TeenStreet (TS) is full of laughter, friends and fun, but, at its heart, TS exists to transform lives. Such is the case with main hall security leader Geert de Bruijn, from the Netherlands.
Geert first attended TS in 2005, after being invited by other teens from church. During the conference, he really enjoyed the Throne Room.
“Singing praises to God all together, hearing all these voices, is so cool,” he remembered.
He was also able to talk to a translator at the conference, who suggested to him that God doesn’t only speak through church services or big conferences but also through small things, like flowers. This conversation got him thinking about his own faith. Although he’d grown up in a Christian family and regularly attended church, he hadn’t taken ownership of his faith. At TS, he decided to change that and surrender his life to Christ for the first time.
In 2007, Geert was disappointed that he couldn’t attend TS again as a participant, but because the conference wasn’t far from the Netherlands, he decided to cycle down to Oldenburg to volunteer. There, he served on the security team and formed friendships with lots of people.
“It’s so cool to interact with people who are also working,” he said, “and have these amazing talks. Every year you come together, you have this amazing bond, like you’re friends for life already.”
Geert has continued to serve since 2007, and those relationships he’s formed at TS have developed over the years. He even met a German girl named Irmela in 2011 who became his wife this spring, and they’re now serving together at the conference this year.
TS also changed his life outside the conference by revealing to him his career path. Before serving on the security team at the conference, he had studied chemistry. However, after enjoying his time at the conference, he decided to change his plans and further his education in safety and security management studies, where he has only a final year left before graduation.
As both a teen and volunteer, Geert has loved interacting with people from different cultures and seeing “all different angles towards belief.” Now, Geert has attended TS 10 times and continues to enjoy serving others.
“I’m so happy to see, through my serving, that people are having a good time,” he said. “I couldn’t think of any other way to spend my holiday.”