology, culture, formation, and political theory. Her publications include Theology, Political Theory, and Pluralism: Beyond Tolerance and Difference, and most recently, The Justice Calling: Where Passion meets Perseverance.

Saturday 29 April, 10am-noon: David Ryden — The Intersection of Faith and Politics

David (JD, University of Minnesota, PhD, The Catholic University of America) is a member of the Hope College political science faculty. he has published numerous books and articles on such topics as the Supreme Court and the electoral process, religious liberty, faith-based sector/ governmental partnerships and other questions at the intersection of religion and politics. He is the author of The U.S. Supreme Court and the Electoral Process and, most recently, Is the Good Book Good Enough?: Evangelical Perspectives on Public Policy.

Saturday 6 May, 8am-11am: Team Immigrant Allies — Tulip Time Run

Want to add the cherry to the top of the Faith and Politics sundae?! Join us in supporting Lighthouse Immigrant Advocates and the CRC’s Blessing not Burden campaign during the 2017 Tulip Time Run. All the proceeds go towards supporting non-profit work for our immigrant and refugee neighbors. Register at

Saturday 6 May, 11:30am-1:30pm: Kris VanEngen—Faith and Politics and Refugee Care, Oh My!

Kris (MDiv, Western Theological Seminary) is a Congregational Justice Mobilizer at the Christian Reformed Church in North America and World Renew. Kris is the creator of the Church between Borders workshop geared at Christian groups interested in engaging immigration from a Biblical perspective.


Questions? Contact Kat Schulte at

Ash Wednesday

By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust and to dust you will return.Genesis 3:19

With these words we turn our attention to Ash Wednesday, the day that leads us into the season of Lent. Pillar will begin the observance of Ash Wednesday with a community prayer service beginning at 12pm in the sanctuary. The church will remain open throughout the afternoon as an invitation to anyone who would like to come to Pillar to pray, to rest, to take of the bread and the cup, and to remember from dust to dust

We will end the day at 5:15pm with a light supper followed by a worship service at 6pm.  Please RSVP for how many people will be attending to

AJ Muste Lecture at Pillar on Oct. 4

The whole community is invited to join us on Tues., October 4 from 7-8:30 when Dr. Robert Johansen will be speaking and taking questions on “Accept War and Terror or Build Peace and Justice” in the sanctuary at Pillar Church.  Robert Johansen (Ph.D. Columbia, 1968) specializes in issues of international ethics and global governance, the United Nations and the maintenance of peace and security, and peace and world order studies. He is a founding (since 1986) faculty member of the Kroc Institute.  Dr Johansen is speaking through the benefit of the Hope College A.J.Muste lecture series.