Rev. Vernon Pollema was born November 19, 1939, and reared in the Dutch community of Hull, Iowa. He attended the Christian schools of the Christian Reformed Church, graduating from Western Christian High School in 1957. He attended Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa from 1957 to 1959, completing his undergraduate work at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, MI, receiving a BA degree in 1961. He attended Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA, for three years and received his Bachelor of Divinity degree in 1964.
The same year he entered the ministry of the RCUS and was ordained at Upham, ND, on Dec. 13, 1964. Rev. Pollema pastored the Peace and Kassel Reformed Churches of Upham and Lincoln Valley, ND, 1964 to 1970, the Emmanuel Reformed Church, Sutton, NE, 1970 to 1979, St. John’s Reformed Church, Lincoln, NE, from its organization in 1979 until 1987, the Ebenezer Reformed Church, Shafter, CA, 1987 to becoming Pastor Emeritus upon his retirement in 2009. While at Ebenezer, Rev. Pollema served as radio pastor of the weekly “Grace and Truth” broadcast and, for ten years, served in a prison ministry to the inmates of the Corcoran State Prison, Corcoran, CA. Rev. Pollema also served as President of the Executive Committee of the RCUS between 1979 and 2011, presiding over 28 Synods. He is also a frequent contributor to the Reformed Herald. Currently he serves as a board member and adjunct professor of Heidelberg Theological Seminary, Sioux Falls, SD.
Rev. Pollema is married to the former Betty Ann Gross of Hosmer, SD. Mrs. Pollema graduated from Northern State Teacher’s College, Aberdeen, SD, in 1962. Prior to marriage, she taught English and German in Kalamazoo Christian High School, Kalamazoo, MI, and Western Christian High School, Hull, IA.
Rev. and Mrs. Pollema have four children: Tarilyn Beth (Mrs. Todd Crabtree), Valerie Ann (Mrs. Brian Driesen), Lowell Scott (Lana Robnett), Audra Kay (Mrs. Matthew Guinn); ten grandchildren: Kenton, Sydney, Devin, Trent, Caleb, Morgan, Emily, Karlie, Makenna, and Kyle. Rev. and Mrs. Pollema, children, and grandchildren all reside in Bakersfield, CA, and are members of the Grace Reformed Church. “Grandchildren are the crown of the aged, and the glory of children is their fathers” (Prov. 17:6). “But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear Him, and His righteousness unto children’s children, to such as keep His covenant, and to those that remember His commandments to do them” (Ps. 103:17).