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De Jong, Gabriel D. (1864-1928) | Heritage Hall, Hekman Library

Name: De Jong, Gabriel D. (1864-1928)

Historical Note:

The Reverend Gabriel D. De Jong was born March 2, 1864, at Minnertsga in Friesland, the Netherlands.  His Christian education there was intended to prepare him for the ministry in the Reformed Church in the Old World.  Circumstances, however, led him to the New World in May 1882.  Arriving in Grand Rapids, he was advised to join the Christian Reformed Church, which was then in the midst of the Freemasonry problem.

In order to come to a right decision for himself, he worked a year.  He then decided to join the Christian Reformed Church, becoming a member of the Coldbrook congregation.  For three years he attended the Theological School.  His first charge was in Vriesland, Michigan.  Later charges were in Grand Haven and South Olive, Michigan; Leighton, Iowa; and Highland, Indiana.  From 1908 to 1914, however, he served as professor of church history at the seminary.

His retirement at the age of sixty-three was necessitated by severe arthritis.  A year later he died quite suddenly of pneumonia following the flu.  He left behind his widow, three sons, and two daughters.  The fact that eight pastors officiated at his funeral testifies to the high regard his fellow ministers had for him personally and for his service to the church.

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