I have now been in the ministry for twenty-five years and have traveled over a number of States in my work. There is one thing that has always stood out clearly in my mind, and that is the fact that we, as Seventh-day Adventists, are very poor advertisers when it comes to publicizing our places of worship and our services.
Many times we come into a city and try to find an Adventist church. We go to the hotels and banks and other public places where we find large printed, framed directories giving the addresses and hours of the services of all the different churches in the city, but very rarely do we find the Seventh-day Adventist church listed. How happy we are when we do find one there! Then we go out to find the church. After much inquiry we come to the building, but there is not a name of any kind upon the structure. Many times if there is a sign, it is so dilapidated that one is ashamed to call it a sign.
It is quite thrilling when we come to a beautiful Seventh-day Adventist church and find a neat sign in front. It shows that we are proud to let the world know that we are there, and that our church is in such condition that we are not ashamed that we are Seventh-day Adventists. We never know what wayfaring soul, hungry for truth, may be looking for the very information given on such a signboard.
We send thousands of dollars from our churches to erect substantial buildings in all parts of the world. Why not have our places of worship in good condition, and then display attractive signs telling who we are? I would like to call your attention to a beautiful sign I saw in front of the Coffeyville, Kansas, church, as shown in the accompanying cut. The members have a church building of which they can be proud in a prominent part of the city, and out on the lawn in front of the church is this sign. It was the first thing that attracted my attention when I arrived at the church.
A sister once told me that the reason her church did not put a sign on their building was that they were ashamed of the building. What a pity ! When we put out hundreds of dollars' worth of literature to bring people into the church, we should have a building to which we are not ashamed to bring them.
One colporteur was told by a woman to whom he was trying to sell a book that it was a fine piece of literature, but one had to be afraid of the Seventh-day Advertisers. That is a good slogan for us. Let us advertise!