Rev. Talman Wagenmaker was born and raised in western Michigan. He completed a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Michigan Technological University and worked in engineering within the pharmaceutical industry. Rev. Wagenmaker received further education at Westminster Seminary in California (MA-Theology in 2001) and Mid-America Reformed Seminary (M.Div. in 2005), after which God called him to the ministry. He has served as a deacon in the Covenant URC in Kalamazoo, Michigan and was ordained as a minister in 2006 in the Grace United Reformed Church in Waupun, Wisconsin. He began serving as pastor at the Dutton United Reformed Church in June, 2018.
Rev. Wagenmaker desires his ministry to be focused on the gospel of Jesus Christ, in a confessional Reformed context. The gospel is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes; the Reformed confessions are the purest and most consistent expression and application of the gospel.
Phone Number: (616) 698-7467
Rev. Steven Poelman was born October 11, 1954, the third child of Marvin and Joy Poelman. His family attended the Reformed Church of America. At age 15, resulting from some negative influences, he became an atheist. Six years of atheism and drug abuse ended in a terrifying vision that he was a condemned sinner, on the way to hell. He spent the next four years searching for the true God–but in Eastern religions. Finally, at age 25, he came to the knowledge of the truth, that the Lord Jesus Christ died and rose again to save sinners. Friends and church Elders encouraged him to get training, and he enrolled in Moody Bible Institute.
At Moody, four events greatly affected the course of his life: One, involvement with a new Filipino church; Two, sharing his faith in the busy streets of Chicago; Three, abandoning Arminianism and embracing Calvinism; and four, meeting his future wife, Nalini. After completion of his studies at Moody in 1987, the Poelmans were married. Before the wedding, Rev. Poelman asked Nalini if she was willing to go anywhere that God would send. Nalini wisely replied, “Okay, but first you have to visit India.” That first visit convinced him that God was calling him to India, and his previous experiences with Hinduism and Eastern religions began to make sense.
In 1988, Rev. Poelman and his bride returned to US so that Nalini could complete her degree at Moody. After their first child, Surekha Joy, was born the Poelmans returned to India in 1989. Both of Nalini’s parents were in the US for her mother’s heart surgery, so the Poelmans managed his Father-in-law’s compound and its ministries. Rev. Poelman led the church, taught Bible classes for orphan children, and taught pastors at their monthly meetings. During this time, He became increasingly aware that he needed more education, and ordination.
In 1991 the Poelmans returned to the US where their second child, Sarala Christy was born. To further his education, Rev. Poelman enrolled in Denver Baptist Seminary. While studying there, Dave Meengs encouraged a transfer to Mid-America Reformed Seminary (MARS) in 1993. At MARS he faced a great theological struggle, because he was a Baptist. In November, 1994, the Poelmans third daughter, Sandhya Rose, was born.
During his final year at MARS, in 1996, he finally understood and embraced covenant theology, and Cornerstone Independent Reformed Church in Hudsonville invited the family to join their congregation. The Poelmans three children were baptized in fall of 1996 at Cornerstone. The elders arranged for Rev. Poelmans ordination exam on September 15, 1996. Cornerstone then sent the Poelmans to southern India to serve with his father-in-law, who desired to introduce the Reformed faith into his ministry.
In mid-1999 the Poelmans were forced to return to the USA as the Indian government would not renew his visa or resident permit. While in the USA their fourth daughter, Supriya, was born. In late 2000 Rev. Poelman received a call to pastor a church plant in the Philippines. Their fifth child, Steven was born during this time of service. Two months after the attack of September 11, 2001, the Elders at Cornerstone requested the Poelmans to return to the USA. From December, 2001 to June, 2002, Rev. Poelman served as stated supply, under the Elders at Cornerstone, for a church plant in Muskegon Michigan. During this time India began issuing visas to anyone married to a person of Indian origin.
December 2002 saw the Poelmans return to India, after he was invited to serve as a teacher at the Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Dehradun in northern India. Throughout fifteen years of teaching students who were preparing to lead Reformed and Presbyterian churches, Rev. Poelman was convinced that he was doing exactly what God wanted. Solid Reformed doctrine was the best antidote to the Liberalism and Pentecostalism influencing most churches and pastors in India. In 2007, the faculty at the Presbyterian Theological Seminary requested Rev. Poelman to complete his Master of Theology. He enrolled at Puritan Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan, completing most classes while on furlough. After finishing his thesis in India, Rev. Poelman graduated in 2010.
In July 2017, out of concern for one of his children, the Poelmans returned to the USA. In June of 2019 Rev. Poelman retired as Cornerstone URC’s missionary and was granted Pastor Emeritus status by the council and classis Michigan. Seeking to continue serving His Lord and Savior, Rev. Poelman began serving as Pastor of Visitation for Dutton URC in September of 2020.