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"Adventists are good citizens" - President Wilson visits Tahiti and Indonesia

"Adventists are good citizens" - President Wilson visits Tahiti and Indonesia

Jakarta, capital of Indonesia

Silver Spring, USA [ANN; Adventist Review; CD EUDNews]. "Authentic spirituality is at the core of the Seventh-day Adventist message", church President Ted N. C. Wilson said during an official visit with the leader of French Polynesia last week. The Advent

February 19, 2013 | ANN; Adventist Review; Andreas Mazza; CD EUDNews;

Silver Spring, USA [ANN; Adventist Review; CD EUDNews]. "Authentic spirituality is at the core of the Seventh-day Adventist message", church President Ted N. C. Wilson said during an official visit with the leader of French Polynesia last week. The Adventist world church leader met with President Oscar Temaru and other French Polynesian government officials at the president’s office in Papeete, Tahiti, while on a tour of the South Pacific island groups.

President Temaru said he was grateful for the positive impact the Adventist Church has on French Polynesia, adding that Adventists are “good citizens.” Wilson, speaking in French, expressed appreciation for the religious liberty granted by the government of French Polynesia. As an overseas country of France, the island groups are given considerable autonomy, allowing for greater religious freedom than granted by laws in France.

Later in their conversation, Wilson illustrated the Adventist Church’s belief in holistic living. Gesturing toward a table in the president’s office, he said, “When one leg is missing, the table can’t stand. Similarly, people need their spiritual, physical, mental and social needs met. We believe God wants us to develop all of these attributes in harmony.”

Before praying with Temaru and his senior staff, Wilson read Micah 6:8, a Bible verse he has previously called a blueprint for leadership. The Old Testament passage encourages justice, mercy and humility. “That is the wish God has for you, your colleagues and your staff,” he said.

During his Sabbath sermon, Wilson urged an audience of close to 4,000 to prioritize spiritual development, citing the Old Testament story of Elijah, who advocated a return to godliness. “God is calling us to be Elijahs in our modern world,” Wilson said.

Local Adventist Church leaders credited the strong turnout to members who brought their friends and neighbors to the rally. There are about 4,600 Adventists in French Polynesia, spread over some 130 islands.The Adventist Church operates 37 churches in French Polynesia, as well as a college and media center.

Indonesia

"It is an honor for us to be able to be in Indonesia and a good experience to meet with the president to share the views of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in helping the people," Pastor Ted N.C. Wilson, president of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, said to reporters after an audience with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono at the Halim Perdanakusuma Air Base, near the capital of Jakarta, on February 12, 2013.

Wilson is visiting Indonesia as part of celebrations of more than a century of Seventh-day Adventist work in the country. There are 1,547 Adventist congregations in Indonesia, and approximately 250,000 baptized members in the nation, whose majority population is Muslim.

"We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute in this country, and I am grateful to the President for the religious freedom granted to groups in Indonesia," Wilson added. “It's amazing to hear that Indonesia is a country with the second highest economic growth. But President Yudhoyono is also aware of the need to do more things,” for his people, Wilson explained. The General Conference president said the church is committed to help in various ways, whether social, physical, emotional, and spiritual, as well as assisting in disaster relief on the island of Sumatra after the 2004 tsunami. “We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute in this country,” he said.


The Seventh-day Adventist Church operates a number of facilities that serve the Indonesian people, including Adventist Hospitals in Bandung, Bandar Lampung, Manado and Medan. The church also operates 372 schools and three universities in Indonesia. "We hope to help the people of Indonesia to solve a number of problems. God understands what is best for our lives," he concluded. Nancy V. Wilson joined her husband in the visit.

To learn more about Ted Wilson's trips, please visit the web page: http://perspectives.adventist.org/

pictures: 1. T. Wilson with President Temaru (ANN); 2. T. Wilson with his wife Nancy (GC); 3. T. Wilson with President Yudhoyono (AR); 4. Gabriel Maurer, EUD executive secretary, Bruno Vertallier, EUD President, Ted Wilson, GC President, Nancy Wilson and Mark Finley during a recent meeting in Germany;

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