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This morning Barry Lynn, a minister and lawyer and the high-profile executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, took the stage to talk about how separation is the cornerstone of our religious freedom.
He was incisive and humorous (as Charles Scriven later described) and his point was very clearly made.
Live from the Adventist Forum Conference in Florida.
On the first night of the Adventist Forum Conference, the chairs were almost full with people who came to hear Joel Hunter, senior pastor of Northland church in Florida who has achieved national prominence.
The conference is taking place at the Mission Inn Resort and Conference Center in rural Howey-in-the-Hills, outside Orlando, Florida.
Far from the ruckus of Disney World and downtown, the conference center complex is surrounded by orange groves and horse farms.
After the Spectrum blog featured a new business that crams traditional Adventist culture and stereotypes into clever T-shirt slogans, we thought we'd track down the young Adventist entrepreneurs behind the idea and ask them how their brand-new business got started.
Jeff Joiner helped to start Union College's groundbreaking International Rescue and Relief program, teaching students emergency medical care, disaster management and a range of additional skills. He talks to Spectrum about how the program started and where its graduates are heading.
Question: How did the International Rescue and Relief program get started? What inspired it?
Florida Hospital College President David Greenlaw talks to Spectrum about creating a different kind of educational institution and how Adventism can reach outside itself to the broader community.
Question: You are the founder of Florida Hospital College of Health Sciences. Can you describe what inspired you to start the college, and what led up to its opening?
Answer: First, some background might help. Florida Hospital is the largest SDA institution in the world. It has had a constant need for new professionals in nursing and allied health.
Delwin Finch is the Web Church Pastor for the Forest Lake Seventh-day Adventist Church in Apopka, Florida. He talks to Spectrum about church ministry in the 21st century and how he and his team are working to bring the Forest Lake church to a bigger community than ever before.
Question: Your church has been known for using technology in your outreach efforts. What are some of the things you are doing?
Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, is an outspoken advocate of "keeping a distance." He will be the Sabbath keynote speaker at the Adventist Forum Conference September 26 to 28 in Florida.
Spectrum asked Lynn about the meeting of faith and politics and how his beliefs have changed over time.
Question: Why is the separation of church and state important? What is the foundation underlying Americans United for Separation of Church and State?
Paul Howe is a hospital CEO. It may be fair to say that he is the only hospital CEO anywhere who graduated from law school this year. Instead of going to work for a big law firm after getting his degree from Washington and Lee, Howe headed to Gimbie Adventist Hospital in Ethiopia. He is 25.
Question: Did you ever think you would be CEO of a 71-bed hospital in Ethiopia? What led to you getting the position?
Answer: I like having options and I never plan too far ahead. God leads me one step at a time.
Nathan Blake is a 28-year-old lawyer who left his firm to work full-time in Iowa on the Barack Obama campaign for president. He talks to Spectrum about mixing politics and religion, and Obama's chances.
Question: What is your role in the Barack Obama campaign? What do you do every day?
Answer: I've been a field organizer for about a year and recently switched to the communications team in Iowa.
Field work is on-the-ground voter contact – what this campaign is famous for.