There is eager anticipation – with District Apostle Rainer Storck, the IYC ambassadors and even with the staff of the Düsseldorf Messe. It could also be felt by the press, who had gathered for the interview a week before the start of the International Youth Convention.
While the work is already starting to set up the Messe premises, representatives of the Düsseldorf media were meeting the organisers of the International Youth Convention in the Congress Center Süd. Also there were two of the young IYC ambassadors. Anna-Maria (NAC Northern and Eastern Germany) knows that so many young people are eager to meet the youth from other continents. She said, “For many of them it will be the first time that they have seen the Chief Apostle live.” Vivien (NAC Western Germany) believes that many are also waiting eagerly for the pop oratorio and hearing the 3,500 strong choir. The highlight will certainly be the service in the Arena on Sunday,
District Apostle Storck, head of the hosting New Apostolic Church of Western Germany, looked back to 2014 as the first plans were being made. Importance was placed from the start on involvement by the youth in creating the format of the event. The result: the youth are holding devotionals, presentations and workshops. “This commitment is a wonderful example of practical contribution toward our Church,” he said.
Made possible through voluntary support
”The Youth Convention has only been made possible in this form by the many members of congregations who have freely given their skills, competences, strengths and time,” reported Dr. Franz-Wilhelm Otten, business manager of the IJT 2019 Düsseldorf gGmbH. “We couldn’t have managed it without that voluntary support.”
The Church is expecting 30,000 participants, of which 3,200 will be volunteer helpers. 5,500 young people will be arriving from other countries and regions. As an example, 88 are travelling from South America, 77 from Australia, 20 from the Congo, 54 from Zambia, 50 from South Africa, 117 from Asia and 84 from the USA. “Several will be coming from East Timor, and they will be leaving their homeland for the very first time,” said District Apostle Storck enthusiastically. He gave special thanks for the donations made by Church members, which will have helped toward the travel costs of these young people to come to Düsseldorf.
With much commitment
The New Apostolic Church’s contracted partner for the Youth Convention is the Düsseldorf Congress. “We are still sleeping very well”, said Markus Demuth jokingly, in reply to a question about the time commitment just a few days before the event is due to start. He promised, “We will do our best – with our full commitment, for it to be just as great as the European Youth Day was, ten years ago.”
He reported in his statement about the enormous task of providing sufficient route capacity for 30,000 people when walking from the Messe to the Arena and back. They have developed a concept of four different routes for the participants to move from one location to the other – without queues building up at the entry points. Throughout the premises large signs display the routes in different colours and each participant will recognise the route which they must follow by the colour of their participant’s pass.
The International Youth Convention will be a very special occasion, they all agreed at the end: 30,000 people, a four-day programme, with catering for breakfast, midday and evening meals for everyone - that is exceptional. “I have the feeling that the air is burning and I am certain – this will be a great success,” said District Apostle Storck enthusiastically.