Books are a singular passion for Langham Literature director, Pieter Kwant. He has an appreciation for many aspects of culture, not least art, music and film, but it is books that he has dedicated his life to in the service of the Lord. Originally from the Netherlands, Pieter wistfully tells of his first encounter with theological books in a bookshop in South Africa where he was rooted to the spot after pulling a book off the shelf and devouring its contents. The bookshop owner no doubt looked on hoping he was going to pay for it after reading it all! Pieter did go on to buy that book along with many more and is still buying them.
It was also in South Africa that Pieter met his wife, Elria and where he started his first job in the Christian book business. He went on to manage and own a bookshop and came up with many imaginative ways of getting his books in front of potential customers, especially students. But God eventually led Pieter back to Europe, this time to the UK where he and Elria raised their four sons. Pieter first worked for IVP and then worked for Paternoster where he led the way in publishing theological and biblical monographs, before eventually setting up his own publishing house and book agency, Piquant.
However, Pieter was then called to Langham Partnership to be the director of its literature program, focusing on resourcing institutions in the Majority World with evangelical theological books for libraries and students, developing and training Majority World writers and publishers, and pioneering partnerships to produce exceptional indigenous book projects such as the Africa Bible Commentary and the South Asia Bible Commentary, among other activities. Pieter’s experience is invaluable to Langham Literature but so is his ability and priority to come alongside Majority World partners so they have a voice, and lead and direct projects and programs making them contextually relevant, something which Langham’s founder, John Stott, held in high regard.
The need for resourcing colleges and seminaries with contextually relevant books and the need to give opportunities to Majority World authors led Pieter to launch a long-term publishing initiative. Langham Creative Projects was formed and over the last six years has published over 160 titles, producing academic evangelical resources, books for Majority World preachers, and textbooks and theology relevant for Majority World readers.
We give thanks to our Heavenly Father for the leadership Pieter has brought to Langham Literature and look forward to where Pieter takes Langham Literature in the future under the Lord’s guidance.