Translating Our Mission into Action

The following areas of work and ministry provide the context in which we translate our goals and convictions into concrete action:

1. The community of the Reichenberg Fellowship (OJC)

The Reichenberg Fellowship (OJC) is a committed association of families and singles who have chosen to live and serve together in a community of faith. This community serves as the supporting foundation for all fields of work and ministry.

2. Short-term community living

We invite young people to live with us in community – often as part of an officially recognized year of voluntary social service. Within the framework of our daily life together, we encourage one another to nurture and practice a responsible and dynamic Christian faith.

Guests are welcome to come and share in community life, regardless of their age and background.

3. Regional and international youth work

The Reichelsheim European Youth Center is involved in a variety of youth activities, including public youth work, opportunities for youth groups, and international youth camps. Our aim is to strengthen and to facilitate the positive development of children, teenagers and young adults. One of our main emphases here includes international, cross-cultural and interdenominational gatherings to promote mutual understanding and the peace-making process.

4. Experiential educational discovery center

At the Reichenberg Fortress*, a unique, “hands-on” center of faith is being developed – the “Pathways to Life” Discovery Center. Here, visitors have the opportunity to encounter stories, symbols and people that bear witness to our culture, Christian life and its Judaic roots.
The purpose of this “modern place of pilgrimage” is to offer impulses of hope to individuals who, in turn, may serve as multipliers throughout our country.

(* The Reichenberg Fortress is a medieval 13th century edifice purchased by the OJC in 1979 which has been gradually renovated over the
years and is used as a conference center, staff housing facility and public café.)

5. Pastoral care and guidance

Since 1979 the OJC has been running basic and advanced training courses on pastoral care for church workers. Our focus is to accompany individuals spiritually on their way to maturity and wholeness. We seek to help others experience healing in those areas where inner wounds have hindered their personal growth.

6. German Institute for Youth and Society

Our team at the Institute studies zeitgeist trends in society, scientifically examining such topics as identity development, manhood and womanhood, sexual ethics, marriage and the family, as well as the challenges of community-building in a world of different cultures and religions. This “think tank” seeks to provide intellectual and spiritual orientation in an increasingly disoriented society. In addition, in 2004, the Institute helped to establish the German network-initiative “Bündnis Ehe und Familie” (Alliance for Marriage and the Family).

7. Conferences and lectures

We also offer conferences and lectures on topics relevant to our various fields of work and ministry. We place particular emphasis on issues which have been “tried and tested” in the “laboratory” of our daily community life and which have challenged us toward deeper intellectual and spiritual reflection.

8. Guest houses

In order to facilitate our work and ministry, we run several guest houses and a public café.

9. Publication of books and periodicals

We communicate about our work through the publication of books and a number of periodicals - (Salzkorn (Grain of Salt), Brennpunkt Seelsorge (Focus Pastoral Care) and the Bulletin of the German Institute for Youth and Society. At the same time, we provide differentiated information on selected current issues, particularly on those topics which are often ignored or presented in a biased way in the public arena. In doing so, we desire to equip those in positions of responsibility for their tasks in church and society, making the insights we have gained through community living and corporate biblical reflection accessible to the public.

10. Worldwide partnerships

Within the framework of long-term co-operations, we work with individuals and groups who are taking a stand with us for a culture of life. When seen from a global perspective, this means actively working toward reconciliation, justice and hope.

Since 1970 we have been supporting projects with partners in developing countries, providing assistance for long-term sustainable development. In doing so, we place great importance on nurturing personal relationships and ongoing exchange with our partners in order to facilitate mutual learning.