Adventists to build first church in the Arabian Gulf region
United Arab Emirates (UAE) – A groundbreaking ceremony was held January 8, 2010, for the first ever Seventh-day Adventist church to be built in the Arabian Gulf region, in Ras Al Khaimah, one of the seven emirates in the UAE.
About 250 Adventists from all over the UAE gathered at the site where Victor Harewood, senior pastor of the UAE and Oman area, and Rogelio Taer, Middle East Union (MEU) associate treasurer, unveiled the cornerstone for the building to officially mark the groundbreaking of this construction project.
The building, which is expected to be finished by September 2010, will house a worship hall seating up to 500 people, an all-purpose hall with a kitchen, and the headquarters for the Gulf Section of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, comprising Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, and Yemen.
“This is the first time an Arab ruler has given us land which will give Adventists the official registration, recognition, immigration profile, and ability to have our own church building,” said Rajee Mathew, project manager for the building. Previously, Adventists have been meeting in church members’ homes and rented rooms.
Adventists in Ras Al Khaimah decided to approach the government for a piece of land. Arrangements were made for the Adventist delegation, headed by the MEU president Kjell Aune, to visit His Highness Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, crown prince and deputy ruler of Ras Al Khaimah.
Aune commented, “The Middle East Union is thrilled to see this project come true. It is a miraculous story and will mark a new era for the Adventist Church in the Gulf. It will be the first church-owned property in the Gulf area and because through it we will get legal registration, we will finally be able to organize the work in the seven Gulf countries in a separate field with a local administrative office. We are indebted to the world church for making this financially possible, to the local members for their dream, initiative, drive, and very hard work to succeed with the project, and to God for working out miracles along the way.” [Gureni Lukwaro/TED News Staff/TED News]
Ministry has embarked on a worldwide effort to increase the number of individuals who write for the journal. Inasmuch as the journal has readers in more than 180 countries, the editors have conducted a series of workshops in various parts of the world during which individuals are given training in selecting topics, organizing material, and writing articles. Recently two such workshops were held.
Nikolaus Satelmajer conducted such a workshop at Spicer College in Pune, Maharashtra, India, in January in which more than 50 ministerial students, faculty, and pastors participated in the event.
Willie E. Hucks II also conducted a workshop at Babcock University near Lagos, Nigeria, in February where more than 40 individuals participated. As a result of those workshops, the journal has already received submissions for articles from the participants.
If a group of ministers, professors, or students wish to participate in such a workshop, we invite such groups to contact the editors to determine if such a workshop can be scheduled for their area. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org .org or +1 301-680-6518. [Nikolaus Satelmajer]
Share the Hope again
Silver Spring, Maryland, United States—Plans were announced at the year-end meetings of the North American Division for all pastors, leaders, and church members to become involved in the goals of the Share the Hope Again program outlined by Adventist Communication Network.
In 2009, the goal of reaching 100,000 individuals for Christ was reached, and the same objective now exists for 2010. Preparing for Share the Hope Again includes reaching the members of North America’s more than 6,000 churches to inspire and shape the ministries of each congregation to share a lifestyle of evangelism across the nation.
The objectives for Share the Hope Again involve prioritizing the need for spiritual renewal at every level of the church, the full and direct engagement of every church member, the discipling of new believers, and the reclaiming of inactive and former members.
Share the Hope Again has goals for each church to focus on:
1. Spiritual renewal;
2. Holding fasting and prayer weekends;
3. Every pastor, conference, union, division officer, and departmental leader to participate in evangelism;
4. New believers being trained for outreach;
5. Increased Sabbath School attendance;
6. Preparing lay members for leading in evangelistic campaigns
The goal for this lifestyle of evangelism program? Another 100,000 baptisms. [Bernadine Delafield]
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