October 26, 2011

New Jersey Conference Members Help Paterson Flood Victims

“The disaster has passed but winter is coming and they still need blankets, coats, jackets, sweaters and so much more,” said Ricardo Cala, pastor of the Paterson Temple Spanish church in New Jersey. “In the name of God first and then the Seventh-day Adventist Church and the New Jersey Conference, we are here to help.”

Cala was one of several church members who recently joined the conference’s Adventist Community Services (ACS) Disaster Response team, under the leadership of Claudia Ramirez, to provide food and clothing to 175 families in Paterson. Many families were driven from their homes after rains from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee caused the Passaic River to rise and flood nearby homes in late August and early September. Some had  flood damage and no electricity for up to 15 days.While Paterson residents received initial aid and many are back in their homes, the flooding has left a mark on the community. Many are still struggling to repair their homes and their lives.—Story and photo by Jim Greene



Washington Adventist University Named One of The Best

The U.S. News & World Report recently ranked, for the first time, Washington Adventist University (WAU) in Takoma Park, Md., in the first tier of Best Colleges in the North Region. “It is certainly an honor to be ranked among some of the top colleges and universities in this region,” says Weymouth Spence (pictured), EdD, president. “It is a result of the significant contributions and hard work of our faculty and staff. It is an even greater honor to know that along with the U.S News & World Report ranking, an increasing number of parents and students are discovering that WAU is a viable and rewarding option for a Christian education.”—Story by WAU Staff

Spring Valley’s Volleyball Team Aims to Stop Human Trafficking

This year Spring Valley Academy’s (SVA) Girls Varsity Volleyball team members are doing their part to prevent global human trafficking of girls their age who fall victim to the sex slave industry. Their interest originated from the Centerville, Ohio-based school’s fall week of prayer theme “Do Hard Things,” which inspired them to do something for others. They discovered the Somaly Mam Foundation, which works to eradicate human trafficking, liberate its victims and empower survivors.

To raise funds for the foundation, the girls run bake sales before all home volleyball games. “And, in lieu of Senior Night, we have decided to make the evening a fundraiser night with all proceeds going direct to the Somaly Mam Foundation,” says sophomore Natalie Hotz. These ladies not only have a new perspective on the meaning of teamwork, but also how easy it is to “Do Hard Things” after seeing a need.—Story by Vicki Swetnam

Pittsburgh Food Festival Raises Monies for Gambia and Kenya

Pennsylvania Conference’s Pittsburgh church and their Pathfinder club recently sponsored their eighth annual international food festival featuring foods from Ghana, Slovakia, Korea, China, the Philippines, India, Ecuador, Germany and America. The festival also included sales of handmade crafts and outdoor activities for children, such as a train ride, jumping castle and darts.

In the end, the church raised more than $1,000. The funds will be sent to ADRA, which will ensure that students in Gambia will get school desks and chairs and child-headed households in Kenya will get the resources they need. Monies from the craft table will enable Pathfinders to attend the 2014 International Camporee in OshKosh, Wis.—Story by Donna A. Igersheim; Photos by Fred Munson

Kettering Adventist HealthCare Sponsors Breast Cancer Walk

For the last few years, Kettering Adventist HealthCare (KAHC) in Kettering, Ohio, has been a major sponsor of the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk. At this year’s walk, KAHC employees distributed pink roses with information cards about early detection to the approximately 5,000 walkers.

“Many women feel touched to receive a rose, and it is important for us to get out the message to get yearly checks,” explained Sue Brake, manager of the Kettering Breast Evaluation Center. The walk was an appropriate October celebration as it is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast Cancer is the second leading cause of death among women.—Story by Christina Keresoma

G.E. Peters Students Share Evidence of God’s Love

With the topic “What Evidence is There of God’s Love In Spite of Weather Changes?” seven students participated in the fifth annual G.E. Peters Adventist School Oratorical Contest in Hyattsville, Md. Marva Shand McIntosh, co-organizer and a member of Allegheny East Conference’s Metropolitan church, which shares a campus with the school, says the contest is not only a form of leadership training, but often serves as a springboard to other public speaking activities.

Twelve-year-old Teneé Stevenson (left), a seventh-grader, placed first in the contest. Her secret? “Pray before you speak, listen to your parents and look at something specific in the crowd.” Eighth-grader Mesha Lewis (center), who placed third, says she thought about how the recent disasters could cause people to think God’s not there, but she knows “He’s always there, and He explains it in His Word that He loves us and wont ever stop.” Mike Lewis, a 10th-grader who came in second place, said his speech was not only about the weather, but about overcoming the storms that can happen in anyone’s life.—Story and photo by Taashi Rowe

Highland View Academy’s First 5K Draws 100 Runners

On a recent fall day in Western Maryland, when more than 100 runners participated in the first Highland View Academy (HVA) Spirit Run. While HVA’s cross country team participated in the 5K race, runners also came from all over the tri-state area to support the Hagerstown, Md.-school, including Washington Adventist University’s cross country team, Smithsburg High School’s cross country team, home school groups and HVA alumni.

Steve Gatz (pictured presenting an award to junior Anna Kim), former HVA boys dean and physical education teacher, organized the event to promote healthy living. “Be healthy, exercise and make it a lifestyle,” he told the crowd. This “is the only body God gave you. It is your God-given responsibility to take the best care of it!” In conjunction with the race, local churches and families hosted a health fair featuring healthy living tips, food tastings and recipes.—Story by Renee Williams

Update: Feitosa Accepts Chesapeake Secretary Post

Last week we reported that Chesapeake Conference’s Executive Committee named Kleyton Feitosa their executive secretary. After taking time to think about the appointment, Feitosa accepted the post and is already transitioning to his new role. Read more about him.

Liberty Member Teaches Kids About Halloween

It was around October, when Denise Hayden, or “Aunt Nisi” as she is affectionately called, overheard the neighborhood kids talking about what they would wear for Halloween. Because she often took them to church, one of the kids asked, “Aunt Nisi, how do [Seventh-day Adventists] celebrate Halloween?” It was this experience that inspired Hayden, a member of Allegheny East Conference’s Liberty church in Baltimore, to create the tract Aunt Nisi … How do Christians Celebrate Halloween, Trick or Treat?

In a language that kids can understand, Hayden, who is also president of the Columbia Union Conference’s chapter of Adventist-laymen’s Services & Industries, answers multiple questions about the holiday’s history, etymology and traditions and how it conflicts with a Christian worldview. Order the tract from the Potomac Book and Health Food Store in Silver Spring, Md., by calling (800) 325-8492 and ask for Paul at extension 3015. Or call the order department at extension 3008.


October 28: Join Metro Area Adventist Young Adults (MAAYA) in conjunction with Miracle Temple Drama Ministry at 7:30 p.m., for “Beware of Angels,” a dramatic presentation in which God’s children wrestle with doing the unimaginable for Jesus. Spiritual viewer discretion is advised. The play will be held at Miracle Temple, which is located at 100 South Rock Glen Road in Baltimore. For more information, contact Pastor Moses Eli at (856) 362-1227 (mosese@hotmail.com) or Trevor Fraser at (909) 648-4955 (trevorfraserdds@gmail.com).

October 29: Power to Financial Freedom
Restoration Praise Center in Lanham, Md., will be hosting “The Power to Prosper Financial Seminar” from 7-9 p.m. This event is an outreach tool to promote financial improvement. Michelle Singletary, Washington Post columnist and author of the book The Power to Prosper: 21 Days to Financial Freedom, will be at the church to offer business budgeting and personal finance consultations. Email stewardship@rpcsda.org to pre-register.

October 29: The Victory Experience debuts “Healing for the Soul,” a Christian production with music, dramatic presentations and sharing personal testimonies at the Dupont Park church located at 3985 Massachusetts Ave., SE, Washington, D.C. This free program begins at 5:30 pm.

October 29: WGTS 91.9 FM will celebrate the ministry of radio host Gerry Fuller, DDS, who served the station for 45 years. The program, which starts at 6 p.m., will include performances by the National Christian Choir and tributes to Fuller, will be held at Sligo church located at 7700 Carroll Avenue in Takoma Park, Md. The event is free and open to the public.

October 30: The Adventist Choice College Fair and Financial Workshop will be held at the Jerusalem French church in Philadelphia from 1-3:30 p.m. All 14 accredited Adventist colleges and universities in the United States will be represented. Students can attend a college financial planning workshop to learn how a Christian education is affordable, apply for free to the colleges (at the event only) and meet with admissions counselors. More details are available at www.AdventistColleges.org. Questions? Contact Rachelle Martinez, fair coordinator, at (215) 510-3361, or email rmrachellemartinez@gmail.com.

November 4-6: Allegheny East Conference’s Hispanic Women’s Ministries Retreat will be held in Lancaster, Pa. For more information, contact Dolores Orellana at (717) 343-2968.

Noviembre 4-6: El Ministerio de Mujeres de la Conferencia de Allegheny tendrá su retiro de damas en Lancaster, Pa. Para mayor información, llame a Dolores Orellana.

November 6: The New Jersey Conference will host the grand opening of Revive, at its book and health food store, at 10 a.m. The new store is located in the conference building at 2303 Brunswick Avenue in Lawrenceville, N.J.

November 11 - 13: Potomac Conference Hosts iThirst, a spiritual retreat for the collegiate and young adult community. The retreat will be held at Camp Blue Ridge in Montebello, Va. The cost is $99 per person. Registration will be limited to 50 participants. The final deadline for registration is Thursday, November 3. Click here to download the registration form. For more information, contact the conference’s Department for Youth Ministries at (540) 886-0771 or email youth@pcsda.org. You can also fax the registration form to (540) 886-5734.

November 12: The Capitol Hill church’s Second Annual Deacon’s Ball will be held at the Camelot Pavilion in Largo, Md. This formal attire event will include thank-you recognitions, lively entertainment, a delicious meal and great fellowship. Tickets are $60 per person. Pay online, by cash or check. Please make checks payable to the “Capitol Hill Church” with “Deacon’s Ball” in the memo. Payment is due by October 29.

For more news and up-to-date information from the Columbia Union Conference, visit columbiaunion.org

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Taashi Rowe, Visitor News Bulletin Editor 
5427 Twin Knolls Road, Columbia, MD 21045

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