Ministering to Muslims in the Netherlands
A Ministry Report from Rev. Drs. Marten de Vries, Rotterdam.
After a couple of years of conversations with Muslims and equipping others for conversations with them, our new neighbors, ‘Het Kruispunt’ (‘The Crossing’) was founded a year ago, in order to work more professionally. The name indicates our two main goals: purposefully meeting Muslims, and secondly, doing so without any concession to our central doctrine of the crucifixion of our Lord Jesus Christ.
On a regular basis, we met Muslims from different ‘denominations’: Salafi Muslims, representors of the Ahmadiyya Movement as well as Turkish conversation partners of the Nurculuk. By preparing and evaluating the several sessions intensively, we were able to give good witnesses and learned a lot about our own belief as well.
Our intention is not to stress similarities but, on the contrary, to discover together what is typically Islamic or Christian based on ashared terminology. Instead of alienating participants from one another – like some people tend to think would happen- we experienced more friendship by granting the other a look into our hearts.
I am curious to know whether we as Reformed Christians dare to enter the adventure of the dialogue, recalibrating this word in a Biblical sense and giving Muslims as much opportunity to express themselves as taking room to explain our Scriptural belief ourselves.
Marten de Vries, Rotterdam