It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to Joannes ‘Jean’ Geeroms, born February 2, 1932 in Meerbeek and died November 9, 2019 in Bruges after a long deterioration of his state of health. It was at the age of 87 that he left us, serene, surrounded by his family. He leaves 4 children, many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Jean was also known for his long active involvement in the Church.
It was in 1954 that Jean Geeroms began working for the Adventist Church as an evangelist for the Dutch-speaking churches of Brussels and Opvelp. A year later, his organizational side had already been spotted and he was appointed to the position of Youth Director of the Federation. He held this position until 1971, when he was also chosen as Federation President. In the meantime, in 1965, he had been ordained to the pastoral ministry. Until his appointment as President he had also served the churches of Antwerp, Bruges, Ostend and Brussels as well as Ghent for a short time. While he was president, he even accepted responsibility for the Mersch Church in Luxembourg. After his presidency, he remained pastor of the Kortrijk, Roeselare and Ypres Churches until 1983.
In 1983 began a new phase of life for Jean and his family. Due to family circumstances, he was unable to continue his pastoral ministry. Despite this – and this is also one of his characteristics – Jean did not turn his back on the Church but continued to serve as director of the humanitarian organization ADRA. This is what he continued to do until his retirement in 1995. Once a pensioner, he continued this work as a volunteer until 2012.
Jean Geeroms will be remembered as a man deeply committed to the Church and to ADRA. Jean was never short of an anecdote or a story, whether it concerns the Bible or the history of the Church. A short conversation or a limited visit was only rarely possible, but each time it was full of hospitality. A few months ago, Jean was still active in the Church of Ostend, which he always visited by public transport despite his increasingly deficient health. You could say Jean “went out with his boots on”, which wasn’t always without consequences for his family. Jean will be missed by all, first of all his family, but also all the members he has served. We offer the family our deepest condolences and share their grief.