Where Some Denominations Are Shrinking, Adventism Grows. The Lancaster Hispanic Seventh-day Adventist Church in Pennsylvania is buying St. Luke’s United Church of Christ. While some mainline denominations are facing declining membership in large cities, Adventist congregations are growing. In its new location, the Lancaster Church congregation plans to help the poor and to hold evangelistic meetings. From Lancaster Online, “The Changing Face of Urban Churches.”
Wheelchair-bound 98-year-old Baptized as Adventist. Wheelchair-bound 98-year-old Henry Combs was recently baptized into the Adventist church. After his wife died two years ago, Combs started studying the Bible, desiring to see his wife in heaven. During his career, Combs designed airplanes like the U-2 and the SR-71 Blackbird. From The Santa Clarita Valley Signal, “Canyon Country man has lived, made aviation history.”
Fifth Grade Class Cleans Island Beach. Math/science teacher Chase Shireman led 25 students from the Saipan Seventh-day Adventist School in a beach clean up on Bird Island in the Northern Mariana Islands. Partnering with the Mariana Islands Nature Alliance, in just two hours Shireman and his students filled 20 bags of garbage that had washed ashore. They were inspired by a a documentary titled “Plastic Paradise: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch.” From Marianas Variety, “SDA students clean up Bird Island.”
Firefighters Fill Baptismal Pool for Breath of Life Ministries. Breath of Life Ministries arranged to have San Antonio firefighters use a fire truck to fill a 5,000-gallon baptismal pool outside the Ephesus Seventh-day Adventist Church. Breath of Life used the above-ground pool to baptize at least 100 people. Fire Deputy Chief Wedige explained that the activity fell under a public-service category which includes training, demos, and public education. From KENS 5 News, “SAFD firefighters filled baptismal pool at request of mayor staffer.”
Eastern Nigerian Union Conference Hosts New Governor. Newly-elected Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Nigeria’s Abia State attended a thanksgiving service at the Seventh-day Adventist Eastern Union Conference Headquarters in Aba, affirming that he intended to accept challenge to “not to displease God.” Bassey Udoh, Eastern Nigerian Union Conference President, had charged the governor in a sermon to watch what he did in order not to displease God. Ikpeazu used strong rhetoric in describing his goals in office, telling his audience that he was prepared to step on toes standing in the way of his agenda. From The News Nigeria, “Governor Ikpeazu declares he will step on toes.”
Loma Linda University Health, San Gorgonio Memorial Begin Affiliation Talks. The board of San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital in Banning, California is entering into exclusive affiliation discussions with Loma Linda University Health. A deal between the two entitites would mean a needed cash infusion for San Gorgonio to allow the 71-bed facility to expand. Loma Linda would lease the taxpayer-owned hospital, but the district would retain the assets. From Press Enterprise, “BANNING: Hospital seeks affiliation with Loma Linda University.”
Pam Dietrich taught English at Loma Linda Academy for 26 years and served there eight more years as the 7-12 librarian. She lives in Redlands, CA.