New Apostolic Church USA

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African Conference and New Swahili/French Resources

Jambo! (the Swahili word for “Hello!”)

On February 1st of this year, ministers, who over the past years arrived here from various African countries, and the rectors and delegates from their new congregations all over the USA came together in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex for a conference with our District Apostle, the USA Apostles and Bishops.

This meeting reflected the fact that just over the past years, more than 900 of our brothers and sisters have arrived here in our midst from these countries, with many of them having spent long periods of time in refugee camps.

The conference was simultaneously translated from English into French and Swahili. A wide variety of topics was discussed to address welcoming, integrating, and caring for these new brothers and sisters.

Topics of discussions included:

  • how to help members to become part of and be comfortable in our congregations and our country’s culture
  • how to identify and locate other members that may not be aware of where churches are located
  • how best to accommodate transportation and communication challenges
  • introduction to USA-based church programs, such as Stepping Forward, Faith Arc, Shared Leadership, Helping without Hurting, etc., and our church’s literature, websites, and phone apps
  • how to provide pastoral care for those that do not live near a congregation
  • sharing of best practices from congregations that have moved through the integration process

While all of them expressed an eager desire to learn or improve in the English language, as an initial welcome and connection, we will increase our library of Swahili-translated literature, and publish for use and references. Currently the Mission and Vision statements, Faith Arc overview, and the THRIVE booklet are in the process of being made available in both French and Swahili. The Divine Service Guides used by ministers to prepare for officiating services have been received in Swahili from our sister church in the East Africa district, and will be published via Minister Companion. Collaborations with some of the African District Apostle areas are being explored to help identify members coming to our country and direct them to the closest congregation. Key USA- based ministers fluent in their language will be called upon to assist in this effort. A supporting team is also mapping where the members reside, and will develop a support network with the opportunity of a visit from a minister who speaks their language.

The opportunity to network and establish or renew friendships proved to be an invaluable experience for all. Please continue to welcome and assist with integrating our brothers and sisters that already live here, as well as any newcomers.

Asante! (“Thank you” in Swahili)


Resources in Swahili and French will be added as they are available on ndi.nac-usa.org

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