A ‘blogger’ must not only expect to receive comments from visitors to his blog, but should welcome them. I can assure you, I do. In the last two weeks I have received many more comments—mostly by e-mail—than I used to get. My last blog (‘Nykobing decides the future of the church’), in particular, caused many to react.
‘Was it really necessary,’ one reader wrote me, ‘to mention the name of this Danish church?’ Another reader in de US—an employee in the headquarters office of the church in Silver Spring, commented: Indeed, ‘the most important decisions don’t happen in Silver Spring. I so agree! It’s what happens in the individual congregations. Some regions are so on fire (Inter-America, South America, Southern Africa-Indian Ocean), while others are so close to death they don’t seem to be breathing (North America, Europe). It’s sad, so sad. You hit the nail on the head, and I appreciate it.’ A reader from Sweden told me he had forwarded the blog to the editor of the journal of the Adventist Church in his country, with the suggestion that they publish it . . .
Well, maybe I should say ‘sorry’ to the members of the Adventist congregation in Nykobing. I hope that, if they read the blog, they do understand that this was not an attack that was specifically targeting them, but that I only took it as an example of an, unfortunately, rather common state of affairs.
Making the blog bilingual resulted immediately in a substantial increase in the number of unique visitors and page views. But other adaptations in the presentation of the site did also not remain unnoticed, such as the plan to publish the text of articles that I wrote in past years. ‘Ministry Magazine’ notified me that I need to ask fort heir permission if I want to re-publish articles which I wrote for them, since they own the copyright. I have now asked for this permission (and received it). Soon these articles will be accessible via this site.
The communication department of the church in Britain reminded me that they have two video interviews with me in their archives and suggested that I might alert my readers to this. Well, for those who are curious, here are the links:
http://www.hopetv.org.uk/content/media-library/media-story/ml/in-conversation-series-4/reinder-bruinsma//12/ and http://www.hopetv.org.uk/content/media-library/media-story/ml/from-the-archive/bruinsma-book-review-1998/9/6/
I will ask my son how I can mention these links somewhat more visibly (and less cumbersome) on the site. And there may be some other, similar, interviews around. About two years ago I was interviewed by the Rumanian Adventist Church television channel (in English) for a program of about one hour. I suppose I could locate that somewhere.
But this must wait a little, for today I am back in Brussels. My vacation has come to an end, and yesterday evening I got in the car to drive to Brussels for a few days in my temporary job in Belgium. The trip took me a bit longer than expected. For about a month I had not used the small diesel car that the Belgian church has put at my disposal, and I had repeatedly filled the tank of my own car with Euro 95. That is what I did yesterday evening at about twenty miles from my home. The emergency service had to be called. It costs me an extra 100 Euro and two hours. But today I was able to forget this misery. I was told that there is at present a large fancy fair close to the Brussels South Station. One if the attractions is a stall with most delicious Smoutebollen or Croustillons—a small variety of what the Dutch call oliebollen (a kind of doughnut hole, but more special than that). For sure, an unexpected treat during my first day back at work!