Chicago. "The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few." Chief Apostle Richard Fehr recalled these words of Jesus during the divine service he conducted in Chicago, in which he retired two well-known personalities of faith: Apostles Ernest Vovak and Walter Wicke. In addition he ordained two new apostles and four bishops.
The two new apostles are Felix Manuel Diaz Salazar (Venezuela) and Julio Cesar Yepez Moratinos (Panama), who will serve in the vast working area of District Apostle Richard Freund. The District Church of the USA also has reason to celebrate over four new bishops: James Edward Fendt, Mark Fuerbach, Gary Morse, and Walter Peter Schmidt.
With a heavy heart, the chief apostle retired two proven apostles who had reached the age limit for their ministries. "Ernest Vovak (*1938) was a great zealot for the cause of the Lord," emphasised the chief apostle as he expressed his thanks to the retiring servant of God. Since 1959 — that is for 45 years — he has served as a minister of the New Apostolic Church, not only in North America, but also in India, South East Asia, and Africa.
Walter Wicke is already 70 years old. Originally from Kassel, Germany, he immigrated to Venezuela in 1955. For 37 years he has served as a minister of the church in Venezuela, Panama, and El Salvador. In this regard Chief Apostle Fehr noted: "With deep trust in God and unshakeable faith, Apostle Wicke nurtured and cared for the lambs of the flock of Christ in these countries, and the Lord has blessed his work in a wonderful manner."
The festive divine service was based on a passage from Philippians 2: 13: "For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure." The chief apostle encouraged the participants in the divine service to continually allow themselves to be purified in heart and mind, "so that divine thoughts are able to lead us through life."
To find out more about the active congregational life of our churches in the USA, visit: www.newapostolicchurch.org
7 September 2004