Stories & Commentaries

About Stories & Commentaries

From time to time, the North American Division shares commentaries on issues and/or events important to Adventists in this division. We also publish stories, which sometimes include interviews and features, to inspire our leaders and members.

At Eid Mubarak: Seeing God’s Footprints Between Adventists and Muslims

This month of Ramadan, some Adventists accepted the “Ramadan Lantern Challenge,” and they visited their local mosque and neighbors to bless them, either with Aaron’s blessings and a box of dates, or simply to get to know them and pray for them. Here are three stories I am sharing with the hope that readers can see themselves in one of them, and move from curiosity and a bit of discomfort to engagement and blessing.

Muslim woman in scarf smiling at another woman whose face is obscured.

Divine Appointments: Hiding in Plain Sight?

Whom do you feel called to reach with the love of God? Your cousin? Your neighbor? Your friend at school or work? According to Ellen G. White, “it is acquaintance that awakens sympathy, and sympathy is the spring of effective ministry.”1 This quote reminds us that the better we know someone, the more motivated we are to care about their needs, and the more effective we can be in reaching them with the love of God. But it also holds a less-obvious insight: It points to the possibility that there are people, or even people groups, God wants us to reach, but we do not yet feel His call to reach them just because we don’t happen to be acquainted with them, their language, their culture, and their needs.

CRS Old braille making magazine in the early 1900s

Christian Record Services for the Blind Marks 125 Years of Transformative Service

In the heart of compassion and dedication, Christian Record Services (CRS) stands tall as it celebrates an incredible milestone — 125 years of unwavering commitment to serving individuals worldwide who are blind and visually impaired. Since its inception in 1899, CRS has been a beacon of hope, breaking down barriers and providing life-changing services to individuals facing vision challenges. 

Artist drawing of the Morning Star ship on the Mississippi, image from Review and Herald Publishing Association

The Blessings of a Delay

James Edson White, the son of Adventist pioneers James and Ellen White, is credited with taking the gospel to African Americans in the southern United States — after having departed from the Adventist faith for approximately 30 years. What may have seemed like a delayed answer to Ellen White’s prayers over the years that Edson was absent from the faith turned out to be God’s perfect timing for the gospel to be shared with former slaves and their children.

Stock photo of tithe in offering plate going down church pew

Divine Genius: Funding the Seventh-day Adventist Worldwide Movement

"Where does all that money go?" As a church employee for more than 40 years, 30-plus of which as a treasurer, Randy Robinson has heard that question more times than any other. It is a profoundly legitimate question, but one that is difficult to answer because of the complexity of the church's financial system. But that's no excuse for not providing a clear and understandable answer. The goal of this article is to help demystify some of the complexity.

Coatesville parade on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in 2024

In Addition to Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day With Its Community, the W.C. Atkinson Community Center Provides Care in Coatesville, Pensylvania

In honor of the 60th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, the Coatesville community leadership, with strong support from the community, banded together to carry on the legacy of King by not only speaking about change, justice and advocacy, but also by emphasizing the day of service and providing ample opportunities to serve. As a tribute to King’s housing initiative that he began in November of 1967, the W.C. Atkinson Memorial Community Service Center, an Adventist Center of Influence in partnership with many other organizations including Good Works and Adventist Community Services, started a home renovation project on Jan. 2, 2024, with a goal of completion by MLK Jr. Day.

G. Alexander Bryant and Desiree Bryant share a special holiday message in December 2023

NAD President and First Lady Share Holiday Video Message for 2023

"During this season, we want to remind you that Immanuel, Jesus, is with you — no matter what you're going through. This time of the year can be so lonely for so many. But the very essence of the season is Immanuel, which says, 'Jesus is not distant. He is near,'" says NAD president G. Alexander Bryant, in the 2023 holiday message he presents to Adventists in North America with wife, Desiree Bryant, who is the NAD Ministerial Spouses director.

stock photo of storm clouds, palm trees, and a bird, with sun poking out of clouds

Measuring Life by God’s Marks

While it’s natural to mark time by the tragedies and traumas that have marred our lives, we also mark time through triumphs. Wedding days, births, new homes, graduations, new jobs . . . these are some of the points—benchmarks—that give us measures of hope, joy. The sad reality for many of us is that those happy moments aren’t often equal benchmarks in this sinful world. The traumatic seems to win out. But then I think of Jesus and how He has created the best markers to live by.

ACS nov 23 article WHO church job fair

The Church Parking Lot

What does your church parking lot look like during the week? For many, the answer is “empty,” but for two Adventist Community Services (ACS) ministries in the Houston, Texas, area, the answer is “full of cars.” The Fondren Seventh-day Adventist Church ACS moved their food distribution into the parking lot in 2020 to abide by COVID-19 recommendations and they haven’t moved back inside. Rain or shine, Fondren ACS volunteers distribute boxes of food to their community every Wednesday.

jump ball at Oakwood Adventist Academy boys' basketball final championship game 2023 screenshot

Oakwood Adventist Academy - "Bigger Than Basketball" Part 2

The Oakwood Adventist Academy Mustangs boys varsity basketball team, after being denied a Sabbath accommodation in the finals for the 2021-2022 state championships, forfeited their semi-final game. Fast forward to the 2022-2023 season and the team is back in the tournament and able to play. Watch what happens at the March 2023 finals; and what lessons the team learned.