Heritage Hall serves as the institutional repository for the Christian Reformed Church of North America. This includes records, publications, and minutes from the denomination, classes, as well as churches. In the reading room, researchers can find bound issues of The Banner and the Agendas and Acts of Synod.
In 1962 the Historical Committee of the Christian Reformed Church was instructed by Synod to collect the records of local, active congregations and microfilm their minutes (council, elders, deacons, the executive committee and the congregation), returning the originals to the congregation, so that a back-up set of records was available to local congregations should anything happen to their original set. The microfilm is stored in our vault, and the originals are returned to the congregation sending them. To protect the privacy of individuals about whom information may be contained in certain records while also dealing with requests for conducting historical research, Synod authorized that, without exception, only agency heads, or those authorized by agency heads in writing, be granted access to confidential records.
Written or phone communications about this program may be directed to the Archives staff.
1855 Knollcrest Circle SE
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49546-4402
Synod 2008 instructed the staff of the archives to prepare a listing of all records that a local congregation may generate along with recommendations on how long, and where such records should be kept. This document (PDF format) can be downloaded by clicking on the link below.
Drenthe (Michigan) Presbyterian Church - Family records. The remaining members of this congregation joined the Drenthe Christian Reformed Church. 1852-1883.
Maxwell, New Mexico Christian Reformed Church - Family information. The church supported the Bethesda Sanatorium (tuberculosis hospital) located in the community. The congregation existed 1893-1908.
Perch Lake (Michigan) Christian Reformed Church - Family information. The congregation existed 1896-1899.
Pillar Church (Holland, Michigan) - The church still exists in Holland, Michigan and has been known as First Reformed Church and Ninth Street Christian Reformed Church. 1847-1880.
Rilland, Colorado Christian Reformed Church - Membership information. The congregation existed 20 January 1893 - 11 December 1893.
South Holland Presbyterian Church (Holland, Michigan) - Family records. The congregation had a building near the intersection of 32nd Street and Washington Street in Holland, Michigan. 1849-1867.
Vriesland (Michigan) Christian Reformed Church - The congregation disbanded. 1857-1893.
The synod of the Christian Reformed Church in North America represents the churches of all the classes. Synod meets annually in June with 196 delegates: one minister, one elder, one deacon, and one other officebearer from each classis. The tasks of synod include responsibility for creeds, the Church Order, liturgical forms, hymnals, principles of worship, and moral/ethical positions.
Synod also provides general oversight for the ministries undertaken jointly by CRC churches. These include educational institutions, a broadcast ministry, world and domestic mission agencies, a world relief agency and a publication ministry, as well as pastoral ministries such as chaplaincy, disability concerns, pastor-church resources, race relations, safe church, and social justice and world hunger concerns.
From 1857 to 1865 the highest governing body in the denomination was the classical assembly. Once a second classis was formed in 1865, the general assembly was formed to adjudicate questions beyond the scope of the classes. In 1880 the general assembly was renamed the synod. The classis met several times per year, while the general assembly/synod met annually or bi-annually.
The Archives maintains a list of every meeting of the CRC Synod (and the classical assembly before it), along with the location of the meeting, the officers, and links to the full-text minutes, agendas, acts, and other documents. When the original documents are in Dutch, the English translations are included as well.