Facebook Twitter Linkedin Google Plus Tell a Friend
Home| Columns| Features| International| In Dutch| Dictionary| What's On| Jobs| Housing| Expats| Blogs| Books
««« previousnext »»»

Bible Belt says no to football on Sunday, whatever the occasion

Friday 09 July 2010

The Netherlands may be on the brink of its first football World Cup title, but in some parts of the Dutch Bible Belt, watching tv on a Sunday is totally forbidden, the Telegraaf points out on Friday.

And Kees van der Staaij, leader of the fundamentalist Protestant party SGP is one of those who will not be following events in South Africa.

'Absolutely not,' a spokesman told the Telegraaf. 'He may watch television occasionally for work but never to relax and absolutely not on Sunday.'

In the village of Urk, which has 20 plus churches for its population of 17,000, three cafes have aroused the ire of religious leaders for deciding to open their doors during the match.

But in the Bible Belt heartland of Staphorst people who actually have a tv will watch quietly at home, a town council spokeswoman said. 'Someone might run outside with a tooter, but they will go back in again straight away'.

In the village of Elburg the local minister has prayed for Oranje to lose. He has even advised parents to put a filter on their children's computers so they do not watch such a 'sinful' match.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

Hilarious! Gosh I thought Holland wouldnt have any religious loonies like this amymore!

By Brenton | 9 July 2010 12:46 PM

Extremely strange that these kind of things still happen here.. am I in Europe and in the 21st century ??

By Anand | 9 July 2010 1:39 PM

Wow. Just wow.

Seems to me these 'religious' leaders need to take a weekend trip to Amsterdam to release some tension and then sit and have a 'coffee' to chill out a bit.

By Shanta | 9 July 2010 1:47 PM

bloody hell?! why would you pray for that! unimaginable!

By Cammy | 9 July 2010 1:55 PM

I am SO tempted to drive through these towns on Sunday, blowing on a Vuvuzula!! :D

By CW | 9 July 2010 2:16 PM

Wow. My Dutch husband has mentioned these religious parts of the Netherlands (during house hunting marathons) but I thought he was exaggerating about the extremity of it. Obviously not.

By Amanda | 9 July 2010 2:24 PM

Why the surprise? There are no known limits to religious fanaticism.

By Jamie Anderson | 9 July 2010 2:34 PM

Perhaps Geert Wilders should ban this lot too for being unDutch.....if they want to live like that perhaps they could move to Afghanistan where the Taliban have similar religios views????!!!
I am not sure if there is a God or not but DO believe if there is, that he would love to see people enjoying the planet he built - I thought it was an amazing sight seeing the floods of oranje fans paertying down to Centraal station on Friday, should have made the seven wonders of the World - Orange Sea in Amsterdam.
If God didn't want us to watch TV,love football & have fun, he wouldn't have given us feet, brains and hearts.... life is for living - see the world, meet lots of people, have fun and enjoy your days off - even God allegedly put his feet up on a Sunday (and would have watched the match if he had a TV)

By Carol | 9 July 2010 3:13 PM

Wow, am I in Holland or Rome? What a nonsense in 2010, they are Bible fanatics I hope they prey for Holland to WIN though :)

By Jiggo | 9 July 2010 3:14 PM

proof number 954863424 that the ultra religious are silly fools lol

By adhd | 9 July 2010 3:20 PM

prayed for em to lose WTF, why, idiots, reminds me of the idiots of the tea part in America lol, praying for something bad to happen to Obama and praying that they didnt get the Olympics, crazy ppl

By adhd | 9 July 2010 3:21 PM

That Elburg fellow is wrong. Spanish are Catholics.He is a traitor of the noble cause of the eighty years war.Which we won, in case you had forgotten this.We even took Den Briel.In 1572 to be exact.

By pieter van Schaaij | 9 July 2010 3:42 PM

Yeah, the fundi's still exist even in Holland, but they are a small minority. They make me laugh. :)

By summer | 9 July 2010 3:58 PM

I suspect a high degree of hypocrisy and if you were a fly on the wall would spot the most outspoken religous nut watching while clutching his/her Heineken....even g-d is going to be watching and gabriel will be blowing a vuvuzels

By hvr | 9 July 2010 3:59 PM

In the event someone actually makes noise, what would happen to the "offender" who loves football? I think extremism goes up to sanctions. If it's merely threats and no action taken, I suppose it's ok?

By Linlita | 9 July 2010 4:02 PM

Why is it sinful for Holland to play and not for Spain?

By Achsa Griffiths | 9 July 2010 4:03 PM

I wonder if they might believe in Germany's Paul the octopus' 100% correct predictions in World Cup winners so far. Unfortunately he has predicted a Spanish win.

By Andrew | 9 July 2010 4:04 PM

Sounds pretty normal to me, as an American citizen from the Southern states. Jesus saves!

By Jethro | 9 July 2010 4:08 PM

Please, please inform me of the locations of the Bible Belt venues. I want to avoid contacts or drive through's to those places and have only heard of references to the Dutch Bible Belt. Inordinately stingy methinks.

By frankh | 9 July 2010 4:22 PM

Church & state should not interfere with each other. This unpopular minority that continues to cling to bronze-age beliefs should be totally ignored!

No relaxation on Sunday? - Come on, get real!

By stevie | 9 July 2010 4:24 PM

These religious folk are oviously still so under the law. Jesus came to set us free from the law.We are under grace- not law anymore! CHristians in South Africa are praying that Holland wins on Sunday. Holland, it's Ayoba time - especially on Sunday!

By Lee Saunders | 9 July 2010 4:44 PM

That Minister in Elburg better prays for Peace and other important things in live, but to pray that Holland will loose is ridiculous. That does not have anything to do with relegion.
Hup Holland Hup. Let the best team win.
Hopefully it will be Holland!!!!!!!

By Riet | 9 July 2010 5:07 PM

They are good liars these fundamentalists. They talk a good game. My uncle who swore on a Bible that tv was of the devil was pretty much addicted to it. And he watched everything, including soccor games.

By Gerry | 9 July 2010 5:08 PM

You will always have persons who have ideas that seem ridiculous to us but I guess in the end you just have to block them out. That is a sign of respect also. Otherwise you find yourself getting caught up in trying to show them how out of touch their thinking is. As for the guy who is praying that we lose, i think there are so many other worthwhile things to pray about. Anyways, I hope we win!!!

By Niki | 9 July 2010 5:17 PM

Just when I thought I had left all this behind in the Southern States of the USA.. I come to this,, I can not believe there are still religious fanatics in the Netherlands,, even tho I have driven thru this part of the country with my Dutch hubby..he told me some spine chilling tales about this so called religion

By CLOGGIEUSA | 9 July 2010 5:39 PM

And if the game was on Friday night or Saturday afternoon, Orthodox Jews would not watch either. Not sure what the point of the story is...

By Yeah So | 9 July 2010 5:58 PM

I'm in the U.S. Sounds like our Bible Belt religious freaks here. Oh, these wacko's will exempt our Football during the NFL season. Talk about God and you can convince these people to be in lock step, know matter how silly the fundamentalism quackery . Mind boggling...

By Bill | 9 July 2010 7:24 PM

Perhaps you religious skeptics have no real concept, that others may view your football enthusiasm as a form of worship, with instruments to match. Give me a church organ any day over against those dreadful vuvuzellas.!!!

By Tazzie Devil | 9 July 2010 9:01 PM

I am surprised thousands of people are voting to send muslims off The Netherlands but they are keeping these other fanatics in. Who is the best fanatic? Is there a good fanatism?

By dulaman | 9 July 2010 9:18 PM

Hope Holland wins.These people should see the occasion as a happy one and not a threat.Go Oranji.

By Declan | 9 July 2010 10:12 PM

Sadly they are everywhere you go. They just had to feel a tad special to say they hope our team lose. They are not worth the time to talk about. We are all hoping holland wins.

By Kaya | 9 July 2010 11:49 PM

These are legalistic Christians.
They are "neit op sondag" Calvinists.
Its called freedom of religion. Let them be.
Contrary to some of the comments above,
Conservative American Christians never had a issue with Super Bowl Sunday. Many even host a Super Bowl Party at the church. (My own church did) In America, Sunday NFL football, Sunday NASCAR go hand in hand with the Evangelical church.

By tjeerd | 10 July 2010 2:46 AM

Expats living within the city limits sometimes don't realize there's more to the Dutch culture than coffee shops, beer and after-hour clubs.

By Quince | 10 July 2010 8:06 AM

The minister knows soccor is the most boring sport in the world. Watching paint dry is more exciting!

By heath runyon | 10 July 2010 8:29 AM

I'm from Scotland but live in NL for +/- 8yrs. In my home country we have this also.
The main (non RC)churh is Church of Scotland. there is also the Free Church who era referred to as the "wee frees" because they're a small group.
Some of our neighbours were wee frees & all they did on Sunday was go to Church & read the bible. No work on "the Lord's day".
As preparing meals was work everything was done on Sat. Meals were cold, no tea or cofee (making it was working).
And no TV!!!!

By Donaugh | 10 July 2010 9:09 AM

I can not wait for the human race to wake up and realize that religion does not add up. As a scientist, I can not equate any of the main stream religions to reality. They each preach that their god is the only god, this does not compute for there is no logic in their religion.

By Paul Martin | 10 July 2010 10:53 AM

Revelations 11-7:

We're all nuts!
Vuvuzelah! Amen.

(cue in-a-gadda-da-vida intro)

By J. | 10 July 2010 10:53 AM

To Dulaman: last time this lobotomised lot was thrown out of the country, they ended up in the new world... the rest is history. Nobody wants to take this risk again. :-))

By El Pagano | 10 July 2010 12:12 PM

Seriously, take it with a pinch of salt. The number of 'radical' Christians who believe football is evil, you could fit on the smallest Wadden island. They aren't trying to push their ideology on anyone else, they are dying out as their kids move away into the modern world - most of you who don't live here probably hadn't even heard of them before this story.

Leave them to live their lives in harmless obscurity; they're a threat to nobody - just a little odd by this century's standards.

By osita | 10 July 2010 5:45 PM

@Dulaman - the difference is muslim extremists force their wacky beliefs on others. The bible belt is entitled to its beliefs and it is only the rest of us persecuting them not the other way around.

By Juan | 10 July 2010 6:52 PM

Religious freedom means respecting the right of these Christians to observe Sunday as they see fit. Unlike too many Muslims, they do not murder those who may criticize their religion. Tolerance goes both ways. I can accept that some just don't like football. Here in the US we have our religious "Pennsylvania Dutch" and Amish who are good and peaceful citizens. What would Jesus do? Uhh, well I know a Spaniard named Jesus. Go Orange!

By Ken | 10 July 2010 10:13 PM

what's wrong if the bible belt do not wish to watch football on sunday. At least they have not issued fatwas against their fellow men unlike the fanatic muslims who killed Van Goh. It's time the secular ductch show some tolerance towards them. Secularism does not encourage tolerance towards conservative christians. Why is that we should respect secular views when they show no respect for conservative christians. these christians are non-violent people unlike the arabs who come to your country and show intolerance towards dutch culture.

By christa | 11 July 2010 3:35 AM

I agree with "Jaun" and "Ken".

Do not even try to put a moral equivalency between Conservative Dutch Calvinists and Radical ISLAM. The Calvinists are a quiet god fearing lot. They work extremely hard, keep a unbelievably tidy property and buisness, and make excellent neighbors. You have absolutely no fear that they will target any of us infidels.
By they way, my Church (a Conservative Evangelical Church) are hosting a World Cup Party.

By Tjeerd | 11 July 2010 6:05 AM

@ Ken, I guess the "Inquisition" was NOT a christian group murdering and torturing non christians? Gandhi was a peaceful man of NON christian values but he did NOT push his religion on others as those in the USA do. I guess the christians killing civilians in Afghanistan and Iraq are not subject to your illogical mode of thought.

By Paul Martin | 11 July 2010 10:38 AM

calvanism still survives! yes even in Holland. but I still say go Oranje!!!!

By lance harvell | 11 July 2010 1:48 PM

Don't laugh, some of these kooks have been propping up the outgoing government for many years.... Lets hope they don't pop up their ugly heads in the next government...but this is Holland, so anything could happen.

By alanposting | 11 July 2010 2:06 PM

There are some pretty bizarre comments here. The Bible belt people should be free to do as they please as long as their not imposing their beliefs on others. What is about people not being able to tolerate others who don't think exactly like them.

By Quince | 12 July 2010 5:00 PM

So that's why they lost!!!

By Mary | 12 July 2010 11:11 PM

The SGP also wish to ban women from public office and that they do have and had in the past seats in parliament.

I quoted this item (with thanks, acknowledgement and a link) in my own blog and put some thoughts about what would happen if such parties got a larger portion of the vote. The question being, would they then start thinking they are morally obliged to "protect Holland" from sinners and those that who do not agree with them?

Donny vdH

By DvdH | 13 July 2010 1:18 PM

Holland has a reputation for tolerance. I believe this includes tolerance for those who have strong religious views. Although I do not agree with their views, I believe they have that right.

By Paul | 13 July 2010 4:16 PM

Newsletter| RSS| Advertising| Business services| Mobile| Friends| Privacy| Contact| About us| Tell a Friend
Apartments for rent Rondvaart - Amsterdam