Here are free resources about the Belgium/Netherlands Mission:
- Mission address and phone number
- Mission map
- Missionary blogs
- Facebook groups
- LDS Mission t-shirts and gifts
- List of past mission presidents
- Cultural articles written by returned missionaries
- Survey with RMs
Belgium/Netherlands Mission Address
Here’s a recent address for the Belgium/Netherlands Mission. We try to keep this information up to date, but it’s a good idea to check with several sources, including your mission packet or the mission office.
2801 AN Gouda
Phone Number: +31 (0) 182 338 025
Mission President: President Johan A. Buysse
Belgium/Netherlands Mission Map
Here’s a link to the mission map for the Belgium/Netherlands Mission (LDS). To access an official, up-to-date LDS.org map for the mission, simply
Belgium/Netherlands Missionary Blogs
Here’s a list of missionary blogs for the Belgium/Netherlands Mission. This blog list includes the name, URL and when the blog was updated.
Belgium/Netherlands Mission Groups
Here are Belgium/Netherlands Mission Groups- for LDS missionary moms, returned missionaries, mission presidents and other alumni of the mission.
- Belgium/Netherlands Mission, Pres. Brubaker Group (266 members)
- Belgium/Netherlands Mission!! Facebook Group (148 members)
- Belgium Brussels/Netherlands Mission Group (147 members)
- Belgium Brussels/Netherlands Mission!! Group (7 members)
- Netherlands/Belgium Mission Pres. Van Ry Group (6 members)
Belgium/Netherlands Mission T-Shirts
Here are T-shirts for the Belgium/Netherlands Mission!
Shirt designs include Belgium/Netherlands Mission logo/emblem shirts and Called to Serve shirts. The shirts make great gifts for pre-missionaries, returned missionaries and missionaries currently serving. LDS Mission shirts come in all sizes: Small, Medium, Large, Extra Large, up to 4XL. The mission designs are printed on white shirts and are shipped to you.
*Simply click on a shirt design to view the details and submit an order. The designs on mission t-shirts may also be printed on other LDS mission gifts, including: Belgium/Netherlands missionary aprons, Christmas stockings, ties, pillow cases, teddy bears and Christmas ornaments.
Belgium/Netherlands Mission Presidents
Here’s a list of current and past Mission Presidents of the Belgium/Netherlands Mission.
- 2018- , Johan August Buysse
- 2015-2018, Robert L. Bunnell
- 2012-2015, Alden C. Robinson
Belgium/Netherlands LDS Statistics (2016)
- Church Membership: 6,756 (Belgium), 9,017 (Netherlands)
- Missions: 1 (Netherlands)
- Temples: 1 (Netherlands)
- Congregations: 17 (Belgium), 33 (Netherlands)
- Family History Centers: 8 (Belgium), 13 (Netherlands)
Helpful Articles about the Netherlands and Belgium
Belgium/Netherlands Missionary Survey
Here are survey responses from Belgium/Netherlands RMs, to give you a snapshot into what it’s like to live in the mission.
When did you serve?
- September 2013-August 2015 (Quinn)
- 2012-2014 (James)
- 2012-2014 (Christopher)
- 2003-2005 (Caryn)
- 1975-1977 (Chris)
What areas did you serve in?
- Turnhout, Hengelo, Kortrijk, Almere, Heerenveen/Leeuwarden, Rotterdam. (James)
- Heerenveen, Heerlen, Alkmaar, Utrecht, Genk, Antwetpen, Rotterdam. (Christopher)
What were some favorite foods?
- Stofvlees, frites, stroopwafels, waffles, chocolate and stampot. (Quinn)
- Doner, Vla, Nasi, Bami. (James)
- Stroopwafels, Bitterballen, Stampot, Frietjes, Doner kebab, Kapsalon. (Christopher)
- Pensive, stroopwaffels, cheese, writes (fries) breads, Indonesian food, Ollie Bollen. (Caryn)
- Baguettes, gaufres (Belgian waffles), frites (french fries), Cote d’Or chocolate, confiture (jam), tarte de mirabelles, Fanta, “oaties au lait” (straight uncooked oatmeal with sugar and milk, yogurt. (Chris)
What was a funny experience?
- We were running to get on a train, when my companion hopped on the wrong train right as its doors were closing. So I waited for him at the station until he caught a train back. (Quinn)
- One time, I tried to start a conversation with my companion by speaking English to him to see if a nearby young man would notice and ask where we come from and what we were doing in the Netherlands so I looked up at a helicopter and asked my companion, “Hey Elder, what’s that?” Then I ask how he would say it in Dutch. He responded “Uh, Elder, that a helicopter.” (James)
- Eating haring for the first time! My trainer bought it for me, it’s a mission tradition. I took one bite, tried to swallow, and almost threw up all over my trainer’s brand new shoes! (Christopher)
- Many…especially language errors or getting lost in rainstorms. (Caryn)
- Fun experiences were seeing the sights on district/zone outings. (Chris)
What was a crazy/dangerous experience?
- Suddenly finding myself passing by a red light district on the train. (Quinn)
- A drunk man threatened to throttle me to show that he was in control. (James)
- Probably when we had to call the police on our neighbors for trying to break our door down! They were blaming us for noise in the apartment complex, and decided that they would take matters into their own hands. Luckily, the police arrived and mediated a discussion. (Christopher)
- Missed last bus out of area for the night! Fights on public transportation. (Caryn)
- Never try to memorize your discussions while riding your bike. You will crash into a parked car like I did because my head was down and I was not paying attention. I was fine but embarrassed. My new bike was never the same after that having had a bent fork. (Chris)
What was a spiritual experience?
- My first time inviting somebody to baptism, this young college girl was super excited about baptism and involving Christ more in her life. The Spirit was very strong and we were all so excited! (Quinn)
- Seeing a less active member who I’d been working with take the sacrament for the first time in several years. (James)
- When I was in Alkmaar, my companion and I were teaching a man who had a lot of struggles. When we would go to his apartment, it was dark, dirty, with a bloodthirsty rottweiler roaming around in the shadows. The Spirit struggled to be there, and we could see that his life had not made him happy. Over the course of several months, he struggled with addictions, with regular church attendance, and with gaining his own personal testimony. Despite his struggles, though, we could see the gospel changing his life. When we went to his apartment a few days before he was baptized, it was clean, bright, and the Spirit was there. The bloodthirsty rottweiler was still there, but much more friendly. Watching his transformation was such an amazing experience. (Christopher)
- Finding someone who really needed the gospel, understanding by the spirit cause I didn’t know the language yet! (Caryn)
- Being led to an entry of an apartment building that previous missionaries had overlooked and then finding a recently widowed woman there with her two young children. She joined the Church. (Chris)
What are some interesting facts about the Belgium/Netherlands Mission?
- Diesel cars with manual transmission are much cheaper and more popular than unleaded with automatic. Some people still wear wooden shoes. (Quinn)
- Much of the Netherlands is beneath sea level. There are historical sites dating back through the world wars until the 1400s. Both Belgium and the Netherlands have a royal family, but neither takes a huge role in the politics of the country. Much of the food comes from German, Indonesian, Turkish or American cultures. (James)
- A lot of the Dutch mainland is manmade. The Dutch have developed techniques to literally build landmass on the water! It’s a fascinating process, and why most of the country is at or below sea level. (Christopher)
- So many people in such a small area, lots of international people. Traditional Dutch are reserved till they allow you in. They will only have one or two appointments a day for regular people. They like to be cozy and sit at the cafe and talk. Fanta soda is popular. 5 bikes to every person! (Caryn)
- It no longer exists. It got absorbed into the France Paris Mission on July 1, 2012. At times it consisted of areas in 4 countries: Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, and France. Belgium is trilingual: French is spoken in the southern half, Flemish in the north, and German in the far eastern reaches. (Chris)
What was the weather like?
- Lots of rain, but plenty of sunshine as well. Winters are cold and wet. Summers will make you sweat a lot. (Quinn)
- Fairly mild temperatures. Lots of rain. Around freezing most of the winter and about 80-90 degrees fahrenheit (30 degrees celsius) in the summer. (James)
- Cold, snowy, and rainy in the fall/winter, hot and rainy in the summer. Lots and lots of rain. (Christopher)
- Rain, humid, hot, sunny. (Caryn)
- Wet and dank in the winter. Pleasant in the summer. (Chris)
What do you like about the place/people you served?
- They’re direct, so it’s perfect for when you want to find out how an investigator actually feels. These two countries are absolutely beautiful and perfect for biking! (Quinn)
- They are some of the most honest, caring, polite, genial, people I have ever met. (James)
- The Dutch people are very direct. They can come across as very rude at times, but they respect directness. It’s fairly straightforward to set up expectations with Dutch people, and they respond well to clear statements. Belgians are very reserved and shy, but incredibly friendly once you get to know them. (Christopher)
- History, there is good anywhere you go. If you search for the good you will find it! (Caryn)
- The people are industrious, and friendly when you get to know them. The history. The family history — because I have French Belgian/German Luxembourger ancestry. (Chris)
Any packing/clothing advice?
- You’ll probably end up buying most of your stuff there in all honestly. It’s just a different culture and climate. (Quinn)
- A heavy winter coat with gloves, a scarf and a hat and umbrella. Plenty of socks. (James)
- Bring waterproof jackets for the rain, and don’t bring anything you don’t need. Packing is tight on international flights, and the Dutch rail system workers get upset with missionaries with too much baggage. (Christopher)
- Layers!! In winter as a sister you will wear lots of layers to stay warm. Learn about bikes. (Caryn)
- Warm overcoat or raincoat with zip in/out warm liner, fleece gloves and cap (over the ear coverage). You don’t have to pack to the gills…you can buy some of your needs over there. (Chris)
What blessings did you receive from serving a mission?
- A much greater understanding of the Gospel, myself, God, and my purpose. (Quinn)
- I’m now bilingual, much more honest and straightforward. My social anxiety has decreased exponentially so that it’s rarely a problem anymore. I gained a deep testimony of the gospel. (James)
- I definitely gained a stronger testimony of the reality and power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I can now more clearly see the path that each of my decisions places me on, and am more able to see my eternal destination. And, perhaps the biggest of blessings, I married a sister missionary whom I had served with! (Christopher)
- Too many to count! Deeper love & knowledge about Christ and the gospel. (Caryn)
- I still have many dear friends who I met over there. My French language skills served me greatly in genealogy research and in my military profession; I am an administrator for several FB Church related sites for French speakers and am flooding the french speaking world with messages about the Restoration of the gospel even into the African hinterlands where French is spoken and maybe their only modern convenience is a smartphone. (Chris)
What are some skills you gained on your mission?
- Became better at presenting, teaching, studying and loving others =). Became better at cooking too. (Quinn)
- Riding a bike with no hands (when you bike everywhere and need to hold a phone, umbrella, groceries, map or whatever else in one or two hands, it’s pretty nice skill to have). Creating a conversation directed towards an objective. Truly caring about what strangers have to say. (James)
- The ability to plan, for sure! I also learned a lot about how to deal with people. It’s not hard to treat everyone pleasantly, and it can go a long way. (Christopher)
- Biking, talking to strangers, eating New food (cow tongue). (Caryn)
- Language and ability to overcome fears of speaking to people. (Chris)
What do you wish you knew/did at the beginning of your mission?
- Don’t buy so much stuff before, you’ll buy a lot there. (Quinn)
- You need to talk to people to find people. If you don’t contact people, you’ll never have people to teach. (James)
- I wish I had been possessed of a larger perspective on missionary service. It’s easy as a new missionary to become discouraged and frustrated with the work, especially if you have unrealistic expectations. Patience with self and others is such a key part of missionary service. (Christopher)
- Faith that I was good enough and that everything can and will be worked for good by the Lord. (Caryn)
- More gospel basics as I was only a convert of 18 months when I left for my mission. (Chris)
Any advice/testimony for pre-missionaries going to Belgium/Netherlands?
- Study Preach My Gospel and The Book of Mormon. Pray everyday. God loves you and has a plan for you! (Quinn)
- It’s really hard work. A lot of people say no before you can even begin teaching, but those that say yes are worth a thousand and a half nay sayers. When the Dutch make an appointment, they expect you to be on time. People feel sorry for you because they think you can’t have success in Europe anymore. They are dead wrong. I had more success than I could have hoped for. You just need to have faith, be friendly and work hard. (James)
- The Belgium/Netherlands mission is a special place. It’s a place that will be hard and unforgiving, a place that will wear you out, grind you down, and make you wonder why you came. But when you get knocked down, make sure you fall onto your knees, because when you can’t, He can. And He will. All of the powers and gifts of heaven are yours to receive, witness, and promise. The places you go will become sacred ground to you, places where you felt the reality of the Lord’s testimony to the world. The people you meet will live in your memory and your heart forever. On the day you leave, the Lord will take a piece of your heart and plant it in Belgium and the Netherlands, and you will always call those lands home. (Christopher)
- Try new food, open up to strangers. (Caryn)
- Study hard in school and learn to be a social being. Go to church and seminary. Be well-rounded in life and do your best in everything you do. Participate and accept leadership callings in Young Men/Young Women. When you get on your mission and are taking pictures, don’t use hand signs: you are not a gangsta, you are the Lord’s representatives–act dignified. (Chris)
What was a funny language mistake?
- None that are too appropriate =). (Quinn)
- Geel means yellow, geil means horny. If someone comes up to you and asks if you are geil, don’t say yes. (James)
- In Dutch, they have a very idiomatic way of saying that you are warm. If you literally translate the phrase “I am warm,” it is not something you want to say! It’s a very easy mistake to make, and almost everyone does it at some point. (Christopher)
- Too many to count. Don’t worry about it. (Chris)
Carsten (Belgium Netherlands North Mission)
–Paraphrased from Carsten’s mission interview–
Going back to the religious history, they were catholic and protestant, but in the last generation, religion just isn’t really that popular. A lot of people think that talking about religion just isn’t that socially acceptable. You had to adjust your work to relate. If you knock on a door and start off saying you’re a representative of Jesus Christ they don’t like that. A lot of people are used to the Jehovah’s Witnesses and they are against that door to door method. You have to find the right angle to be more effective.
There are four stakes in the Netherlands and one of them is half in Belgium. The church activity has decreased a little bit over the last decade. A lot have moved away or have gone inactive. We had a lot more missionaries come in. It’s gone from 80 to about 160 missionaries. A lot more cities opened up for the missionaries to serve in. The Netherlands have very open immigration policies and it’s very attractive to Africans, South Americans, and people from the Middle East. Those people tend to be a little more open to random contact. We worked a lot with people from other countries.
There is a temple in the northwest. It was built a little while ago. That’s the dutch speaking area and even with the Netherlands there are different dialects.
The first missionaries came over in the 1800’s and they were pretty successful. A lot converted and left to the states. After they stopped moving the Church built up a little. In the 1900’s there were a lot of Dutch people that came to the United States again until the Church asked them to stay and build up the Church in their native country. One member got that letter and decided to stay even though it was a hard thing to do. The Church wasn’t popular there and she wanted to join the movement in the states.
There are a lot of fun experiences you have. I never had to run for my life. It was pretty mellow in that regard. Some of the best experiences that I had were when the people we met with were really able to open up about their lives. When they talk about themselves and you can see where they are struggling and they want to know what to do, I was able to get a glimpse into their life and understand what they were going through. Sometimes it hurt when they weren’t willing to keep meeting with us because we wanted to help more.