Information in English

Welcome for English reading visitors

Welcome at the website of the Council of Churches in the Netherlands. The Council of Churches is a fellowship of thirteen member-churches and three associate members. The churches represent together more than 6,5 million believers.

The Council exists officially since 1968. The history of the ecumenical movement is of course much longer. All churches are represented by one or two delegates in the board of the Council. The two largest churches (the Protestants and the Roman-Catholics) are represented in the Executive Board, as well as three of the other churches. Theologians and delegates support the ecumenical work participating in working groups and committees.

The Council concentrates on three themes. First of all the Council stimulates the relations between churches and the mutual agreement on belief, faith and church. Secondly the Council organises the advocacy in public affairs, for instance to the media and the government. Thirdly the Council is a Christian partner towards representatives of other religions.

In the year 2015 essential themes are among others: 
* working on the theme of 'pelgrimage for justice and peace', following the suggestions of the tenth assemblee of the World Council of Churches in Busan; young adults will make / did make the focus of the program, in September there will be a walk4peace in The Hague, and during the year two informationbulletins will appear, one with 'a liturgy for the pelgrimage' and one with 'ethics for the pilgrimage'
* discussing the spirituality related to the sacrament of eucharism trying to understand one another better, in January 2015 an impression appeared in Dutch based on information from more than 600 participants from local communions about their feelings when they participate at the sakrament of the eucharism
* organising the week of prayer in January 2016 in which more than 200.000 Christians participate, with also a registration of it on the national television
* concentrating on the relation between politics and religion in talks with representatives of the gouvernment
* stimulating the contact between Dutch churches and churches of immigrants, who have more than 900.000 members in the Netherlands for instance by distributing the campaign ‘Giving a face to one another'
* helping people who are in need of asylum trying to influence politics
* stimulating Christians to take care of environment and organise lectures about this with a spiritual background with a special focus on 'food', after signing a document about 'water' as a human right earlier (March 2013)
* make information available about the poor people in the Netherlands and motivating church members and politicians to work on an economy based on justice
* organising programs together with partners from other religions to show the mutual interest in democracy, justice, peace and integrity of creation
* a special programm runs on the use of the social media, the Council can be followed on Twitter on the account @raadvankerken (2300 followers) and internationally on @dutchreligions; we are also present on Facebook (more than 1000 friends)

The Council has an office in Amersfoort at the Koningin Wilhelminastraat 5. People who want to get further information or who want to visit the office can sent a mail to rvk@raadvankerken.nl. It is also possible to make a phone-call to + 31 33 46 33 844. Ms. Beppie van Laar (first picture) will take care of the information; she works at the office of the Council. People who want to meet a member of the Council informally can ask for rev. Klaas van der Kamp (second picture), general-secretary of the Council of Churches in the Netherlands.

The following churches are participating in the Council of Churches in the Netherlands:  
Protestant Church in the Netherlands
Roman-Catholic Church in the Netherlands
Old-Catholic Church of the Netherlands
General Mennonite Society
Remonstrant Brotherhood
Evangelical Brothercongregations in the Netherlands
Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
Syrian-Orthodox Church in the Netherlands
Salvation Army
Anglican Church in the Netherlands
Coptic Orthodox Church
Fellowship of Free Evangelical Congregations in the Netherlands
Orthodox Church 
Critical Groups and Congregations in the Netherlands (associate member)
Church of the Seventh-Day Adventists (associate member)
Association of Dutch Protestants (associate member)

If you want to see a short introduction of two minutes on YouTube, showing our office, meetingroom and chapel: please push here.

The Council of Churches has signed a strategical partnership with the Evangelical Alliance in 2011. If you want to read the agreement, push here.

Nine churches signed a joint declaration in which they recognise the baptism which has been given in each others churches; and eleven churches signed a rapprochement on baptism. If you want to read the Englisch translation, push here. If you want to listen to a short introduction on the item in a YouTube-film, push here.

In the week of prayer 2013 the Council gave extra information about the Dalits in India, because the material for the week was prepared by the churches in India. Part of this backgroundmaterial is published in English; push here.

The former general-secretary of the World Council of Churches Konrad Raiser held a speech in Amsterdam about the concept of Just Peace on the 16th of January 2013. Push here.

The document ‘Faith and Economics: Perspective on the Economic Crisis’ made in 2013 is also available in English. The economic crisis raises questions which strike the foundations of our society and our existence. The national council of churches in the Netherlands has a special tasforce which analysed the situation from a biblical perspective. The group also had two expertmeetings with economical and political specialists. All the information was elaborated to a brochure. The text of this brochure was translated by pr. Sam VanLeer, a native speaker. It is available if you push here.

Klaas van der Kamp, the secretary-general of the Council, wrote a book in 2014, in which he reflects over the main items of his work during the last five years. If you want to read a summary, click here.

The Council has made Dutch translations of the main reports of te World Council of Churches, in which material is added for groups to discuss the main issues also locally. Four of these documents are available in Dutch: About the church, about mission, about economy and the oecumenical statement. On the 22th of March the water-document brought out by the WCC in 2011 was signed. 

The National Councils of Churches in Europe came together in Egmond in May 2014. Click here and you'll find introductions and backgroud-information of this conference.

In 2014 the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew visited the Netherlands and participated in the 'Food and Sustainability Symposium'. If you want to read more: click here. A special book was made about the visit called 'An ongoing conversation', copies of the book written in English can be ordered by mailing to rvk@raadvankerken.nl, the book costs 20 euro. 

At the end of 2014 in December 26 churches signed an agreement about safety in the church. Churches promiss to be aware of the rights and safety of young people in the church, especially women. The agreement is a reaction to the publications of sexual abuses in churches. All the members of the Council and other churches agreed that the church should be a place of safety, and the promiss to take measures of this safety might be in discussion. 


    Raad van Kerken in Nederland | Koningin Wilhelminalaan 5 | 3818 HN AMERSFOORT | 033-4633844 | rvk@raadvankerken.nl

    Site design: SyncCP; techniek: SiteCan