Ron felt impressed to hand the woman at the gas pump a GLOW tract. He did and the woman recommitted her life to Jesus, and she joined the Adventist church. But how can we share the message of hope during these uncertain times? What can we do when we are all staying at home and personal contacts with others aren’t as available or encouraged while we navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic?
Congregational care during this coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic is essential, however, traditional congregational care is, at best, now very strained. Ministry is quite different than it was a few weeks ago. We cannot meet or gather as congregations. Caregiving for bereaving families unable to attend funeral services, members who may not be digitally connected, and those losing employment while working from home are just some examples of how ministry has shifted. The congregational need for dedicated pastoral care is self-evident.
On the night of April 12, 2020, my wife Lou and I were getting ready for bed and listening to the weather forecasters announce the tornado watches and warnings. When they announced that the worst of the storms had passed, I turned the TV off. We changed ino our pajamas, said our prayers together, which is our nightly custom. The screech of metal and loud banging woke me from sleep. It was our tin roof being yanked off the house as a tornado hit.
While the entire church structure benefits in varying degrees, by far the largest portion of tithes in the North American Division (NAD) reverts back to the local church and school. To keep things simple, let’s follow a $100 portion of tithes to see where the funds go; and then, as an example, how NAD distributes its money.
Our hearts struggle to accept the reality of death. Existence is such a persuasive experience that we simply cannot conceive of a world in which we no longer exist. As a small child I used to spend more time than a youngster probably should trying to imagine a universe without me: how is it possible that prior to 1969 I did not exist at all?
Randy Robinson, treasurer for the Seventh-day Adventist Church in North America (NAD), recently spoke with Kimberly Luste Maran, an associate director of communication for the NAD, about his role, and how the division is functioning during the COVID-19 pandemic. The interview was conducted entirely online.
Even before his state issued a stay-at-home order to curb the spread of COVID-19, Desta Gelgelu, an economics professor, church planter, and pastor of the Oromo Seventh-day Adventist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, called his conference executive secretary for advice. Decisive action by local church leaders had an unexpected result — and blessing.
When Stephanie Seay and “Christine” met more than 20 years ago on the job at an Atlanta nursing home, they were young, single, and relatively carefree. They became fast friends. Seay, the facility’s bookkeeper, was a practicing Christian, and Christine, the social activities assistant, was not. Marriage, children, and age rolled in and Christine began wondering about Christ, shared Seay. That’s when Seay sent her Message magazine.
According to the World Health Organization, the United States has 140,640 confirmed cases of COVID-19 disease as of March 31, 2020. Canada has 6,317, Bermuda has 22, and Guam has 58. I can only imagine the turmoil in the lives of those who have been affected directly because they or a family member are or have been sick. And it is concerning to know that all of us are at risk. This hit home when I was under voluntary quarantine after returning from a conference.
Faith for Today’s Mike Tucker shares his conversation with Roy Ice, incoming speaker/director for the broadcast media ministry. At the conclusion of this interview, Tucker's shares a few words about Faith for Today.