Professing Jesus in all situations
Belief connects human beings with God. Sometimes this belief becomes visible in public. This week we take a look at a refugee camp, an art object, and a very active working group.
Professing Christ in a refugee camp
Fifty Christians received the sacrament of Holy Sealing in a refugee camp. Last Sunday, Apostle James Kasongo from Lusaka (Zambia) conducted a divine service with 300 participants in Mantapala Refugee Camp and dispensed the Holy Spirit.
The divine service was based on 1 John 4: 19–20: “We love Him because He first loved us. If someone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?” In his sermon, the Apostle said: “The love of Jesus Christ prompts us to help those who need help. We may not choose whom we want to help. We must help everyone who needs help, because that it was our Lord wants.” Then he added: “We must also remember that the love of Jesus Christ is greater than hate, therefore we must always exercise love, even towards those who do not love us.”
Mantapala is a refugee settlement in Luapala Province, in the northern part of Zambia. It was set up in 2018 and offers shelter to some 15,000 refugees, most from the neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo. Owing to ongoing conflicts there, many people have had to flee to neighbouring Zambia. The government of Zambia coordinates and manages the emergency aid for the settlement through the Office of the Commissioner for Refugees and works together with UN agencies. There are many New Apostolic people in the refugee settlement, who regularly come together for divine services.
Professing Christ and generating attention with art
“The mosaic mounted on the wall behind the altar of the old church building has been installed on the exterior wall of the new church. Now the whole city can see it,” the members of the congregation in Oldenburg (Germany) write. Jörg Bensberg, a regional politican, was also happy that something from the old church survived. “The motif, a cross, connects all Christians. The many thousands of little stones make a magnificent picture. Every stone, whether shiny or dull, is important for the overall picture. If some were missing, the mosaic would no longer have the same effect,” Bensberg said, and compared the mosaic with the fellowship in the congregation, in which everyone has his place.
There is something special to be discovered: “If you try to find the angle of reflection of the sun’s rays, the cross shines in glittering gold. Try it, you’ll be thrilled,” the first chairwoman of the Foundation for Art and Culture in Westerstede, Melanie Schneider, said. She called the installation of the mosaic one of the most creative and impressive art projects in Westerstede.
Professing Christ together with Christians of other denominations
The New Apostolic Church Western Germany was awarded associate status in the south-west chapter of the Council of Christian Churches in Germany (CCCG). District Apostle Rainer Storck filed the application in August last year.
The New Apostolic Church Western Germany was awarded associate status in the regional council of North Rhine-Westphalia at the beginning of October.
The Council of Christian Churches in Germany (CCCG) was founded in 1948. It is constituted by the national council of churches in Germany and is an associate organisation of the World Council of Christian Churches (WCCC). The CCCG’s tasks include providing mutual information and counselling for the purpose of common witness, service, and prayer, as well as supporting the work among the churches, and promoting theological dialogue with the objective of clarification and understanding.
For many years there have been memberships and enhanced cooperation across confessional borders both in other European countries as well as in Argentina, India, Uruguay, the USA, and in several African countries.