Berlin. Chief Apostle Wilhelm Leber, international leader of the New Apostolic Church, celebrated the first divine service of the year 2010 in the German capital of Berlin. At the start of the divine service in the congregation of Lichtenberg, he conveyed his New Year’s message to the 1,300 souls in attendance: “This new year is to be the year of perseverance!”
The Church leader went on to focus his message more sharply with reference to the following elements of faith: perseverance in prayer, in helping along in God’s work, and in waiting for the day of our redemption, the day of the Lord. He also drew special attention to aspects of human interaction that are particularly important in our time: “Let us persevere in maintaining a clear and untroubled relationship with the people in our surroundings, but also with the brothers and sisters in the congregation.” After all, it can also happen there that people misunderstand one another and find it difficult to bridge conflicts. Especially then, it is of utmost importance to strive for a clear and untroubled relationship. Chief Apostle Leber reminded the congregation of the Christian mandate to persevere in making peace.
Proclaiming the gospel through word and deed
The divine service in Berlin-Lichtenberg was characterised by the Chief Apostle’s interpretation of the Bible text recorded in Luke 9: 60: “[…] but you go and preach the kingdom of God!” The Chief Apostle pointed out that this call to action of the Lord Jesus applies to the whole congregation, not just to the ministers. “On the one hand, we preach the gospel by talking about our faith,” said the Chief Apostle, “so let us talk more about our faith and the goal of our faith, for example even within our own families.” In particular, he called upon parents to speak with their children more frequently about faith.
“However the gospel of the Lord is not only preached when we talk about it,” the Church leader pointed out, “but also when believers begin to exhibit the characteristics of Jesus Christ.” For example, Jesus displayed special sensitivity in dealing with other people. It is important to follow Him in this respect.
In addition to the traditional Berlin school choir, the recently established orchestra of the District Church of Berlin-Brandenburg also contributed to the musical setting of the divine service, which was transmitted from Lichtenberg via satellite into numerous congregations throughout Berlin and Brandenburg. A total of 10,000 souls were thus able to participate in the divine service, including just over 1,300 who attended in person in Lichtenberg.
You can read our detailed divine service report on the website of the New Apostolic Church Berlin-Brandenburg.
Chief Apostle Wilhelm Leber’s New Year’s message can also be found in the Word for the month of January, which is entitled “Perseverance”.