Communication Department, ATCU
Recently, the South Bahamas Conference (SBC) of Seventh-day Adventists held its fourth quadrennial session at the Hillview Seventh-day Adventist Church in Nassau, Bahamas. During this constituency meeting, delegates elected the administrators, departmental directors, and committee members who would administer the work of the Adventist church in the South Bahamas for the next four years. To facilitate efficiency of operation and successful corporate goal attainment, the Atlantic Caribbean Union (ATCU) hosted a one-day orientation for the members of the newly formed executive committee of SBC on Sunday, November 16, 2014, at the union headquarters in Nassau. Bahamas.
According to Pastor Peter Kerr, executive secretary of ATCU, the Adventist church recognizes the importance of training and developing its leaders.
“This orientation for the committee members of the South Bahamas Conference,” said Pastor Kerr, “highlights ATCU’s commitment to empowering its leaders for effective, Spirit-led service.”
The one-day orientation covered sessions entitled "Knowing Your Church and System of Governance" and "Best Financial Practices for the Seventh-day Adventist Church."
Pastor Leonard Johnson, president of ATCU, and Pastor Peter Kerr addressed the principles of church organization and governance while Elder Roderick Sands, treasurer of ATCU, presented information on the committee’s fiduciary responsibility.
The executive committee of the SBC is comprised of some 28 members which includes the three reelected administrators, Pastors Paul Scavella, president; Peter Joseph, executive secretary; and Melvin Lewis, treasurer; departmental directors; church pastors; and lay members.
Pastor Larry Green, youth director of SBC, remarked after participating in the session, "I am more equipped and have clear insight into my function on the committee."
Women’s ministries director, Mrs. Jacqueline Gibson, explained why the training was important to her.
"The sessions allowed me to understand my role as a new director and strengthens my resolve to propel the women’s ministries department of our local churches to a higher level of service to God."
Communication Department, ATCU
On Sunday evening, November 2, 2014, delegates and guests convened at the Hillview Seventh-day Adventist church in Nassau, The Bahamas for the opening service of the 4th quadrennial session of the South Bahamas Conference (SBC) of Seventh-day Adventists.
Bringing remarks during the service were the Honorable Dr. Hubert Minnis, leader of the official opposition in the House of Assembly in The Bahamas, and the Right Honorable Perry G. Christie, prime minister of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. Both leaders acknowledged the work of the Adventist church, particularly in the areas of education, Pathfinders, and health.
Prime Minister Christie commended the church for the vital role it has played in the development of The Bahamas and challenged the Seventh-day Adventist church in the Bahamas to develop a health and wellness center, opining that the church has a very effective healthy living program.
“You have an extraordinary history of commitment to best health practice. In this report (referring to the SBC president’s report presented to the church delegates), it speaks to the success of wellness programs that you have, but it also says we must move to create in the Bahamas a wellness center.”
Prime Minister Christie further went on to say that “when you find a body like yours, that has an international reputation for its commitment to wellness and healthy lifestyle and you are prepared, and you do it in this country, then the government of the Bahamas will find a way to help you succeed at doing that.”
Dr. Leonard Johnson, president of the Atlantic Caribbean Union, informed the delegation of upcoming plans to launch a health initiative entitled “I Want to Live Healthy,” throughout the union territory in 2015 and reaffirmed the church’s commitment to continuously pray for the leaders of the country.
“When we visit with leaders of our country, it is not just to solicit help from them or to deal with issues, but, as spiritual leaders, it is to take time to pray for them,” Pastor Johnson said.
Pastor Leon Wellington, vice-president of the Inter-American Division, delivered the charge on the opening night of the session.
At the conclusion of the three-day conclave, Pastors Paul Scavella, Peter Joseph, and Melvin Lewis were re-elected to serve for the next four years as president, executive secretary, and treasurer, respectively. Also elected were departmental directors and conference executive committee members.
The South Bahamas Conference is the largest of the four fields within the Atlantic Caribbean Union territory, having a membership of approximately twenty-one thousand. It covers the territory of the central and southern islands in the Bahamas, including New Providence on which is situated the nation’s capital.
The schedule for the 4th Quadrennial Session of the South Bahamas Conference is below:
Sunday, November 2, 2014 from 12:00 noon to 5:00 p.m. - Registration of delegates
Sunday, November 2, 2014 from 6:30 - 9:30 p.m. - Opening of conference session
Monday, November 3, 2014 from 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Conference in session
Tuesday, November 4, 2014 from 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. - Conference in session.
The installation service for the officers and directors of the South Bahamas Conference for the 4th Quadrennium will be held at the Hillview Seventh-day Adventist Church on Sabbath, November 8, 2014 at 4:30 p.m. –
Pastor Kenny Deveaux, Crusade Coordinator, SBC
How quickly time flies when one is having fun doing the mission of the church. Phase 2 of Mission to the City began on September 6, 2014, at the Queen Elizabeth Sports Center, opposite the Government High School. Four weeks have quickly passed and the Nassau Experience has come to an end.
Phase 1 was the flow of love demonstrated throughout our communities by the various projects conducted by the Seventh-day Adventist churches throughout New Providence. These projects included soup kitchens, whole wheat bread distribution, clean up campaigns, and distribution of clothing and food supplies.
During Phase 2 hundreds of persons attended the meetings each night and were guaranteed a blessing. Many unrelentingly explained how impacting the Nassau Experience has been on their lives. Participants continue to bask in the wonderful glow of Christ and are strengthened in their relationship with Him. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, God has rescued 223 precious souls from the grips of the enemy through baptism.
Through the powerful preaching of international evangelist, Pastor Peter Joseph, coupled with the inspirational singing of a 200-voice choir, backed up by a melodious band, the nightly program was reported to be “off the chain.”
The ministry at the altar was truly divine as each night attendees were invited to the altar and prayed for by the evangelist. Persons are still talking about the refreshing experience of praying together as they reflect on the joy found in ministering and being ministered to at the altar.
Now Phase 3 of the Mission to the City begins as the 223 souls are transitioned to the various churches throughout the island. This is an important aspect of Mission to the City. We are depending on God to “renew in us a clean heart” as we welcome these dear ones. Continue to pray for the new believers that they will now impact the communities around them and bring honour to God thus changing this Bahama land we love.
Under the theme, “Empowering Youth…Securing Our Future,” national youth month began with the national youth leaders certification course, where many youth leaders from across the country sought to become certified youth leaders. During the month of October, there are many activities that engage the services of the youth of our country and one such activity is the national youth march.
The youth groups of the South Bahamas Conference (SBC) were led by Pastor Andrew E. Burrows, youth director for the Atlantic Caribbean Union (ATCU), pastors Paul Scavella and C. Melvin Lewis, president and treasurer or SBC, pastor Kent Price, youth director of SBC and other associate youth director of the conference.
Accounting for a wide age spread, the adventurers, pathfinders, masterguides, Adventist youth leaders, and members in their church’s colors, joined in as usual and in an organized fashion paraded through the streets of New Providence. Other groups represented included primary, junior and senior high schools, churches, other uniformed youth groups, and youth groups from all of the political parties. This magnificent representation conveyed the profound message to the nation and the world that youth can still make a positive difference.
Other activities during national youth month will include, a holy youth jam, youth parliament, youth awards and medal pinning ceremony, and youth band encounter. All churches are encouraged to allow the youth to be featured during the month of October. The Pathfinders will host a speech contest on Sabbath October 18, at 6 p.m. at the Hillview Seventh-day Adventist Church.
The church for a long time has been empowering its youth and thus we are able to secure our future and make a difference in a society where everything bad seems to be noted and the good that our youth do go unnoticed.
In a press release to inform the nation of national youth month, Dr. Daniel Johnson, minister of youth for the Bahamas, stated that “during the month of October there will be a showcase of many positive youth role models and outstanding leaders within our country while encouraging unattached, marginalized, and at-risk youth to become involved in meaningful program and projects in their communities.”
The Seventh-day Adventist church will continue to partner with the ministry of youth to ensure that no youth is left behind and all are encouraged to do their best. As pathfinders, we will continue to do the work of the Lord and take this message to all the world.
Wilfred T. Adderley, Sr., Personal Ministries Director, SBC
When Moses asked the Lord to show him His glory, it was after God had agreed for His presence to be with His chosen nation- Israel, throughout their journey to the promise land. Then the Lord described Himself, saying: “I will make all My goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion” Exodus 33:15 -19.
According to Wikipedia dictionary, ‘compassion’ is the emotion one feels in response to the suffering of others that motivates a desire to help…it is rational and is based on sound judgment. However, sympathy is a feeling or reaction of expressed sorrow to distress, or a need of another person.
God calls us to emulate His character of compassion with the desire to help anyone who needs our help. Throughout the Bible we can read story after story where compassion was asked for or noticed by God.
Moses says it clearly in Deut. 10:18, “He administers justice for the fatherless and the widow and loves the stranger, giving him food and clothes.”
Let us consider three Biblical models of the church in ministry.
- The early Christian church model in Acts 2:44 and 45 showed that they had all things in common because they sold some of their possessions and then shared with those who were in need. Thus, Ingathering is a ministry of compassion to all who are in need even church members.
- The Corinthian model in 1 Corinthians 16:2 – 8 indicates that the Corinthian church was called upon to give donations and gifts to help people in Jerusalem who were suffering a famine, which was a natural disaster. Therefore, Ingathering is a ministry of compassion that is needed in the aftermath of a hurricane or any such calamity that calls for immediate help to the Nation.
- The End-Time Church model was described by Jesus Himself in Matthew 25:31 – 41, as a church that was actively involved in seven ministries of compassion: (i) feeding the hungry; (ii) clothing the naked; (iii) giving shelter to the homeless; (iv) visiting the sick; (v) visiting those in prison; (vi) providing water to drink; and (vii) extending the invitation for eternal-life to all who desire it. To fulfill Christ’s mission on the earth, until He comes is the main point of this kingdom parable.
As we launch ingathering on October 25th, the goal of every member is to contribute to Ingathering by first putting aside a special offering for the poor in the church-in the Samaritan’s Purse; then to invite friends and neighbors, to give voluntary donations to assist the less fortunate of our communities. I wish to commend those churches that reached their goals in the 2013 campaign and to encourage all our members to manifest a spirit of compassion in ministry.