Euro-Africa Region Mid-year Executive Committee. Some important presentations

Euro-Africa Region Mid-year Executive Committee. Some important presentations

Freudenstadt, May 21, 2012 [CD-EUD]. One of the highlights of the Executive Committee held in Freudenstadt, Germany, May 20-22, was the presentation of theology and history of the “Great Controversy”. Considering that this book is going to be promoted all

June 03, 2012 | CD-EUDnews; Pictures E.Diez

Freudenstadt, May 21, 2012 [CD-EUD]. One of the highlights of the Executive Committee held in Freudenstadt, Germany, May 20-22, was the presentation of theology and history of the “Great Controversy”. Considering that this book is going to be promoted all around the world as a missionary book, it was obvious for the Division leadership to give a special emphasis on its prominence.
Dr. Hans Gutierrez, dean of the Adventist University of Florence, Italy, and Dr. Frank Hasel, dean of Bogenhofen Adventist Seminar, Austria, presented 4 lectures that positively impressed the members of the executive.

“Great Controversy” project

In the first of his two presentations, Hanz Guttierrez elaborated on the process of how we got the final, present form of the book, starting with the vision of the Great Controversy and ending with the 1911 edition. The second lecture presented the theological richness of the book, emphasizing the unique contribution of Ellen G. White to the way Seventh-day Adventists understand the Bible, and especially its teaching on eschatology.

Frank Hasel painted a rich background of the grand vision concerning the Great Controversy between good and evil, sharing the reasons why this book had a special place in the life of its author, nearly costing her life. He also explored the benefits a worldview based on the great controversy concept can bring to the understanding of suffering and evil in our world, by conveying the hope that one day the sad history of human sinfulness will be over and we will have the chance to live in a completely renewed world.
Participants were led to look at the book in a new light, to appreciate the value and enjoy the reward that a fresh and attentive reading of it can bring.

Mission is the focus of the church, and a special time was reserved to present evangelistic projects.
Matthias Müller, EUD Media Center Stimme der Hoffnung director, shared the interesting success of the multiphase outreach project Simple Faith, developed on satellite broadcasting and Internet streaming. The program was presented in German, but it could be re-produced in other languages as well.
Global Mission, the department in charge of supervising evangelistic programs all around the world, is supporting different projects also in the countries of the Euro-Africa region. Among the projects presented, an interesting proposal came from France, where a different “house of prayer” will develop a mission in favor of Muslims that desire to know Jesus Christ better. In France as well as in other parts of Europe, there is an increasing Muslim population, and the intention is to also be ready to encounter their spiritual needs. “Money comes from the members and it would be good to inform the members how it is employed” said Virtiato Ferreira, Health Department director. The treasu

rer Norbert Zens confirmed that in the name of transparency we voted some time ago, the church will be informed accordingly. “The interest of the administration is to support and supervise the progress of the project,” Zens affirmed. A special web page for evangelistic projects will also be realized for this purpose.
According to the General Conference of the Seventh-day Adventists, all the worldwide regions are invited to select a “big city” in their territory to focus all the missionary efforts for 2014. New York will be the first “big city” outreach project model scheduled for 2013.
The EUD Committee recommends all Unions to select a city in their territory for 2014. This outreach is a church-member-oriented project, to involve them to develop a center of spiritual interest for residents of their city. The EUD is committed to give contributions for such projects.
Among the suggested “big city” in the EUD territory, Geneva, Switzerland, was selected for its special setting: more than 190 nationalities are represented, 40% of which are foreign, plus hundreds of international organizations and it is one of the most important locations of the Protestant Reform.
A long-term outreach program has already started in Geneva this year beginning January 2012, where large groups of members were involved in evangelistic campaigns, “evangelistic house groups”, Health Expo, concerts, seminars, and so on.
In Geneva there are 656 members attending 4 different ethnic churches. More than 2000 ex-Adventists live in Geneva, and this will be one of the most important focuses of the whole campaign. It is interesting to notice that at the end of this first impact, about 50 people asked to study the Bible. This seems to be the largest number ever for a country like Switzerland.

Marcus Czettl, Euro-Africa Associate Treasurer, presented an interesting reflection regarding an evangelistic campaign focused on creation. Based on the movie ‘Die Schöpfung – di Erde ist Zeuge – (The Creation - di earth as a witness) produced by Henry Stober, this evangelistic campaign gathered hundreds of visitors, who were invited to learn more about God's creation and to understand why evolution is not acceptable as a possible alternative. The churches in the german-speaking area have organized meetings in theaters and church members have paid for the ticket of the people they invited.
This initiative was seen as an excellent motivating means to invite the public to study the Bible with more consistency. An exhibition stand was organized for the occasion and the material is available to those requesting it.

Inter-ministries convention
An Inter-Ministries Convention is programmed for next March, 2013. The intention of such convention is the same as the one in 2008, with the difference that now all the ministries and departments are involved in the organization. The intention is to present a model of structure that improves the collaboration and integration of all departments of the church, applying the synergy and partnership modules focusing on the major goal: mission.
“Throughout the dynamics of discipleship, leadership and family setting,” said Paolo Benini, one of the organizer of this Convention, “we would like to involve church members to more effectively accomplish the mission entrusted by Jesus 2000 years ago.” The venue will be Torre Pedrera-Rimini, Italy, from March 14 to 17, 2013.
“Will we have concrete solutions or only ideas?” claimed Günther Machel, South German Union president. “The intention is not to solve all the problems, but to experience the dynamics of synergy in order to work as a team and not on our own,” replied Vertallier. And this has to start by the EUD departments that are already experiencing this methodology in order to give the idea of cooperation and not departmentalization. “I do not expect new methods from this Convention, but solutions on how to work together” concluded Gunter Machel.

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