Regional youth conventions ↑
Youth conventions generally take place within the individual district Church, coordinated under the direction of the respective District Apostle.
In 2009, the New Apostolic Church hosted a European Youth Day for the first time, with around 35,000 young people from many countries who travelled to Düsseldorf. The International Youth Convention 2019 is a remake of this event and is directed toward all young Christians worldwide.
European Youth Day 2009 ↑
This European Youth Day took place in Düsseldorf in 2009. Chief Apostle Richard Fehr, the predecessor to Chief Apostle Wilhelm Leber, had already had the idea at the end of the 90’s for the New Apostolic Church to hold a European-wide major event.
The idea came into focus again in November 2005 following the Catholic World Youth Day, when an initial working group of the New Apostolic Church met to discuss the subject. The District Apostles of Europe had given the green light to begin preparations for such a multi-national communal festivity, at one of their regular meetings in Zurich.
Looking back to the World Youth Day, Chief Apostle Leber said in an interview, “The Catholic World Youth Day has demonstrated that such a spectacular event can give the youth the stimulus for a blessed development”; ideal pre-conditions for a successful European Youth Day 2009.
Representatives from the main European areas, and thus all the European District Apostle regions, gathered for the first time in Düsseldorf in March 2006. District Apostle Armin Brinkmann, the head of the district Church in North Rhine-Westphalia at that time, chose the capital city of NRW as the location of that meeting for a very good reason. As the committee members walked around the enormous site of the Düsseldorf Messe (exhibition centre), they received their first impression of the dimension of the European Youth Day.
Thereafter, the planning committee met in six monthly intervals in order to make the fundamental decisions for the European Youth Day. By the third session in February 2007, they had formed nine project groups on various themes: the Arena, programme contents, communication, exhibition site, music, the follow-up phase, sponsoring, accommodation, catering.
The legal framework for the European Youth Day was drawn up on 26th March 2007 and the non-profit operating company, “EJT 2009 Düsseldorf gGmbH”, was formed by three German district Churches in Dortmund. All financial dealings for this major event were subsequently transacted through the new company.
By the end of the European Youth Day 2009 it was an unforgettable experience for all who took part and helped out. Many New Apostolic Christians still talk today about the impressive time they had there, remembering the Arena filled with lights and the divine service with Chief Apostle Wilhelm Leber.
International Church Convention 2014 ↑
The desire to have a repeat came soon after, and even the older generation of New Apostolic Christians wanted to have a major event.
So it was that, shortly after the 150th anniversary of the New Apostolic Church, an International Church Convention took place in 2014 in Munich. More than 50,000 participants experienced an extensive programme over three days and a concluding divine service with Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider in the Olympic Stadium.