Once again a major event of the New Apostolic Church is taking place in Düsseldorf, ten years after the European Youth Day of 2009. Again, the Church is working hand-in-hand with the Düsseldorf Congress Sport and Event organisation. The firm is making the “Messe” (exhibition) premises available for use and is also offering its service in the event planning. It was previously instrumental in the planning of the halls used for the European Youth Day.
The contracted partner of the Düsseldorf Congress Sport and Event organisation is the commercially registered company IJT 2019 Düsseldorf gGmbH, which is commissioned by the New Apostolic Church in organising the International Youth Convention and which was formed on 17th May 2016. The district Churches of Hamburg, North Rhine-Westphalia and Southern Germany are partners of the company, each holding shares in it to the value of 50,000 euros. An application is currently in hand to recognise the company as a non-profit making organisation.
The contract was signed, on behalf of the IJT 2019 Düsseldorf gGmbH, in the tower building of the Messe Düsseldorf, by both managing directors, Dr. Franz-Wilhelm Otten and Winfried Bister and also the project manager, Hendrik Herrmann. Apostle Otten was also previously the managing director of the EJT 2009 Düsseldorf gGmbH in 2009 and looks after the congregations in the region of Southern NRW. He is a member of the New Apostolic Church North Rhine-Westphalia executive committee and oversees the major International Youth Convention 2019 project.
Shepherd Winfried Bister is rector of the Düsseldorf-Flingern congregation and is responsible, within the project organisation, for the section covering the Messe. Hendrik Hermann was engaged in the management of helpers and security throughout the European Youth Day. As project manager he, with his project bureau team, is coordinating each organisational area and project group.
Welcome to Düsseldorf
Hilmar Guckert, spokesperson, and Markus Demuth, general manager, of the Düsseldorf Congress Sport und Event GmbH, signed the two contracts on behalf of the company for rental agreement of the Messe premises and for the provision of services in exhibition construction and planning. The two contracts are valued at around four million euros, equating in similarity to the price level of the European Youth Day 2009.
”Our staff and I will do all that we can to make this event in 2019 to become just as successful as the European Youth Day was”, promised Hilmar Guckert. The Messe Düsseldorf company will fulfill its commitment to the youth event in bringing people together, and uphold the value of personal encounters. “On behalf of the city, may I today extend a hearty welcome to all visitors to Düsseldorf”.
Great expectations for the youth
As the contract was signed, Apostle Otten underlined the constructive and sound cooperation given before the start of the European Youth Day. “The trust which has developed will help us to bring the International Youth Convention to a success”, he said confidently. Düsseldorf, as a major city in the heart of Europe, with its transport connectivity and the expansive exhibition centre, is the perfect location for hosting such an event – and joyful young people are an enrichment to any city.
Apostle Otten spoke with enthusiasm of the visit he made to the Southern Germany Youth Convention in Stuttgart, where the mention alone of the event in 2019 drew rapturous applause from the 6,500 participants.
More than 30,000 participants expected
The Messe in Düsseldorf has a variety of halls at its disposal for such events with an area of about 126,000 square metres, and with short inter-connecting distances. Additionally, the Messe Conference Centre offers various rooms for workshops and smaller events for 20 to 150 persons. Then there are the catering and nine dormitory halls with an area of 123,000 square metres, allowing for 24,000 people. The outer area between the halls can be used to set up an open air stage.
All believers between the ages of 14 and 35 are invited to the International Youth Convention, regardless of family and marital status. Their chaperones and their many hundreds of helpers are also invited to attend. A great interest was already shown at the European Youth Day from countries beyond Europe at the chance of an international youth gathering, as was seen in 2009 by the several hundred participants from Africa and Asia who travelled to Düsseldorf. This time there promises to be even more international guests.
The host of the International Youth Convention is the New Apostolic Church of North Rhine-Westphalia, with its president and District Apostle, Rainer Storck