Theology of ordination study committee
Following the assignment of representatives from the 13 global divisions of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the names of the 100-member Theology of Ordination Study Committee (TOSC) were announced November 29, 2012, by committee chairman Artur A. Stele, a general vice president of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists.
The main tasks confronting the panel are to:
1. Review the history of the study of ordination in the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
2. Develop a Seventh-day Adventist theology of ordination.
3. Study the subject of ordination of women to the gospel ministry.
4. Focus on potential solutions that support the message, mission, and unity of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
According to Stele, “The Theology of Ordination Study Committee will prayerfully study the issues presented above trying to reach a consensus on each assignment. In the areas where consensus will not be reached, the TOSC will present several reports and will also work on potential solutions. These steps will ensure that the process will be open, fair, and transparent.”
Stele said the steering committee has already met twice, and “we are suggesting that the first meeting of the TOSC [to have taken place in January 2013] will be totally dedicated to the study of the first step. A group of scholars has been given the assignment to work on the first draft of the Theology of Ordination document.”
He added, “We are planning to present the first draft to the TOSC in January, discuss it, and based on the contributions of the whole committee, to prepare a second draft and send it out to all Division [Biblical Research Committees, or BRC]. We will ask each Division BRC to send in their suggestions, contributions, agreements, and disagreements. Based on the discussions involving all BRCs, a third draft will be prepared and we hope to come to a final draft that could be ‘hopefully’ accepted by the TOSC the first day of our meetings in July 2013.”
Stele said, “After concluding the study on Theology of Ordination, we will start working on the issue of women’s ordination.” Although women have functioned in various ministry roles from the beginning of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, ordination has come up as an issue before church leaders several times in the recent past. At present, the church does not ordain women to ministry, following votes at General Conference sessions in 1990 and 1995 on the question, where the issue was a major focus of the international deliberations.
12,000 ADRA shoeboxes arrive in Burkina Faso
Watford, United Kingdom— “Most days I’m loading my truck to make rich people richer. Today, I’m transporting happiness,” Mac beamed while carefully swinging a 40-foot container up from the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) compound on Stanborough Park, Watford, onto the back of his lorry.
A skilled operative, he was one of the lorry drivers commissioned to transport the two ADRA containers to the port of Felixstowe, from which began the six-week journey by ship to Burkina Faso where 12,000 shoeboxes, WakaWaka solar powered lights, and 250 relief boxes from Aquabox arrived.
ADRA-UK CEO, Bert Smit, was visibly excited as he watched the containers being loaded. “So many people, and especially schoolchildren, have made this happen,” he stated, noting that there were 4,000 more shoeboxes than in the 2011 appeal. “People are so generous, even when feeling the pinch themselves.”
That generosity has been seen across the country. In Middlesbrough, 167 boxes were collected at the Adventist church while a further 202 were donated by children at a local primary school. Judy HamiltonJohansson states, “This is the sixth year the school has taken part in our annual shoebox appeal. The kids are so keen to help others and get really excited about making the boxes, after watching the ADRA DVD and realizing how little the children of Africa have, many used their own pocket money to buy gifts.”
Hundreds of churches and volunteers made the 2012 appeal the most successful to date. A young child from Manchester stated, “We saw your video, and we wanted to do shoeboxes to make more little kids happy.” Said another volunteer, “When I saw the number of shoeboxes being delivered, it was only then I realized how big the shoebox appeal has become.”
“The response from our members and friends has been phenomenal,” states appeal coordinator, Godwin Benjamin. His thanks go not just to the donors, “but also the volunteers who packed boxes at the collection points and those who helped to unload the trucks and pack the two containers. All your efforts were greatly appreciated.”
[Victor Hulbert, BUC News/tedNEWS]
Launching of FM program in hyderabad, india
Pune, India—November 13, 2012, was a historic day in the life of Adventist Media Centre, Pune, India. Adventist World Radio, along with the Adventist Media Centre in Pune, launched its first FM program “Vennela” in the Telugu Language (the largest spoken language in India) in the city of Hyderabad. Thus far, the Adventist Media Centre airs shortwave programs in eight Indian languages.
The program will be aired on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday between 5:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the frequency of 102.8 FM. It consists of 30 minutes of general topics. The intention of the program is to make the church audible and visible in the society.
[N. Ashok Kumar, producer of FM Telugu]