New Evangelical head says revival is 'essential' for European church

Published 28 April 2010  |  
The newly appointed General Secretary of the European Evangelical Alliance says revival is essential for Europe's traditional churches.

Rev Niek M Tramper was appointed to his new post at the EEA's annual conference in Turkey on April 22. He succeeds Gordon Showell-Rogers, who is stepping down after 11 years to become the World Evangelical Alliance's new Associate International Director next month.

Rev Tramper, of the Netherlands, said there were many challenges facing the church in Europe, including the need for greater cooperation between new and traditional forms of church, a growing Muslim population, and tensions between the rich and poor.

"The church and Christian movements need each other in advancing the Kingdom of God," said Rev Tramper.

"Traditional churches cannot continue without revival. Profound theology and missionary zeal are complementary.

"In places with few historic churches, the EEA is of great value for facilitating the replanting of churches in countries like Kosovo, Albania and Turkey, as well as in Central Asia."

Rev Tramper is pastor of the Evangelical Protestant Church in Vlaardingen, near Rotterdam. He was lecturer in Missiology at Ede Christian University and previously worked for 10 years with the Reformed Mission League (RML) as regional director for Europe and the Middle East. During that period he was active in the council of ACO-Fellowship, a cooperation of churches in Europe and the Middle East.

He graduated in biology from the University of Wageningen and in theology from the University of Utrecht. He then started his career as staff worker with IFES-Netherlands before being appointed director of the Reformed Bible College De Wittenberg, in Zeist.

His appointment as General Secretary was welcomed Jiri Unger, President of EEA.

"We are delighted that Niek has accepted our offer to take on this role," he said.

"The past years have seen significant growth in the EEA, under the direction of Gordon and we feel that Niek brings the necessary gifts and experience to build on that growth and encourage us as Alliances together to impact Europe with a Christian gospel that transforms lives and societies."

Rev Tramper will take up office in September, whilst continuing to pastor within the Protestant Church of the Netherlands. His appointment means that the EEA's office, presently in London, will be transferred to the Netherlands.

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