European District Apostles plant tree

The Acer campestre, commonly called the field maple, was named as the Tree of the Year in Germany. Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider and the European District Apostles planted a young field maple at the conference of European District Apostles taking place in Zurich in Switzerland.

In July of this year, Chief Apostle Schneider was a guest at the Day of the Youth of the New Apostolic Church North Rhine-Westphalia (Germany) and was given one of 475 young field maples. The young trees were to symbolize the youth convention’s attempt to be carbon neutral. The Chief Apostle promised to plant one of the saplings in the garden of the international head office of the Church in Zurich. The tree-planting has been going on for several months now in the District Churches of North Rhine-Westphalia and in the Netherlands, and has now finally also reached Switzerland. It had been decided at the Day of the Youth that every congregation in the district was to plant a young tree. Trees convert atmospheric carbon from CO2 into organic woody biomass as part of a process called photosynthesis, and release oxygen.

Carbon neutral Day of the Youth

In the run-up to the Day of the Youth in North Rhine-Westphalia, young people had thought about how this event could contribute to a friendly environment. They came up with the idea of a hands-on project: a tree-planting activity. They picked the field maple, which had been chosen as the 2015 Tree of the Year in Germany. The field maple is well suited to tough urban sites. It is a medium sized tree, making it ideal for narrow streets and gardens. Mature trees can reach a height of 20 metres. The tree is very tolerant of pollution, and endures heat and intense sun without any problems.

Young people from Düsseldorf had organized a total of 475 young saplings. Each sapling was wrapped in burlap and provided with a wooden sign, explaining the tree’s name and its purpose.

Each congregation in the district received a young tree for planting after the Day of the Youth. The tree plantings were documented by the Facebook group “Jugendtag NRW”. The planting of the field maple at the Church’s head office in Zurich was the final event of this environmental campaign.

Tree planted at NACI

While the European District Apostles were in Zurich for their fall conference from 11 to 12 November 2015 they planted the sapling. A big enough hole had been prepared in the garden of the head office and the Chief Apostle set the sapling into the hole.

Keyword: Climate neutrality

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is a vital component of the air we breathe. As long as the natural cycle of carbon dioxide emission and absorption is in balance everything is fine. But the massive burning of fossil fuels has led to a major impact of the carbon cycle with alarming consequences. The objective is to avoid carbon emissions as far as possible and ensure for a natural disposal through reforestation in order to slow the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

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Peter Johanning
Germany, Switzerland, benefit event