The administrative work of the Executive Committee of the Seventh-day Adventist Inter-European Region (EUD) that meets annually, during the first weekend of November, is composed of a presentation of leadership training and reports from the different departments.
This year, the main invitee was Dr. Angel Rodriguez, the former director of the Bible Research Institute of the General Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church (GC). Dr. Rodriguez’s presentation theme was Issues in Adventist Eschatology, a central theme for Adventists whose reason for being is based on the proclamation of Jesus’s second return, as highlighted even in their name.
“Jesus is coming back, and He will not delay,” affirmed Rodriguez, calling attention back to an evangelism focused on transmitting hope in a world sinking in continuous corruption.
A second theme presented this year dealt with a model of leadership based on the example left by Jesus. This theme was presented by Claude Richli, GC Associate Secretary.
“Jesus’ ministry began with his baptism,” explained Richli. “He made a public commitment identifying himself with his people. His focus was a commitment to His Father’s mission and will.” Leaders of the church are invited to follow this example of choices and commitment.
The third theme was presented by Petras Bahadur, Global Center for Adventist Muslim Relations Director at GC level. The theme was Facilitating Muslims in Europe to cross the bridge. In a time where Muslims are viewed with suspicion for the acts of terrorism carried out by obviously Muslim groups who, yet, have nothing in common with the sincere spirit of Muslims, Bahadur invites all to apply an Appreciation Approach where the driving force is love for Muslims, for who they are and can become.
“For this, we are invited to build a bridge in order to bid them to follow Jesus,” challenged Bahadur.
Adventist Mission reported the interesting development in the EUD territory of the Urban Centers of Influence (UCI). In a secularized territory such as Europe, there is no lack of needs that could be satisfied by a Church that is conscious of the burdens of the society in which it lives. Even if only in small percentages, the people who could benefit from the services offered by the UCI are satisfied and, in the best of circumstances, collaborative.
Children’s Ministry presented the contribution given for the celebration of the Reformation. The project provided instructional material that would help children to understand the value of the Reform.
Special Needs Ministry expressed once again that it seeks to bring wholeness to all in a world that is broken. A sense of “wholeness” is not dependent on the removal of one’s disability. It is a rediscovery of the completeness a person has in God. This ministry has a unique opportunity of not only proclaiming but also emphasizing the value and dignity of each person. The department continues to create awareness of the presence of people with disabilities in the society and in the church.
Communication presented the trailer of the docu-movie The Vision,a series of 10 documentary-movies that trace the origins of the Adventist movement in Europe, sharing the hardships, joys and vision of a Church committed to reaching the world. The production of this documentary necessitates a contribution from all those that would like to know the way the Church started with its missionary profile. Very soon, on the web page, there will be a post on how to contribute www.the-vision-series.org
Family Ministriesreminded all present that its primary purpose is to highlight the role and responsibility of families in the education of children for this earth and eternity. It also exists to provide training and resources that enhance the spiritual lives of families, as well as material for pre-marital and marital education including abuse prevention. The department also organizes family-friendly church services and programs. Training and special meetings are organized locally and at the international level.
The department also reminds all that 2019 will be the centenary of the existence of its ministry.
It also presented information once again on the Combined Women‘s, Family, Children‘s Ministries Convention that will be held September 18 - 22, 2019.
Finances. As per every year, the report of the treasurer included the budget for the next year (2018), the audit financial statement, the general report and other operational votes.
ShepherdessInternational proposed a new initiative in the Ministerial family: Adventist Pastors’ Kids Ministries:
The majority of unions and conferences sponsor an active ministry to pastoral spouses and families. But very few are dedicated to the pastors’ kids.
This proposal is intended to address the unique needs of pastors’ children while fostering their Christian growth with spiritual support through resources, training, and networking.
Women’sMinistries presented the report for the last year, but also the results of an educational training that improves the skills of women to serve the church and be involved in the mission. Several projects have been organized in these years by the department, and the director, Denise Hochstrasser, who has decided to end her mandate, leaves an interesting legacy to the new director. Words of recognition and thanksgiving from the President and the Secretary were addressed to Hochstrasser for her dedication to this ministry.
YouthMinistries report was presented by the former director, Stephan Sigg, and the new entry, Jonatan Tejel. Among the different projects organized by the department, a large contribution to the Reform Celebration has been prepared, helping young people to once again discover the wonderful message of the grace that Jesus reinforced with His mission. The department also prepared a special edition of the Biblical book of Romans, where focus has been placed on the preferred message of Martin Luther about justification by faith.
Still within the theme of the Reform Celebration, a special tour has been organized to visit some of the most important places where Reformer John Huss lived and worked.