A year’s worth of “Victory with Christ”

What may have sounded a little cumbersome at first developed into a firework of impulses over the course of the year: “Victory with Christ”, the motto of the New Apostolic Church for 2016. Following is a look back at the most important aspects.

The motto was issued by Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider in his New Year’s message 2016. In the New Year’s service, which he celebrated in Siegen (Germany), he expanded on it. Christ helps us gain the victory

  • over attitudes such as dishonesty, intolerance, lovelessness, and selfishness that arise as a result of evil.
  • over concerns for our own future and the future of the Church, and of making commitments in our private lives and in the Church.
  • over our own characteristics, such as pride, which keeps us from accepting God’s help; over prejudices, which prevent us from loving our neighbour; and over the urge to communicate our own opinions no matter what havoc this may cause.

The Chief Apostle expanded on these thoughts over the following months, developing them in two directions. On the one hand, he addressed the strategies of the Devil—such as unbelief, disobedience, and irreconcilability—and showed how we can defend ourselves against his lies. On the other hand, he showed what powers we can tap into to help us gain the victory with Christ: Holy Communion and the Resurrection.

The motto as a graphic design …

The annual motto was not only reflected in words, but also in images: over half a dozen designers from America, Asia, and Africa cast the words into a logo. Such signets are often used in correspondence, on the Internet, or in posters.

Already last year the District Churches revealed a whole bouquet of colourful ideas, whether on the Internet or on stationery, in magazines or as a calendar. And creativity is contagious: many different designs from various congregations are coursing through the social networks—nothing official, but with a great deal of heart for the cause.

… and inspiring thoughts

The District Churches around the world not only came up with graphic ideas, but especially with spiritual impulses. The District Apostles filled the motto with life in our “Spotlight” series, and this over months. And they clearly showed

  • that whoever wants to gain the victory with Christ has to put up a fight and make sure he is standing on a solid foundation and has a firm footing.
  • that whoever wants to reach the goal has to be able to assess his own performance and move forward in stages.
  • that victory is possible if we are not alone and help each other.
  • how important it is not to give up, because perseverance will pay off.

The most beautiful aspect of victory with Christ is: there are no losers.

One District Church even had the idea of allowing the young participants themselves develop some of the content of the youth seminars. Some of the questions were: "What does this solution mean to you?" "What does it mean to overcome anxieties and fears?", "Where does the responsibility of the individual lie, and what is the biblical foundation for this?"—all interesting questions that elicited reflection.

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Andreas Rother
motto , New Year's Day, International