Letters to the Editor

Calvin stories appreciated
The Spark is a joy to read: From Jennie Nichols' story to Gaylen Byker reminding us of how resurrection life can be lived. Thanks for all you do to tell Calvin's story.

Baukje Gray-Sluis '44
Chico, Calif.

More discernment needed
I was intrigued by the article about the Y-AGE political action committee (Fall 2007). I applaud students' initiative and work in this venture and the article about this work. However, with the ability to influence the actions of others comes responsibility. The Spark article shows the home page screen view, which includes the news item "Hummer's more green than Prius." As someone interested in and teaching about environmental stewardship, this caught my attention. A quick search on the internet would show that the article that you have profiled on your Web site has been discredited or certainly has serious problems.

I would like to think that a political action committee created by Calvin students should seek to use the highest standards in selecting sources to promote a political agenda. I am hopeful that Calvin prepares students and alumni to exercise greater discernment than that profiled at the Y-AGE Web site and in the Spark!

Chris Goedhart '78
Sioux Center, Iowa

1966 graduation misplaced
Just wanted to let you know about an error in the fall issue of Spark. This concerns the location of the 1966 graduation ceremony. 1966 was the first year this was held in the new Knollcrest Fieldhouse; 1965 was the last year for the downtown Civic Auditorium. I remember this well. Growing up in Grand Rapids, I had looked forward to the "pomp and glamour" of receiving my degree in the Civic Auditorium. Then, we discovered that ours would be the first graduation on campus in the new fieldhouse. We newly minted graduates sat on hard chairs in a sweltering room. As I recall, the families had much the same experience. Well, my best classes were not in physical education, and I wasn't impressed by having these memories brought back to me on my big day.

Some weeks later I went to Central Michigan University to enroll in a master's program. When the academic officers looked at my Calvin transcript, they said that they would be raising my GPA one full grade point to make it match the state schools because they realized that Calvin was tough academically. Wow, was I impressed and proud! That almost made up for my recent graduation-day experience.

Dan F. Bloem '66
Jenison, Mich.

More chaplaincy work
The current issue of Spark (Fall 2007) is one of the best yet-and one of the biggest. But what is even bigger is the vision for Calvin and its future that is conveyed in these pages. One of the articles that particularly struck me was "Helping deployed chaplains to serve their soldiers." What a thoughtful and remarkably practical thing to do, putting flesh on our prayers. Definitely a "God thing."

This organization is similar to Workplace Chaplains, U.S., a ministry that has grown tremendously since it first began providing chaplaincy services to a few hundred workers in their workplaces in 1999. Another Calvin grad, Rev. Ron Klimp '73, and I, with help from Rev. Jake Heerema '57, founded this nonprofit corporation focusing on the Cadillac (Mich.) area. We now serve several thousand workers, not only locally, but in several downstate locations as well as a few workplaces in Wisconsin, with possibilities in South Dakota as well.

Rich Westmaas ex'54
Cadillac, Mich.

Another family helped by the Buursmas
I read with interest the story about the Pater family being connected to Calvin through the sponsorship of Rev. Bill and Althea Buursma (Winter 2006). My family, too, benefited from the Buursmas' kindness and recently reunited on the 50th anniversary of the Mejan family arrival in the United States. The Buursmas were present at this event as well. We also count a few Calvin grads among our group, including Monique Mejan '02, Maurice Mejan ex'98, Duane Mejan ex'86, Tena Hettinga Mejan '63 and me.

Ted Mejan '65
Ontario, Calif.

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