Adult Ministry – April 2016


Well over 100 people walked on the path Jesus walked on the way to His crucifixion in this year’s first ever Journey to the Cross Lenten prayer walk. It was a very meaningful experience for all who participated, adults and youth as well as members and guests alike. Here are some reflections:

“I participated in the walk with a physically challenged friend. We were asked to carry a rock throughout the walk that symbolized the burden of our sin. I often had to juggle carrying my rock, my friend’s rock, our papers, and our pens. It was often a struggle for me. This made me reflect on how our own sin can indeed hold us back from helping others.” (retired male)

“At the last station, we were encouraged to leave our rock (sin) at the foot of the cross. I had a very difficult time dropping my rock and letting it go. This challenged me to reflect more on why I hang on to my guilt and my shame instead of giving it all to Jesus.” (full-time working mom of teenagers)

“The most meaningful station to me was praying as Jesus did in the Garden of Gethsemane. It made me realize that when I know I will be facing troubles, it’s okay to “be scared, run, and hide” to be with God like Jesus did. It made me remember to pray to God instead of worry alone.” (middle school male student)

 The adult ministry team plans to make the Lenten prayer walk an annual opportunity for our members, guests, and our community.

The Spring launch for Life Groups is April 17. To sign up, use the connection card in the bulletin to indicate interest and someone will contact you. For people newer to the church or who may be thinking about becoming members, there will be a Sunday night Discovery Life Group. Life Groups are great opportunities to get to know fellow believers and interact with them on a personal level, supporting each other and sharing life together.

Ladies, don’t miss Ladies’ Day 2016! April 23 will be a great morning with guest speaker Rev. Leslie Holmes (who also happens to be Tom and Miriam Carpenter’s daughter) about Powerful Prayer. Plus, women attending can choose one of several fun and relaxing break-out sessions. The event is free. However, you must RSVP to Rebecca Cruttenden. Deadline for reserving a spot for lunch was April 10, but any woman may still sign up to attend the rest of the morning.


Adult Ministry – March 2016

Easter is March 27 this year and we are in the season of Lent, leading up to Good Friday. Lent is a time dedicated for reflection on Jesus Christ – his suffering and his sacrifice, his life, death, burial, and resurrection.
To observe Lent, a special Journey to the Cross Prayer Walk is available to individuals, families, and groups at our church. You are invited to walk through seven interactive, devotional prayer stations set up throughout the upper level of the gym. You will travel along the path Jesus walked on the way to his crucifixion. Each station includes scripture reading, interactive exercises, and prayer to help you reflect upon the sacrifice of his death, so that you might experience the grace and love of God more fully during this Lenten season.
Times are available for guided and self-guided walks for individuals and groups. A devotional program booklet was placed in your church mailbox and the back page of it lists these times as well as other special events and services for you and your family, friends, and neighbors.
Ladies, set aside Saturday morning, April 23, for a Ladies Day here at Rockford Reformed. Details are still being worked out, but plan to be inspired, uplifted, and refreshed with a special speaker and break-away sessions. Click here for the latest information.


Adult Ministry – February 2016

The season of Lent is upon us. It is a Christian season of preparation before Easter, celebrated this year on Sunday, March 27. Lent is a time dedicated for reflection on Jesus Christ – his suffering and his sacrifice, his life, death, burial, and resurrection.

To observe Lent, a special Journey to the Cross Prayer Walk will be available to individuals, families, and groups at our church. Beginning in March, you are invited to walk through seven interactive, devotional prayer stations set up throughout the upper level of the gym. You will travel along the path Jesus walked on the way to his crucifixion. Each station includes scripture reading, interactive exercises, and prayer to help you reflect upon the sacrifice of his death, so that you might experience the grace and love of God more fully during this Lenten season.

An all-church open house format Journey to the Cross Prayer Walk & Breakfast has been set for Saturday morning, March 12 from 8:30 – 10:00am. During March, additional times will be available for guided and self-guided walks for individuals and groups. Please check your church mailbox soon for the corresponding devotional program booklet listing these times as well as other special events and services for you and your family, friends, and neighbors.

Everyone is invited to stay after the 11:00 service on Sunday, February 21 for a delicious dinner prepared and served by our high schoolers! Donations go toward high school mission trips and retreats. On the menu: meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and more!


Adult Ministry – January 2016


At the Adult Ministries Team meeting on January 7, Karen Bazen agreed to assume leadership of the team. Primary responsibilities of the team include Wednesday and Sunday adult ministry offerings and coordination of Life Groups. The team also discussed the formation of a Women’s Ministry team to coordinate special women’s events for Lent, Christmas, etc. If you are interested in volunteering for this team, please contact Karen Bazen or another team member.

With the January 3 Winter Festival and Concert of Prayer, a new season of Wednesday night and Sunday morning adult classes began. Bren Shantz is teaching a Sunday class on the Portraits of Jesus based on the four gospels. He is sharing the historical and cultural background that brings greater understanding to Jesus’ actions and teachings. Please feel free to join this class any time that works for your schedule.

On Wednesdays at 6:45, there are two class offerings. A women’s class is taught by Polly Johnson, and a coed class on the book of Hebrews is taught by Pastor Paul Bradford. See the calendar on the church’s website for more details.

Life groups have expanded. We have made more progress toward our goal of full congregational participation in a weekly life group during at least one 10 week session each year. In order to meet the needs of more individuals and families, some groups meet every other week or monthly. One of the current groups includes newcomers to Rockford Reformed Church. All life groups have been using Sunday sermon topics as a basis for discussion. Groups stress relationship building with God and with other group members. Watch for announcements about the formation of new life groups this spring.

As time goes on, the Adult Ministry team plans to continue to emphasize outreach into our community.

“What IF we lived like Jesus?” Ladies, join with women around the world to participate in the simulcast of IF: Gathering 2016. Listen to speakers, share in conversation, and worship together – all while wrestling with the question, “What IF we lived like Jesus?” The IF: Gathering seeks to gather, equip, and unleash this generation of women to live out God’s calling on their lives.

  • IF: Grand Rapids – Remembrance Church
  • 4575 Remembrance Rd, Grand Rapids, MI 49534
  • Friday, February 5, 6 – 9:30 pm
  • Saturday, February 6, 8:30 am – 6 pm

Dessert will be served on Friday evening. Breakfast, lunch, and snacks will be served on Saturday. IF: Gathering asks that you provide a donation (minimum $1) toward their organization, and you are also able to provide a donation to Remembrance Church to help cover the costs of hosting the event ($20 suggested donation). Please register by January 31. For more information and to register, go to: or contact Betsy Miedema, 616.453.7700×20 or


Adult Ministry – December 2015


Luke Morgan is the new leader of the adult ministries team. At this time, the primary responsibilities of the committee include finding leaders to teach adult Sunday School and adult Wednesday groups. The committee is also available as a resource for other RRC adult ministries.

On January 3, there will be a Concert of Prayer to celebrate and ask God’s blessing on a new season of church ministries. On Sunday mornings at 10:00, Bren Shantz will teach a class about the four portraits of Jesus, based on the four gospels. On Wednesday evenings at 6:45, Polly Johnson will continue to teach a women’s class using Andy Stanley DVDs. Concurrently, Pastor Paul Bradford will be leading a Discovery Life Group for newcomers.

Also on January 3, there will be a Winter Festival to introduce church-wide winter ministry offerings. Information and sign-up sheets will be available regarding ongoing and new Life Groups. Everyone in the congregation is strongly encouraged to participate in at least one 10-week session in a Life Group to facilitate personal spiritual growth and to build Biblically based relationships with other members and attendees at Rockford Reformed Church.

Details of winter adult ministry offerings will be shared via email, newsletters, church service bulletins and announcements. 


Adult Ministry – November 2015


The Adult Ministry Team has a new leader/director, Luke Morgan. Luke has been part of the team and has transitioned to the leadership role. Since the Adult Ministry Team had been a new committee at the beginning of the year, Nancy Steenwyk and Karen Bazen started as co-leaders of the team, with the goal of identifying a team member as one who could eventually transition to being the leader. Luke, with his background in adult education, has gifts that match what is needed for the team and has accepted the leadership role. 

Recently, representatives of small groups and the Life Groups met to discuss how their groups were doing and to answer any questions they might have. We found that the groups are having good discussions, and growing in relationships with other people and with God. Most of the groups are continuing, but there are additional leaders identified who will have room for you in a group if you are interested. The next opportunity to join a Life Group will be to sign up for one on January 3, when the church will have a mini-Winter Festival, similar to the Fall Festival.

Kevin and Polly Johnson have a few weeks left of the Andy Stanley “Follow” series during the Sunday School hour. If you haven’t joined in yet, there’s still time – and room – for you. Bren Shantz will lead an adult Sunday School class on the four Gospels once the new year begins. 

For Wednesday night studies, Polly Johnson is just starting a brief series called “The Christmas Experience” with the ladies’ class. For the second half of the year, she will be leading the discussion on two video series from Andy Stanley, “Guiderails” and “Life Rules.” Ladies who would like to join the group are invited to attend. The other class offered after the new year will be a Discovery Class that will be led by Pastor Paul.


Adult Ministry – October 2015


Two new life groups started this fall. Childcare is now provided for the families of one of the new groups. We plan to start even more weekly groups in January. An option for a 10 session group to meet every other week may also be offered if needed. There are also a few dinner and Bible study groups that have stayed together from last year. We encourage everyone to make a commitment to one of our small group offerings for one of the 10 week options during the year. Our goal is to promote fellowship, mutual Christian support, Bible study, and prayer among members of the Rockford Reformed Church family.

Currently, two Wednesday classes are meeting at 6:45 during Pioneer Club. Feel free to check the church calendar and join in. Kevin Johnson leads an adult Sunday School class at 10:00. All are welcome to these classes as well.

Watch your announcements for various Men’s and Women’s group social events, prayer groups, and Bible Study groups. There are many opportunities to build friendships, enjoy fellowship, and grow in the grace and knowledge of God our Father, Jesus our Savior, and the Holy Spirit who blesses us. If you have an idea for a social gathering or for a class, please let us know.

Please plan to attend the January 3 Winter Fest and Concert of Prayer to kick-off the winter class/group sessions.


Men’s Ministry – October 2015


Men! Join us for an Amazing Journey! Last week, we launched our Men’s Friday Morning Breakfast. We meet every other Friday morning in the gym from 6:30 to 7:30 to begin to discover God’s real plan for men. We are watching “33” – a series of video talks that look at the 33 years of Jesus’ life on earth to give us a model of true manhood. We begin at 6:30 with a “real” Man’s Breakfast (not just muffins or fruit cups), then spend the rest of the hour watching and discussing the video.

The six sessions will include Manhood Realities (Oct 9), Create and Cultivate (Oct 23), Manhood Definition (Nov 6), King/Warrior (Nov 20), Lover/Friend (Dec 4), and Seasons (Dec 18).


Adult Ministry – September 2015

At the last Adult Ministries meeting, we finalized leaders and study questions for the new Life Groups that start up the week of September 20. We were also able to confirm the adult Sunday School class and the two Wednesday night classes.
In addition to these classes, there are many opportunities for adults – both men and women – to grow in their relationships with others and with God through weekly Bible studies. Hopefully you were able to sign up for a class that works with your schedule at the recent Fall Festival.
Our church is blessed with volunteers who graciously give of their time and energy to lead the different studies and activities. If you’re one of those people, “Thank you!”
There’s a men’s event coming up that would be a great opportunity for the guys to invite friends, neighbors, and co-workers to. Just show up at church on Monday, October 5 at 7:30pm, and you will be treated to a cookout while you watch the Lions vs. Seahawks game on the big screen! You can contact Kevin Johnson (291-3991) or Bren Shantz (821-8907) with any questions. Another cookout will be held December 3.


Adult Ministry – August 2015

As Pastor Paul mentioned, Life Groups will be starting in the fall. They are called Life Groups because each group will be sharing life together. The focus will be on Sharing (our lives with each other), Study (of God’s Word and how to live out our lives in following Jesus), and Support (with prayer and encouragement, meeting needs of those in our group and outside of it). Each Life Group session will be 10 weeks; three times a year people can join or leave a group. You may participate in one or more of the sessions.
A Life Group Covenant will be offered to and signed by each member of the Life Group, confirming a commitment for the 10-week period. Consistent attendance is asked in order to promote intimacy within the group and spiritual growth for the members.

Life Groups will be made up of 8-14 people with one designated leader (or a couple) acting as facilitator. Meetings are expected to last 1 ½ -2 hours and are offered on different evenings of the week. Some groups may choose to meet at church, but meeting in homes is encouraged.
A Life Group Leader Training is planned from 7-9 p.m. on September 10. Some leaders may choose to co-lead before leading their own group. The Adult Ministries Team is in the process of recruiting leaders. We will also be asking for people to act as hosts for a Life Group session, so watch for that opportunity. If anyone has questions, please contact one of the members of the Adult Ministry Team (email: Karen, Nancy).