I am a pastor in heart and believe in the transformational ministry of local communities of believers. This requires mature leaders, both intellectually and spiritually. After having been a pastor in the Rotterdam Church of the Nazarene (1989-96), I invested 17 years in clergy preparation through European Nazarene College in Büsingen, Germany. I was serving the church in various countries of Europe and the former Soviet Union. My aim was to equip people for the challenges of the future and not the past, and to develop a sustainable delivery system that uses technology to bridge geographical distances. Having our home in the rural setting of a small German village along the Rhine river, yet participating in a diverse international community, has been a blessing to both my wife Wilma and myself and our two children Frank and Corianne.
In 2013 we returned to the Netherlands. Wilma and I accepted to the call to co-pastor the Zaanstad Church of the Nazarene just north of Amsterdam. Moving from academics to local church ministry did not mean following a different calling. I am still committed to the same cause of transformational ministry. Instead of equipping students, I am now committed to help one particular congregation become a transformational community for its members and the city. Co-pastoring together with my wife has been one of the greatest blessings of my ministry.
In 2014 I was elected district superintendent of the Dutch district, which I do along with my responsibility as a local church pastor. My aim is still the same as when I served the college as academic dean; how can I help churches face the challenges of the future? The major difference is that instead of focussing on the diverse cultural contexts of the church in Europe, I can now concentrate on being church in one particular post-Christian and postmodern society. Yet my international experience helps me to place the Dutch setting in a wider perspective.
Many of the blogs and articles on this site are the result of my responsibility of a district superintendent and pastor, and most have been published before in district publications or delivered in a different format as sermons or presentations.