HELP! I need somebody…

June 25, 2001

Help! not just anybody.
Help! you know I need some-one.

Nostalgic strains of classic Beatle songs waft through the house these days as a younger generation discovers the Lennon-McCartney genius. Particularly poignant is this 1965 hit – “when I was younger, so much younger than toda-a-a-y….” – which conjures up from my subconsciousness a black-and-white photo of the Liverpool Lads jumping up and down on a black LP sleeve.

(LP, for the under-30’s, stands for long-play record, a 12-inch-diameter acetate disc that last century, in a crackly kind of way, fulfilled the function of CD’s in this century.)*

“Help! I need somebody… ” Poignant? Yes, for this was the last week in the office for Kees Voogd as European office manager/miracle-working conference organiser and my personal assistant. When he and his wife Miranda returned in the spring from leading an outreach in South Africa, it was to the tune of “Hello Goodbye”. They shared with Romkje and me their sense of God’s leading to join fellow-Dutchies Toby and Aukje Brouwer in their heroic work at Beautiful Gate, among street children and children with AIDS (featured co-incidentally on Dutch tv this weekend).

A couple of years ago, when I stayed with the Brouwers in Cape Town, I was greatly impressed by their pioneering work of mercy. A mini-DTS at Heidebeek a decade ago had overturned their comfortable lives and launched them from Friesland into missions. So you can understand my mixed emotions about them recruiting Kees! My attempts to persuade him to “Get back to where you once belonged” eventually gave way to “Let it be”. The Voogds and their two children, Noah and Mindel, now have a “Ticket to ride” to Cape Town next month. (Hey, Father McKenzie, d’you think anybody’s still bothering to read this??)

Unflappable Kees has assisted me now for six productive years and umpteen conferences! When he was away, work at the office was like driving with the brakes on. (When I was away, he always got a lot done.) I can only be extremely grateful to the Lord for our partnership. We send them off to Cape Town with our appreciation, warm memories, prayers and best wishes!

Meanwhile, back in the office… what’ll we play? “Yesterday, all my troubles…”? “Sergeant Pepper’s lonely heartsclub band…”? “We can work it out…”? “With a little help from my friends…”? “HELP! not just anybody…”!

Actually, I’m looking for FOUR people to do Kees’ job! or work that needs to be done:

  • One, an OFFICE MANAGER/PERSONAL ASSISTANT, generally running the European office and arranging travel and conferences, schedules and engagements, etc….
  • Two, an ADMINISTRATOR for HOPE.21, to help organise the Hope for Europe congress in Budapest next April for 1500-2000 European leaders.
  • Three, a COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER for the YWAM Europe office to help gather and edit news and information from across Europe for this new website, for “Europe NOW!” (sorry I haven’t been able to produce one for a year – help!), for “Hope for Europe NEWS”, and for HOPE.21 press releases. Any graduates of schools of communications??
  • Four, a MANAGER for Centrum ‘s Heerenhof, a multi-ministry centre which houses the YWAM Europe office in Heerde, and also provides facilities for seminars, public celebrations, film workshops, concerts, youth events, a bookstore and a conference room.

Could YOU be one of these? or do you know of someone who could be? I have one or two leads, but would love to hear from anyone interested.

“… Help me get my feet back on the ground.
Won’t you please, please help me?
Help me! Help me-ee! Oooh!”

Till next week,


*While we’re off the subject, did you know that the hole in the middle of every CD is exactly the size of a Dutch 10-cent coin? No, really? The reason I’m telling you this now is that you only have a few months left to verify this important fact – revealing the dominant role of Philips in developing the compact disc, and proving the disproportionate global influence of this little lowland – before all the coins are collected and melted into euros.

Till next week,

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