United Pentecostal and Evangelical churches
The United Pentecostal and Evangelical Churches is the largest Pentecostal and evangelical
Evangelicalism is a Protestant Christian movement which began in Great Britain in the 1730s and gained popularity in the United States during the series of Great Awakenings of the 18th and 19th century.Its key commitments are:...

 Christian denomination
Christian denomination
A Christian denomination is an identifiable religious body under a common name, structure, and doctrine within Christianity. In the Orthodox tradition, Churches are divided often along ethnic and linguistic lines, into separate churches and traditions. Technically, divisions between one group and...

 in the Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

. It was created on February 16, 2002, when the Brotherhood of Pentecostal Churches (Broederschap van Pinkstergemeenten) and the Full Gospel Churches of the Netherlands (Volle-Evangeliegemeenten Nederland) merged together. The VPE is the Dutch branch of the Assemblies of God
Assemblies of God
The Assemblies of God , officially the World Assemblies of God Fellowship, is a group of over 140 autonomous but loosely-associated national groupings of churches which together form the world's largest Pentecostal denomination...

. In 2008, it had 22,000 members in 160 churches.


Local churches have relative autonomy, and the national office, based in Urk
Urk is a municipality and a town in the Flevoland province in the central Netherlands.Urk is first mentioned in historical records dating to the 10th century, when it was still an island in the Almere, a lake that would become part of the Zuiderzee in the 13th century after a series of incursions...

, functions as a facilitator of local churches. Peter Sleebos
Peter Sleebos
Peter Sleebos is a Dutch pastor and leader of the Pentecostal movement.Sleebos has been the chairman of the United Pentecostal and Evangelical Churches since its establishment in 2000. With over 22,000 members this is the largest denomination of Pentecostal churches in the Netherlands...

 has chaired the VPE since its founding. Clergy and other church workers are trained at Azusa Theological College, which has resided at the Free University
Vrije Universiteit
The Vrije Universiteit is a university in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The Dutch name is often abbreviated as VU and in English the university uses the name "VU University". The university is located on a compact urban campus in the southern part of Amsterdam in the Buitenveldert district...

 in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the largest city and the capital of the Netherlands. The current position of Amsterdam as capital city of the Kingdom of the Netherlands is governed by the constitution of August 24, 1815 and its successors. Amsterdam has a population of 783,364 within city limits, an urban population...

 since 2002. The Free University also has an academic chair of Pentecostalism.

Relations with other Churches

Internationally, the VPE is a member of the World Assemblies of God Fellowship (WAGF). Within Europe, the VPE cooperates closely with Assemblies of God churches in Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 and Flanders
Flanders is the community of the Flemings but also one of the institutions in Belgium, and a geographical region located in parts of present-day Belgium, France and the Netherlands. "Flanders" can also refer to the northern part of Belgium that contains Brussels, Bruges, Ghent and Antwerp...

—the Federation of Pentecostal Churches
Federation of Pentecostal Churches
The Federation of Pentecostal Churches is a Pentecostal Christian denomination in Germany. With 44,102 members in 2009, it is the largest Pentecostal church in Germany and is the German branch of the Assemblies of God...

 and the Verbond van Vlaamse Pinkstergemeenten respectively. The VPE is also a member of the Pentecostal European Fellowship.

In the Netherlands the VPE cooperate with other pentecostal and evangelical groups in the National Platform of the Pentecostal and Evangelical Movement and participates in the Evangelical Alliance
Evangelical Alliance
The Evangelical Alliance is a London-based charitable organization founded in 1846. It has a claimed representation of over 1,000,000 evangelical Christians in the United Kingdom and is the oldest alliance of evangelical Christians in the world....

 of the Netherlands.
The VPE has continuous dialogues with both the Roman Catholic Church
Roman Catholicism in the Netherlands
The Catholic Church in the Netherlands; , is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope and curia in Rome. Although the number of Catholics in the Netherlands has decreased significantly in recent decades, the Dutch Catholic Church is today the largest...

 and the Protestant Church in the Netherlands
Protestant Church in the Netherlands
The Protestant Church in the Netherlands is the largest Protestant Christian denomination in the Netherlands. With 2,000 congregations and a membership of some 1.8 million , it is the second largest church in the Netherlands after the Roman Catholic Church.It was founded 1 May 2004 as a merger of...

September 15, 2007, at the occasion of the celebration of the 100 years existence of the Pentecostal movement in the Netherlands at the Olympic Stadium in Amsterdam, Bas Plaisier, secretary general of the Protestant Church in the Netherlands asked for forgiveness for some judgements of the Pentecostals issued by his church in the past. November 16, 2007 Peter Sleebos, chairman of the National Platform did the same vice versa when he addressed the General Synod
A synod historically is a council of a church, usually convened to decide an issue of doctrine, administration or application. In modern usage, the word often refers to the governing body of a particular church, whether its members are meeting or not...

of the Protestant Church in the Netherlands.
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