1. PRAYING FOR THE NORTH AMERICAN DIVISION AND THE ELECTION OF ITS NEW PRESIDENT
The Seventh day Adventist Church was a prophetic movement of destiny as Christ’s remnant church to reach a world with the everlasting gospel during this time of the end. It began in North America with a fledgling group of believers who embraced the beautiful and biblical message of a soon coming Savior.
As faithfulness to the truths of God’s Word became the foundation of its conviction, God guided this church to encircle the globe with over 22 million members commissioned to carry a sacred message and mission of apocalyptic urgency.
Today, the church you and I belong to has 13 world divisions. We are members of the North American Division of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists -- the mother division that initially gave birth to the expansion and existence of all the other world divisions – committed to reaching every heart for Heaven. The North American Division is made up of over 1,254,000 members in the United States, Canada, Bermuda, St. Pierre and Miquelon, Guam, Wake Island, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia.
It is organized into 9 large sections known as union conference territories. We belong to the Southern Union Conference – the largest union conference in this division. These union conferences are then further organized into 59 smaller local conferences and missions. We, of course, belong to the Carolina Conference with a membership of over 24,000 precious lives who have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ and the message of His end-time church.
Although the Seventh-day Adventist Church was formally organized in 1863, there have only been 4 elected presidents of the North American Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church [NAD] since it was established. These four include:
This month we will say farewell to our current NAD President Dan Jackson and our First Lady, Donna Jackson as they retire from their 10 faithful years of service to Christ and His church in North America.
Dan and Donna have been dear friends to both Carole and me during the past 9 years that I have served you as my church family in the Carolinas. We wish them God’s special blessings as they transition to a more relaxed pace of life.
Tuesday – July 7, 2020 – There will be a special election of a new President for the North American Division of the Seventh-day Church. Please join us in prayer for the Holy Spirit’s blessing and direction of this process and Heaven’s anointing of the sacred calling in our new leader’s life and ministry to our church.
Whoever this leader may be, I am pleading that we come together in a spirit of oneness and unity – uplifting this individual with our prayers of blessing and words of kind encouragement as he shoulders the sacred mantle of leadership for our home division of God’s remnant church.
2. PRAYING FOR OUR 2020 EVANGELISM FUNDING INITIATIVE
One of the disappointing chapters of 2020, fostered by the enemy of mankind through the COVID-19 pandemic, was the cancellation of our annual camp meeting at one of the most beautiful settings – lovely Lake Junaluska. Camp meeting is a time of spiritual renewal, social fellowship, especially of Adventist believers, families and friends. It is a time to grow in our walk with Christ and nurture the gifts of His Spirit in what we learn and implement in our service for His church.
Camp meeting is also the biggest boost to the Carolina Conference in raising evangelism funds to assist our 167 Churches and Companies in keeping the primary mission of reaching every heart for Heaven with the end-time truths Christ has called us to proclaim. Acts 13:47 reminds us of Christ’s command to every faithful disciple.
“For the Lord gave us this command when he said, ‘I have made you a light to the Gentiles, to bring Salvation to the farthest corners of the earth.’ ”
Acts 13:47 (NLT)
When we as a church neglect or minimize this command of Christ, we fail in the purpose of our existence and miss out on our prophetic calling to the world.
This month, I along with my fellow officers, the Ministerial Council and the Communications Department will develop a mailing to every Adventist home of the Carolina Conference. It is an invitation to provide us with a boost and hopefully a surge to go above and beyond what we expect – to multiply the dollars of fishes and loaves and feed thousands upon thousands with food left over in touching hungry hearts with the love of Christ.
When we personally recognize the enormous sacrifice that Jesus made for each of us, we will be overwhelmed by His love and will be compelled to do all that we can with the means He has provided for us to share what He has done in our own lives.
Please pray that the Holy Spirit will touch the hearts of every home as they receive, at the end of August, this invitation to participate in the greatest work ever entrusted to us as followers of the Lord. By God’s grace, may Carolina experience another miracle of raising a million dollars for evangelism, as well as witness a record breaking thousand souls to join the family of God in 2021 and every year thereafter. Above all else it’s time to pray for the outpouring of the Latter Rain so we can witness a finished work and soon be home with our Savior!
3. PRAYING FOR OUR PASTORS & THEIR CHURCH DISTRICTS
Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, these words of encouragement were penned for our churches: “Ask of me, and I will answer your requests. The promise is made on condition that the united prayers of the church are offered, and in answer to these prayers there may be expected a power greater than that which comes in answer to private prayer. The power given will be proportionate to the unity of the members and their love for God and for one another.” [9MR, 303]
Praying for our pastors is very important. They are serving God and the attacks of the enemy are relentless. They must be covered in our prayers on a daily basis.
Our prayers should be personalized by saying the title of pastor along with their name since they hold a position of sacred trust for God’s remnant church.
Why not pray specifically for our pastors by name using these seven needs and scriptural promises:
For Protection from Satan — "Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour." (1 Peter 5:8)
For Protection from Our Own Sinful Hearts — "But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death." (James 1:14-15)
For Deep Spiritual Encouragement — "For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine." (Romans 1:11-12)
For Wisdom — "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him." (James 1:5)
For Doctrinal Faithfulness — "By the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, guard the good deposit entrusted to you." (2 Timothy 1:14)
For A Healthy Body — "But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others, I myself should be disqualified." (1 Corinthians 9:27)
For A Strong Marriage & Family — "Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church." (1 Timothy 3:2-6)
PASTOR CHURCH(ES); COMPANIES & GROUPS
1. Marion Miller....................................................................................................................Pastor
Waynesville SDA Church
Sylva SDA Church
2. Jose Montenegro............................................................................................................Pastor
Spartanburg Spanish SDA Church
Greenville SC Spanish SDA Church
Boiling Springs Spanish SDA Company
Forest City Spanish SDA Group
3. Oscar Montes..................................................................................................................Pastor
Lincolnton SDA Church
Shelby SDA Church
Shelby Spanish SDA Group
4. Israel Mora......................................................................................................................Pastor
Kernersville SDA Church
Tri-City Christian Academy
5. Kevin Morgan..................................................................................................Part-time Pastor
Warrensville SDA Church
6. Enoch Omosa.................................................................................................................Pastor
Raleigh Umojah Central SDA Church
Raleigh Imani SDA Company
Charlotte Safari SDA Company
7. Will Oosthuizen...............................................................................................................Pastor
Hillsborough SDA Church
Durham Five Oaks SDA Church
4. PRAYING FOR OUR DEPARTMENTAL MINISTRIES
Last year, starting with our April, 2019 issue of P5, we began highlighting a department of the conference each month – not so much as to give a full length report of all that they have been doing or are accomplishing, but rather to simply uplift in our prayers all our leaders and their faithful service. The ministries of the Carolina Conference are basically structured under 6 organizational departmental functions. They include:
1. The Adventist Christian Book Center
2. Camp Meeting
5. Church Ministries
6. Children & Young Adults
Over the past few months, we have focused on the departmental functions of Administration and Outreach. With this issue, we continue to focus on another vital department – that of the Publishing Ministry which focuses on the work of our Literature Evangelists, the Magabook Program, and the Glow Track Ministry.
So during this month of July, I invite you to prayerfully uplift our Carolina Conference Publishing Ministries under the leadership of Lance Morrison & his secretary, Lisa Moyer.
The Publishing Department is responsible for the literature ministry of the Carolina Conference. Their goal is to place as many truth-filled books, papers, and tracts as possible in the homes of the people of the Carolinas. Thanks to the support of our members, this type of evangelistic work is still a vital part of the ministry of our conference.
Because of this funding we are able to provide the following:
An annual 10 week Magabook student evangelistic campaign.
An elementary school Magabook fundraiser.
A GLOW tract website (personalized for Carolina Conference) to order online (www.glowcarolina.org).
A new website through Georgia-Cumberland Conference Home Health Education Services (GCCHHES) where anyone can purchase Adventist literature and books (www.familyhomechristianbooks.com).
Obviously, some of these programs have been paused this year due to the pandemic. However, it is our purpose to keep our support for this ministry as a vibrant and shining light in heralding God’s truth-filled publications. If you have any questions about the services we provide or would like to find out more about our department please contact Lance Morrison at 704-453-9375.
5. SATURATED WITH THE WORD – Fundamental Belief # 12 — The Church
As a President’s Prayer Partner, we again invite you to truly be a people of the Word. As Seventh-day Adventists, we embrace 28 Fundamental truths that are based on the Bible alone. This is the second cycle in our emphasis on these vital beliefs that are centered in Christ as our Savior and as our Lord.
Let’s continue to place His Word prayerfully in our hearts each day of this month.
I carry a set of these passages with me in my car and repeat them aloud as I drive from place to place. My goal is to prayerfully say one verse at least five times a day for a week, thus embracing the promise of God’s Word – “Thy Word have I hid in mine heart that I might not sin against Thee.” Psalm 119:11
Repeat these passages over and over till they become a part of your very being. Of course, you can always choose to do more. Prayerfully consider how you can saturate your soul and make His Word a part of your heart every day.
FUNDAMENTAL BELIEF # 12: The Church
The church is the community of believers who confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. In continuity with the people of God in Old Testament times, we are called out from the world; and we join together for worship, for fellowship, for instruction in the Word, for the celebration of the Lord’s Supper, for service to humanity, and for the worldwide proclamation of the gospel. The church derives its authority from Christ, who is the incarnate Word revealed in the Scriptures. The church is God’s family; adopted by Him as children, its members live on the basis of the new covenant. The church is the body of Christ, a community of faith of which Christ Himself is the Head. The church is the bride for whom Christ died that He might sanctify and cleanse her. At His return in triumph, He will present her to Himself a glorious church, the faithful of all the ages, the purchase of His blood, not having spot or wrinkle, but holy and without blemish.
A. Exodus 19:5-6 (NKJV) — “Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. 6 And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’”
B. Ephesians 2:19-22 (NIV) —"Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”
C. I Peter 2:9 (KJV) — “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”
D. I John 1:7 (NKJV) — “But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.”
6. REMEMBER AND KEEPING IN FOCUS OUR 2020 VISION
VISION IV: Advance Seventh-day Adventist Education
PRAY AND COMMIT to increasing the number of our church schools to at least 25 with a 5% increase in our overall K-12 enrollment from what it is now. We embrace the Advent message that we are living in the closing moments of earth’s history. Therefore, it is our desire to advocate and validate the counsel of God’s messenger that “In the highest sense the work of education and the work of redemption are one.” Education, Page 20
Across North America, the secularization of society has corrupted the curriculum – and every day we see a moral decline from the standards of God and His word. A shifting of priorities and financial commitments has also unfortunately impacted God’s remnant people. Sadly these factors have impacted a downturn in our overall enrollments – especially in our church schools across the North American Division.
At the end of 2015 the Carolina Conference was operating 18 church schools and Mt. Pisgah Academy. It is our desire to see us increase the number of our church schools to 25 by the end of this quinquennial period. By God’s guidance, I am happy to report that we have already added three new church schools in North Carolina – in Waynesville, Salisbury, and University City (Charlotte) bringing us now up to 21 Carolina conference operated church schools. We also are in a partnership arrangement with the South Atlantic Conference in reopening our church school in Fayetteville, NC.
It is also our desire to see a new and steady trajectory of growth with an increase of at least 5%, rather than a decline in our overall K-12 enrollment. That is taking our K-12 enrollment from the 688 students in 2015 to at least 723 students. Praise the Lord! We have exceeded those numbers in the church schools across the Carolinas for four consecutive school years as evidenced in the graph below:
With the huge pandemic challenges that impacted all our schools in the last months of the 2019-2020 school year across the nation – both public and private, our church schools have certainly felt the sting of separation and discomfort of restructuring our education to adapt to the difficulties of the circumstances that we are all having to grapple with for this moment in time.
As we remain uncertain regarding the reopening of our schools in the normal and desired fashion this fall for the 2020-2021 academic year, let’s unite in heartfelt prayer that God will send His mighty angels to intervene on behalf of our schools, teachers, parents, and most of all our students.
All of our teachers have been hired for the next year with the exception of one school. We need one more one-room church school teacher in South Carolina. Please join our Education Department team in asking God to lead us to the right person that will make all the difference in educating young lives to live for Jesus and dedicate their energies in His service.
7. REMEMBERING AND UPLIFTING GOD’S ANOINTED LEADERS FOR THE SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST CHURCH IN CONTINUOUS PRAYER
Be part of God’s praying church across North America for these leaders also who guide God’s work in these territories of God’s vineyard: