British Union Institute
ALL the workers of the British Union gathered for a season of spiritual refreshing at Birmingham, England, July 30 to August 2. We were unusually privileged in having with us Pastors L. H. Christian, E. E. Andross, Carlyle B. Haynes, and W. T. Bartlett. The messages delivered were most timely and helpful, and we believe that all who attended returned to their fields of labor with a new vision and added strength for their tasks.
Pastor W. H. Meredith, president of the British Union Conference, opened the institute with an address upon our responsibilities and problems. Taking as his text, " We are laborers together with God," he dwelt upon our responsibilities: First, to the world; second, to the church; third, to the cause of God; and fourth, to each other. The great problems which we face were referred to as (1) The false teaching of our time, (2) The worldliness in the church, and (3) The indifference manifest by church members and workers. The great needs were clearly portrayed, the greatest of all needs being " men, big men, strong men, men of vision, courage, and consecration." The only hope of finishing our work in the British Isles depends upon the rededication of the entire force of workers to the work of the Lord.
The devotional services during the institute were a source of great spiritual benefit. In two of these Pastor Andross conducted the studies. Following Pastor Andross' address on the second morning, there was such a response from the workers, both in praise and prayer, that the meeting, timed to close at ten o'clock, was prolonged until 12: 30 13. M. Not for years has there been such a time of general consecration to God on the part of all the workers. The concluding devotional service was conducted by Pastor W. T. Bartlett, his subject being, " Our Standing as Sons of God." He clearly set forth the high privileges of such a calling, and urged that workers always bear in mind this heavenly relationship, and endeavor to become identified with Heaven in every respect, giving due honor to one another as princes of the royal household.
The sermons at the evening services were delivered by Pastors Bartlett, Christian, and Haynes, on timely themes of special importance to the workers. With a keen sense of the situation confronting the heralds of the third angel's message, brought about by the wave of infidelity sweeping over the world, and the fog of evolution and false isms which is beclouding the mind and leading to despair, Pastor Bartlett set forth that the evidences that led our fathers to espouse the principles of present truth are unshaken, and the foundations stand secure. He emphasized that " the supreme Christian evidence that Christ came from God and that His word will be fulfilled, is His church. The church is the clearest evidence of the claims of Christ that will ever be given to the world. If the world does not find occasion for belief in our lives, it will not, and cannot find it elsewhere. It is not my arguments, but myself, that matters. If we fail to live a Christian life, it does not matter what other facts we may bring forth in support of the gospel."
Pastor L. H. Christian dwelt on the subject of the sanctuary, approaching it from an unusual angle and in such a way as to help all to see its spiritual value, He said, "We deal too much with the material phase of the sanctuary with the sockets, the boards, the coverings. Rather, let us think of the spiritual help that may come from the study of the sanctuary." He stated that the outstanding spiritual truths to be taught in connection with the doctrine of the sanctuary, were (1) the personality of God; (2) the work of Christ since His ascension; (3) the judgment. We also find that the sanctuary teaching substantiates the perpetuity of the law, makes plain the end of the wicked, the end of sin, and the final destruction of the evil one. It also makes evident the justice of God in all His dealings with the human race, and the reason for the final annihilation of sin and sinners.
Pastor Haynes dwelt upon the "Sureties of the Message." He left no room for doubt that the message is " sure and certain," but focused his remarks on the field of uncertainty in the individual life. His sermon questionnaire was foursquare: (1) " How are you in health? " (2) " How are you doctrinally? " (3) " How are you practically?" (4) " How are you spiritually? " He emphasized the imperative need of keeping our bodies well and strong for the great task committed to us. " Ill health is often the cause of much ill temper and bad Christianity," he said, " and bad Christianity is sometimes really bad health." As to doctrine, Pastor Haynes said, " It is most important that Adventist preachers believe what they profess to believe. It is equally important that persons coming into the church should be thoroughly converted and thoroughly instructed." The practical phase of Christian experience was emphasized, and in dealing with the fourth question, "How are you spiritually? " Pastor Haynes urged all to enter into the spiritual experience that God has made available for every worker, which will mean victory, success, and peace and joy.
A portion of the time of the institute was spent in round table discussion of ways and means of securing greater results from our work. Subjects of vital and practical interest were introduced, followed by helpful discussion on advertising, conducting public meetings, training staff, etc. The Question Box, opened at four o'clock each afternoon, brought many important items before the workers,
The institute, though brief, proved to be one of the most profitable series of meetings which it has ever been my privilege to attend, and I believe that much good will accrue as the principles set forth are put into practice, and the inspiration received is carried back by all the workers to the churches and companies of believers throughout the British Isles.
Arthur S. Maxwell
Emma J. W. Westphal is spending the larger portion of his time in the field in the interests of the spiritual upbuilding of workers and church members, placing due emphasis on the benefits afforded through The Ministry and the Ministerial Reading Course. The keynote to the situation confronting him is stated thus in a recent letter: " Our churches are greatly in need of help. They need to get a new hold on God. In this will be solved every other difficulty." Referring to the specific Ministerial Association interests, Elder Westphal states: " I do not know when or in what line I have ever done stronger promotion work than I have in behalf of The Ministry. I think that practically all our English-reading workers now have the paper. It is my plan to reprint much of this valuable material in our Spanish paper. I have greatly enjoyed the Ministerial Reading Course books this year, and am anxious to receive full particulars regarding the new course for 1929. You may be interested to know that we have decided on the selections for our Portuguese and Spanish courses for the coming year. We hope to Place the promotion material for all Reading Courses in the hands of our workers during September."
Elder J. S. James, under date of July 22, writes: " I feel very much burdened for the work of the Ministerial Association. India needs the benefit of this help, perhaps more than any other field in the world. It is very easy for our workers, when once they launch 'themselves into the great sea of work and need in this country, to cut loose from their former connections in the homeland and permit themselves to become entirely absorbed with their local work. I am convinced that helpful contacts should be preserved with the home base, so as to strongly maintain the resources which qualify for missionary service. I am glad that THE MINISTRY goes to all our workers, as it is a source of strength in their work. I am particularly interested in the new plan for the Ministerial Reading Course, whereby it is left for the Division Ministerial Association leaders to select one volume especially applicable to local needs. I think this plan a very practical one, and have in mind several good books which may serve to good advantage for our workers in the Reading Course for 1929."
Frequent communications are received from Elder C. H. Watson, president of the division, and also from Elders A. W. Anderson and W. W. Fletcher, representing the Australasian Division on our advisory council.
These communications indicate progress in all lines of endeavor. Personal letters from Elder Daniells which have been received tell of the cordial reception extended by the many friends and coworkers of former days and also by the new groups of workers. One of the first meetings arranged to begin at the time of Elder Daniells' arrival in Australia was the Ministerial Institute at Wahroonga, June 22-28. The syllabus of subjects considered at this institute reads as follows. We understand that a similar program is being followed in all the general meetings which Elder Daniells is attending.
1. Our Present Position—Beginning, Present, Future, by A. G. Daniells.
2. The Gospel — Relation to Sin, Righteousness, Judgment, by W. W. Fletcher.
3. Christ — His Divinity, Humanity, Mediation, by W. W. Fletcher.
4. The Holy Spirit — Creation, Pentecost, Closing Work, by A. G. Daniells.
5. The Word of God — Source, Authority, Power, by A. W. Anderson.
6. The Gospel Ministry — Call, Commission, Service, by A. W. Anderson.
7. The Church — God's Purpose for; Relation to Ministry, by W. J. Westerman.
8. Righteousness — God's Provision, Conditions, Results, by A. G. Daniells.
9. The Gifts of the Spirit — Source, Diversity, Object, by A. G. Daniells.
10. Organization — For Order, Advance, Defense, by A. G. Daniells.
11. Gospel Finance — Need, Provision, Method, by C. H. Watson.
12. An Efficient Ministry Spirituality, Earnestness, Thoroughness, Fruitfulness, Power, by A. G. Daniells.
Writing from Blantyre, Nyasaland, on June 8, Elder E. D. Dick, Ministerial Association secretary for the African field, speaks of his situation and plans as follows: " I came to this place several weeks ago, and am now in the midst of the native workers' institute. We have over one hundred teachers in attendance, and are having an excellent institute. It falls to my lot to give instruction in pastoral training, Bible methods, moral standards, and other lines of study. I find that one of our greatest needs is to help our native teachers and pastors along evangelistic lines. We are endeavoring to give help on these points by bringing out a catechism, and as soon as possible will get out a manual for evangelistic training and pastoral work."
Elder C. E. Wood, after referring to the advantages afforded the workers at the division headquarters by the completion of the new office building, says: " We are receiving very interesting letters from the various fields in the division, telling of the progress of the work. In some places the Spirit of the Lord is going before our workers, and companies of Sabbath keepers are being raised up entirely independent of the conference or mission workers. There is no doubt but that we are rapidly approaching the time when the major portion of the time of our ministers will be occupied in organizing these new companies and developing the interests created by the lay members of our churches."
During the prolonged absence of Elder J. C. Raft from the division office, whose itinerary covered a large part of the division territory, including Madagascar, Abyssinia, Egypt, and Syria, occasional word was received from Prof. L. L. Caviness, of the divisional departmental force, who wrote: " I am very glad indeed to do all I can to help in the circulation of the excellent paper you are bringing out. I had estimated that we might reach a goal of 250 subscribers to The Ministry, but I am informed that present figures show a total of 266 subscriptions. Of course, you understand that I have not been asked in any way to promote the work of the Ministerial Association during Brother Raft's absence other than to write out concerning the decision of our committee to supply the Reading Course members With The Ministry."
Elder W. H. Meredith, president of the British Union, informs us that " Our committee took action to supply The Ministry to all our workers throughout the whole British Union.
We are anxious that all our workers shall get the best possible help." In behalf of the workers in the North British Conference, President Alfred E. Bacon informs us: "We are delighted with The Ministry, and believe it is filling a long-felt want among our ministers and workers. A large number of our conference workers are enrolled in the Ministerial Reading Course for 1928. Our aim is to have every conference laborer a member of the Reading Circle. We are thoroughly enjoying the books in this year's course. I am confident that all our workers would receive much benefit by following the plan. There is nothing like such a course of study to broaden one's vision and give efficiency in the work of soul winning. We shall ever endeavor to do our part to encourage both our younger and older workers to press on with this good work, in the aim to become more efficient laborers in the cause of God."
The Far East
Prof. Frederick Griggs writes most assuringly of the steadily developing interest. He states: " I want to tell you that everybody over here seems to be pleased with the new publication, The Ministry. It is a great help and stimulus to our workers. We aim to have every worker a member of the Ministerial Association, and this will,
of course, make every one a reader of The Ministry.
An echo from the Malaysian Union Mission of the Far Eastern Division comes in by way of a letter written by Elder L. V. Finster, superintendent, from which we quote as follows: " I am glad to tell you that I find, as I go through the field, that our workers appreciate The Ministry very much. We are glad that we have this helpful agency in the building up of a stronger ministry for the Lord. The Spirit of the Lord is being manifested in a marked manner in connection with our work in Malaysia, and we believe this will be our best year in soul-winning results."