We believe in God the Father Almighty,
Creator of Heaven and Earth
united apostolic church
C A N A D A
As the Apostolic Creed denotes, the Apostolic Church of Queensland's original roots go back to our Lord Jesus Christ who as the Head of the Church laid the foundations of this spiritual building to be known as the Church. The Church was given life by the sending of the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost and so began the first Apostolic Church. It, under its head, was to be structured according to His Commandments as recorded in Ephesians 2 v 19-22:
"Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; and are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."
Our Lord commissioned the work that was required to a fourfold ministry; firstly Apostles, then prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. This period of labour is recorded in Scripture as the former rain (Joel 2-23).
The Apostles became the foundation of the Lord's teachings and we can read in Scripture how additional Apostles were ordained in the original Church to keep the work ongoing from the original 12 chosen directly by our Lord. Some of those recorded are:Matthias (Acts 1: 22-26), Ananaias (Acts 9:17-18), Paul (1Cor. 15:9), Andronicus (Rom. 16:7), Junias (Rom. 16:7), Barnabas (Acts 13:2-4) , Epaphroditus (Phil. 2:25), Silvanus (1Thes. 1:1), James [brother of Jesus] (Gal. 1:19), Apollos (1Cor. 1:12)
History records that the Apostle Ministry was taken out of the Church by the will of man and many dark pages of history are now recorded as a result of that.
Jesus Christ as the Head of the Church again became the caretaker of the Apostle Ministry (Hebrews 3:1; 'Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest or our profession, Christ Jesus') to again re-establish it in his time and order. This period is known as the latter rain on earth, as recorded in Joel 2:23. This came about when God's spirit aroused devout Christians and clergy from all around the world, about 1820, and in the UK this ministry was again re-established by the Lord. History records this as "Catholic Apostolic" revival and is the subject of study by many theologians throughout the Church since then. A brief summary of this period is extracted from the publication "Religious Bodies in Australia" 3rd Edition by Rowland Ward and Robert Humphreys 1995.
Many reference books were written on this re-establishment, one being "Gathered under Apostles" a study of the Catholic Apostolic Church by C G Flegg 1992.
This was a period in Christian History of much research of the Scriptures and guidance by the Holy Spirit to the re-established Apostle Ministry and volumes of works and findings were sent out to all Christian Churches who adopted much of those findings and as with the original Church, great advancements were made to more fully understand the mysteries of God. Large libraries still exist in England and are eagerly visited by deeper thinking theologians, even today. A list of only a few of those publications can be obtained by Emailing The Apostolic Church of Queensland.. Many MANIFESTOS were sent out at that time to all leaders of the world and churches warning of things to come and urging all to become "Catholic" and "Apostolic" in their faith and pray that these ministries would continue so that the Church could be prepared to be as a bride at the Lord's return.
During 1860 a dispute arose regarding the continuance of men to be ordained into the Apostle Ministry. The remaining English Apostles felt it was not necessary, but by both devout ministers and through prophecy many saw the great need for the continuation of this blessing in the Church. As a result a small group of believers in Holland and Germany were set aside from the Church and they prayed for the continuance of this office. These prayers were blessed and by 1863 Apostles were functioning in the group which was known as "Apostolic Mission Church." The Lord showed He was with this group which laboured under persecution, particularly in Hanover, where a State Church forbad any other views to be expressed. An extract from the Book "The Work of the Church from 1860" by P Kuhlen describes an event that had a big impact on the work in Queensland:
A daughter community of great significance for the spreading of God's work in central Germany was Schladen am Harz. In the year 1865, Brother Vollbohm, who had been a member of the Apostolic communion in Hamburg, returned to his home (the Harz Mountains) and told his parents and brothers and sisters of the divine deeds he had heard of and experienced. He also brought to his friends and acquaintances the Apostolic witness. The first members to gather in Schladen were Mrs Sebastian's parents, signal-man Fischer (the latter brought the Apostolic witness to railway inspector Krebs who was employed in Schladen), and the subsequent Apostles Ruff and Niemeyer. Apostle Preuss conducted the first service in Brother Vollbohm's house. However, at that time it was not appropriate in Hanover (not even in private dwellings) to advocate what one acknowledged to be true and just. Utterances made by free-thinking men were held to be suspect, and such men had to be ready for all kinds of injury and danger. This fate befell Apostle Preuss. The next day he was arrested in connection with conducting the first evening service, taken to Wollingerode and imprisoned. After three days he was released. This incident caused an uproar in the whole village and was a significant contributory factor in the attention that the Apostolic teachings invited!
The first ministers of the Apostolic community in Schladen were Krebs and Vollbohm who were appointed by Apostle Preuss as sub-deacons and had to contend with an extremely difficult state of affairs. Schladen is situated on the Prussian-Hanoverian border. Since there was no religious freedom in Hanover then, Apostle Preuss was not able to assemble the members of the Apostolic community in closed quarters. All meeting rooms were out of bounds to him, and the police did their best to uphold ecclesiastical discipline on behalf of the Hanoverian State Church.
When the Apostle returned to Schladen after some time and attempted to hold services, there was no dwelling available for an assembly. So he and his friends and guests went out into the fields and the first sealing took place one night in the open air. During this pastoral service, prayers were said particularly for a meeting place for the children of God. In the course of Apostle Preuss's persistent supplications, the words of prophecy emerged: "A kingdom shall fall into ruin and my people shall be free."
No one knew what these words were to spell. A few months later, 1866, war with Austria erupted. The days of the Hanoverian kingdom were soon numbered, and the prophetic words were fulfilled. As a result of the annexation of Hanover, Schladen became Prussian and henceforth nothing stood in the way of services being held. Consequently, due to the zealous activities of members, the Apostolic work spread to Winneburg, Wedela and Osterode. Additional branch communities were set up in Braunschweig and Wolfenbuttel.
The young man HF Niemeyer witnessed these events and was converted and had the desire to go to the new land of Queensland and set in place the foundations of this Church that would with God's blessings grow. During 1883 he was ordained to be an Evangelist, but because the Church was only young in Prussia all they could contribute was prayers. In 1886 he was ordained to be an Apostle for Australia having pioneered difficult work in a virgin land.
All ministers in the Apostolic Mission Church which was now spreading around the world abandoned the cleric robes and wore ordinary clothes and were not paid by the Church and had to follow secular occupations. This is still the case today in the Apostolic Church of Queensland and those other churches throughout the world associated under the World Wide Unity of Apostles. All ministers must become brothers amongst brethren.
After the demise of the last English Apostle the Apostle Mission Church in Europe experienced rapid growth as the previous members from the Catholic Apostolic Church sought their spiritual guidance from the continuing body. Along with it also came some nonscriptural changes such as abolishing the prophet office and introducing a stamm (later) chief Apostle whose words were to be considered to have precedence over the Bible. This caused concern around the world and in Europe some Apostles were expelled for opposing these ideas. They formed the "Reformed Apostolic Community." In Africa the Apostle was expelled and the court ruled he was to be known as "The Old Apostolic Church", and those that continued with the chief, "The New Apostolic Church."
By 1912 the Australian Apostle also withdrew from "The New Apostolic Church" and so began the birth of the name "The Apostolic Church of Queensland." Both groups continued separately from that time.
World wide since then there have been many expelled from the New Apostolic Church for opposition to doctrines and teachings introduced. These groups usually reform and have become affiliated under the World Wide Unity of Apostles who meet regularly to ensure that the Church is being led strictly in accordance with Scripture and the guiding power of the Holy Spirit. All churches bear the inscription on their altars "ALL HONOUR TO GOD" as a constant reminder to all members.
Much is written in Queensland history of the hardships endured by our pioneers in settling this land. Following is a report of such work in the pioneering of the Apostolic Church of Queensland written many years ago.
United Apostolic Church, 723 Balmoral Dr, Brampton ON L6T 1X5, Phone: 416 823 6613