Adventist Basketball Team Forfeit Championship Because of the Sabbath Day; and other world news

26 Feb 2022

This week on ANN.

In the United States, the Oakwood Adventist Academy High School Boys Basketball team had to forfeit a playoff game, giving up their chance to win a state championship, because the game was scheduled on Saturday, or Sabbath, February 19. The team advanced to the Sweet Sixteen playoff round. When they learned they were given a 4:30 p.m. game time, they asked the Alabama High School Athletic Association and other teams in the regional tournament if they would switch them to the 7:30 p.m. game, which was after Sabbath. The Oakwood Adventist Academy said they were not looking to change the date or location, but only switch their time with another team until after Sabbath. The Alabama High School Athletic Association has denied that request twice over email.

In Samoa, vulnerable families are being assisted with new housing as part of a partnership between the Samoan government and the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA). The Samoan government allocated 1 million Samoan tala from its stimulus package to assist struggling families in 2020. ADRA Samoa used the grant to build a simple wooden house for 120 families. Fifty-three houses were also refurbished by ADRA. Earlier this month the Samoan government announced further funding of 2 million talas for ADRA Samoa and Caritas Samoa as part of its Shelter and Hygiene Facilities Program. Caritas has received 500,000 talas to construct water tanks, while ADRA has received 1.5 million talas to build homes, sanitation facilities, disabled ramps, washbasins and security fencing for each house. This will support 88 vulnerable households. ADRA Samoa is also continuing its Maluapapa Safe Haven Project in partnership with Habitat for Humanity New Zealand.

In South Colombia, more than 1,000 laypersons were recently trained during a special congress to strengthen small group ministry in the City of Villavicencio, not far from the capital, Bogota. On February 5, the lay congress drew regional and local leaders from the East Los Llanos Conference to better equip small group leaders and active members in spreading the gospel where they live. Themed Esperanza Definitiva, or The Ultimate Hope, the congress sought to “bolster the lay forces developing the discipleship, retention, new believers, and missionary couples ministries in each congregation with the purpose to preach the gospel everywhere in the region.”

The construction of the Adventist College of Alagoinhas, in Bahia, Brazil, became a point of preaching and decision. Of the 74 construction workers who worked on the project, 37 are studying the Bible. The South American Division shared this story of Juclei Araújo, a bricklayer who was baptized as a result of the work of the Caleb Mission volunteers.

It’s been almost two years since the Seventh-day Adventist World Church launched the new strategic plan “Reach the World: I Will Go.” At the core of the plan, I Will Go is a rallying cry to Total Member Involvement. It’s about each of us individually and it’s about the corporate church, too. We need to partner together to share the gospel with our communities and to the ends of the earth. ANN recently sat down with a special assistant to the Seventh-day Adventist World Church president, Michael Ryan, to talk about “I Will Go” and how everyone can participate.

A Brazilian journalist, television producer and researcher felt the Lord’s calling to go to Lebanon for an important mission. Larissa Preuss left her comfort zone and went to work as a volunteer teacher for Syrian refugee kids in the country. Adventist Mission has more: (link)

We will never stop working diligently for God’s service while waiting for Christ’s soon return. ANN is very pleased to share how every church mission has been guided by God’s leading.

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