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The Reformed Journal Podcast

The Reformed Journal Podcast

By Reformed Journal
The Reformed Journal Podcast is the official podcast of the The Reformed Journal: A Journal of Reformed Thought. Visit us at
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Makoto Fujimura

The Reformed Journal Podcast

"Mirabilia, in the Garden” by Rebecca Spears
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews Rebecca Spears about her poem “Mirabilia, in the Garden." Rebecca is the author of Brook the Divide and The Bright Obvious. Her poems, essays, and reviews have appeared in many journals and anthologies, and she has received many writing awards, including a Pushcart nomination.
September 06, 2022
Jennifer Holberg
In this episode, Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell interviews Jennifer Holberg, professor of English at Calvin University, co-director of Calvin Center for Faith and Writing, and frequent writer for the Reformed Journal Blog. Jennifer discusses her childhood as an army brat, the effects of the early death of her mother, and her forthcoming book “Nourishing Narratives: The Power of Story to Shape our Faith,” which is expected to come out in July 2023.
September 01, 2022
“How the Fog Can Matter” by D.R. James
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews D.R. James about his poem "How the Fog Can Matter." David lives in the woods outside Michigan, and has recently retired from Hope College. His most recent poetry collection is called Mobius Trip.
August 30, 2022
Jim Bratt
In this episode, Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell interviews Dr. James Bratt, professor emeritus of history at Calvin University and frequent writer for the Reformed Journal Blog. Jim describes himself as both a “Pharisee of Pharisees” and a “loyal opposition” in the CRC world. He discusses his early life, his typology of Dutch Reformed traditions in America, and his perspectives on the interactions of Christian intellectual history and American politics.
August 24, 2022
“Everyone Pretending” by Katie Kalisz
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews Katie Kalisz about her poem "Everyone Pretending." The poem appeared in a collection called Busy Griefs, Raw Towns, a poetic response to the brutality of the war in Ukraine. Katie teaches at Grand Rapids Community College, and her first book of poetry is entitled Quiet Woman. Learn more about Katie at
August 23, 2022
"The Dark" by D.S. Martin
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews D.S. Martin about his poem "The Dark." Don is the poet in residence at McMaster Divinity College, and his most recent poetry collection is “Angelicus,” a collection of poetry written from the perspective of angels. Find out more about his work at
August 16, 2022
"You Could Call This Mercy" by Laurie Klein
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews Laurie Klein about her poem "You Could Call This Mercy." Laurie is the author of "Where the Sky Opens" and "Bodies of Water, Bodies of Flesh," a winner of the Thomas Merton Poetry Prize for “Poetry of the Sacred,” and a Pushcart nominee. Laurie blogs monthly at
August 11, 2022
“East River, South Dakota” by Cameron Brooks
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews Cameron Brooks about his poem "East River, South Dakota." Cameron is an MFA candidate at Seattle Pacific University, and his poems have appeared in Poetry East, North Dakota Quarterly, Third Wednesday, and more. Check out his website at
August 01, 2022
“Wanton” by Anne Marie Holwerda Warner
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews Anne Marie Holwerda Warner about her poem "Wanton." Anne Marie is a divinity student at Western Theological Seminary and a postulate for priesthood in the Episcopal Diocese of Western Michigan. Her poems have appeared in 15 publications, including Earth and Altar, The Hour, Impossible Task, and The Last Stands of Poetry Journal.
July 25, 2022
Tom Boogaart
In this episode, Jeff Munroe interviews Tom Boogaart, Dennis and Betty Lou Voskuil Professor Emeritus of Old Testament at Western Theological Seminary. Tom talks becoming a sheet metal worker at 10, the emptiness of achievement and recognition, his approaches to scripture and teaching, the beginnings of the current Reformed Journal, and the future of the Church.
July 20, 2022
“Little Apocalypse” by Maryann Corbett
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews Maryann Corbett about her poem "Little Apocalypse." Maryann is the author of five books of poems, including her most recent collection called "In Code.”
July 17, 2022
“Snow and Aspergillum” by Paul Hooker
In this episode of the Poetry Edition, Rose Postma interviews Paul Hooker about his poem "Snow and Aspergillum." Paul, a retired pastor and former Associate Dean of Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, has authored two volumes of reflections and poetry, “Days and Times: Poems from the Liturgy of Living” and The Hole in the Heart of God: Stories of Creation and Redemption."
July 11, 2022
Jared Ayers
In this episode, Jeff Munroe interviews Rev. Jared Ayers, senior pastor of First Presbyterian Church in North Palm Beach, Florida and one of the writers for the Reformed Journal Blog. Jared recounts his experiences in ministry, starting with being the child of a pastor, sharing the gospel in Eastern Europe, and church planting in Philadelphia, to serving a large, politically diverse church population in a polarized America. He also shares some of his mentors and literary influences. 
July 06, 2022
Nikki Grimes
In this episode, book review editor Deb Van Duinen interviews Nikki Grimes, poet and bestselling author of books for children and young adults, including the Coretta Scott King Award winner Bronx Masquerade, the Coretta Scott King award honor books Jasmine's Notebook, Talking about Bessie, Dark Sons, The Road to Paris, and Words with Wings. Nikki discusses using her poetic voice for worship, as well as the origins of her latest book, Glory in the Margins: Sunday Poems.
June 29, 2022
Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell
In this episode, Jeff Munroe interviews Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell, co-pastor of the Second Reformed Church in Pella, Iowa and one of the original editors and writers for the Reformed Journal Blog. Steve chats with Jeff about his memories with his politically engaged father, his love for the Reformed Journal which began in his high school years, and his journey to co-pastoring with his wife, Sophie.
June 22, 2022
Doug Brouwer
In this episode, Kate Kooyman has a family conversation with her uncle, Doug Brouwer and her cousin, Sarah Brouwer. Doug and Sarah are both ministers ordained by the Presbyterian Church, and they discuss Doug's book Chasing after Wind: A Pastor's Life and reflect on their experiences in ministry and the generational changes they have observed.
June 15, 2022
"Bioluminescence" by Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer
In this episode of the Poetry Edition of the Reformed Journal Podcast, Rose Postma interviews Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer about her poem "Bioluminescence." Rosemerry has been publishing her poetry daily on her website A Hundred Falling Veils for the last 10+ years, and is a co-host of the podcast Emerging Form. 
June 13, 2022
Rebecca Koerselman
In this episode, Jeff Munroe speaks with Rebecca Koerselman, professor of history at Northwestern College in Orange City, Iowa and contributor to the Reformed Journal Blog. Jeff and Rebecca talk about Rebecca's journey from high school history teacher to scholar and professor, where she gets inspiration for her writing, evangelicalism in the United States, and her history-informed perspective on political and social polarization in 2022. 
June 08, 2022
"Perennial" by Dave Schelhaas
In this inaugural episode of the Poetry Edition of the Reformed Journal Podcast, Rose Postma interviews Dave Schelhaas about the origins of his poem "Perennial," which was celebrated in the poetry anthology Final Exam: Poems About Teachers and Their Students.
June 07, 2022
Kate Kooyman
In this episode, Jeff Munroe, editor at the Reformed Journal, talks with Kate Kooyman, author of the most viewed post in the Reformed Journal Blog, "I'm Sick of Appreciating Teachers." Kate is an ordained minister with the RCA, spent 10 years working in the CRC's Office of Social Justice, and currently serves as District Director for Michigan state senator Winnie Brinks. Jeff and Kate discuss Kate's path to becoming a minister, the role of social justice in Christian life, and her approach to writing impactful blog posts. 
June 01, 2022
April Fiet
In this episode, Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell has a conversation with April Fiet, co-pastor at First Presbyterian Church of Scottsbluff. April is the author of The Sacred Pulse: Holy Rhythms for Overwhelmed Souls and a lover of creativity and delight in life. Steve and April talk about a whimsical crochet project that caught the attention of the Washington Post and MSN, as well as the four "dances" of The Sacred Pulse. You can find more of April's work at
March 02, 2022
Jon Pott
In this episode, Jeff Munroe, editor at the Reformed Journal, talks with Jon Pott, former editor-in-chief of Williams B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. Jon has had a long career in the Christian publishing industry and has worked on numerous influential volumes, including Eerdmans' Contemporary Writers in Christian Perspective series. Listen to this episode to find out how Jon found himself in the publishing world and hear stories about the interesting people he has collaborated with as an editor. 
February 23, 2022
Jim Schaap
In this episode, Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell chats with Jim Schaap, writer and retired Dordt University professor of English. Jim has authored novels, devotionals, and a history of the Christian Reformed Church, and continues to write for his daily blog, as well as hosts the podcast Small Wonders on NPR. In this conversation Steve and Jim discuss the roots of Jim's creative energy, his mission-oriented approach, and his fascination with the Great Plains, the Ghost Dance, and Native American rights, the subjects of his latest project. 
December 15, 2021
Jeff Crosby
In this episode, Jeff Munroe, editor at the Reformed Journal, talks with Jeff Crosby, President and CEO of the Evangelical Christian Publishing Association. Jeff C has been involved in the Christian publishing industry for nearly four decades, including 5 years as Publisher for InterVarsity Press (IVP). Listen to this week's conversation to hear about how Jeff C found himself in the Christian book business, Jeff's time at IVP, and the future of Christian publishing, as well as get great book recommendations.
October 20, 2021
Neal Plantinga
In this episode, Deborah Van Duinen, book review editor at the Reformed Journal, talks with Cornelius (Neal) Plantinga, senior research fellow at the Calvin Institute of Christian worship at Calvin University. Neal has written several books, including Not the Way It's Supposed to Be (Eerdmans, 1995), Christianity Today's 1996 "Book of the Year," and Engaging God's World (Eerdmans, 2002), the 2003 "Book of the Year." Deb and Neal discuss his newest book, Morning and Evening Prayers, why more Christians should use published prayers, how Reformed theology informed the prayers in his book, and more. 
September 22, 2021
Gayle Boss
In this episode, Deborah Van Duinen, book review editor at the Reformed Journal, talks with Gayle Boss, author of All Creation Waits (2016) and Wild Hope (2020). Gayle shares the stories behind the Advent and Lent devotionals rooted in her deep love for God's creatures, as well as how we can become better caretakers of Creation. More information on Gayle's work can be found at 
September 08, 2021
Jim Herrington and Trisha Taylor
In this episode, Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell talks with Jim Herrington and Trisha Taylor of The Leader's Journey, an organization that helps leaders and organizations grow their emotional intelligence so that they can be the healthiest, most effective versions of themselves. In this conversation, they discuss their Enneagram numbers, the evolving challenges facing the RCA and other Christian denominations in North America, and The Leader's Journey's work with pastors, congregations, and denominations. 
August 29, 2021
Makoto Fujimura
In this episode, Jennifer Holberg talks with Makoto Fujimura, a leading contemporary artist whose process driven, refractive “slow art” has been described by David Brooks of New York Times as “a small rebellion against the quickening of time”. He was a Presidential Nominee to the National Council on the Arts from 2003 to 2009, and served as an international advocate for the arts, speaking with decision-makers and advising governmental policies on the arts. In this episode, they discuss Fujimura's book, Art + Faith: A Theology of Making, and what Japanese kintsugi and John 11 can tell us about God's gratuitous love.
August 19, 2021
Tim Van Deelen
In this episode, Jeff Munroe talks with Tim Van Deelen, who is a professor of Wildlife Ecology at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. He is also a frequent contributor to The Reformed Journal, regularly contributing the blog and writing essays. In this episode, they discuss Tim's work, as well as ways that individuals can make a difference around climate change, and more. 
August 12, 2021
Kyle Meyaard-Schaap
In this episode, Rev. Kate Kooyman talks with Rev. Kyle Meyaard-Schaap, who is the Vice President of the Evangelical Environmental Network. He attended Calvin University and Western Seminary, and has also served as the National Organizer and Spokesperson at the Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. They discuss Rev. Meyaard-Schaap's advocacy for climate change throughout his life, what he has learned about his faith through this work, as well as advice for those who want to become involved in climate change advocacy. 
July 29, 2021
Reggie Smith
In this episode of The Reformed Journal Podcast, Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell talks with Rev. Reggie Smith, the Director of Diversity for the Christian Reformed Church in North America. Rev. Reggie Smith grew up in Chicago, Illinois, then attended Calvin Seminary. He then pastored Northside Community CRC in New Jersey for almost two years before moving to Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he pastored Roosevelt Park Community CRC for 20 years. He has also taught urban ministry and urban development classes at Calvin Theological Seminary, Western Theological Seminary, and Grand Rapids Theological Seminary. In 2017, he began serving with the Christian Reformed Church in North America, where he currently serves as the Director of Diversity. Tune in to hear their conversation!
July 15, 2021
Charlie Lowell
In this episode, Jeff Munroe talks with Charlie Lowell, a founding member of the band Jars of Clay. Charlie is a three-time Grammy winner and most recently produced and co-wrote a song called "The End" that was streamed over five million times and featured in the Netflix series Bridgerton. They discuss his life, career, and play a segment of his most recent song. 
July 08, 2021
Meredith Anne Miller
In this episode, Kate Kooyman talks with Meredith Anne Miller, a mom, pastor, and writer with over 20 years of experience in children’s ministry and curriculum. Meredith holds a Master of Divinity from Fuller Seminary, as well as a B.A. in Religious Studies and Spanish Language & Literature from Westmont College. Meredith and her husband started Pomona Valley Church in 2019, and she has been involved with the work of the Fuller Youth Institute since 2007. 
July 01, 2021
Thomas Lynch
In this episode, Reformed Journal editor, Jeff Munroe, talks with Thomas Lynch about his life, career, and poetry. Thomas Lynch operated the Lynch and Sons Funeral Home in Milford, Michigan for decades. He's an accomplished essayist and poet, and he has been the subject of a documentary on PBS. He's written for The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, and a host of others. He's also done spoken word pieces for the BBC. At the end of this episode, Thomas Lynch reads three of his poems aloud.
June 24, 2021
Joel Schoon-Tanis
In this episode, Reformed Journal book review editor, Deb Van Duinen, talks with Joel Schoon-Tanis about his art and his most recently published book 40: The Gospels. Joel has a 30- year professional art career, and he is a celebrated painter who has shown his work around the United States and in Kenya. His murals can be found in many schools, children's hospitals, and churches, including murals in Kenya, Zambia, Palestine, and northern Wisconsin. He is also the creator and writer of Come On Over, a children's television show that won 13 regional Emmy awards and two national Telly awards. 
June 17, 2021
Brian Allain, Todd Deatherage, and How to Heal Our Divides
Brian Allain and Tood Deatherage are co-collaborators (along with several others) in the new book How to Heal Our Divides: A Practical Guide. In this episode, Reformed Journal editor Jeff Munroe talks with Brian and Todd about the book. They especially focus on Todd's work in peacemaking with Telos and the latest round of violence in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
June 10, 2021
Wes Granberg-Michaelson
In this episode Kate Kooyman talks to former RCA General Secretary Wesley Granberg-Michaelson about his new book Without Oars: Casting Off Into a Life of Pilgrimage. "Pilgrimage" becomes a metaphor for the journey of faith, based not on making one's beliefs fit into a confessional box, but on where one walks.
May 20, 2021
Lisa Cahill
Roman Catholics on the Supreme Court, natural law, the nexus with public life, and how does the Reformed tradition evaluate and use natural law? Lisa Sowle Cahill, the J. Donald Monan S.J. Professor of Theology at Boston College discusses natural law as a source of public and Christian ethics. Dr. Cahill is known for her work in bioethics, gender studies, war-justice-and-peace. She talked with Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell
May 12, 2021
Winn Collier
Winn Collier is the author of "A Burning in My Bones," the biography of Eugene Peterson, he's associate professor of pastoral theology at Western Theological Seminary and director of the Eugene Peterson Center for Christian Imagination also at Western and our guest today on the Reformed Journal podcast.
May 07, 2021
Marilyn McEntyre
Our guest for the first episode of our new season of the Reformed Journal podcast is one of our finest spiritual writers, Marilyn McEntyre. Marilyn has written over 20 books, and has three new titles being released in the first half of 2021. RJ editor Jeff Munroe talks with her about those books, her background, and her reading and writing practices.
April 30, 2021
The Iowa Caucuses
Bob Leonard is a reporter in Iowa with almost unequaled access to the candidates, along with a deep familiarity of Iowa's first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses.  Hear Bob's thoughts on many candidates, including what might have gone wrong with some who are out of the race.  What is likely to happen on caucus night? Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell interviews Dr. Bob Leonard.
January 21, 2020
Jeff Munroe on Reading Buechner
Jeff Munroe, a frequent contributor on The Twelve, has a new book -- Reading Buechner: Exploring the Work of a Master Memoirist, Novelist, Theologian, and Preacher. It's generating some good reviews and lots of buzz. Hear Jeff discuss the book with Steve Mathonnet-VanderWell. 
January 13, 2020
Do the Right Thing: Author, Professor, and Musician Luke Hawley
On this episode of the Reformed Journal Podcast, Luke Hawley joins us to talk about faith, music, and learning how to change the oil in his car.
December 09, 2019
Scott Hoezee
Welcome to the Perspectives Journal Podcast where we have conversation with thoughtful and interesting people from a generously Reformed Perspective. We’ll be covering topics from theology and church to the arts and sciences and many more. Today, we’re getting to know Scott Hoezee, one of our original bloggers on the Twelve. Scott is a professor at Calvin Seminary where he is the Director of the Center for Excellence in Preaching. Listen as we discuss topics from “What does it mean to be Reformed?” to the importance of science in the 21st Century. All in all, in this episode we get to know Scott on a more personal level. We hope you enjoy this episode! Feel free to comment below and let us know what you think!
July 13, 2018
Chuck De Groat
Welcome to the Perspectives Journal Podcast where we have conversation with thoughtful and interesting people from a generously Reformed Perspective. We’ll be covering topics from theology and church to the arts and sciences. Today, one of our guest bloggers for the Twelve is with us, Chuck De Groat. He is discussing his article “What in the World Does it Mean to be Reformed?” from May 29, 2018. Among other things, in this episode we learn more about Chuck DeGroat and his work, we learn what it means to have a generously Reformed perspective, and we learn how to have conversation with humility and curiosity rather than judgement. Furthermore, we discuss difficult topics like what it means to live out our faith, how to wrestle with the question of LGBTQ+ using a generously Reformed perspective, and narcissism in the church. These are simply a list of topics, but the conversation that flowed from them is genuine and intentional–well worth listening to. We hope you enjoy this episode! Feel free to comment below and let us know what you think!  
July 05, 2018
Rebecca Koerselman
Welcome to the Perspectives Journal Podcast where we have conversation with thoughtful and interesting people from a generously Reformed Perspective. We’ll be covering topics from theology and church to the arts and sciences. Today, we’ll be getting to know one of our Twelve Bloggers a little bit better. Introducing Rebecca Koerselman, a history professor at Northwestern College. In this episode, we discussed how Rebecca’s Reformed perspective and her faith shapes the way she studies history. She also tells of her fascination with gender history – studying history from the perspective of a particular gender and how that affects the way we perceive history. On a lighter note, one of the things Rebecca loves about teaching history is hearing the different perspectives that her students bring as they interpret history. And aside from teaching history, she finds joy in baking, spending time with her daughters, and doing projects around her home. Listen to the podcast or read the transcription for the full conversation and details. TRANSCRIPTION Steve: okay well we welcome Rebecca Koerselman, history professor at Northwestern College in Orange City and a regular blogger on the 12 thank you Rebecca for being one of our first podcast guests for the perspective podcast Rebecca: thank you Steve for having me Steve: so part of our goal is just to get to know some of our bloggers a little bit better so could you just tell us a little bit about who you are or your background what you do maybe FamilyLife kind of name rank serial number starting stuff Rebecca: Well, as you mentioned I’m a historian and I teach at Northwestern college. but I’ve kind of bounced around a few different places. I was born in Michigan, lived there for a while moved with my family to Iowa, went to Northwestern College as an undergrad and got my degree in history and secondary Ed, spent some time in South Dakota,  and in central Iowa and then I spent time in Michigan at Michigan State to work on my doctoral degree in history. my first job was in Oklahoma and this is my second job, and this is my fourth year here. so we’ve lived a few different places mostly in the midwest. I have… my spouse Works in special education. and we have two daughters, which give our life a lot of fun and a lot of drama all at the same time . Steve:and tell us about teaching. why do you like to teach? what excites you in the classroom are there courses especially to you like the teach? or topics? or what what is it that kind of makes you get up in the morning and want to go to work? Rebecca: I love teaching. I love the interaction of Youth in particular dealing with content and history specifically. one of my favorite things about history is that it’s always an interaction between the present in the past. right? the past doesn’t necessarily change that much will occasionally does that most of the time that information say the same but we don’t. the things were interested in the things we pay attention to changes just like we do .and one of my favorite things about teaching history is that I get  to see students bring their perspectives to what we’re looking at. so I could have read this book 4 5 times and then we talked about it in class, and I have students notice things and bring of things I’d never thought of or could ever possibly imagined before. and that’s one of my favorite things about teaching history. and I got to do that with high school students, I get to do that more with college students .because I got to spend less time policing behavior and more time talking about content, which I particularly enjoy. I teach all the u.s. history courses here at Northwestern College. and I’m primarily interested in 20th century US history. I do a lot and gender history and American religious history are two of my passions. I also oversee the student teachers and work a lot with the history education Majors, which I also really enjo
June 12, 2018