The Michiana Adventist Forum presents:
How Adventism Has Changed Since World War II
Michael Scofield, MBA
Health Information Management
Loma Linda University
October 12, 2019
at 3:30 p.m.
Chan Shun Hall
Berrien Springs, MI
About the Speaker:
In addition to his current appointments at Loma Linda University, Michael Scofield has served as Director of Data Quality at Experion and as Vice President for Information Quality at Home Savings of America.
A sixth-generation Seventh-day Adventist and a self-proclaimed amateur sociologist, he has long been active in informal and formal discussions about the denomination’s administrative structure and has made numerous presentations about the Adventist Church and its culture. He holds an MBA degree in management systems from the University of California at Los Angeles Anderson School of Management.
About the Topic:
Rapid economic expansion and prosperity in North America after World War II triggered many changes in Seventh-day Adventism. This presentation is organized in six sections:
1. How the world has changed and its impact upon Adventism. This includes norms of culture, advances in transportation and communication, and societal tolerance for curious religions.
2. Changes in Adventist theology. We see a tremendous diversification of held beliefs with individual congregations in urban areas forming their own distinct flavors of doctrine and culture.
3. Changes in Adventist polity. Partially as a result of societal and government pressures, Adventist institutions have had to change their business practices, particularly how they treat employees. This has created considerable stress.
4. Changes in Adventist institutions. In both education and healthcare, amateurs (i.e. ministers) were no longer qualified to manage the complexities imposed by government, insurance, and market forces. This required a professionalization of management, along with increased bureaucracy and some collateral consequences.
5. Changes in the Adventist culture. Access to communication technology, and a greater awareness of the culture and economy outside of Adventism, has changed the Adventist world view and how individuals and congregations act.
6. What has not changed in North American Adventism. As Adventism diversified culturally and theologically, some portions of the community kept their traditional reliance on authoritative writings, expectations of peer behavior, and a tragic lack of understanding of grace.