Willy Bombeck (Works for LGBT recognition in the church) • At home we were very committed to the church in Cureghem. The pastor was a working priest with whom we had a very good relationship. When I told him I was gay, he laughed once: What is the problem now? It is important to have people in the church to whom you can go with all your questions and doubts.
I also feel supported at the Loggia Christian Thought Center. Thanks to that environment, I began to really feel good about myself as a gay religious believer and because of that I now also dare to advocate for other religious gays, who still feel rejected from the official ecclesiastical point of view.
Janica de Printer (Church Pastor) • At the local level, people in our Protestant church can turn to the church council. There and with the Reverend lies the leadership. Decisions are made with other office holders (the sponsor cannot make his own decisions). A community meeting is held annually. In this meeting people can ask questions about the policy of the church council. There is a similar system at the national level.
The Protestant Church in Belgium is an organized congregational church. But these processes take a long time.
Our church is divided into regions (French and Dutch). Thereafter, each congregation has delegates (both lay and pastors) who represent their subjects in the district council. Discussions on important issues take place at the district level first, with delegates representing the location of their church council. Subsequently, the Chambers present their interventions at the national synodal meeting (once a year). All counties receive documents in advance, to which amendments can then be submitted. At a synod meeting, discussion takes place by topic, followed by a vote. There must be a quorum for the adoption of decisions.
Dear Hergers (Director Broederlijk Delen) • I can share my doubts, questions, and sometimes my discontent with good friends in the parish community. Although she is hesitant at times. We also talk about this within the international Broederlijk Delen network. What binds us together is our commitment to social justice, the “cry of the poor.” So it is disappointing to note that our church does not always focus on the weak, the poor.
I dream of an open church, a church where people and the earth are central, and a church that embraces diversity.
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