International reports

Festive divine service in the Philippines

13.02.2006

Manila. There was great joy among all who attended: Chief Apostle Wilhelm Leber visited the brethren in Manila on Sunday, 12 February 2006, where he conducted a divine service in English. During that service he also retired Apostles Virgil Fuentes and Francisco Nuyad.

In the apostles and bishops meeting on Saturday, 11 February 2006, Chief Apostle Leber expounded upon a Bible passage from 2 Corinthians 4: 1, where it says: "Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart." The chief apostle explained that the blessing of God is ultimately greater than the burdens the ministers bear because of the ministerial commission they receive when they are ordained. Twenty-four apostles from 19 Asian countries gathered around the spiritual leader of the New Apostolic Church on this occasion. The bishops from the Philippines were also present.

The long awaited festive divine service took place on Sunday, 12 February 2006 in the New Apostolic congregation of Makati. Some 470 brethren in faith gathered in the church, while another 22 receiving stations around the country enjoyed a satellite transmission of the divine service. Another seven receiving stations - in Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, and Korea - were also connected by satellite. Chief Apostle Wilhelm Leber based the divine service on an excerpt of the Bible passage recorded in John 14: 9: "He who has seen Me has seen the Father." At the end of the service he retired the Apostles Virgil Fuentes (65) and Francisco Nuyad (59). After 25 and 24 years of ministerial activity respectively, the two apostles can well be counted among the "pioneers" of the New Apostolic Church in the Philippines, where there are presently 125,000 brethren in faith.