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Ralph Heynen (1907-1993) | Heritage Hall, Hekman Library

Name: Ralph Heynen (1907-1993)

Historical Note:

Son of pastor, Henry J.  Heynen, Ralph Heynen was born in Rock Valley, Iowa on December 19, 1907. Like his father before him, Heynen enrolled in Calvin Theological Seminary to become a pastor. He graduated in 1933 as well as got married to Ida Van Wyk. After graduation, Heynen accepted the call from the Christian Reformed Church in Rock Rapids, Iowa where he became ordained as their minister.  In 1938, Heynen moved to Holland, Michigan to serve the congregation of Niekerk Christian Reformed Church.

In 1943, Heynen began his career as Chaplain at Pine Rest Christian Hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Known as both a mental and spiritual healer, Heynen continued to serve the Pine Rest Christian Hospital almost 30 years until his retirement in 1972. Heynen was also a prolific writer; he was an author of six books and numerous Banner articles, mostly on Christianity and mental health. He also found time to host a radio program six days a week at Dordt College for 17 years. Heynen even served on several denominational and church boards. Because of his dedication to chaplaincy and Christian mental health, in 1981, Heynen received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Calvin Alumni Association. Heynen passed away on May 10, 1993.

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