News

Hyveth Williams and Wymouth Spence display Williams award at WAU's Visionaries Gala.

Story by Emeraude Victorin

The Washington Adventist University (WAU) in Takoma Park, Md., held its fifth annual Visionaries Gala last week at the Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md. The event, geared toward raising funds to support scholarships and other university initiatives, honored five individuals for providing excellent leadership, service and inspiration to others.

Event organizer Roland Blackman talks with a woman from the community.

Story by Oksana Wetmore / Photos by Urbanized Geek

This summer marks the fifth anniversary of Park N’ Praise (PNP), an event run by Seventh-day Adventists from across the Washington, D.C. area, that aims to raise awareness of the need for affordable housing.

Volunteers worshiped with community members, many of whom are homeless, distributed 500 meals, 5,000 diapers and personal care items, conducted 20 health screenings and prayed with 30 attendees at this year’s Washington, D.C., event at Shepard’s Park.

photo by moritz320 on pixabay

Editorial by José H. Cortés Sr., president of the New Jersey Conference

I remember when my family moved to the New Jersey Conference 30 years ago. My wife, Celita, two sons, Jose Jr. and Josue, and I came after ministering in the Euro-African Division. We carried four nearly empty pieces of luggage, but our hearts were lled with dreams. Now as we look back, we only have expressions of gratitude. The

Lord’s hands have been upon us! God took our dreams and multiplied them infinitely. Through our sons, He brought us daughters: Joanne and Joyce. He also blessed us with grandkids: Jose III, Nadia, Joel and Emma. God has given us much more than we deserve, and His blessings keep raining upon us.

Photo by domeckopol on pixabay

By Debra McKinney Banks

Visit a Seventh-day Adventist church these days, and it is no longer guaranteed that the service will start at 11 a.m. No one really knows the history of when or where the 11 o’clock Sabbath worship time began. Plausible theories from pastors and historians posit that during more agrarian times, farming families needed to tend to the livestock and finish the chores before attending church. Whatever the reason, most people don’t maintain that farming lifestyle anymore. Today some pastors have discovered that holding Sabbath services at non-traditional times—either before or after 11—are becoming more of a necessity to meet the missional needs of their flocks.

Photo by Rise-a-Mui on Pixabay

Editorial by Celeste Ryan Blyden

You aren’t alone. A recent survey of executive committee members across the Columbia Union Conference identified lack of community among church members as an issue. “The greatest challenge is lack of social connectivity between the families and members within the churches,” noted one participant. “The large majority of members limit their relationship with one another to only Sabbath School, worship service and fellowship meal time—basically once a week.” 

While Sabbath potluck remains high on the list of member favorites (Who would want to miss haystacks?), for many, the fellowship ends as soon as the last piece of dessert has been claimed. 

Story by Columbia Union Visitor Staff

The Columbia Union Conference is creating a database of volunteers interested in traveling to Houston and other areas impacted by natural disasters to work as a crisis counselor or in the warehouse distribution centers. Experienced volunteers are preferred, however, anyone with a willing heart will be considered, says Minnie McNeil, Columbia Union ACS/ACSDR coordinator.

Food and lodging assistance is available. Click here to register (https://form.jotform.us/72483917510155).

Steve Carlson

Story by Anna Bartlett

Collective is a student-led Friday evening worship service and fellowship meal held in homes where students and faculty of Kettering College in Dayton, Ohio, can share their stories and worship together.

As Kettering is not a residential campus, many of the students live in a very segmented world, says Steve Carlson (pictured), campus chaplain. They drive in for class and then go home, often only interacting with others within their own program.

Story by Anna Bartlett

A group of Potomac Conference churches in the Richmond area have learned the key to building community in their churches is through a ready-made small group—families. Local leaders used the families within the church to create 25 home churches in order to reach families outside the church and adopt them into the church community.

“We established the method of ‘Families that Earn Families for Jesus,’” says Rafael Soto (pictured, pastor of the Hopewell Spanish, Richmond Evangelist Center, Blackstone Spanish and the West End Spanish churches that sponsor the home churches.