‘Why do you do what does? That is a question that has always fascinated me. Because of my religious upbringing in Staphorst, that interest led to a study theology in Zwolle. Once in the city, my worldview in science and humanity changed. I started to have doubts about the faith, but noticed that I could not go to the church with that.
“I wanted to keep busy with meaning, but without that religious part. That is why I started my own initiative with a friend: the ‘PopUp Church’ here in Zwolle. Once every two weeks we meet with a group on Sunday. Together we look for how to do ‘the good’ in life, by discussing our own experiences or by means of an art expression. We also always do a joint meditation exercise.
“A few weeks ago I heard that my education had nominated me for the Young Theologian of the Fatherland election. I thought that was cool, because my story as a secular theologian is quite different from the others. In the end someone else won; I do not mind. The target group of that election is mainly within-religious; I focus on the world out there.
“We come together with the PopUp church in cafe De Nieuwe Keuken and they were looking for a bartender this summer. I thought: laughing, doing a bar shift for an evening. But one day turned into two days, then three and now I will sign a permanent contract soon. I find my meaning partly in being a theologian, but I have now accidentally also found it in the catering industry.”
“I’m looking forward to earning a little more in the near future. Then I can save a little more and have a good website built for my own company as a theologian, for example.
“I also practice treating myself to something nice more often. With larger expenses I quickly think: will this really improve my life? Then I can think about it for a long time, while I would say to others: dude, just do it. That’s why I now have my practice projects. For example, last summer I just bought a hammock and I have been lying in it all summer. Truly a top purchase.
“I have just moved. Before this, my girlfriend and I lived for a year in a small house, partly in a converted basement. We now have a place in a community in Zwolle: 35 apartments in three buildings around a communal garden. The idea is that you take care of the garden together, take care of your neighbors and make the world a little better. We were on a waiting list for a year, but now a spot became available. A major improvement in terms of rent and living comfort.”