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History Foundation Protestant Airport Chaplaincy Schiphol


opening meditation centre 2018 141R The Airport Chaplaincy came into being thanks to the Roman Catholic bishop of Haarlem, Monsignor Th. Zwartkruis. He took the initiative in 1975 and Schiphol Airport Company provided him with a “chapel” that same year. The bishop appointed Pastor J.H. Duin as the first Airport Pastor at Schiphol Airport. His Protestant back-up was Pastor M.A. de Savornin Lohman, Reformed minister at nearby Badhoevedorp.

In 1978 the number of Airport Pastors was increased to two. The parish of the Reformed Church in Amsterdam, appointed Pastor J.A. Hoogervorst to succeed Pastor Jan Duin. This diaconal appointment expressed from the beginning, that the Airport Chaplaincy would have a pastoral as well as a diaconal character. Pastor Hoogervorst was succeeded in 1988 by Pastor J.W. Blankert, Reformed Church minister at Hoofddorp. He was appointed as Airport Pastor by the Reformed Church synod

When Pastor Jan Blankert accepted to serve the congregation of Edam/Volendam in 1995, the appointment of Pastor A. van der Hart followed after a short period. She was appointed in 1996 by the National Cooperative Committee for the Chaplaincy of the "Samen op Weg kerken". A year later the Reformed Church of Nieuw-Vennep appointed her as pastor, with the Airport Chaplaincy as special assignment. Management at that time was, on the Catholic side the Stichting Rooms-Katholiek Luchthavenpastoraat (Foundation of the Roman Catholic Airport Chaplaincy) and on the Protestant side the Protestantse werkgroep Luchthavenpastoraat (the Protestant task force Airport Chaplaincy), which was attached to the National Service Centre of the "Samen op Weg kerken" at Utrecht.

Pastor Anja van der Hart left Schiphol at the end of 2002 to accept an appointment as Hospital Pastor in Amsterdam. This was due to a reorganization at the Landelijk Dienstencentrum (LDC) (National Service Center). Fortunately, she was to be succeeded by Pastor E. Plantier in september 2003. Pastor Edith Plantier left the Airport Chaplaincy at the end of 2008 and started work, employed by the National Service Center, at the Pastoral Care of Foreign Students in Amsterdam.

In order to secure a better continuity of Protestant staffing in the future, on June 16, 2009, the Foundation Protestant Airport Chaplaincy Schiphol Airport (SPLS in Dutch), was established). This Foundation has no formal ties to the Protestant Church in the Netherlands (PKN in Dutch), but PKN strongly supports the work at Schiphol in both financial and spiritual sense. Members of the Protestant Task Force formed the first Foundation Management.

The goals of SPLS are:

  • a. The representation of material interests of the Airport Chaplaincy
  • b. To operate the Airport Chaplaincy
  • c. To advise and support the Airport Chaplaincy

On Januari 1, 2010 Pastor F.G.W. Hordijk-van der Zwaag was appointed as the fifth Protestant Airport Pastor in succession. Pastor Wina Hordijk-van der Zwaag left the Airport Chaplaincy on November 1, 2015 due to early retirement. She was succeeded on the same date by Pastor M.S. Meiring-Snijder.

As of 1992, the initial contact was made between the Protestant Task Force and the Roman Catholic Foundation. This has grown into an intensive cooperation today. As of 2005, this was joined by the membership of the Anglican and Old Catholic Churches in the Netherlands.

he three participating foundations representing the different denominations, founded the joint umbrella organization “Stichting Ondersteuning Luchthavenpastoraat Schiphol (SOLS) (Foundation Support of the Airport Chaplaincy) to support the work of the pastors.