May 16, 2012

Adventists Best Peers in Johns Hopkins Diabetes Study

In 2009 the Johns Hopkins Center for Nutrition, in partnership with the American Diabetes Association, embarked on studying 15 African-American churches in Baltimore to see if churches could help members reduce their risk factors for diabetes. The Healthy Bodies Healthy Souls study included the Allegheny East Conference churches of United in Christ, Cherry Hill and Miracle Temple.

The first phase of the study involved all churches participating in health screenings and completing a health questionnaire that evaluated frequency of food consumption, food purchase and preparation and physical activities. In the second phase of the study, churches were charged with creating a collaborative intervention plan for their congregations. Results from the study were recently released and found that the cohort involving the Seventh-day Adventist churches did better than the cohorts involving other denominations in the areas of health outcomes, behavior and physical activity. Pictured are members of United in Christ discussing primary barriers to healthy eating.—Story by Myrtle Evans


Senior County Official Praises Adventist Contributions

Last Friday 22 members of the Adventist Community Action Council—representing Seventh-day Adventist churches, schools and hospitals located in and around Montgomery County, Maryland—met with Michael L. Subin (pictured), executive director for the county’s Criminal Justice Coordinating Commission. During the meeting, he called the Adventist educational system “outstanding” and said, “It adds a lot to our county.” He also noted that Adventist schools relieve the stress on the county’s school system, and praised Adventist HealthCare, the second largest employer in the county, for providing quality jobs. Subin stressed the importance of having strong partnerships with faith-based organizations, such as Adventists.

Every other month the group gathers at Washington Adventist Hospital in Takoma Park, Md., to have breakfast with a community leader. “What we are finding is that the majority of our secular visitors have no clue the concentration of Adventists that exist here,” says Erwin Mack, a member of Potomac Conference’s Sligo church in Takoma Park, who co-founded the council seven years ago. At these meetings, “we find out what their needs are, and they get to know who we are and what we have to offer that they can use as resources.”—Story by Taashi Rowe

Ohio Ministry University Draws Attendees From Three Conferences

After six years, Ohio Conference’s Ohio Ministry University (OMU) continues to draw lay leaders, pastors and those interested in growing their church. This year was no exception with 188 registered guests from across Ohio and several from the Allegheny West and Pennsylvania conferences at the event in Dublin.

Workshops as well as featured speakers struck a chord with attendees, focusing on one goal: how to fill empty pews. Paul Richardson, Reconnecting Ministries coordinator for the North American Division and executive director of the Center for Creative Ministry, shared practical ideas and resources about how local churches can reconnect with inactive and former members. Ron Whitehead, director of the Center for Youth Evangelism (Mich.), defined a church of refuge and explained how local churches can reach and engage teens and young adults.

To listen to and view presentations from the event, visit and select Ohio Ministry University under the Annual Events link.—Story by Heidi Shoemaker

Potomac’s Radio Programs Impact Station Owners, Community

Airing six times a week, Acción Adventista and Ondas de Esperanza, two radio ministries spearheaded by Jose Esposito (pictured), director of Potomac Conference’s Hispanic Ministries, should cost more than $1,000 a month to broadcast in the Richmond, Va., area. However, owners of Radio Ponder expressed that they have been blessed by the programs and now ask for just $200 each month.

Geared toward the Hispanic church community, the 60-minute program, Ondas de Esperanza, which airs on Saturdays, starts with a biblical message. During the program, listeners can call the station and share their praise and prayer requests, announce church events and request rides to church services and activities. The program closes with a story time for children. Acción Adventista, which can be heard live on, airs Monday through Friday and is filled with an inspirational message and music.


El programa radial del Potomac impacta los propietarios de la estación y a la comunidad

Acción Adventista y Ondas de Esperanza, transmitidas seis veces por semana, son dos ministerios de radio encabezados por José Esposito (fotografiados a la derecha), director de los ministerios hispanos de Potomac Conference], que deberían costar más de $1,000 USD al mes para difundir en el área de Richmond, Va. Sin embargo, los propietarios de Radio Ponder expresaron que los programas han sido de bendición para ellos, y ahora solamente piden $200 cada mes.

El programa sabático, Ondas de Esperanza, de sesenta minutos de duración, está dirigido a la comunidad de la iglesia hispana, y comienza con un mensaje bíblico. Durante el programa, los oyentes pueden llamar a la estación y compartir sus alabanzas y peticiones de oración, anunciar actividades de la iglesia y pedir transporte a los servicios y actividades de la iglesia. El programa concluye con Tu Historia Preferida para los niños. Acción Adventista se puede escuchar en vivo en, y se transmite de lunes a viernes. Es un programa menos interactivo lleno de mensajes y músicas inspiradoras.


Young Adult Discovers Philadelphia Church Plant In North Carolina

At the invitation of his co-worker, Justin McLaughlin, a young adult from Philadelphia, attended Just Claim it, the third annual North American Division youth prayer conference held this spring in Greensboro, N.C. One morning Tara VinCross, pastor of Pennsylvannia Conference’s Chestnut Hill church in Philadelphia, presented a seminar and showed a video showcasing their REACH Philadelphia church plant, which is led by young adults ministering to their peers. After the seminar, McLaughlin approached VinCross and said, “This is what I've been waiting for. I want to join your church.”

VinCross baptized him in the Sheraton Hotel pool on Sabbath morning, surrounded by a dozen members of the REACH group who hugged, supported and welcomed him into the fellowship. VinCross reports that McLaughlin has been involved in the REACH Philadelphia community since the day they got back from North Carolina. He is pictured with pastors Manny Cruz, North American Division associate Youth Ministries director, and VinCross.

Highland View Academy Board Appoints New Principal

Gregg Cain, MDiv, recently accepted the invitation of the Highland View Academy (HVA) Board of Trustees to be the new principal of the Hagerstown, Md.-academy beginning July 1.

“His experience in secondary education administration will be a strong asset in our ongoing pursuit of the highest standards on all levels at Highland View Academy,” says Rick Remmers, Chesapeake Conference president.

Cain (pictured with his wife, Krista) comes from the Forest Lake Academy in Florida where, for six years, he was vice principal for Student Services. In addition to his experience teaching at the elementary, high school and college levels, he served as a youth pastor for 10 years and as an athletic director for summer softball and baseball leagues. He is also certified in educational coaching for the purpose of administrative and staff team building in an educational setting.

“I look forward to serving the needs of students and families alike as our HVA team works together to continue its long-standing commitment to academic excellence,” Cain says.—Story by Samantha Young

Brinklow Member Snags White House Internship

This spring Jennifer N. Williams, who attends Allegheny East Conference’s Emmanuel-Brinklow church in Ashton, Md., served as a White House intern in Vice President Joe Biden’s Domestic Policy Office.

Thousands apply for these internships and the recent graduate of Howard University School of Law in Washington, D.C., won out. In her capacity as a White House intern, Williams conducted research about various domestic policy issues, including healthcare. She also spent a great deal of time doing research on the government’s policies regarding contraceptives and religious liberty, education and alternative energy sources.

According to Williams, a 2005 graduate of Oakwood University (Ala.), “Serving in the White House has been both humbling and incredibly enlightening. I feel blessed and very grateful to have had this opportunity, especially at this significant moment in our nation’s history.”—Story by Sherman Rogers

End Quote: Earning the Right to Tell Jesus’ Story

“We can no longer rely on programs alone to attract people to Jesus. We have to earn the right to tell the story of Jesus. And we can do that through building relationships. Rather than figure out how to attract people to the church, we are trying to figure out how to get people into the world. Over the years, Adventists have tended to be isolated from their communities, but we must get involved in the pain and brokenness of the world. This was Jesus’ method. We are now learning how to be in the world but not of the world.

The mission in the North American Division is not about a quick fix but about building long-term relationships. I wish I could tell you we have figured it all out, but we are learning and trusting Jesus to build up His church. God is in our communities long before we get there. Our challenge is to link up with Him.”—Raj Attiken, Ohio Conference president, shared his views on outreach in the United States while at the Bible Auditorium church in Hong Kong

Click here for a complete listing of upcoming events around the Columbia Union Conference.

May 17-19: A Hispanic Evangelistic Campaign, featuring well-known evangelist Pastor Alejandro Bullón 6:30 p.m., on May 17 and 18 at the Spencerville church, which is located at 16325 New Hampshire Avenue in Silver Spring, Md., On Sabbath, May 19, the meeting moves to Long Reach High School at 6101 Old Dobbin Lane in Columbia, Maryland, and begins at 8:30 a.m. Come and be blessed. For more details, call (410) 995-1910.

July 25-29: The Allegheny East and New Jersey conferences will be sponsoring the Alliance of Prison Ministry Organizations and Affiliates (APMOA) 22nd annual convention in East Rutherford, N.J. Themed “Compassion in Action: Building Bridges of Hope,” there will more than 25 Prison Ministries and community services workshops. Speakers will include C.D. Brooks, former speaker/director for the Breath of Life broadcast; José H. Cortés, New Jersey Conference president; J. Alfred Johnson II, director of Adult Ministries for the North American Division; and Charles Cheatham, Allegheny East Conference president. For more information or to register, click here or call (201) 896-0500.

August 19-September 2: Mountain View Conference’s fourth annual Wellness Camp will take place at the Valley Vista Adventist Center in Huttonsville, W.Va. For an early bird rate of $695, payments are due by July 2. Early bird spouses pay $550 and early bird Wellness Camp alumni only pay $500.

Those who meet the regular deadline of July 16 will pay $795 plus $650 for spouses. Wellness Camp alumni who meet the regular deadline will pay $600. For more information, call the conference office at (304) 422-4581 or visit and click the “Health Ministries" link.

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