Zurich. “It has finally happened: the district of East Africa, which consists of the countries of Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda, has become independent and has its own District Apostle in Shadreck Lubasi.” It was with these words that Chief Apostle Wilhelm Leber began his announcement to all the Apostles of the New Apostolic Church around the world.
The international Church leader is convinced that this is an important step, since a District Apostle who resides within his district is better able to manage the affairs of the Church than one who resides elsewhere. At the same time, the Chief Apostle expressed his thanks for the many years of support from the District Church USA, which has also supported and promoted the process of achieving independence.
During the last weekend in March, Chief Apostle Leber travelled to Kampala, Uganda. In the divine service he conducted there on 29 March 2009, he also discharged three Apostles into a well-deserved retirement, and ordained a number of other ministers in addition to the new District Apostle Lubasi (60). The individual ordinations were as follows: in the District Church of Kenya, Peter Mutisya (39) and Benard Ochieng (39) will from now on serve as Apostles, and Joseph Kituo (46) will work as a Bishop. For the church in neighbouring Tanzania, the Chief Apostle ordained the new Apostle Jani Leonard Malila (52). Beyond that, Anyemike Bukuku Igonda (47), Amosi Musa (41), and Samwel Odira Odamna (50) were all ordained to the Bishop ministry. The District Church of Uganda also received a new Bishop in Yohonan Byoona (47).
For the long-serving Apostles Patrick Leonard Gambo Janga (65) and Samson Ogutu (64) – both from Kenya – as well as Japhet Runyoro (65) from Tanzania, the time of active service had come to an end. The Chief Apostle expressed heartfelt thanks to them for their self-sacrificing work upon the souls that had been entrusted to them.
In his announcement to the Apostles, Chief Apostle Leber wrote that the days of strong growth in East Africa are over. He impressed upon the newly ordained ministers that they were to “hold on to what we have”. In particular he noted that the many different groups of Pentecostal congregations have become very influential.
The Church leader based his divine service in Kampala on a Bible passage taken from 1 Corinthians 1: 9: “God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.”
2 April 2009