Participants of the General Chapter

List of participants


Br. Gerard de Haan

Born: Groningen, Netherlands (03/03/1944)
Living in: Doetinchem, Netherlands
Province: West Central Europe
Gerard  de Haan
I was born in the city of Groningen, The Netherlands, on the 3rd March 1944 as the third child of six (five boys and a girl) in a happy family.
I received my secondary education at the school of the Marist Brothers in Azelo. After completing high school, although it had been a long-time desire of mine to enter the priesthood, I decided to join the Marist Brothers and to do the Postulancy and Noviciate in Habay-la-Vieille, Belgium (1962-64).
I then returned to The Netherlands for the scholasticate where I attended the teacher training College in Nijmegen (1964-69). From 1969 till 1987 I gave my best at our Secondary School and Boarding School (200 boys) in Azelo in various positions (teacher, educator, deputy headmaster etc.).
In 1977 I began further studies in theology at the same time as I was working in the School and boarding School in Azelo. I completed my theology studies seven years later in 1984. 
In 1987 I was appointed Pastoral Worker in the Basic Pastoral Care Unit, first in Houten for seven years and then in Doetinchem.
Since my retirement in 2009 I have been involved in the management and programme development of all our Dutch Marist projects which are aimed at young adults. These are located in Nijmegen. Both at The Westerhelling, our house in Nijmegen mand elsewhere in the city. This includes the Moria project, which is aimed at (ex-)prisoners, and the House To Be, which is aimed at troubled teenagers aged 13-17. 
I find it fascinating to set out on a journey with people, particularly young adults… to help them find silence and, in it, to discover themselves… who they are in the very depth of their being. To help them to develop a sensitivity to the mystery of life (Life)! “Circling around the Mystery”… is what I call it… God? Creator? The Living One? Yes! To look at something that may seem obvious but really isn’t so obvious! To discover what it is that keeps us from seeing what is really there. To go and look for the source of life, where vulnerability is accepted and considered valuable.
I am a profoundly happy man, and I feel grateful that I can enjoy the life (Life) which I have been given freely.
I am director in the Netherlands and Vice-Provincial in our Province.
My hobbies: listening to classical music, driving, reading, cycling and walking in the countryside, travelling (to The Hermitage, among other places), gardening, growing my own vegetables…etc.

That we are convinced to find ways during the next years to have Provincial bodies, composed of All Marists who will discern, decide and act together for Mission.