Contributed by Ruth A. Bruinix Racki

Nicolas H. A. Bruinix

Nicolas H. A. Bruinix

Jennie S. Goossen and husband Isaac Goossen were the parents of Margaret Goossen Bruinix, who used to live on Main Street in Marion. Now, it is a blue vinyl, nicely restored house almost across from the school.

Their daughter, Margaret Goossen, married Nicolas H. A. Bruinix, July 3, 1923. Nicolas H. A. Bruinix (my father) was a Presbyterian Minister for 50 years. He celebrated 50 years in the ministry in 1979. He graduated from Hope College and Western Seminary. At Western Seminary he received his masters in theology. Above is a picture of Nicolas Bruinix at the time he was ordained from Western Seminary, Holland, MI in 1929.

Margaret and Nicolas had 5 children: Margaret born in 1925, Marian born in 1926, David born in 1931, Paul born in 1932 and myself, Ruth. Of those 5 children, only Margaret and Ruth survive.

Margaret was a school teacher for 36 years in the Rochester area after she graduated from SUNY, Brockport. Marian also attended SUNY, Brockport and lived in Brockport till her death on January 20, 1981 of a heart attack. David was a vice president of a bank till his death on February 17, 1990 of cancer. Paul was regional manager for Nationwide Insurance, and retired at the age of 62 in 1994. I am submitting this information because a few relatives remain in the area and they may want to know that Paul passed away September 30, 2003 at the Michigan Cancer Institute in Ann Arbor, MI.

Nicolas and Margaret Bruinix had 15 grandchildren and many great grandchildren. One of the grandchildren died at age 14 near Canandaigua, NY from a heart attack when he was running in track.

The following are buried in the Marion Cemetery: Isaac Goossen, Jennie S. Goossen, Margaret Goossen Bruinix, Nicolas H. A. Bruinix, Nicholas Bruinix and Jacomina Bruinix. All six plots are side by side.

His greatest strength in his ministry was being called to a floundering church and building up the Sunday school and youth program. Having more youth in a church makes it grow and endure longer. There are many examples of this but his greatest two churches were Covenant Lebanon Presbyterian Church in Buffalo, NY in the 50's wherein he combined the Covenant Presbyterian Church and the Lebanon Presbyterian Church to build a congregation of 1,000 or more. He also was pastor of the Sloan Presbyterian Church in the Buffalo area at the same time. He was in his 50's at the time but his energy was magnetic and contagious. Also, he served two churches in the Binghamton area, which included Afton, NY and Nineveh, NY. While he served the Nineveh Presbyterian Church, Sunday school rooms were added by lifting the church off it's foundation, adding a basement, and building rooms in the basement for the Sunday school classes. At this time, from what I understand, Nineveh is the more prosperous church and Afton's congregation has become small. During his time there, that situation was the opposite, how he would have loved to make it prosper again.

His sermons were down to earth, where people could relate and feel enriched as they walked away. My mother would stand with him at the door and hear so many positive comments of how my father's sermons helped them see situations in a different light.

Ruth A. Bruinix Racki

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Created: 3/5/04
Updated: 4/17/04
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