Since 1990, the Department of Women’s Ministries at the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists has promoted a special day when women around the world have the opportunity to strengthen their spiritual bonds as they pray for and with each other. The International Women’s Day of Prayer is the first Sabbath of each March. In past years this special day has been celebrated in a variety of ways: prayer breakfasts, fasting and prayer, consecration services, and women preaching the sermon for church services and other special programs.
Women throughout the South Central Conference had the opportunity to celebrate this day as well. At the Maranatha SDA Church in Panama City, FL, the Women’s Ministries department used it as an opportunity to involve the entire church in corporate prayer during Divine Worship. According to Elder Marilyn Wallace, they were few in number, but the Holy Spirit was present with them. Their theme was “Something Happens When God’s People Pray.” The theme Scripture was Acts 12:1-24.
Using the story in Acts 12:1-24, the women believed that the same special dynamics that came into prayer when God’s children came together, united in faith and purpose, to seek the face of the Lord in prayer would be present. If the power of corporate prayer freed Peter from prison when the church prayed with one accord (Acts 1:14), surely God would answer their prayer. If it worked for the church then, it will work for Maranatha.
So, after the Sabbath message, the members formed groups and prayed for: 1) the out pouring of the Holy Spirit on their church and in them; 2) God to revive them and the church; and 3) God to provide funds to move a building they were acquiring for the young children […]
The Other Side of the Cheese: My Response to Dr. Dwight Nelson’s Sermon on Ending “Ethnically Separate Conferences”
This article was supposed to be about the other side of the Young Adult Ministries Initiative. Part One dealt with our responsibility to our young adults-those things we want to put in place to bring our young adults into full partnership with those of us who are older, as we all seek to fulfill the gospel commission. Part Two was to be about those things that we shall ask from our young adults. This Young Adult Initiative cannot be one-sided. It cannot just be about what the church can do for young adults. But it must also be about what the Lord asks young adults-and everyone else-to do for His church.
To finish the work that God has given to us will take all of us and we shall need our young adults to be a part of that in ways that we have not invited them to be involved in the past.
I shall get back to that soon. But today I want to respond to a very important issue that has been raised of late. It began with a sermon a few weeks ago by Dr. Dwight Nelson, the long-time Senior Pastor of he Pioneer Memorial SDA Church on the campus of Andrews University. He preached a sermon on ending what he called “ethnically separate conferences.” Whether he intended it to be taken that way or not, it was interpreted as being a call to end regional conferences-a stance that Dr. Nelson (and others, such as Dr. Jan Paulsen, when he was President of the General Conference) has taken previously.
That was followed by a forum on the campus of Andrews University that addressed the issue of our current structure, where we have what are called […]
Below you will find the most recent Kingdom Builders issue, and 2015 International Day of Prayer Packet. The 2015 International Day of Prayer will be on March 7th. Click on the images below to access the documents.
For more information on Women’s Ministries, please visit our Women’s Ministries Departmental Page.
For more information on Sabbath School, please visit our Sabbath School Page.
Ten years ago, I was blessed with the opportunity coach and mentor the young men at Ephesus SDA Church in Columbus, OH. Our basketball team, mostly high-school underclassmen, barely squeaked into the Allegheny West Conference playoffs after a pedestrian season filled with mediocrity. However, after two upset wins, we advanced as underdogs all the way to the League Championship Game. Sadly, the grandmother and guardian of one of our captains Terrell passed away suddenly. She was laid to rest on the same day of the Championship Game. Several team members accompanied me to the funeral and we embraced our brother paying respects. We proclaimed to him that the Ephesus Warriors would bring home a championship in his honor. Terrell then taught us a lesson about the definition of teamwork and said “Coach, I’m leaving with you because I am playing tonight.” He cried in the car as we made the 2 hour drive to the game, he cried in the locker room as he put on his jersey, and he didn’t score a single point in the game, but his presence and commitment galvanized our team and we went out and won the title.
Terrell was not a Seventh-day Adventist. He never attended an SDA school. He didn’t keep the Sabbath or understand the concepts of the Health Message. He would wear jewelry when I would bring him to church and had sleeve tattoos that intimidated both children and adults. But over a decade later he stays in touch with his former coach, teammates and friends from Ephesus SDA Church. He still occasionally stops by on a Sabbath morning to sit through a service sometimes bringing his mother and family members. The irrevocable bond that young […]
Last month, the Executive Committee of our conference voted to ask Pastor Lola Moore, Pastor, Panama City/Greenwood, Florida, to serve as the Director of our newly formed Young Adult Ministries Department.
Few, if any conferences in North America have a stand-alone Young Adult Ministries Department. It is the cornerstone of our Young Adult Initiative. Along with the initiatives that are a part of our theme for 2015-2016, Moving: From Fellowship to Membership to Discipleship, the Young Adult Initiative is the highest priority for me in the 19 or so months that are left to me in this office.
Our Young Adult Initiative seeks to fundamentally change the way we operate in the South Central Conference by intentionally involving young adults (a group that we are defining as being between 18 and 40) in both how we operate our churches, our conference and in ministry.
We haven’t-I haven’t, been intentional about doing that and that needs to change, and it needs to change now; in fact, things have already begun to change, beginning with the historic and precedent-setting step and staffing a full-time Young Adult Ministries Department.
Then, our five person delegation from South Central to the General Conference session in San Antonio, Texas this summer has two young adults in it-that is 40% of our total delegation-in 2011, we had none. Already, our three person delegation on the North American Division Executive Committee has one young adult; South Central is one of the few conferences with a young adult as part of its delegation-our representative, Ms. Nikkia Hampton, the Lead Teacher of the Chattanooga Avondale SDA School, is one of the youngest members of the North American Division Executive Committee.
A part of this initiative is to make a commitment […]
It was a cool but bright and sunny afternoon on Sunday, December 14, when a small group of members and friends of the Berean SDA Church, in Jackson, MS, met to prepare for their first Angel Tree Celebration. There were thirty (30) children, ages 1 – 17 and their care givers who were going to be presented with gifts and money.
Each Christmas prison chaplains, Prison Fellowship and Christian churches make available this program called “Angel Tree Christmas”, enabling prisoners to give gifts to their children. This is not a charity but is intended to reconnect the child with the incarcerated parent. Each gift had a personal message from the parent to the child. This gift was simply a tangible way to demonstrate the love of God and the incarcerated parent.
A multiracial group of more than eighty (80) young people and adults attended and enjoyed a program, activities and good food. This was truly an opportunity for our church to live out its mission – “Caring, Sharing and Preparing”.
Anne Gray, reporting
Pastor, James G. Owens
We live in an age where news headlines blare with warnings of viruses, epidemics, contaminants and the increase of disease. Health care costs are on the rise and health insurance coverage affordability and accessibility are major concerns for many. It is no wonder that health conscious Americans are taking intentional measures such as modifying diets , exercising regularly and adopting lifestyles to prevent illness and promote health.
Mary Averhart, Director of Health and the Temperance Department of the Bethany Seventh Day Adventist Church is excited and passionate about promoting healthy lifestyles among church members and the community at large. Recently, Averhart and her team hosted a special health emphasis , cultural awareness day which included members and community. Casio Jones, renown health evangelist served as guest presenter for this church and community celebration. Morning worship took place at the Bethany Church and afternoon activities were held at the Maggie Street Baptist Church Dream Center. The highlight of the afternoon activities was a feast of food entitled, “A Taste of Nations.” Cultures represented in beautiful displays and mouthwatering foods were from the United States, Mexico, China, Jamaica, Nigeria, the Philippines, Hawaii, Italy and Peru. A special element of the feast was the Food in any Language Table which included Bread Soups and Salads.
The Celebration of Health and Wellness concluded with a workshop and exercise session facilitated by Health Evangelist Jones. Bethany’s Pastor, Elder Jeffery L. Watson applauded the Health and Temperance Department for the success realized in the creative promotion of both spiritual and physical health. Averhart and her team look forward to future opportunities to share the ministry of Health and Temperance with the Montgomery community . If you desire information on cooking classes or other programs scheduled / available, please contact Mary Averhart at 334-241-8348 or visit the website at Bethanymontgomery.org
SAVE THE DATE! – Saturday evening, January 24, 2015
First-ever Northeastern Conference/Camp Victory Lake Reunion Reception
Northeastern Conference President Dr. Daniel Honore invites all NEC/Victory Lake “alumni” and friends to the first-ever NEC/CVL Reunion Reception on Saturday, January 24, 6-7:30 p.m., Wade Hall, Oakwood University.
This event will launch officially the $40M Camp Victory Lake capital campaign.
Stay tuned for more information, . . .