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Protestant synod settled over half of property claims

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

UTRECHT — In the wake of the 2004 merger of three Dutch denominations which now form the Protestant Church in the Netherlands (PKN), the synod of the merger church has now settled property issues with about half of the sixty mainline Reformed congregations (formerly NHK, Hervormd) that chose in part or full to stay behind and regroup as the Restored Reformed Church (HHK). Depending on the local situation, some were given property with full title while others settled on a long-term lease, joint usage and/or cash payments. The decision for the approach was partially made out of pastoral concern for the objectors before the merger, as a move to minimize discord and acrimony and to be considered beyond legal obligation, when it appeared that a split was developing in the ranks of the orthodox Reformed wing of the NHK. Although the PKN has declared many church buildings redundant, the HHK and other orthodox Reformed church groups are building new ones, often in new residential districts.