As part our series of articles and panel discussions about race relations in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, The Compass Magazine is featuring initiatives that bring together church members from different conferences and ethnic groups for the purpose of ministry.
We hope these stories will inspire other local churches and conferences to find creative ways to work together. Whether barriers between ethnic groups have been created through prejudice, ignorance, cultural/language differences, structural separation, or mere habit, we believe that our church’s mission will be strengthened as we intentionally work together in unity whenever possible.
Fayetteville, North Carolina
Two years ago, churches from the South Atlantic Conference and the Carolina Conference founded a jointly operated school, replacing the two struggling church schools in the city. Greater Fayetteville Adventist Academy provides quality Christian education for students from four local churches representing multiple ethnic groups—but the blessings of unity have gone far beyond the classroom.
Video interview: GFAA leaders speak out on the impact the unified school has had on the students, on the local churches, and even at the conference level.
St. Louis Metro Area, Missouri/Illinois
Collaboration in evangelism was the goal that led to the founding of Adventist Ministers and Pastors of St. Louis in 2011. Church members and leaders from four different conferences and 14 churches in the St. Louis metro area minister together to the spiritual needs of the community. With the St. Louis area now at the epicenter of racial tensions in America due to the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Adventists are setting an example of how Christ can bridge racial divides.
Video interview: St. Louis pastors discuss why joint evangelism is such a powerful testimony to the community and share how churches in other areas can start a similar movement.
Race Relations Series Wraps Up This Sabbath
Our final “It Is Time to Talk” live broadcast will take place this Sabbath, May 21, from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. Eastern Time. Our panelists will discuss recommendations on how the Seventh-day Adventist Church in North America can move forward toward greater racial/ethnic unity. We will look at how individual members, local churches, and administrators/institutional leaders can contribute to progress in this area.