Zomaar een Dak, the University of Antwerp's Pastoral Care service, is a meeting place for everyone. The service hosts a wide range of activities for anyone interested in philosophical questions or just looking for meaningful ways to immerse themselves in student life. Our activities are generally of a social, cultural or philosophical nature and are often the result of initiatives proposed by our staff or by students themselves.
Our door is always open
Nobody remembers who first put the words "Zomaar een dak" ("Just a roof") over the door of Prinsstraat 32. The pastoral carers must have made the decision several decades ago. While these three words continue to inspire us, over time they have evolved from a cryptic Christian statement into a strong pastoral product: a professional service with a clearly defined role at entire university. The words were taken from a hymn written by Huub Oosterhuis: " Zomaar een dak boven wat hoofden" ("Just a roof over some heads").
Our main room downstairs is a meeting place: a cosy place to go for all kinds of meetings, a cup of coffee or tea, to exchange notes, hang around and catch up, play the piano or a game of table tennis, watch a cycling race or a football match, drink some more coffee and so on... If the gate is open, it means we're there, so just drop in.
There are currently three pastors working at Prinsstraat 32: Johan Vanhoutte, Heidi Cobbaert and Gert Van Langendonck. Pastor is the Latin word for shepherd, which is why we decided to call the upstairs room 'het open veld' - 'the open field'. The Open Field is a large room suitable for meeting others or just relaxing with music or a film. There is also a small kitchen and a book corner with lots of different publications.
Another of our core tasks is to take care of the liturgical side of things. The Ignatius Chapel is an 'oasis of calm" on the bustling Stadscampus. During the key periods of the liturgical year (Advent and Lent) we hold adapted services here. These services are held on Thursdays between 12.30 p.m. and 1 p.m. and every Tuesday we also organise a short psalm prayer at 12.30 p.m. Everyone is welcome!