Peter Lambert becomes new District Apostle Helper for South Africa
Apostle Peter Lambert, who was the head of music of the Church in South Africa for many years, will be assigned as a District Apostle Helper for the New Apostolic Church Southern Africa on Sunday, 4 December. A big task, but one that he faces with confidence in God: “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God” (Luke 18: 27).
“With the blessing of our Chief Apostle, I will retire in the divine service on 10 December 2023 in Gauteng. I am also thankful to advise that after much prayer and deliberations between myself and District Apostle Helper Mkhwanazi, our Chief Apostle has agreed to assign Apostle Peter Lambert as District Apostle Helper and to be my successor. Apostle Lambert will continue caring for the Cape- Winelands Apostle Area where he currently works. Now already we pray for the Lord’s blessing on all our plans.” This is what District Apostle John Kriel writes to the members of his Regional Church.
In a divine service on 4 December in Cape Town, South Africa, Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider will entrust Apostle Peter Lambert with the function of District Apostle Helper.
The new District Apostle Helper is no stranger to the New Apostolic Church in Southern Africa. Until 2017 he was head of music of the Regional Church. He also composed some songs for the choir hymn collection and the English Hymnal.
Peter Bernard Lambert was born on 22 July 1964. Already in his early childhood he sang a lot. His father was a choir conductor and his mother an organist, and they fostered a love of singing in their home. As a teenager, Peter received his first organ lessons from a minister and also attended choir-conducting classes.
Nevertheless, he could not imagine making music his profession at first; he wanted to become a certified public accountant. He enrolled at the University of Cape Town for a B.A. degree. After one year, he decided to switch to music after all, even though he was told that he would have little success due to his lack of entry prerequisites. But he completed his music degree and graduated: “God had made something possible that highly knowledgeable and experienced people thought impossible,” he later recalled.
After two and a half years as a music teacher at Sibelius Secondary School in Steenberg he started working full-time at the Church offices in Cape Town as head of music in 1989. He led the musical work of the Regional Church, coordinated musical activities, made sure that especially children and young people were encouraged in the field of music, supervised concert performances and events, especially in cooperation with institutions outside the New Apostolic Church, supervised the production of recordings and the publication of sheet music, and managed the Church’s musical instruments. He never got bored. Nevertheless, he went on to study business administration on the side.
When Peter Lambert was ordained as an Apostle for the Cape-Winelands area during a divine in Tafelsig on 13 December 2015, he soon had to give up his work as head of music. But it was not all that difficult for him: “When I see the young conductors doing it better, it’s easier for me not to do it any more,” he says.
New Apostolic Church Southern Africa
New tasks await the District Apostle Helper. The Regional Church Southern Africa has been in existence since 2016. In a divine service in December 2016, the Regional Churches of Cape and South East Africa were merged to form the new Regional Church Southern Africa. Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider appointed the then District Apostle Helper of the Cape District, John Kriel, as District Apostle for the new entity. Since then, District Apostle Kriel has been responsible for the countries of Botswana, Falkland Islands, Lesotho, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mayotte, Mozambique, Namibia, Réunion, Seychelles, St Helena, Swaziland, and South Africa. Together with District Apostle Helper Mandla Patrick Mkhwanazi, Peter Lambert will now take on this task.
Here too, he trusts that God will make the impossible possible: “My initial reaction was shock because on a human level, one realises that this task is greater than our human capabilities. However, I take comfort and reassurance in the fact that the call came from the Lord, and God will provide what is necessary in order to fulfil His purposes.”