The young people parade their joy and faith through the streets of Ikeja, Nigeria
22 December 2023

Songs of praise fill the streets of Nigeria, ring out in a retirement home in South Africa, and come from the mouths of children at a special service in Spain. When young people are involved in shaping things, there is always something going on in the congregation and in society. Here’s a glimpse of what the younger generation is up to.

Three days among themselves

For three days, around 250 young people from the Apostle Area West in Nigeria celebrated God and being together. They praised and glorified God in song, talked about their faith, and enjoyed various activities and each other’s company. The highlight was a divine service on 12 November, which Apostle Oscar Nwanza conducted for the young sisters and brothers in Ikeja. He read Luke 15: 18–19: “I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants.’” In his sermon on the parable of the prodigal son, the Apostle reminded the young people that no matter how you far you move away from God, He is always very happy when you return to Him. God always welcomes all those with open arms who recognise their mistakes.

Meeting the new District Apostle Helper

‌Speed dating with the District Apostle Helper. This was one of the activities offered after a youth service in Frankfurt, Germany, on 10 December to give the young people the opportunity to get to know the designated District Apostle of the New Apostolic Church Western Germany better.‌ After the youth service, District Apostle Helper Stefan Pöschel first answered a round of quick questions on his preferences, such as “The sea or the mountains?” and “Sports or the sofa?” This was followed by lengthy questions in which the District Apostle Helper told the young people about his profession and how he celebrates Christmas with his family. After lunch, each young person had one minute to speak personally with the District Apostle Helper. He very much enjoyed the conversations with the young people and was impressed by their faith, Stefan Pöschel said afterwards.

Young voices in a retirement home

It doesn’t take much to do good. This is what the young people of the Riversdale South congregation in South Africa thought at the beginning of November. A few hymns, a recorder, and a bit of their time—that’s how they delighted the seniors in one the local senior homes. Part of the audience was made up of patients from the dementia ward. Everyone was delighted with the cheerful sounds that rang through the retirement home that Sunday.

Involving children

The children of the congregation of Vitoria in Spain left only the preaching and the liturgy to the ministers. For the divine service on 12 November, they decided to take on all the other tasks that need to be done before, during, and after a divine service. With help from the Sunday School teachers, they decorated the altar and set it up for the service. The children’s choir sang all the songs during the service. The officiant conducted the sermon in a child-friendly and interactive way. After the service, the youngest participants happily stood next to the officiant in front of the altar to say goodbye to the members of the congregation. The day ended with games and other activities.