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Editor’s Notes

Beacon Lights is undergoing some changes both visibly and behind the scenes.

The major and most apparent change is that we are changing business managers. The position of business manager is key to the publication of the magazine. Perhaps a better word would be “indispensable.” The business manager is an essential member of the publication staff. This person manages the finances, which is obviously important: no money, no magazine. This person also manages subscriptions: no subscribers, no magazine.

For the past nine years, Laura Kaptein has been our business manager, and she has done a fantastic job in managing both the finances and the subscriptions, as well as contributing in other ways to the continuation and improvement of the magazine. Those of us who have worked with her will affirm her value to Beacon Lights.

But now Laura has decided that the time has come for her to pass the torch to someone else. Although we would like to keep her, we respect her decision, and we thank her heartily for her good work. If you happen to meet her, please thank her in person.

Before leaving, she has created a new web-based management system designed specifically for Beacon Lights. This system will manage on an integral platform both the finances and the subscriptions of the magazine. It will be easy to use and more efficient than the previous outdated system, and it will have potential applications not previously available. Laura has agreed to serve as a consultant for the near future to train her successor and to make enhancements to the program as necessary.

This improvement will not be apparent to our readers. Yet it is appropriate to mention it from a financial viewpoint. Our subscription income barely puts us at the break-even point from a cost standpoint. Any improvements, such as the cost of this new management system, cannot be figured into the subscription equation. It is in this context that church collections and donations become important. Using good stewardship, we have used these funds to enhance our service to you while keeping our low subscription fee at $15.00 per year. In this light we thank our people for their giving in church collections and especially those who donate to the magazine. These contributions are essential, and we sincerely thank all those who help us.

Laura’s leaving necessitates someone to take her place. Beacon Lights is pleased to announce the appointment of Matt Rutgers as her successor. Matt is a member of Hope (Walker) Protestant Reformed Church and a certified public accountant, which leads us to expect that he is capable of managing our finances. He is also vitally interested in the spiritual health and edification of our young people, and plans to play an integral part in the magazine. In the near future he will work with Laura during this time of transition. Updated contact information for the business manager appears in the masthead. Welcome, Matt!

On a completely different subject, we will shortly be losing the author of the “Little Lights” rubric. More on this in a future issue. We would like to continue this rubric, assuming that we can find a writer for it. If you are interested in contributing to this column in Beacon Lights, please contact our associate editor, Ryan Kregel, at ryankregel@gmail.com, or 616.802.8191.

Next, in the recent past I mentioned that we would like to receive some poems from our readers. The response to this request has not been exactly overwhelming. Thus I reiterate my request: all you poets out there, please put pen to paper.

Finally, this issue contains the editor’s last question from a reader to Schuyler and his response. Schuyler would like some more questions, preferably those of the difficult variety. Feel free to ask him.