UCG-Germany Holds Three Successful “Kingdom of God Bible Seminars”
November 15, 2011
The Bible seminars were announced in the September-October 2011 issue of the Gute Nachrichten magazine. The German office also invited every reader living within a 50 km radius to the seminar venue with a personal letter.
We didn’t know what to expect because a few years ago only one reader responded to an invitation to a public lecture. But this time we were quite overwhelmed by the positive response. We had 18 new visitors in Dormagen (average attendance in Dormagen is 35 people). Three gentlemen came all the way from Antwerp, Belgium. They had seen the advertising on the UCG website. 15 people came to Moerfelden (average attendance is 25) and 7 visitors to Hamburg (average attendance is 15). We had a 4 percent response to the letters we had sent out.
Two PowerPoint presentations were given by Paul Kieffer on the topics: “What was the message of Jesus Christ?” and “How up-to-date were Jesus’ predictions?” They were both well received. Mr. Kieffer explained how Christianity has lost sight of the message about the coming Kingdom of God, and he outlined the signs that will precede the return of Christ as given by Jesus Himself. The visitors commented frequently and enthusiastically how much they appreciated the messages.
The fellowship was enhanced by an abundant potluck meal and the atmosphere was warm and friendly. The visitors participated in the fellowship and also stayed long after the seminar ended. Among the audience were readers who have read Church of God literature for 30 years and others who just started reading the Gute Nachrichten magazine only a few months ago.
One visitor who is pastor of a Sunday keeping church realized during the seminar that the Sabbath is very important and still valid for the followers of Christ. When he realized what that meant for him and his church he cried out: “Oh Lord, help us!”
Every guest received a seminar folder containing the booklet “The Kingdom of God,” an 12-page reprint of articles on the subject of the gospel message, a handout of the PowerPoint presentations and an order form with all the literature available in German. The visitors could leave the order form with us if they wanted to order literature or leave their contact information to be contacted for the second round of seminars. Quite a few people want to come back for the second round and a few people mentioned their interest in visiting church services.
After the seminar in Hamburg one visitor sent the following email: “Thank you very much for your hospitality and your presentations. I drove home with much joy in my heart!”
Overall, the three seminars exceeded our expectations very much and were very encouraging to the congregations.