Promotions for the event began almost a year ago when the theme for the 2017 calendar was chosen. It focused on twelve previous Chief Apostles visits to India, the first one dating back as far as 1993. Over the course of the year, the calendar was a constant reminder of the forthcoming visit of Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider to Raipur in November 2017. This and other promotional activities carried out throughout the year served to build excitement and anticipation for the event to come.
CG 04 CA 2017?
“CG 04 CA 2017” is a unique number dedicated to the visit of our Chief Apostle (CA) this year (2017). This is derived from a typical registration number plate of vehicles in India. The first two digits represent the state (CG for Chhattisgarh) and the next two numbers stand for the area (in Chhattisgarh, 04 stands for Raipur). The remaining six figures are allotted sequentially by the Transport Department. We innovated ‘CA 2017’ as our unique code for the visit of our Chief Apostle.
Promoting the Event across India
Hence, ‘CG 04 CA 2017’ was developed as a key element for all promotional activities. Many photographs were taken of Raipur which were printed on the calendar and posted on Facebook and on the NAC website, to make members familiar with the location and the venues.
In different parts of the country, cricket tournaments and youth picnics were planned as promotional events. T-shirts with the church emblem on the front and ‘CG 04 CA 2017’ at the back were worn by all the players at the tournament. Banners were printed and posters about the forthcoming visit was displayed in many congregations across the country.
Gathering Excitement and ‘Likes’
Social Media was used effectively with the Facebook page being regularly updated with details regarding the events. In July details about the Divine Service and Cultural Programme were posted. In August the music scores and the selected hymns for the Divine Service were uploaded. In order to gain and keep the attention of the youth in particular, four letters written by Apostle David were posted on Facebook, spread over the months of July, August, September and October. These letters informed them of the progress of the preparations and the upcoming deadline for booking seats at the Divine Service through online registrations. Daily posts on Facebook stirring up excitement began twenty days before the event. Regular articles regarding promotional activities carried out by members in different parts of the country were also uploaded on the NAC India website.
Preparations in Raipur
Raipur became the focus of attention for a number of special occasions. Our District Apostle Mark Woll visited the city and its church members in January 2017 as an inspiration for the preparations. In April, the Easter Divine Service was celebrated by District Apostle Helper David Devaraj in Raipur and transmitted to twelve congregations across the country. The practice of the National Choir was held at Raipur in August of this year. The city of Raipur was certainly receiving much attention!