WINDHOEK - The breakaway group of the Hallelujah congregation of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Namibia (ELCRN) has been recognised as the 55th congregation of the church.
The newly-recognised congregation was welcomed back by the mother body, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Namibia (ELCRN), last Sunday in Windhoek.
The Hallelujah congregation broke away eight years ago from the Macedonia Parish due to a clash of perspectives among the church’s elders.
The decision to recognise the Hallelujah congregation was decided upon at the church’s council meeting held on 28 August 2018, after many deliberations and thorough discussions.
At the historical welcoming ceremony that took place on Sunday, a letter from ELCRN acting general secretary, Pastor Wilfred Nico Diergaardt, was handed to the founding father and pastor of Hallelujah congregation Vilho Shiyandja.
It stated: “The ELCRN Church Council, after consideration of all facts that emanated over the period of your absence from the structure of the church, decided that the next step will be to reach out to the ELCRN’s hand of reconciliation, by recognising the once ‘breakaway group’, Hallelujah, as a congregation of ELCRN, with full rights and privileges as provided for by the constitution of ELCRN.”
Pastor Diergaardt added: “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, let us see this as step in the right direction for the ELCRN and its members. Let’s click to the watchword for August which says ‘God is love, whoever lives in love lives in God and God in Him (1Joh 4:16).”
This further implies that the Hallelujah congregation will be an integral part of the Circuit Windhoek Parishes and Congregation.
The meeting further resolved that the Circuit Council, in cooperation with the administrative board, organise an official welcoming worship service, which was witnessed and celebrated by ELCRN Bishop Ernst Gamxamub,
ELCRN Deputy Bishop Rev. Paul Kisting, the Circuit Windhoek Council, pastors and members from different ELCRN congregations in Namibia.
Deputy Bishop Paul Kisting, in his powerful sermon message, said they are burying the past and moving forward as one.
“You stayed compact, you always carried the message that you belonged to ELCRN, you refused to be misled and you stayed where you belonged because of your firm belief in Jesus Chris,” remarked Bishop
Receiving the letter of admission from ELCRN, head of Hallelujah congregation Pastor Vilho Shiyandja described the occasion as a dream come true, stressing that their prayers have been answered by being accepted back as part of ELCRN.
He said that during the past eight years, Hallelujah did not sit still but was busy making sure that they evangelised as many people as possible.
“We bought a sound speaker system and we went to evangelise everywhere in the remote areas. It did not matter where we did it, we were out on the streets and we realised that people are very hungry for the gospel,” Pastor Shiyandja said.
One of the elders of the Hallelujah congregation, Salomo Naukushu, described the welcoming ceremony as a joyful moment.
He recalled that eight years ago, some members of Macedonia Parish left the church due some ‘misunderstanding’ between leaders of the church.
“We found ourselves being expelled from the church. However, for the past eight years we have been knocking and we thank God today that we’ve become part of the ELCRN family again,” said Naukushu.
2019-03-19 08:56:23 5 months ago