Consolation and hope go hand in hand
The needs in the many thousands of congregations across the globe are as different as the inhabitants and societies. Here is a glimpse.
Democratic Republic of the Congo – Divine service in Kalemie
Democratic Republic of the Congo – Divine service in Kalemie. The province of Tanganyika is located in the south-eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Its capital is Kalemie. This is where District Apostle Tshitshi Tshisekedi travelled from 13 to 16 October 2018. Many people in the region suffer from the unstable conditions so that the Apostle’s visit and the comfort he brought were very welcome. More than 2,000 members came to the service he conducted in the central church in Kalemie. It was based on Isaiah 41: 13–14: “For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you. Fear not, you worm Jacob, You men of Israel! I will help you,’ says the Lord and your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.” At the end of the service, Apostle Barthelemy Miseka Kyamusoke and his wife, Esther, received a blessing on their silver wedding.
On Monday, 15 October 2018, after a meeting with the Apostles Musenge Gabin Mwemena, Miseka, and Boniface Ngongo Mayombo, as well as Bishop Mbayo, the District Apostle met with all the ministers from Kalemie and presented them with the Divine Service Guide Yearbook for 2019. The ministers in this part of the world do not receive a monthly edition of the Divine Service Guide, but a yearbook containing all twelve months.
Ghana – Breakfast meeting
Some 200 women and men came to the central church in Koforidua on 21 September 2018 for a breakfast meeting at which two talks were given on the theme “Watch your tongue”. Hosting the event were the Apostles Osei Du and Robert Asampong. The programme began at 10 a.m. with a prayer. Then Apostle Osei Du took began his talk. According to the Bible, he said, the tongue is a very powerful organ. It can either bless or curse, it can bring chaos upon nations, it can bring judgement and destruction. People therefore need to guard their tongue. Apostle Robert Asampong also gave a talk and emphasised that Christians should plan well and save towards the future.
USA - National Synod in Atlanta
This year’s general session of the National Synod of the District Church USA took place in Atlanta, Georgia. Typically, all congregational and district rectors are invited. This year’s meeting took on a new format. Saturday opened with spiritual thoughts from District Apostle Kolb that focused on the return of Christ and signs that Jesus is present. He also spoke about the generosity of the first congregations at the time of Jesus. The District Apostle said that we may be able to give without loving, but we cannot love without giving. The participants also broke up into groups to go through a Bible exercise. They analysed specific Scripture passages for meaning and context. This activity was meant to demonstrate one way that ministers can prepare for services. The afternoon was filled with small group breakout discussions. The groups focused on different topics such as brainstorming on ideas for Confirmation in 2020.
“On Sunday the group celebrated divine service with the Atlanta congregation. District Apostle Kolb based his sermon on Mark 1: 11: “Then a voice came from heaven, “You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”