Join us Sundays at 9:30am
Practical Bible Teaching, Uplifting Worship, Casual Atmosphere
1226 Union NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505


Meet the Staff


Pastor: Eric Schalk

Eric is our senior pastor. He and his wife Julie have been long-time members of Fourth Reformed, and most recently, Eric served as the executive director of New City Neighbors. Eric grew up in the neighborhood around the church and has a huge passion for investing in the lives of people who are not-yet-believers.



Parler professional photoDirector of Faith Formation: Branson Parler

Branson and his wife Sarah have been members at Fourth for five years. A native of Waterloo, Iowa, he earned his Ph.D. in systematic theology from Calvin Theological Seminary in 2010. Branson serves as an elder and also works at Kuyper College as professor of theological studies.

Bio - MKKids Hope USA: Mary Kay Townley

Mary Kay grew up at Fourth Reformed. We won’t tell you how long she’s been here, because we don’t want to tip off her age. Over the years she has served as secretary and book keeper, but her real passion is serving as the director of Kids Hope USA. Mary Kay enjoys pairing kids up with mentors from the church and seeing kids grow through weekly tutoring at Kent Hill Elementary. She loves this community and is dedicated to helping kids succeed in school and life.

Student Ministry: Sam & Kristi Dennis

Sam & Kristi were volunteers with our youth ministry before becoming the leaders this past fall. They are passionate about youth and will be leading both our middle school, and high school ministries.

IMG_2388Worship & Children’s Praise Team: Julie Schalk

Julie grew up in Wisconsin, but landed in Grand Rapids after attending Kuyper College. Julie has always had a passion for music and we have been blessed to have her lead our worship team for many years. Julie recently expanded her role at the church to include working with the children’s praise team, and leading singing at some of our community ministries through New City Neighbors.

Christian Education: Amy Baragar

Amy was born and raised in Fourth Church.  She and her husband have been married for five years and have been blessed with a son, Liam, who will be two this year, and they are expecting another little one in September.  While being a wife and mother is her first passion, education is her second.  She studied at both Kuyper College and Cornerstone University earing degrees in both Education and Religious Studies.  She then continued her education at Marygrove College where she earned a Master’s degree in the Art of Teaching with an emphasis on Curriculum and Instruction.  Amy has been serving as our Christian Education (Sunday School) leader for two years and is a blessing for the children she serves.

Bio - RuthOffice Manager: Ruth Meendering

There is no one quite like Ruth! Ruth serves at the office manager at Fourth and is the person who labors the most behind the scenes. When she’s not in the office, she is tackling projects around the building, making meals for those in need, inviting people into her home, and helping the rest of us do our jobs.