Only another 978 days to go

The first International Youth Day of the New Apostolic Church will run from 30 May to 2 June 2019. The rental contracts with the Düsseldorf fairgrounds have already been signed, and the planning committee is making some basic decisions on the programme of events.

Ten years after the European Youth Day of 2009, yet another big event organized by the New Apostolic Church will take place in Düsseldorf. And the Church will be working together with the Düsseldorf Congress Sport and Event group on this occasion too. In addition to making the fairgrounds available, the company will provide planning services for the event. The company had already provided planning services for the various activities in the event halls ahead of the European Youth Day in 2009.

IJT 2019 Düsseldorf GmbH established

The contract partner to the Düsseldorf Congress Sport and Event group is the charitable corporation known as IJT 2019 Düsseldorf gGmbH, which will organize the International Youth Day on behalf of the New Apostolic Church. The company was incorporated and registered in the commercial register on 17 May 2016. The partners in the corporation are the District Churches of Hamburg, North Rhine-Westphalia, and Southern Germany, each with shares of 50,000 Euros. At present, application is being made to have the charitable status of the corporation recognized.

Rental contracts signed

The two managing directors, Dr. Franz-Wilhelm Otten and Winfried Bister, as well as the group’s project manager, Hendrick Hermann, participated in the signing of the contracts on behalf of the IJT 2019 Düsseldorf gGmbH in the high rise on the Düsseldorf fairgrounds. As he signed the contracts, Apostle Otten highlighted the constructive and positive collaboration between the two groups ahead of the European Youth Day in 2009. He is certain that “the trust we have built will also help us make a success of the International Youth Day.”

Ten Project Groups

The planning committee that will determine the organizational framework of the event has some work-filled months ahead. At the group’s second meeting in Düsseldorf from 15-16 September 2016, its members concerned themselves with the broad-strokes decisions concerning the sequence of events over the youth weekend.

At the planning committee’s first meeting in May 2016, eight Project Groups were established in order to develop the content of the Youth Day and organize the preparation and follow-up for the event. In the meantime, the number of Project Groups has risen to ten. The two new groups will deal with sports and catering, respectively. Most of the Project Groups met up over the summer months to come up with some initial ideas. These were presented to the full assembly of the planning committee by each of the group leaders over the committee’s recent two-day meeting.

More than 30,000 participants anticipated

Various event halls with a total area of some 126,000 square metres will be available on the Düsseldorf fairgrounds for the occasion. In the Conference Centre of the fairgrounds there are additional rooms for workshops and smaller events for 20-150 people. In addition, there are the catering halls, as well as nine dormitories with 123,000 square metres for up to 24,000 people. The outside area between the halls can be utilized as an open-air stage.

Dimensions of a small city

Catering will be an especially big challenge at the International Youth Day: some 25,000 young people will be staying overnight and having breakfast at the fairgrounds, and up to 35,000 people will be present for lunch and dinner. “These are figures on the order of a small city!” said Priest Hendrick Hermann, as he estimated the dimensions the event would take on. Some 300 tonnes of drinking water—that is, over 40 truckloads—will be needed. In addition, another ten tonnes of fruit will be needed, for example.

The numbers are similarly high for the sleeping halls: each of the young people will bring their own sleeping paraphernalia, however, shower and toilet facilities—as well as mobile phone charging stations—still need to be set up for up to 25,000 people.

International Guests

All young believers between the ages of 14 and 35—irrespective of their family status—are invited to the International Youth Day 2019. Many chaperones and several hundred helpers will also be involved. Already at the European Youth Day 2009 there was great interest from outside of Europe in the idea of an international youth event: at that time, several hundred participants from Africa, America, and Asia had also travelled to Düsseldorf. This time the idea is to have even more international guests.

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