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I-CHANGE, U-CHANGE, WII-WERE-CHANGED

27 April 2011, Telford, United Kingdom [Victor Hulbert with Catherine Boldeau and Peter Jeynes, BUC News]   The crescendo of the Michael W Smith song filled the hall at Telford International Centre: "Crucified, laid behind a stone. You lived to die, Rejected and alone..."  It reflected the emotional intensity in the air as 500+ young adults found themselves challenged and inspired by the power of the resurrected Christ, at the BUC Youth Congress, organised by Des Boldeau, BUC Youth director.


Wilson Opens Spring Meeting Sermon With Call to Christ's Righteousness

'Our only hope' at history's close, Adventist world church leader says 12 April 2011, Huntsville, Alabama, United States [Mark A. Kellner, Adventist Review] Capping a morning of joyous singing, scripture contemplation and heartfelt prayer, Pastor Ted N. C. Wilson, president of the Seventh-day Adventist world church, delivered a call to seek Christ's "all-encompassing righteousness" at the Oakwood University Seventh-day Adventist Church in Huntsville, Alabama, United States today. The message came during Sabbath worship at the start of the Adventist world church's spring leadership meetings, being held at the Oakwood campus this year, instead of its usual location at the church's Silver Spring, Maryland, headquarters. "Christ's all-encompassing righteousness is our only hope as we rapidly come to the close of earth's history," Wilson said to an onsite congregation of approximately 2,100 as well as a live global television and Internet audience. "Seventh-day Adventists have been called to proclaim the truth as it is in Jesus. He and He alone is our salvation," he added. Wilson said Christ "calls us to accept His righteousness and to be empowered by the Holy Spirit to accomplish the last great work of proclaiming Christ, His righteousness, and His soon coming. This is the message that has been entrusted to the Seventh-day Adventist Church as His last-day remnant people."


Evangelism Reports Begin Spring Meeting Business Sessions

Council on Evangelism and Witness highlights regional outreach; Great Controversy book distribution preview 12 April 2011, Huntsville, Alabama, United States [Ansel Oliver, ANN] Top regional leaders of the Seventh-day Adventist world church shared reports on evangelism efforts in their territories during the Council on Evangelism and Witness, which lasted throughout the first morning of business at Spring Meeting on April 10. Presidents of many of the denomination's 13 world divisions highlighted how coordinated outreach approaches are leading people to join the church, while others supported an initiative to widely distribute versions of the book The Great Controversy, written by church co-founder Ellen G. White. One president shared the results of a public perception survey in his region. "That's risky if you're not secure," said Mark Finley, assistant to the president for evangelism. Finley led the presentations at McKee auditorium at Oakwood University in Huntsville, Alabama, United States, where some 130 members of the world church's Executive Committee met for two days of business meetings.


Adventist Leaders Stress Follow-up in Unresolved Audit Findings, Transparency in Administration

Discussion begins, to be continued in October; 2010 tithe tops $2 billion 12 April 2011, Huntsville, Alabama, United States [Mark A. Kellner, Adventist Review] World leaders of the Seventh-day Adventist world church stressed a continuing need for transparency and accountability in financial reporting during an April 10 business session of the denomination's Spring Meeting. "We need to be united and set the right tone as officers ... we must work together as a team, all the way through the system," said Adventist world church President Ted N.C. Wilson, responding to a report presented by world church Treasurer Robert E. Lemon and General Conference Auditing Services (GCAS) director Paul H. Douglas. The 12-page document on transparency -- the product of a task force composed of Lemon, Douglas, North American Division Treasurer Tom Evans and GCAS associate director Robyn W. Kajiura -- stressed concerns raised by the GCAS Board and its chairman, Jack L. Krogstad. Krogstad, a layman who holds the Union Pacific Endowed Chair in Accountancy at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, was recently an Academic Fellow in the Office of the Chief Accountant at the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Those concerns followed a GCAS report "which included the frequency of certain audit findings and the recurring unresolved nature of those findings," as stated in the document.


Mission Focus Highlight's Spring Meeting Opening

Business session to address finances, including transparency in accounting 09 April 2011, Huntsville, Alabama, United States [Ansel Oliver, ANN] Seventh-day Adventist leaders highlighted church mission, both within and outside its own walls, at the Friday night opening of Spring Meeting, one of the denomination's two major annual business meetings. Delegates also approved the meeting agenda as Sabbath began, before holding a spiritual service at McKee Auditorium at Oakwood University in Huntsville, Alabama, United States. Executive Secretary G. T. Ng called for mission efforts to not neglect people who are already members. Without many choosing to leave the church, world membership would now likely be 24 million instead of the nearly 17-million at present, Ng said.


Recommitment to Freedom of Belief Urged at Annual Religious Liberty Event in Washington

Recent assassination of religious freedom advocate Bhatti a reminder for renewed support 07 April 2011, Washington, D.C. [Bettina Krause/IRLA, ANN] Last month's assassination of Pakistani cabinet minister and religious freedom advocate Shahbaz Bhatti added a somber note to the April 5 Religious Liberty Dinner in Washington, D.C. More than 200 government officials, ambassadors, religious leaders and religious liberty advocates stood for a minute of silence to honor Bhatti and the many others around the world who over the past year have suffered persecution, imprisonment, or death for their faith.


Adventists Are Fastest-Growing Denomination In North America

01 April 2011 USA [Global News, sizly.com] The Seventh-Day Adventist Church has long been known for quaint beliefs and rigid regulations, but surprisingly it is the fastest-growing Christian denomination in North America at the moment. Data shows Seventh-Day Adventism growing by 2.5% in North America annually, whereas Southern Baptists and other denominations are declining. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, or Mormons, registered 1.4 percent growth. Their denomination also prioritizes numeric growth. Observers are surprised by the gains being posted by Adventism, known for resting on the Sabbath, and adhering to Old Testament dietary laws, including vegetarianism.


Remembrance: McFarland Helped Millions Quit Smoking with Five-day Plan

24 Mar 2011, Loma Linda, California, United States [Ansel Oliver, ANN] Dr. J. Wayne McFarland, a Seventh-day Adventist health advocate who co-authored the Five Day Plan to Stop Smoking, which drew millions to seminars in the 1960s, died March 14 at a retirement facility in Loma Linda, California. He was 97. Dr. J. Wayne McFarland helped millions quit smoking as the co-author of the Five Day Plan to Stop Smoking. Above, he addresses a luncheon at the Sheraton-Chicago hotel in 1969. [photo courtesy McFarland family]



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