Reforming narratives on human sexuality in the Dutch Reformed Church


  • Louis Van der Riet Stellenbosch



queer theology, Reformed Theology, Dutch Reformed Church, Sexuality, Embodiment, Ethics


This article offers a critique on the dominant narrative on human sexuality in the Dutch Reformed Church (DRC). A mirror is held up to the binary nature of this dominant discourse, centred on ethics, hermeneutics, and ecclesiology. The limitations of how the DRC has engaged with human sexuality, and homosexuality in particular, are framed within the church’s own construction of being “vasgeloop” (stuck) amidst plurality and diversity. These limitations are discussed as issues of church unity, justice, and embodiment. Finally, a subaltern “window” is offered out of this apparent impasse, that looks upon the liberating alternatives presented by embodied queer narratives. In an attempt at seeing queerness within the Reformed tradition, queer phenomenology is presented as an epistemic shift away from the normative, binary discourse that has dominated the discourse on human sexuality in the Dutch Reformed Church.