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Andrew Van Der Bijl

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Religious Figure

The Resume

    (May 11, 1928-September 27, 2022)
    Born in St. Pancras, Netherlands
    Christian missionary
    Founded Open Doors (1955)
    Known for distributing Bibles behind the Iron Curtain during the Cold War
    After the fall of Communism in Europe, shifted his focus to supporting Christian churches in the Islamic world
    Nicknamed 'Brother Andrew' and 'God's smuggler'
    Wrote or co-wrote 'God's Smuggler' (1967), 'A Time for Heroes' (1988), 'And God Changed His Mind' (1990), 'The Narrow Road' (2001), 'The Calling' (2002) and 'Secret Believers: What Happens When Muslims Believe in Christ' (2007)

Why he might be annoying:

    As a Dutch commando in Indonesia, he participated in the massacre of a village's inhabitants, including women and children.
    After the massacre, he became a heavy drinker.
    He was kicked out of three churches for excessive zealotry.
    Ironically, after the publication of 'God's Smuggler,' he largely stopped directly participating in Bible smuggling, since he became too well-known to get away with it.
    He said that missionaries who emphasized humanitarian work over preaching the gospel were letting people 'go to Hell on a full stomach.'

Why he might not be annoying:

    As a teen, he participated in the Dutch Resistance during WWII.
    While recovering from a bullet wound to the ankle suffered in Indonesia, he began studying the Bible after noticing how perpetually cheerful the Franciscan nuns in the hospital were.
    He quit smoking to be able to afford the books for Bible college.
    During a dozen years of smuggling Bibles through the Iron Curtain, he was never caught, even when he left the Bibles in plain view while driving through police checkpoints.
    He survived a plane crash (1971), and claims it even cured his chronic back pain.
    He logged over a million miles in 125 countries as a missionary.
    He and his wife Corrie have been married for over 50 years.
    He opposed the war in Iraq, saying 'Almost all the actions the West takes are creating more fundamentalists and terrorists.'
    He said, 'I am not an evangelical stuntman. I am just an ordinary guy. What I did, anyone can do.'

Credit: C. Fishel

Featured in the following Annoying Collections:

Year In Review:

    In 2022, Out of 72 Votes: 43.06% Annoying
    In 2021, Out of 9 Votes: 88.89% Annoying
    In 2020, Out of 8 Votes: 87.50% Annoying
    In 2019, Out of 2 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2017, Out of 2 Votes: 100% Annoying
    In 2016, Out of 2 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2015, Out of 9 Votes: 77.78% Annoying
    In 2014, Out of 18 Votes: 50.0% Annoying