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House of Hope Opens in Paris

House of Hope Opens in Paris

On the weekend of November 27-28, 2009, the North France Conference of Seventh-day Adventists - numbering more than eight thousands church members - celebrated the official opening of the House of Hope, a spiritual and cultural center located in Paris. P

December 03, 2009 | Jean-Paul Barquon

On the weekend of November 27-28, 2009, the North France Conference of Seventh-day Adventists - numbering more than eight thousands church members - celebrated the official opening of the House of Hope, a spiritual and cultural center located in Paris.

Purchased in 2005, the House of Hope facility was reconstructed in order to comply with regulations for public buildings and allow access to people with disabilities. The cost for the purchase and reconstruction of the House of Hope totaled 3 million Euros. The money was supplied from the building funds of the North France Conference and a special offering given by 20 million Adventists around the world.

The House of Hope is a meeting place to promote cultural diversity and help people discover the ways of God and of other people. Every Sabbath morning, four different Adventist congregations will share the facilities: the French speaking Church of Hope, the Romanian church, the Portuguese church and the Hispanic church. A Baptist congregation will rent the facilities on Sunday mornings. Each of these congregations has 80-100 members. The building has room for over 300 visitors. During the week, the center will offer a variety of biblical, social, educational and health programs in collaboration of a variety of partners.

During the opening ceremony on Friday, November 27th, the deputy mayor of Paris, Mr. Jean Tibeiri, said, "It's good that a church like yours is open to society. It's a good thing to have created a cultural and spiritual center, and I am delighted that a house like yours is situated in the Latin Quarter of the 5th district of Paris.”

The minister of the Baptist community that will use the center, Roger Abotsivia, expressed his hope that other similar “houses of hope” will be erected in France and also thanked the center's director, Philippe Leduc, for leading this initiative in the heart of Paris.

The President of the Adventist church in the Euro-Africa region, Bruno Vertallier, stated, "We want to live together with Christian hope in the heart of the city instead of with the stress that our society usually suffers.”

On Saturday, November 28, Adventist pastors from the Paris region gathered at the center for a religious ceremony. Officials from the Euro-Africa Division of Seventh-day Adventists, Franco-Belgian Union and North France Conference presented messages of exhortation and gratitude, and the "Crescendo" choir and others performed musical selections.

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