Making guests feel at home
There are various kinds of guests: invited guests, surprise guests, and rare guests. Five congregations around the world recently welcomed special guests.
Birthday guests attend service
On his birthday, Brother Adebayo from Nigeria invited his guests to church instead of to his home. He went from door to door in his neighbourhood and invited more than 50 people to church. It so happened that more than 86 people, friends of the 86-year-old brother as well as members, attended the service in the congregation of Idimu in Lagos (Nigeria). The biggest present for our brother was the visit of Apostle Hagher.
Too small a church
The congregation in Malta had to temporarily relocate recently. The congregation in Gwardamangia usually counts between ten and twenty people. But when a group of German tourists announced its visit—all New Apostolic and fifty in number—the congregation quickly hired a hall in the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta. During this service, the ministers preached in English, Maltese, and German. Afterwards everyone stayed for a cup of coffee.
Welcome and farewell
District Apostle Bernd Koberstein recently visited the island state of New Caledonia. It was his first visit there—and his last one. The service he celebrated was attended by 38 believers. The choir had made a point of especially preparing a song in German.
Politically, New Caledonia is administered by France. The New Apostolic Christians are cared for by ministers from France, which makes the island state one of the most remote places in the working area of District Apostle Koberstein. This visit shortly before reaching retirement age was not only a duty for him, but also a great joy.
New Caledonia is about 5,000 kilometres north-east of Perth, where all the District Apostles had met for a conference in October. Not only District Apostle Koberstein used the opportunity to visit congregations he is responsible for in the region, but so did District Apostle Rainer Storck. After the conference, he continued on to East Timor, an island state on the southern tip of the Malay Archipelago. He held a meeting for district leaders and visited a new church that had been built by the members themselves. At the end of his stay, he celebrated a divine service, which was attended by 450 people.
District Apostle Storck, incidentally, based his sermon on the same Bible text that District Apostle Koberstein gave the members in New Caledonia as a farewell message: “For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways” (Psalm 91: 11).