Meet Our Staff

+

Rev. Matt Waterstone

Senior Pastor

Rev. Matt Waterstone

Senior Pastor

Grace & Peace. I'm Matt Waterstone and I have the humbling privilege of being the Senior Pastor here at First Church. I grew up on the sunny shores of the south side in Holland, MI. I graduated from Hope College in 2005 with a major in Religion and minor in English. After Hope, I turned my tassel to Western Theological Seminary, graduating in 2008 with a Master's of Divinity degree and in 2015 with a Doctorate of Ministry degree. My beautiful bride, Sarah, and I have a four year-old son named Willem, a one year-old son named Bram, and a mutt dog named Chunky. I have a deep passion for sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ across ages, skin colors, church backgrounds and last names. As for hobbies - I enjoy running, swimming, biking, and golfing. More than anything, I love the Lord Jesus and I am continually refreshed and renewed by His amazing grace. I'd love to grab a cup of conversation, go for a run, lift a few weights, play some golf and share life together with you.

+

Rev. Rich Grevengoed

Director of Pastoral Care & Counseling

Rev. Rich Grevengoed

Director of Pastoral Care & Counseling

Greetings... I'm Rich Grevengoed and I was raised right here in South Holland. I was ordained as a minister in 1967 after graduating from Calvin College and Calvin Seminary. I pastored churches in Michigan and Chicago for fifteen years. In 1985 I earned a Doctorate in Pastoral Care and Counseling from Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. For twenty-three years I was the Executive Director and a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor at New Leaf Resources in Lansing, IL. I live in South Holland with my wife, Barbara, where we enjoy time with five of our grandkids who also live here. I am excited to be a part of this ministry at First Reformed Church. I have experienced so much of Christ's love and care in my own life and I want to share that love with others in our Caring Minstry at First Church.

+

Corey Buchanan

Director of Mercy & Justice Ministries

Corey Buchanan

Director of Mercy & Justice Ministries

My name is Corey Buchanan. I was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago. I received the call to ministry in 2002 under the leadership of Pastor Carl Bogus where I served as an Associate Minister and Youth leader at Greater St. Titus M.B. Church. In 2005 I joined Fellowship M.B. Church under the leadership of Pastor Charles Jenkins where I served as Associate Minister, a Mission Ministry Director, and Church Leadership Team member. I have served as a fulltime Chaplain with Chicagoland Prison Outreach since 2004 ministering to inmates and their families at Cook County Boot Camp. I joined the ministry team of First Reformed Church in August of 2010 and I serve part time as the Director of Mercy and Justice Ministries. I hold a B.A. in Pastoral Studies and Biblical Exposition at Moody Bible Institute and am currently working on becoming a Commissioned Pastor at First Church. I enjoy movies, plays, laughing and traveling.

+

Anthony Bolkema

Director of Worship & Student Life

Anthony Bolkema

Director of Worship & Student Life

My name is Anthony Bolkema and I have had the privilege of serving as the worship leader and youth director here since July 2010.   I lived in South Dakota, Minnesota, and Wisconsin before moving south to Illinois to attend Trinity Christian College where I majored in English and Theology.  Between my junior and senior year at Trinity I was blessed to marry my high school sweetheart (and now wife of nearly eleven years), Kim, who teaches PE at Calvary Academy.  We moved to South Holland in early 2009 and we have loved every minute of it here.  We have three boys (ages 6, 4 and 4 months) who keep us running every day!  I earned a Master of Worship Studies degree from the Robert E. Webber Institute of Worship Studies in Jacksonville, FL in October of 2016 and am currently pursuing my Doctor of Worship Studies degree.  My family and I enjoy spending our free time playing outside, jogging through South Holland, and working on our house.

+

Nyla De Graff

Church Administrator

Nyla De Graff

Church Administrator

Hi! My name is Nyla De Graff and I have had the honor of working in the office of First Reformed Church for twenty-seven years. It continues to be my privilege and joy to serve the members of First Church and its pastors. I was born and raised along with five other siblings in Redlands, California. In 1971, while attending Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, I met my husband, Don De Graff, a native of South Holland. We have resided in South Holland for over forty-two years and have four children and thirteen grandchildren. I enjoy spending my free time with my grandchildren and on the golf course.

+

Gerri VanBaren

Church Office

Gerri VanBaren

Church Office

My name is Gerri VanBaren and I have been working in the church office since January 2009. I previously worked at South Holland Bank and later at MB Financial Bank beginning as a teller and later moving to the Retail Loan Department. I "retired" six years ago and have spent the years enjoying my three granddaughters and my hobbies which include painting and writing stories. I was excited to have my first children's book published and, if possible, would like to continue writing. My husband, Don and I have lived in South Holland for over thirty-seven years and have been members of First Reformed Church for many years.

About First Church

163 years is a long time, but that's how long we've been telling the story of Jesus in South Holland, Illinois.  From farmers and bankers, to single-parent moms and laid off linesmen, we've all come from different walks of life and tell different stories.  For some of us, we came to First Reformed Church as infants and can trace our roots back to the mid 1800s.  For others, we came to be a part of a community where black and white and young and old and rich and not so rich can enact a slice of heaven together.  And still for others, we came to hear the story of the risen Jesus sung and prayed and preached.

The chapter of the story we're writing today is one of revival.  We're writing a story that brings the richest hymns of the 19th century alongside the robust soul of contemporary worship songs.  We're writing a story where the setting has been and will continue to be 15924 South Park Avenue in our beautifully diverse community of South Holland.  And we're writing this story convinced that our best days are not in our rearview mirror, but lie just ahead.

And what underlines our story is the grace of Christ.

To learn about the various ministries that we provide and support - Click Here

What We Believe

At First Reformed Church we are rooted in the strong heritage of the Reformed faith. We recognize that Christ desires for His church to live in unity, not division, and so our core beliefs are most succinctly summed up in the words of the historic Apostles' Creed.  

We are also a part of a larger church family called the Reformed Church in America. This association of churches is the oldest protestant denomination in the country. For more information about this network, its heritage, and its beliefs, click here.

apostles_creed

Growing Together In The Grace Of Christ

Come grow with us this Sunday!