Proclaiming Christ in Portland

SONY DSCRev. Steven Oeverman was installed as the pastor of Grace United Reformed Church in West Linn (a southern suburb of Portland), OR, on September 23, 2012. Dr. W. Robert Godfrey officiated the service.

Rev. Oeverman is a 2004 graduate of Westminster Seminary California (WSC), who had been an associate pastor at Escondido URC since 2006. For the last seven years, he had served as executive vice president of WSC.

“The past seven years have been an amazing time of personal and professional growth,” he says. “Serving to advance the mission of WSC and the greater work of Christ’s kingdom has been a profound privilege.”

Grace URC is a young congregation, which began meeting for worship in January of 2009 and organized in March of 2010. Rev. Dan McManigal, an OPC church planter who lived in Portland, served as the church’s first pastor.

The McManigal family recently moved to Seattle to obtain better educational opportunities for their six-year-old son, who is deaf. Rev. McManigal continues to preach and teach in local Reformed congregations while completing his theological dissertation on the Gospel of Matthew.

Oeverman familyIn August, Rev. Oeverman accepted the call to Grace URC and his family moved to the Portland area. He and his wife, Kathryn, have five children: Elizabeth, Annaliese, Olyvia, Amelie, and Ellyson.

The Grace congregation meets for worship at 10:45 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. in the Seventh Day Church building at 8738 Cason Road in Gladstone, OR. Sunday school is held at 9:30 a.m., prior to the morning service. Two elders and three deacons serve the congregation that consists of 75 members and many regular visitors.

“The vast majority are new to the Reformed faith,” says Rev. Oeverman. “As a young congregation, our numbers are fluid—usually to the better. The Lord has been very kind.”

Rev. Oeverman desires “to continue the faithful ministry of Grace while praying for the preeminence of Christ in all things for the joy of our congregation, the peoples of Portland, and beyond. ‘Him we proclaim.’ Colossians 1:9ff.”

The above article by Glenda Mathes appeared on page 14 of the November 14, 2012, issue of Christian Renewal.

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