On the weekend of 12-14 June 2015 District Apostle N Barnes together with the apostles and bishops of the Cape converged on the town of Victoria West, which is situated some 600 kilometres north-west of Cape Town.
The apostles and the bishops of their working area travelled together so that the journey could provide them with the opportunity of discussing matters that would benefit their working area. On arrival the Friday evening the group gathered in fellowship around a camp fire where spontaneous singing created an atmosphere that set the tone for the weekend ahead.
On the Saturday morning the District Apostle held a meeting for apostles and bishops in the Victoria West church. Upon arrival the youth of the area was present to greet and welcome the visitors. The main thrust of the meeting was the sharing of the key elements from the African Apostles’ Conference, which Chief Apostle J-L Schneider held over the Pentecost weekend in Lusaka, Zambia.
After the meeting the group went on a walkabout of the town, which included a visit to the museum that housed interesting facts about the origins of the town and its people. The day was concluded with a vibrant music hour that brought great joy to an enthusiastic audience that filled the municipal hall. All the performers were from the local bishop area and their singing was wonderful! This spoke volumes for the development in this aspect of the Church’s activities and was extremely encouraging.
The Sunday morning divine service took place in the Victoria West Town Hall and the preparations for and anticipation of this event could be felt. The pre-service programme also helped to create a beautiful atmosphere and fertile ground for the sermon, which was based on the Bible text “For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God (1 Corinthians 1: 22-24).
Before the conclusion of the divine service an historical moment in the development of the Church took place: The local Bishop, Andrew Hans, was placed into retirement after a ministerial activity of over 40 years. Thereafter a new Bishop, Werner von Schaeffer, was ordained. This has resulted in the re-organization of districts and the establishment of the newly formed Queenstown Bishop Area.
The service was transmitted by audio-visual transmission and in this respect also served as a preparation for the chief apostle’s visit to the Cape in December 2015.