“For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers: our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding.”
With many misgivings and doubts did we, the Hudsonville Young People’s Societies, undertake the planning of the 1970 Convention. How were we to make this a truly significant and meaningful Convention? We wanted the conventioneers to not only have a good time but also to stop and think about their own responsibility and place within the Protestant Reformed Churches. It needed to be more than just a social experience and somehow through the kind of Convention we planned, the young people would be more aware, more enthused, and more dedicated people. These were our hopes but we soon found that alone we could never make the 1970 Convention a success. We laid out a schedule and have tried to choose activities and topics which would help us achieve this goal. Yet, so much of the spirit and enthusiasm depends on the contribution of each conventioneer. We sincerely hope that each one planning to attend puts forth his best efforts to reach this goal!
As many of you already know, the dates for this event have been set for August 19-24, a five day, week-end Convention once again. There will be three speakers who will, at different activities speak on some aspect of the theme, “Strangers in a Strange Land,” which is based on I Chronicles 29:15.
Wednesday, the first and opening day, registration will be held in Hudsonville Church at night. To save time, those needing lodging will be pre-assigned to different homes. This hopefully will eliminate much of the lodging confusion and will also give the conventioneers more choice as to with whom they would like to stay during the Convention.
From Thursday to the end of the Convention there are many traditional as well as new and different activities planned. As usual, the business meeting will be held early Thursday morning. Hopefully by noon most business will be concluded and lunch will be served. After lunch a Sports Mixer is planned which will not only allow time to get acquainted but also will involve many competitive sports. In the evening the first Mass Meeting will be held and the first speech given on “The Origins of These Strangers.” The rest of the evening is kept free but you are welcome at many of the homes of the Hudsonville young people.
This year, the all-day outing is to be held on Friday instead of the usual Saturday. The activities available at Silver Lake are almost too numerous to mention and are ideal for a long day of relaxation. There is everything from dune rides to swimming and we hope you all anticipate a climb in the dunes.
Saturday morning will come around all too soon for many of us, but hopefully we will see you (sleepy eyes and sore legs!) at the 7:00 Pancake Breakfast. By mid-morning we should be alert enough to participate in some interesting group discussions. Topics and leaders will be provided to give the discussions a general direction but the questions you bring with you will always be welcome. We want each individual to profit from discussing the problems and questions that many young people must face today. If you contribute and do not think of these discussions only as “one of those things you have to go to” they can be some of the most satisfying and profitable times of this Convention. Bring yourself whole-heartedly! At noon lunch will again be provided and afterwards the traditional East-West ball game will be held. In the evening something new is being planned – an informal mass meeting. The dress will be informal as will be the entire meeting. Our second speaker will talk to us here on our calling to be strangers in a strange land. After the meeting a bonfire will be held and another special activity is planned that we hope you will enjoy very much.
Sunday morning will again require an early rise because a Sunrise Church Service is being planned for 7:00 a.m. This will be a usual church service. After service, and a short break with refreshments, discussion groups will be held once again. With you cooperation this can be a very unique and worthwhile way to begin the Sabbath. One Sunday evening the 7:00 church service will be held, followed by an interesting singspiration.
Monday morning will give us all a chance to catch up on some of our sleep. At 10:00 we will meet at Tunnel Park for a morning of Lake Michigan swimming. After dinner, late business will be taken care of. Because of the evening’s activities, the afternoon is kept free (especially for the sake of the girls!). The banquet is the height and highlight of the 1970 Convention. Our third speaker here will speak on our destiny as strangers. We sincerely hope you enjoy the convention we have planned. It has demanded long hours of work but if you go away feeling spiritually more capable of retaining you title as stranger in this world, it will be worth it many times over. In everything, we as young people stand as a special pillar within the church. May this week-end of fellowship add to our strength!
Originally Published in:
Vol. 30 No. 4 June July 1970