Alberta Adventist News June 2021

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Alberta Conference

Virtual Camp Meeting 2021


Keys of Success in Every Endeavor The Character Diamond Stronger Together Is the Pandemic Unchurching the Church?




his year's Virtual Camp Meeting is going to be unlike any Alberta Camp Meeting you've experienced before. We're not just going to hear about faith. We will experience faith as a community — a community that spans Alberta and the Northwest Territories. We hope you'll plan to join us!

Alberta Adventist News is a print and digital media publication of the Alberta Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Communication Director/Editor Eric Ollila; Co Communication unless otherwise noted. Submission Guidelines:; Submissions:

ELECTED OFFICIALS: President Gary Hodder; Secretary/VP for Administration Wayne Williams; Treasurer/Chief Financial Officer Keith Richter; Board Members/EXCOM: Gar Rayette Hetland, Curtis Letniak, Proscovia Nabafu, Tyler Rosengren, Melanie Semchuk, Deborah Silva, Middin Galve-Sumiller, Sheldon Trenchuk, Griffin Webster, Jennifer Williams. De Superintendent Ronda Ziakris; Planned Giving & Trust Services/Philanthropy Director Lynn Mc Dowell; Foothills Camp Director Troy McQueen; Youth Director Lyle Notic CONFERENCE OF THE SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST CHURCH: Address: 5816 Highway 2A, Lacombe, AB, T4L2G5. Office Hours: Monday-Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Phone: (40 Instagram: ABAdventist, LinkedIn: ABAdventist, Website:

JUNE 2021 EDITION 04 Message from the President 06 From the Editor 08 Devotionals


32 Department News 36 Staying Strong 38 Together 40 Church News 52 Announcements


54 Means & Meaning

12 The Character Diamond The Character Diamond is

a tool that movie screenwriters and script artists use to create emotionally riveting personas and dialogue. In leadership, we can use the same tool to help discover the multifaceted nature of our character and attributes. Doing this has been one of the most fulfilling exercises I've ever done in my Christian journey.

16 Is the Pandemic Unchurching our Church? With the

impact of the pandemic, the landscape of "going to church" is looking very different. The pandemic has caused churches to close down physical worship services or cut down the number of people who can attend to lessen the transmission of the COVID-19 virus. Many take this to mean that the church is dying. But the church isn't dying. It's just changing.

o-Editors Nanette Quines & John Simon; Graphic Design Mishell Raedeke/; Photo attribution: Alberta Adventist

ry Hodder—chair, Wayne Williams, Keith Richter, Benjamin Arias, Miguel Brown, Isaac Darko, Massiel Davila-Ferrer, Bruce Fillier, epartmental Directors/Ministerial & Evangelism Director George Ali; Human Resources Officer Jennifer Williams; Education ce; Communication/IT/Media Director Eric Ollila; Risk Management/Project Development Director Llew Werner. ALBERTA 03) 342-5044, Fax: (403) 775-4482 Email: info@ albertaadventist. ca SOCIAL MEDIA Twitter: ABAdventist, Facebook: ABAdventist,


Some of Abraham Lincoln's possessions were found in his pocket at the time he was shot: between other things, eight newspaper clippings praising his accomplishments were particularly precious to him.

A Few Good Words Reflections on the words of the thief and their value to Jesus.


ind words are both appreciated and rare. When Abraham Lincoln was shot at the Ford Theater, they took his body to a boarding house across the street. When they emptied his pockets, they found two pairs of spectacles, a five-dollar bill, pocketknife, watch fob, and eight newspaper clippings praising his accomplishments. One of these was especially significant to Lincoln, as noted by its yellowed age and nearly broken creases. He obviously reread this on many occasions.

Up until this time in Lincoln's life, he was one of the most disliked men in the country. Newspapers either considered him a dictator or a weakling. Some called him the Gorilla from Illinois. His colleagues conspired against him, and his generals did not follow his directives. It is no wonder he prized the few clippings that extolled his virtues. We all need to hear words of kindness from time to time. They seem to sustain us during the many brushes

Abraham Lincoln - The Newspaper Clip – Robert Petterson, The Book of Amazing Stories, p, 233.


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with life. We need not only to listen to words of kindness but also speak genuine kindness whenever we can. Jesus said so many things to uplift people, and we are encouraged to follow His example. Perhaps someone is carrying your kind words in his or her pocket.

Gary Hodder

President Alberta Conference

Educating for


in Red Deer

Registration is now open!



Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021

Stronger Together


his year's Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting is going to be unlike any Alberta Camp Meeting you've experienced before. We're not just going to hear about faith; we're not just going to talk about faith; we will experience faith as a community — a community that spans Alberta and the Northwest Territories. We will extend beyond the church walls during this eight-day event, leave some of our traditional, familiar routines, and go into the lives of friends and members like you from the Alberta and Northwest Territory community. We will take an inside look at inspiring faith stories, heartbreaking tragedies, victories and triumphs. We will see and witness meaningful faith-building events unfold firsthand. We will see God at work in our midst. This year, "Stronger Together"


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We can excel and overcome all obstacles that we encounter along the way when we are together. was chosen as the theme because it is a beautiful reminder during this COVID pandemic that we need and can strengthen each other. Though the pandemic has threatened to separate and isolate us from one another, we still need one another. We are stronger together. Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021: Stronger Together is a statement that declares that even though we may not be able to meet together physically, we still value being together, albeit virtually. We

can excel and overcome all obstacles that we encounter along the way when we are together. Even though we can't meet physically at camp, we can meet virtually. We can share words, songs, testimonies, stories, and a host of other things that endure and inspire hope in one another. We hope you will check out our lineup of speakers and all the youth and children's programs we are offering this year. We are confident you and the entire family will be blessed by what is in store. See you there!

Eric Ollila

Communication/IT/Media Director Alberta Conference

Daily Disciples #abdailydisciples JULY 10 - 17

7:00 AM

Are you eager to grow in relationship with Jesus and others? Are you yearning for authentic intergenerational fellowship for all ages? Join Pastors Ted and Sandra Deer as they host a team of different presenters each day in an exciting and interactive meeting every morning. You will learn practical principles in how to live daily as a disciple of Jesus. There will be worship time, sharing time, lesson time, and a daily challenge to put to use what you learn! Our time together will be reminiscent of the early Christian Church when truly it was found to be ‘Stronger Together’!”

Meeting ID: 918 0220 8342 Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021


Keys for Success in Every Endeavo

“Two are better than one, Because they have a good reward for their lab fall, one will lift up his companion.… Again, if two lie down together, th But how can one be warm alone? Though one may be overpowered by a can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken” (Ecclesiast


hese verses remind us that our church's primary focus is winning souls for the kingdom. "One of the greatest evidence of the power of the gospel results in the unity of the church, for when people of different backgrounds, cultures, languages, and dispositions are united by the Holy Spirit in Christ, the world notices."— Mark Finley Based on the passages above, there are three keys of which we should be aware to have success: First, there should be cooperation when someone has to endeavor to achieve a good reward for their labor.


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"Christ's name was to be their watchword, their badge of distinction, their bond of union, the authority for their course of action, and the source of their success. Nothing was to be recognized in His kingdom that did not bear His name and superscription" (Ellen White, The Acts of the Apostles, p. 28). Second, there should be coordination. All members of the team or group have to be aware and need to function together smoothly and efficiently in their part as a team to succeed. Third, there should be a unification of mind, purpose, and resources, and desire to accomplish the task.

Ecclesiastes 4:12 describes that if every team member comes together and unifies one’s talents and resources for one goal of the team, there is a greater possibility of success to overcome a greater challenge they face. It has been said there is strength in numbers. The disciples of Christ were unified (see Acts 2:1–4). When they prayed, the Holy Spirit descended upon them with power that multiplies them exponentially and accomplishes their task tremendously. The early Christian believers were very successful in winning souls to Christ, for they saw the leading of the Holy Spirit that unified them. In

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bor. For if they hey will keep warm; another, two tes 4:9–12, NKJV).

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their concerted effort, they were willing to sacrifice their cherished ambitions to maintain a unified focus on soul-winning, resulting in the massive conversion of souls to Christ. As the disciples came together, they became a strong team in accomplishing Christ's mission.

Subscribe here: Joseph Batiancila

Pastor/Edmonton Filipino and Edmonton Ghanaian Adventist Churches

JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News



Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. The point being that we can often find what we are looking for in caring for others.

Outward, Not Inward


emember when you used to be able to shake someone's hand when you met the person? Or if you heard someone sneeze next to you, the only thought you had was to be polite and say, "Bless you”? Not too long ago, that was our norm, but the last year has shown us how quickly norms can drastically shift. COVID-19 has changed how we interact in so many ways that it will take a great deal of time and reflection to understand just how much it has affected us. While we are enduring and adapting, much of our actions have led to various degrees of isolation. Left alone in isolation, our thoughts and attitudes can become very focused on self as we grapple with the ongoing challenges COVID-19 and life in general continue to throw at each of us.


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I also remember when I learned the counter to the dilemma of self during a struggle. Around five years ago, I talked with my pastor at the time, John Murley, about finding answers to something pressing in which I was seeking God's direction. I remember when he said to me, "The answer is not always found within, Ryan" and proceeded to open his Bible to Philippians 2:4: "Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others" (ESV). The point is we can often find that for which we are looking in caring for others. The answer to how we cope with COVID-19 and the fear it carries is not only found in how each of us handles it within our minds but also in loving relationships in which we build each other up. God created us

to be relational beings, so it makes perfect sense that the remedy to an ever-changing world is a loving relationship that edifies. While our norms have shifted, our intentionality about staying connected does not have to shift. Let our love and care for each other be the constant that does not shift. If you find yourself somewhat stuck in a mentality set on self, reach out and look after someone else's interests and see how that outward care becomes a blessing to you both.

Ryan Reeves

Pastor, Medicine Hat Adventist Church

Did you know that the Alberta Conference offers free Microsoft Office 365 E1 licenses for all church officers? For more information email Certain limits and exceptions apply. Microsoft E1 Licenses are web-based only Microsoft E3 and E5 licenses are available upon request. Charges will apply.


Integrated Microsoft Office 365 and Zoom licenses are available for a special discount for all Alberta Conference Churches. Contact us today for more information and pricing: OFFICE 365 + ZOOM

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Alberta Adventist News



The Character Diamond This year, I enrolled in a personal development course on leadership. I must say it has been one of the most fulfilling courses I've taken to date.


he last couple of the exercise is the importance modules have had of my weaknesses. Up until I us exploring our took this course, I generally “Character Diamond.” In loathed my weaknesses and case you are not aware, shortcomings. I had this idea the Character Diamond that if I wanted to be a good is a tool used to identify leader, I needed to overcome the multiple facets of an all weakness. I needed to individual's character. In the become superhuman. I entertainment industry, the needed to become perfect. Character Diamond helps "Be ye therefore perfect, even as artists and writers create your Father which is in heaven lifelike characters with is perfect" (Matthew 5:48, KJV). strengths, weaknesses, and What I have learned is it negative and positive inner is our weaknesses that allow conflict. It is what enables us to connect with other the fictional characters to people. I had believed it was have depth and substance. our strengths that connect us Furthermore, it is what allows with others. And our strengths the audience to relate to them. do indeed play a part in how In leadership, the Character we relate with others. Our Diamond is a tool that helps strengths are the things that us get to know and understand can give others confidence in the multifaceted nature of us and our abilities. And from who we are as individuals. It a distance, our strengths may looks at the strengths and be the things that draw people weaknesses and the positive toward us, at least initially. and negative inner attributes. However, our strengths are It reveals the contradictions not the attributes that provide that live inside every one of us. power and depth to our Perhaps the most significant emotional connection with thing I have learned through others at the personal level. 12

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Our strengths are not the hook; our weaknesses are. One of the examples used by my mentor was Superman, the superhero. Over the years, there have been multiple times when fans' interest in Superman waned. During these times, ratings dropped, and people no longer watched movies or read comic books about Superman to the extent they had done so previously. The reason? He had become unrelatable for one reason or another. One example involved a time when Superman became too strong. He had no apparent weaknesses—the Man of Steel. Superman could fly, was indestructible, had laser eyes, and could burn through anything. He always got the villain and came out the hero. He was caring and kind to all the right people and heroic and protective against evil. Even his rose-coloured view of his father just put him beyond the reach of many. Nobody

...our strengths are not the attributes that provide power and depth to our emotional connection with others at the personal level. Our strengths are not the hook. Our weaknesses are."

could relate to him. Then creators and writers reworked the character Clark Kent, the hidden, weaker, behindthe-scenes character of Superman. You can see some of the changes here: 10 Ways Brian Bendis' Superman Changed Clark Kent | CBR1. When the writers revealed the weaknesses of Superman or brought out some contradictory component of his character, fans' interest and enthusiasm rekindled. Superman became more relatable. In 2000 and 2001, the release of the film Smallville demonstrated this. The film, released right after the tragedy of 9/11, showed that people could relate to Superman as a superhero without the cape and full development of his powers. The film depicted a young Clark Kent before and during the time he discovered his superpowers. A YouTube documentary called The Amazing Story of Superman by Warner Bros. Entertainment2 highlights some of this information.



The Bible reveals that God and the apostle Paul both understood this about themselves. In 2 Corinthians 12:9 (ESV), it says, "But he [God/Jesus] said to me [Paul], ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’

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Alberta Adventist News


FEATURE Therefore I [Paul] will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me". Don't miss it. God says His power is made perfect in weakness. And Paul understood his weaknesses were the things that allowed God's power to rest on him more fully. How many of you can relate to God Almighty as selfexistent, eternal, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent? Have you always existed? Are you immortal, in and of yourself? Are you all-powerful, all-knowing, and can you be present everywhere at the same time? No, of course not. Those attributes of God inspire us. They give us confidence in Him as our Creator. However, on that emotional, personalconnection level, those characteristics about God are not what allows us to relate to Him. If that is all I knew about God, I would be afraid of Him. The same is true with us. Our strengths may help inspire others or give others confidence in us, but our strengths alone may also be the very attributes that keep others at a distance from us. Maybe our strengths incite fear or insecurity in others. Our strengths may be the same things that isolate us. It is our weaknesses that allow us to connect with others. Our weaknesses are what draw people to us. God, the self-existent, pre-incarnate, all-knowing, 14

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On the cross, it is precisely there that God's power and authority were made perfect. The Creator, suffering at the hands of His creation. all-powerful, all-wise God, condescended to our level by taking upon Himself our nature. The self-existent, independent Creator God became a baby wrapped in the arms of His mother. The allknowing, all-wise God became the toddler and teenage Jesus. The all-powerful, Almighty God became the man Christ Jesus, who Roman soldiers arrested, stripped of His clothing, mocked, beat, spit upon, and finally nailed and staked to a cross, where He died a humiliating and painful death. "If you are the son of God, save yourself" were the words yelled out to the eternal, all-powerful, self-existent One hanging there on the cross. The One with authority to command legions of angels was submitted to the Roman soldiers and nailed to a cross. On the cross, it is precisely there that God's power and authority were made perfect. The Creator suffered at the hands of His creation. The Life-giver, giving up His

breath for those into whom, through their nostrils, He breathed the breath of life. The immortal God experienced the suffering of mortal humanity. It was the weaknesses and contradictions of Clark Kent that gave Superman the power to connect with audiences. It was God Almighty taking upon Himself humanity that gave Jesus the ability to connect with humankind. To whom can you relate better? The manof-steel, laser-eyed, cape-sporting, soaring Superman, or Clark Kent? To whom can you relate better? The Almighty, immortal, all-knowing, ever-present God, or the Man, Christ Jesus? Understanding this and identifying the facets of my Character Diamond is perhaps the most incredible, fulfilling exercise I have ever done. I would highly recommend it; then read 2 Corinthians 12.

Eric Ollila

Communication/IT/Media Director Alberta Conference

Hi, my name is Kelly Stickle. For the last six years, I’ve been the guidance counselor at Mamawi Atosketan Native School, our Alberta Seventh-day Adventist School for students from the four First Nations of Maskwacis. I would like to invite you to join me for a six-week journey of understanding, challenge, growth, and discussion based on the free 4 Seasons of Reconciliation online course.

In the first five weeks, we will separately complete two of the course modules; then, we will meet online at 7:30 pm on Friday evenings to share and discuss our feelings, understanding, and implications of the week’s modules. We will be joined each Friday by an Indigenous, Métis, or First Nations leader or Elder to offer their support for our journeys. The final discussion will reflect on the overall implications of the course, and most importantly, we will consider the question - What Next?

MAY 28



Modules 1 & 2 Modules 3 & 4 Modules 5 & 6



Modules 7 & 8 Modules 9 & 10

JULY 2 What Next?

Zoom Meeting ID: 750 6806 3344 Passcode: 4seasons


Is the Pandemic Unchurching our Ch W

hen Was the Last Time You Went to Church? People may respond, “Do you mean physically to the building or virtually to an online digital program?” With the impact of the pandemic, the landscape of "going to church" is looking very different. The pandemic has caused churches to either close down physical worship services or cut down the number of people who can attend to lessen the transmission of the COVID-19 virus.


Alberta Adventist News

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Our world has changed literally overnight, and so has our relationship with the church as we once knew it. It has been said that there are more people viewing and watching online church services now than ever before. Because of these cataclysmic changes, we need to ask the question, What is a church? What will the church look like post-pandemic? How do we want the church of the future to look? Where will the church be in five, ten, or twenty years? These may be

some tough and challenging questions on which to focus, but if the church is going to thrive well into the future, we must confront the reality of global changes that are taking place right now. Pajamas and Online Church I think it might be safe to assume that when we finally make it through this Covid era, many people that attended church pre-Covid, will not be coming back to the building. Instead of waking up and dressing up in Sabbath's best


Since the world has changed, behaviors are changing as well. People still want Jesus; they still wish to fellowship. They still want community, just in a different way. and attending church for several hours on a Saturday, many people are enjoying and opting for a 40 min

program that they can watch online in their pajamas. According to a Barna article entitled “State of the Church,” “57% of church-going adults who have attended in the last six months admit that people they know are tired of the usual church experience.” I realized something during this pandemic. It is as Richard Jacobson put it: “Believers are not leaving the church… it's the church that is leaving the building.” I don't believe we should see the lack of desire to attend church as a lack of devotion or even a lack of faith. I see it more as a culture shift. Since the world has changed, behaviors are changing as well. People still want Jesus; they still wish to fellowship. They still want community, just in a different way. We must be willing to pivot and adapt to engage and reach this new changing culture.

Jesus Is the King of Kings… Content Is King It is often said, “Content is king,” a phrase used by Microsoft founder, Bill Gates. What does that even mean? It means people are always looking to be engaged with great content. If you don't have great content, they will find it elsewhere. If churches remain relevant and impactful globally, online content will have to be of topnotch quality. I think we are moving toward an on-demand type of content programming. People are watching more and more Netflix and YouTube, which have an on-demand feel to them. They can watch what they want and when they want to watch it. It won't be enough to duplicate the service you had in person and just put it online. Churches will have to create and produce content that will

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Alberta Adventist News


FEATURE have viewers wanting to come back for seconds and thirds. See, it's no longer about church attendance; it's about church engagement. The good thing is there is always a need for great, spiritually uplifting content.

Where Are We Going? Some members love the Churches will have to create and produce current, traditional church content that will have viewers wanting to model more than they love come back for seconds and thirds. See, the mission. As a church, the it's no longer about church attendance; traditional model can no longer be our sacred cow. What we it's about church engagement. The must focus on is our mission. good thing is there is always a need for I find it interesting that great, spiritually uplifting content. over the last couple months, political and civic leaders have been encouraging groups of faith communities. in their home and community. us to meet in small The two emerging areas I I think this shift back to the cohorts — bubbles — essentially, biblical model of the firstsee helping our church pivot smaller groups of people gracefully through this time century church is a good one. with whom we spend the of change is the small-group If it worked and was good most time — to lessen the effect and the creation of enough for the disciples and transmission of the virus. quality, on-demand content. the apostles of old, perhaps I think this may be the For many, due to this it will be good for us as well. opportune time when God may pandemic lockdown, it's In closing, the church is going to continue to be allow us to transition to small not dying; it's just changing. some comfy PJs and some groups, like the church of old. Maybe you can call it an great, inspiring, on-demand, Perhaps the church of the "unchurching." There is a online Sabbath content. future is going to resemble paradigm shift taking place. the church of the past — the It is starting to look different first-century church. The firstbecause the world is changing century church was a houseand our culture is shifting. church model, comparable It could be that this time to a small group of ten-toof change is calling us back twelve people who lived and to the biblical model of the moved as the "church" while first-century church — smaller Sources

Dr. Lyle Notice

Barna: Richard Jacobson:


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JUNE 2021

Youth Director Alberta Conference of the Seventh-Day Adventist

Stay active and healthy during Alberta Virtual Camp! Join the “HAYSTACKS” CLUB on to participate with your fellow friends.

The 2021 Haystacks 5K & 10K Fun Run will be tracked virtually so you can run in your area. For an extra challenge, try racing one of the routes in your city. Prizes and a year of bragging rights up for grabs. Visit for more information, or to join.

Text HAYSTACKS at (587) 802-2016

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021


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Alberta Adventist News


Adult Speakers/Seminars* For the past four years, Gary has served as the President of the Alberta Conference. He graduated from CUC (Burman University) and Andrews University. Born and raised in Newfoundland, Gary served a total of fifteen years in that Province - as Pastor of the St. John’s Church and President of the Newfoundland Mission. In Ontario, he served as College Park Senior Pastor and Secretary of the Conference. Gary has pastored in several churches in AB Conference during his ministry. He is married to Almyra and they have 5 children. Gary enjoys ministry and considers it a privilege to be in God’s service.

Gary Hodder

President Alberta Conference

Evening Unsung Heroes Friday, July 9 (7:00 p.m.)

Massiel Davila-Ferrer

Chaplain, Burman University Associate Pastor, College Heights Church

Evening Stronger Together in Battle Tuesday, July 13 (7:00 p.m.)

Massiel Davila-Ferrer's origin story begins in Managua, Nicaragua. At a young age, her family moved to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, where she grew up. In 2012, Massiel joined the team at College Heights Seventh- day Adventist Church, and in August 2019, she accepted the invitation to serve as chaplain for Burman University. During her time in Lacombe, she met and married her teammate and best friend for life, Junior Ferrer, who also serves on the campus of Burman University.

Evening This Is Us (Youth Program) Thursday, July 15 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

Mike and René Lemon Hosts for It Is Written Canada

Morning 1+1+1=1 Evening The Ninety-nine are Watching

Mike and René Lemon are the hosts for It Is Written Canada, a nationwide television ministry that spotlights the life-transforming power of trusting God’s Word. They are both 100% organic, nonGMO, sweet- and- sour lemons. René is the sweet one. They have two amazing daughters, Jo-Ann and Miclain, who are extroverts like their parents are and love to make meaningful connections with others.

Sabbath, July 10 (11:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.)

Trevor O’Reggio

Chair of the Church History Department of the Seventh- day Adventist Seminary at Andrews University

Evening Running To Win Wednesday, July 14 (7:00 p.m.)

Trevor O’Reggio was born in Jamaica. He graduated from Calabar High School, Theology from West Indies College, BA in Theology at Walla Walla College, MDiv from Andrews University Theological Seminary, PhD in History from the University of Chicago, and DMin in Marriage and Family from GordonConwell Seminary in Boston. Trevor also spent 15 years in pastoral ministry. Since 1998, Trevor has been a professor of Church History, Religious Education and Discipleship at Andrews University Theological Seminary and chairs the Church History Department. Trevor has authored several books and articles. He is married to Dr. Anna Maria Simpson and they are parents of three beautiful children.

*Go to for complete biographies.

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting July 9-17, 2021

Liz Pule

Co-director for Family, Singles, Men's and Women's Ministries Ontario Conference

Pastor Elizabeth Pule counts it a blessing to experience life with all people. She is currently serving alongside her husband, Orlando, as the co-directors for Family, Singles, Men’s and Women’s Ministries in the Ontario Conference. They are blessed with three energetic boys: Gabriel, 14; Isaiah, 13; and Samuel, 8. She believes no-strings-attached love is the foundation of being a disciple of Jesus.

Evening Cancel Culture vs Community Culture

Adventist World Radio’s

Vice President

Evening No Walls, No Borders, No Limits

Professor of Historical Theology

Evening, Afternoon One in Christ Monday, July 12 (7:00 p.m.) Trinity Friday, July 16 (2:00 p.m.)

Sunday, July 11 (7:00 p.m.)

Cami Oetman

Denis Fortin

Cami Oetman is Adventist World Radio’s vice president. She began her diverse career as a model, attained a master’s degree, and was a successful international business owner. Through miraculous events, God clearly called her into evangelism. She has filmed over 100 AWR mission stories abroad. Her online Unlocking Bible Prophecies series has surpassed 8 million views and been translated into over 50 languages.

Thursday, July 15 (7:00 p.m.)

*Go to for complete biographies.

Wayne Williams Vice President of Administration of the Alberta Conference

Evening Sermon

A native of Quebec City, Denis Fortin is a professor of historical theology and a former dean of the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary of Andrews University (Michigan, USA). He is also a teaching pastor for the One Place Fellowship on campus. Denis is married to Kristine Knutson, and they have three adult children: Kimberly, Mark, and Erika. In 2019, Denis and Kris walked 800 km of the ancient pilgrimage trail, the Way of St. James, from France to Santiago de Compostela, Spain.

As a young adult, Pastor Williams was impressed to enter into the ministry. He studied at Canadian University College, Oakwood College, and Northern Caribbean University, earning a BA in Theology and Religion. After pastoral employment in the Ontario Conference, he obtained a MDiv at Andrews University and is presently completing a Doctorate at Andrews University. He returned to the Ontario Conference until becoming Vice President of Administration/ Executive Secretary of the Alberta Conference. Pastor Williams maintains his greatest earthly treasure is his family, his wife and two children.

Friday, July 16 (7:00 p.m.)

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Alberta Adventist News


Adult Speakers/Seminars/Host* Glenward Alexander Bryant, DMin, fifth president of the North American Division, is a pastor and seasoned administrator. Prior to his current position, he served as a departmental director, Education superintendent, conference president, and division executive secretary. His passion for ministry springs from his love for evangelism and teaching. He staunchly advocates for a spirit of collaboration, believing the Church is stronger together.

G. Alexander Bryant

President of the North American Division and vice president of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists

Evening Sermon Sabbath, July 17 (7:00 p.m.)

Claudio and Pamela Consuegra Family Ministries Directors, North American Division

Building a Healthy Home Afternoon Monday, July 12 to Friday, July 16 (1:00 p.m.)


Alberta Adventist News

Claudio Consuegra joined the Seventh-day Adventist Church in 1976. At Columbia Union College (now Washington Adventist University) in Maryland, he met and married Pamela, the associate director of the Family Ministries Department for the North American Division. Prior to being elected Family Ministries director for the NAD, Claudio served as the director for the Ministerial, Evangelism, Communication, Ethnic Ministries, and Family Ministries departments, as well as the vice president of administration for the Minnesota Conference. For three years, he and Pam hosted a national call-in talk show on LifeTalk Radio. He and Pamela have been married for more than 35 years and have two daughters, Diana and Hadassah, and sonsin-law, Greggory and Andrew, respectively.

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Elise Kruithof

Director of the Sakala Success Centre


It’s Okay Not to Be Okay Monday, July 12 Let’s Talk – Supporting a Friend Tuesday, July 13 It’s Everybody’s Business – A Discussion About Suicide Prevention Wednesday, July 14 Because You’re Worth It –  Self care Thursday, July 15

Elise Kruithof is the director of the Sakala Success Centre and the mental health coordinator at Burman University. Prior to joining Burman in 2018, she worked as a provincial suicide prevention coordinator with Alberta Health Services. Before moving to Alberta in 2012, Elise lived in northwestern British Columbia, where she taught at Northwest Community College (psychology, counseling, sociology, and criminology) and worked as a community-based counselor.

Debbie Schwarz grew up in Kelowna and studied at Walla Walla College, where she graduated with a Nutrition Care degree. She spent 20 years as Director of Food Service for Conference-owned Long Term Care facilities.

Debbie Schwarz

Administrative Assistant/ Associate Secretariat | President/Secretariat

Evening Interview Conference Happenings With Debbie Monday, July 12 to Sabbath, July 17 (6:30 p.m.)

Debbie served as a missionary in Hong Kong and Uganda where she taught ESL and worked as a host of English programs at Adventist World Radio (Hong Kong) and Administrative Assistant for the Vice Chancellor of Academics at Bugema University, Uganda. Debbie has been the Administrative Assistant to both the President and Executive Secretary in the Alberta Conference for almost 10 years.

*Go to for complete biographies.

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting July 9-17, 2021

Youth Speakers*

Ashia Lennon

Interim head pastor at the Pinehouse Drive Seventhday Adventist Church in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Evening This Is Us Friday, July 9 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)

Marc Andrade

Chaplain at PAA and CHCS

Evening This Is Us Sunday, July 11 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)

Pastor Ashia Lennon grew up on the beautiful island of Jamaica. In 2007, she relocated to Canada, where she completed a diploma in biotechnology. In 2014, she received her call to ministry, then attended Burman University in Alberta, Canada, where she completed her undergraduate degree in theology. Pastor Ashia is currently completing her masters in pastoral ministry at Andrews University. Her focus in ministry involves the practice of empathetic listening and assisting people in finding healing while discovering efficient ways of communicating. She is currently the interim head pastor at the Pinehouse Drive Seventh-day Adventist Church in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Pastor Marc Andrade grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba. In 2010, he moved to Lacombe, Alberta, where he graduated with a degree in theology and an after-degree in secondary education. He continued to teach high school Bible at CWAA in Calgary and is currently working as the chaplain at PAA and CHCS in Lacombe. He enjoys teaching and having real discussions with his peers and young people as they try to see and experience God in their everyday lives. He loves to play music and will never pass up a challenge on the basketball court, despite how much it will hurt his knees the next morning. At the end of the day, his true passion is for people to see the real-life practicality of following Jesus today through His Word and the testimonies of others.

*Go to for complete biographies.

Ben Lundquist

Young Adult Ministries Director for the Oregon Conference

Morning This Is Us Sabbath, July 10 (11:40-12:00 a.m.)

Jose D. Sanchez

Student at the Seventh- day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University

Evening This Is Us Monday, July 12 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)

JUNE 2021

Benjamin Lundquist is currently one of the prominent voices for young adult ministry in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. He is currently serving as Young Adult Ministries director for the Oregon Conference and also as the Young Adult Ministries coordinator for the North American Division. Each year, Benjamin leads teams of young adult leaders in community service efforts with organizations such as St. Vincent DePaul, Toys for Tots, and Samaritan’s Feet. He is passionate about inspiring young adults to become growing followers of Jesus and leaders for His cause.

Jose D. Sanchez was born and raised in Venezuela. In 2007, his family received an invitation to minister among the Hispanic community in Toronto, ON, which they accepted. He attended Burman University, from which he obtained his degree in religious studies in 2016. For two years he served as a youth pastor in the Ontario Conference. Jose is happily married to a wonderful woman by the name of Laura Angelica Sanchez. Lately, Jose also began a YouTube channel in Spanish called Claro y Simple, where he seeks to present the gospel through word and music in a “clear and simple” way. Currently, Jose is a full-time student at Andrews University, pursuing his MDiv with a special emphasis in chaplaincy.

Alberta Adventist News


Youth Speakers/Children's Presenter* Alex Portillo is the Youth and Young Adult pastor at Meadow Glade Seventh-day Adventist Church and host of the MGC Podcast. Alex was born in Silver Spring Maryland and grew up in the Washington DC metropolitan area.

Alex Portillo

Youth and Young Adult Pastor at Meadow Glade Seventh-day Adventist Church

Evening This Is Us Tuesday, July 13 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)

Ron Sydney

Pastor of Pontiac Southside and Detroit Center Churches

Evening This Is Us Friday, July 16 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)


Alberta Adventist News

He graduated from Burman University with an undergraduate degree in Religious Studies and Biblical languages. Most recently, he graduated from Andrews University with a MDiv. His interests are in stoic philosophy, wisdom literature, and self-development. He lives in Vancouver, WA with his wife, Chelsea, and their dog, Nimbus.

Pastor Ron Sydney grew up in St. Lucia. He was called to ministry at a young age. He answered the call and went to study theology at Canadian University College. After graduating, he was called to pastor the Ephesus and Richland churches. It wasn’t too long after his successful ministry that pastor Ron was called to pastor the 24/7 church in Seattle, Washington. Currently, Pastor Ron is serving as the lead pastor for two churches in the Detroit area, Pontiac Southside and Detroit Center. He loves preaching and sharing inspiring messages with young people.

JUNE 2021

Ben Amoah serves as a chaplain and youth/ young adult pastor in the lower mainland. His passion is helping young people in our church see they have a role to play in the continuing narrative of Jesus.

Ben Amoah

Chaplain and Youth/Young Adult Pastor in the Lower Mainland

Evening This Is Us Wednesday, July 14 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)

Originally from Ottawa, Ontario, Ben completed his education at Burman University in Lacombe, Alberta. Check out his podcast, The Auricle Podcast, where people share how their experiences with God have shaped their lives.

Pastor Mathew Feeley was born and raised in Toronto. The early years of his life were troubled and characterized by drug abuse and crime. Eventually, after a series of life-changing events, Pastor Feeley accepted God's call to Pastoral Ministry.

Mathew Feeley

Pastor, Ottawa East Seventh- day Adventist Church

Evening This Is Us Sabbath, July 16 (7:40-8:00 p.m.)

He studied at Burman University in Alberta and later did his MDiv at Andrews University. Currently, he is the Senior Pastor of the Ottawa East Seventh- day Adventist Church. Pastor Feeley's goal is to be a channel of grace and to help others know that Savior who saved him 17 years ago. He is ever thankful for the loving support of his dear wife Kristy and son Ayden.

*Go to for complete biographies.

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting July 9-17, 2021

Praise Team*

Damian Chandler

Senior Pastor in Sacramento California

Morning This Is Us Sabbath, July 16 (11:40-12:00 a.m.)

Janeth Vasquez

Uniformed Ministries Coordinator for the Alberta Conference

Morning Rescued (Ages 5-12) I Wonder (Ages 13-14) Sabbath, July 10 to Sabbath, July 17 (9:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.)

Pastor Damian Chandler was born in Toronto, Canada, and raised on the island of Barbados by his parents, Michael and Grace Chandler. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Theology. He later furthered his preparation by pursuing and attaining a MDiv degree from Andrews University. Pastor Chandler is passionate about ministry but even more passionate about family.

Sean Kapakasa Bachelor of Science in Psychology, Worship

After years of dedicated pursuit, God gave him the desire of his heart and a partner in life, his wife, Tanzy Chandler. They later expanded their partnership with the addition of their daughter, Zoe, son, Salem, and the most recent addition, Levi.

Janeth Vasquez was born and raised in Medellin, Colombia. Her passion for clubs and children’s ministries was developed at a young age, when she experienced firsthand the impact and influence of these ministries in her own life and Christian journey. After becoming a mom for the first time, she decided to dedicate her life and time to her kids and all the children around her. For the last ten years, she has worked with children of all ages, served as a Sabbath School teacher, homeschool representative, Adventurers instructor for different local clubs, area and executive coordinator for the Adventurers ministry, and is currently the Uniformed Ministries Coordinator for the Alberta Conference. Her dream is to witness an army of children and youth being touched and transformed by the love of God.

*Go to for complete biographies.

Audrey French Worship Leader

Brandon Napod Worship Leader

Sean Kapakasa is a recent graduate from Burman University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. He is from Ontario and has been involved in praise and worship since he was young. During his years at Burman, he was highly involved in ministry as the Campus Ministries Ignite coordinator, praise team leader, as well as a residence assistant in the various residence halls. When asked why he is passionate about worship, he said, "I am passionate about music and worship because since I was young, I found it to be the way I communicated best and how I interpreted the world.” Having grown up in Church with an innate love for God and music, it was a foregone conclusion that Audrey French would be a praise and worship leader. The second of three children, she was born into a musical family with both parents having spent decades involved in music both inside and outside of the church. She went on to be a member of the youth choir of the West Edmonton Seventh-day Adventist Church and eventually the director of The Light youth choir. In addition to her talents as a singer, Audrey is also a gifted violinist and has performed as a soloist, in an ensemble and at the orchestral level. Brandon Napod is a central Alberta-based worship ministry leader, currently serving in the Red Deer/ Lacombe area, and leads worship part-time at Epic Church Red Deer and College Heights Seventh-day Adventist Church. He has also previously served in worship ministries in the Manitoba-Saskatchewan Conference before returning to Alberta to graduate from Burman University with a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies in 2020. Brandon has a deep interest in modern, contemporary worship and strives to discover new ways in which worshipers can experience God’s love and presence.

JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News


Presenters / Hosts* Ted Deer has ministered in Lacombe. He has served as Chaplain in various assignments in Grades K through 12 and at Burman University, as well as on the Pastoral Team at the College Heights Church.

Sandra and Ted Deer

Volunteer Coordinators Revival/Men's Ministries

Morning Daily Disciples Sabbath, July 10 to Sabbath, July 17 (7:00 a.m.)

Lyle Notice

Youth Director, Alberta Conference

Morning Maskwacis/MANS Sabbath School Saturday, July 10 (9:45 a.m.)

He and his wife, Sandra, who is also a pastor, have two young children, Stephen and Bethel. Ted’s greatest passion in ministry is encouraging and mentoring others to live daily as a Disciple of Jesus!

Dr. Lyle Notice grew up in City of Toronto. From a young age, he had a passion for the stage and had begun an acting career when he felt God calling him to ministry. After graduating from Canadian University College and Andrews University, he accepted a call to become youth pastor at the Ottawa, Orleans and Kanata Churches. In 2012 he joined the Alberta Conference as Associate Youth Director and since 2014 has served as the Youth Director. Lyle is married to Cheri, and they have two children, Marlowe-Rae and Cairo.

Lynn earned her law degree at the University of Alberta and her Certified Specialist in Planned Giving while working in Adventist healthcare before joining the Conference.

Lynn McDowell

Director of Planned Giving/ Philanthropy

Morning Maskwacis/MANS Sabbath School Saturday, July 10 (9:45 a.m.)

Pastor Honey Todd describes herself as a forgiven child of God, wife of Clinton, mother of Rhian and Sean, and Sean’s wife, Kalie.

Honey Todd

Volunteer Prayer Ministries Coordinator

Morning, Noon, Evening Prayer Ministry

She is passionate about creating inspiring worship and safe community.

Romando Carey

Jordane Smith


Alberta Adventist News


JUNE 2021

Honey has been a Bible teacher in Australia for grades 7-12; a Registered Psychologist in Australia; and a Pastor in Canada for the last 22 years in Lacombe and Calgary, and now back to Lacombe.

Friday, July 9 to Sunday, July 17

Pastor Jordane is JamaicanCanadian born and raised in Toronto. She is currently the Youth and Young Adult pastor at the College Heights Seventhday Adventist Church.

Youth and Young Adult Pastor College Heights

She co-authored the Canadian PGTS exam for the North American Division in 2015 and has helped nearly 400 Alberta Adventists with their wills through Wills@Camp, Wills Now, and the Conference’s regular wills program.

Romando Carey recently graduated from Burman University with BA in Theology. He enjoys sharing the Gospel through preaching, teaching and singing. When he’s not preaching, he conducts Ubuntu, a 40-member choir that specializes in Negro Spirituals. Romando strives to be authentic and vulnerable in his relationship with God and his ministry so that he and others can experience all that the Gospel has to offer.

*Go to for complete biographies.

Virtual Youth Camp Meeting 2021

Creative. Innovative. Compassionate. Join us at 12:00 noon with pastor Jordane Smith and pastor Romando Carey Instagram Live Sabbath mornings @weignitelacombe Prizes and give aways!

Ben Amoah

Massiel Davila-Ferrer



Marc Andrade

Ron Sydney

#thisisus More information: Dr. Lyle Notice

Youth Director The Alberta Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church


Jose Sanchez

Damian Chandler

Alex Portillo SABBATH , JULY 17

Ben Lundquis


Ashia Lennon WEDNESDAY, JULY 14






Mathew Feeley

#thisisus2021 Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021


NEWS Pastor Massiel Davila- Ferrer delivering her powerful messages about women in the bible that we can relate today.


ow! What a retreat! Pastor Massiel Davila-Ferrer, your messages on “Women in Battle” were so pertinent and on point to what so many are going through today. You opened your heart to us, and we were moved. We related to you. Thank you for letting God use you to bless the women of Alberta. Let me share a testimony of a woman who attended in person: "It has been very hard for me these past few months because I am going through a divorce, and on top of this, I have recently lost my job after working there for three-and-a-half years" due to the pandemic. She continued with teary eyes and said, "It was as if Pastor Massiel was talking straight to me while holding my hand." Due to the pandemic protocols, the Women’s Retreat meeting at 3 p.m. had an in-person attendance of 85, with 57 for the 7 p.m. meeting. However, we had an


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

overwhelming response to livestreaming, with over 1,000 viewing each meeting of the Alberta Conference Women’s Retreat on April 10, 2021. Amazing! Thank you everyone who played a role in making the Women’s Retreat a huge success. Thank you to my awesome team for the many hours: Belinda Bader, Brenda Hodgins, Nanette Quines, Vera Wiebe, Judith Walters,

Nanette and Friends, leading praise and worship.

Virtual Children's Camp Meeting (Ages 5 - 12) July 10 - 17

Nicole Sydenham welcoming the women present and online subscribers.

Sarah Long Brown speaking about her testimonial.

Jane Holmes delivering the word of prayer.

Mina Desjardins, and Scott Nischuk. And a special thank you to the College Heights Church and their livestreaming team. Everyone had to be adaptable and flexible yet experienced the promise in Isaiah 43:19: “For I am about to do something new…” (NLT). God was in the planning from the start. We hope you will plan to attend our next retreat in person on April 9–11, 2022. More information will follow. Keep safe and stay close to God. See you next year!— Submitted by Nicole Paradis-Sydenham

A Discovery Mountain Bible School Adventure! Join Janeth Vasquez daily starting at 9:00 a.m.

#abrescued2021 Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021


Grade 12 Student Wins MANS Healthy Food Contest W

hile a food skills class is taught to Mamawi Atosketan Native High School students every year, in April 2021, their teacher Kim Harrington initiated a little friendly competition with a Healthy Snacks contest. "Students have a variety of skills when they enter the kitchen," observed Harrington, "This year, we had two classes in the kitchen at the same time. One class was an introductory group. The other was an intermediate class. The

students learn about how to stay safe and keep things clean in the kitchen. They learn how to follow a recipe. They also learn about nutrition and how to make positive food choices." Some students were initially skeptical entering the kitchen/classroom (there was no chip, candy bar, or sugary drink in sight). But grade 12 student Jersey Threefingers was inspired by the recipes she learned to follow in an appetizers class and was excited to participate April 12 was a high day for Jersey Threefingers. The high school senior arrived at school ready to don her cap and gown for her high school graduation portrait—an exciting prospect in itself. Jersey's smile grew bigger when she was told that she won the Healthy Snacks contest and would be taking home a gift boxed tea trio of a teacup, strainer, and herbal tea selections.

in the Healthy Snacks contest. It was an incredibly close call among the many deserving, beautifully presented snack candidates—there was only a one-vote difference between each of the top four competitors—but a tasty batch of apple nachos Threefingers prepared emerged as the winner. When she got the news of her win, Threefingers was so excited. Not only did she get to take home the prize tea set (generously donated by the ABC store in Lacombe), she did so with particular satisfaction. She convinced her skeptical classmates that healthy food could also taste great and look beautiful with apple nachos. — Submitted by Myken McDowell

Jersey's Apple Nachos edged out three other top competitors by the closest of margins, but her beautifully presented and healthful snack carried the day.


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

Virtual Camp Meeting (Ages 13 - 14) July 10 - 17

Janeth Vasquez Uniformed Ministries Coordinator for the Alberta Conference

Join Janeth daily starting at 11:00 a.m. for a selection of lessons, experiments, fun and the most important, to share with old and new friends in this virtual platform. #iwonder2021

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021


Theme Week - Dress Like a Teacher - Ramiel, Arden, Bryan, London, Jaeden, and Sarah.

Staying Strong I

know this past year has brought its own challenges to each person. Whether financially, spiritually, mentally, physically, it’s run its course. I know for me, I’ve struggled to be apart from others. I’ve wrestled with being separated from students, co-workers, friends, family, and our church family! No matter what you’re facing, during these times, it is easy to feel alone, insignificant, or like God is not there. At first, the quarantine and separation appeared bearable and seemed to be a nice break from the stresses of life. However, since it has continued so much longer


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

"If there’s one lesson that this pandemic has taught me, it’s during these times that we truly are stronger together."

than many of us could have imagined, it has become overwhelming and imprisoning. Not being able to be together has dampened plans, but it has also put hope in my heart for the future and being able to return to normal. I want to be able to see students’ faces again, warmly greet church members on Sabbath morning, and gather with distant friends and family. While we have almost reached the end of a successful pandemic school year, we haven’t quite crossed the finish line. It’s easy to become tired of keeping our distance, wearing our mask, and following the guidelines. But

From left to right Mr. Jason Marcinyk and Diego Diaz - painting tips; Annica Palaganas - Fine Arts Pottery Project.

I am here to remind you, that together we can continue to stand strong against this virus. If there’s one lesson that this pandemic has taught me, it’s during these times that we truly are stronger together. It’s not just one teacher, one student, or one family that will be able to turn this pandemic around. It’s all of us. We all have to remain diligent and stay the course, in order to be reunited one day again. I’m reminded of the verse in the Bible that says, “For the body does not consist of one part, but of many.” 1 Corinthians 12:14. We are all called to play our part and make up not only the body of Christ, but also

follow guidelines and find creative ways to be His body to those around us. This can include wearing our masks to protect others, checking in on a church member you haven’t seen in a while, and having Zoom meetings where possible. It is not one, but all that are called to this purpose. In times of trouble, it’s easy to focus on the negative. Let us not forget to thank God for his abundant blessings He has granted to us this year. I know I am thankful for being back together at SSCS, for a wonderful church community, and for the health of my students, friends, and family members. Church family,

let us not lose hope during these times. May we choose to work together to fulfill the calling God has for each and every one of us. For it is not alone that we will be able to overcome these trials. It is through His strength and the fact that we indeed are stronger together.

Martha Boehner

Head Teacher, South Side Christian School

JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News



If you're fightin’ in the fight of your life, then stand We're gonna make it through this hand-in-hand And if we fall, we will fall together… Together And when we rise, we will rise together Together 38

Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021


here is a popular song by the Christian group, For King and Country, that my daughter often plays. The song is entitled "Together," and the chorus lyrics include these words: If you're fightin’ in the fight of your life, then stand We're gonna make it through this hand-in-hand And if we fall, we will fall together… Together And when we rise, we will rise together Together The word “together” is defined as "with or in proximity to another person or people." However, when one searches deeper for the definition of being together, the words take on a personal flavor. "Cooperative and surrounded by friends, together is never alone." I would suggest the last part is worth repeating— “together is never alone.” It has been my distinct honor and privilege to serve as the director of Education for the Alberta Conference, and throughout my time in this role, the theme of “Being together” has been at the forefront of visioning. Collaboration, collegiality, and cooperation have been

the drivers for our leadership team. Comprised of the Education Department staff and our school principals, the school leadership team in the Alberta Conference demonstrates what being together means. Thank you to the unwavering dedication of our principals who have led their schools through the most challenging year that this generation has experienced. Thank you to our teachers—our education warriors—who have had the courage to fully show up each and every day to carry out the ministry of education to their students. It is not an overstatement to suggest that the above song lyrics ring true during this time. We are indeed going to make it through this even stronger than we were before because we stand together—not alone. The words “thank you” seem inadequate to express my deepest gratitude for the countless blessings afforded to me during my time working for the Alberta Conference. As I begin a new chapter in my career, the word “together” will always be at the forefront when I think of Adventist Education in Alberta. Together, we work with our churches. Together, we work with the homes of

We are indeed going to make it through this, even stronger than we were before because we stand together. Not alone. our students. Together, our school system is stronger. May Philippians 2:2 always be our guide: "Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind" (ESV). There are times we stumble, trip, and even fall, but having the love and joy of Christ at the center of all we do will ensure we can pick each other up and continue together. Most importantly, we will continue to rise. We will rise together. Together!

Ronda Ziakris Director/Education

JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News


Arden Sending (Grade 7)

Pratishta Manukonda (Grade 8)

Rosshellyn Etienne (Grade 9)

Do not delay; [God] is the most important thing in your life."

Joash Muthiah (Grade 10)

Pastor Rudy Alvir praying for Ayden Polishuk (Grade 6) and his family. Bryan Sending (Grade 4), introduced by Pastor Moises Ruiz before delivering his sermon. Cristciel Knight (Grade 9)

The youth speakers with Pastors Rudy and Moises with their gift, personalized Bible.


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021


Leaders For Today “Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity” (1 Timothy 4:12, NIV).


n Sabbath, April 24, at the Red Deer Seventhday Adventist Church, everyone in the congregation stood up and moved forward, responding to the call of God on their hearts. The preacher for that night was concluding our week of revival with a message on finishing the work of God. Arden Sending (Grade 7) told us about a vision of a great revival in the last days (see Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 126) and asked the question, "Do you see yourself there?" He then made the call and prayed over those in person and watching online that God would embolden them to share the gospel in their communities. How many of us would be willing to stand up in front of a congregation and preach a full sermon on revival, inviting others to join the call? This is not always an easy thing to do, no matter your age, and yet we were recently blessed with not just one but seven young people who said “Yes” to preaching a sermon and leading their church's Week of Revival. Our young people took the challenge seriously as they

began working on their scripts On Thursday, Cristciel in advance, highlighting, Knight (Grade 9) spoke preaching to mom and dad, about the promise of revival. and conducting a test run With clarity, she outlined at church the week before. how the promise of revival is It was inspiring to see the received through surrender. hard work and dedication On Friday night, Ayden in preparation for ministry. Polishuk (Grade 6) preached The Week of Revival a message on evangelism kicked off with a bang when and revival. With passion, Pratishta Manukonda (Grade he reminded everyone of 8) preached a powerful our special mission to share message on prayer and revival. God's grace with others. She spoke with a conviction Apart from the nightly beyond her years and made lessons delivered by our us desire more prayer in our preachers, we learned that lives. The following message our youth are not the leaders was brought by Bryan of tomorrow; they are the Sending (Grade 4) on the leaders of today. Each night's Holy Spirit and revival. With message concluded with a power, he presented the Holy special blessing from the Spirit as a personal friend elders of the Red Deer Church who’s eager to guide and bless. as they prayed over our young On Tuesday, Joash Muthiah people and their families as (Grade 10) brought the these mighty young women Word, speaking about the and men continue to speak urgency of revival. He spoke boldly in response to God's to the heart as he said, "Do prompting on their hearts. I not delay; [God] is the would encourage everyone most important thing in to pray and support their your life." On Wednesday, youth wherever they can Rosshellyn Etienne (Grade and then stand amazed 9) delivered a sermon on at how God will use this true and false revival. With generation. Submitted by: earnest love, she let us know —Pastor Moises Ruiz that true revival begins with Youth Pastor, Red Deer Church knowing and obeying Jesus. Pastor, Epic Church Red Deer JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News





Pathfinders Went Tubing


n February, our Mountaineers Pathfinder Club went tubing at the Canada Olympic Park in Calgary. Fortyfive people joined the event, including staff and members of the Master Guide Outdoor (MGO) Club. While ongoing restrictions limited both how the event could take place and opportunities for group socialization, it was so much fun to see each other slide down the hill, have some giggles, and meet in person again, even at a distance.—  Melissa Ohlmann

(587) 802-2016

Virtual Camp Meeting 2021

VCM2021 Digital Newsletter

ENEWS Alberta Adventist News



Mountain View Pathfinders and Master Guides, enjoying the day-out tubing together.

Honey Todd is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting of

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 920 7178 9980 Passcode: 468331

Dial by your location Canada +1 778 907 2071 +1 204 272 7920 +1 438 809 7799 +1 587 328 1099 +1 647 374 4685 +1 647 558 0588 Find your local number: albertaadventist-ca.zoom. us/u/adUd0GY7pc


Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021

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Brent Wilson leading praise and music for all the Adventurers during a Zoom meeting.

The Adventures Continue T

he Adventurer Club continues to do so much. Thank you to all those who lead in the various Adventurer classes. For the Sunbeam Adventurer Group, we learned about precious memories from each of our lives and recorded them in our scrapbooks. Many of our favorite memories centered around our families and friends.

We also talked about putting God's Word in our memories. When asked about what we are looking forward to in the future, one of the children said, "Heaven," so we talked about all the wonderful memories we will be able to make with Jesus face to face. —Submitted by Charlene Wong

Little Lambs Adventurers The girls learned about their bodies. In the picture, they are learning about how they can blow air out of their lungs. Then they made puppets of themselves. —  Submitted by Cherie Wilson


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

Get the inside scoop on what's happening in the Alberta Conference within Alberta and the Northwest Territories.

Join Debbie July 9 - 17, at 6:30-7:00 PM #debbie&friends

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021


Blessed by Small Group


e have 14 small groups meeting at various times, studying the book Believe by Randy Frazee. Some groups meet on Zoom, with several families represented. Others are families who are using the book during their worship time. We are blessed and inspired to be part of a small group and have a meaningful time studying together. —  Submitted by Phyllis Corkum

Jason and Tedra Holtem and kids.

Brian Corkum and Stacy Kindopp and kids

Mountaineers Master Guide Ou O ur MGO Club has been meeting regularly on Friday evenings by Zoom. During our meetings, we have been continuing our discussion on Messages to Young People and


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

completing various honors, including "Christian Story Telling," "Adventist Pioneer Heritage," "Laundering," and "Housekeeping." In the month of February, we sadly had to cancel our

planned Winter Campout in Waterton due to provincial health regulations. However, we had a bonfire with a smaller group as regulations permitted. The weather was cold, but our hearts were


Farewell, Pastor Honey and Clinton


ugs, cake and ice cream, and many other good things one would expect when saying “Farewell” to special people couldn’t happen because of COVID-19. However, we all joined together on Zoom on February 27 to share with Pastor Honey and Clinton Todd our most profound appreciation, love, and good wishes as we said “Farewell” after 16 years.

utdoors Club warmed as we socialized and caught up with each other face to face. We are looking forward to more outdoor events, including bonfires, backpacking, camping, and hiking, now that spring is here. —Chris Ohlmann

There were many tributes expressed, laughter at funny memories, learning things we had never known about the Todds in our trivia game, and viewing slides of special events that took place over the years. To add to the prominence of the occasion, we welcomed Mervyn and Tapuitea Todd from Australia, Sean and Kalie Todd from Nova Scotia, and Rhian Todd from Calgary. In addition, friends who have moved away from Calgary joined from northern and southern British Columbia and as far away as Portugal. We are truly sad to see our friends move away to Lacombe, but we know the Lord is leading them and will lead our Mountain View Church family in the future. — Phyllis Corkum Communications Coordinator Mountain View Seventh-day Adventist Church

JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News



Alive and Well W

e are grateful for the technology of meeting online. COVID-19 has brought us together in new and powerful ways. We are social creatures and need each other. Small groups meet the need and desire for worship, study, and prayer. From the comfort of our own homes, we are connected to others who share our time and attention to spiritual growth. At Red Deer Seventh-day Adventist Church, we have

Socrates' Group at McKenzie Park.

been meeting in small groups for two years. A huge “Thank you” to each of the leaders for hosting and guiding the participants through weekly discussions and prayer. We are encouraged; we are supported; we are loved; we are open to anyone and all who would like to join us. Some groups are currently completing the book Come Home by Pastor Don MacLafferty. One group is studying End Times by Ellen G. White.

Clean up drive.

Dory Quines group.

Small group enjoying fresh breath of air, food and God's nature. Small Group participating in the community clean up drive.

Mbewa Opiyo's group.


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

Gesklin Etienne's Gro


Our upcoming resource for the study is Deep Calling: on being & growing disciples by Tara J. Vin Cross. Our aim is always to draw people closer to Jesus. The small group provides a lifeline for us, and it's so easy to join. You can choose which group you would like to attend. Check out our website, reddeersdachurch. ca, for contact numbers, or call Jane Holmes, coordinator of small groups, at (403)  877- 4943. See you online! — Submitted by Jane Holmes

Dory Quines group went to Banff.

oup Zoom Worship.



Ritchie Quines

Dory Quines

Sudhan Muthiah

Ellen Afram

Sherry Silk

Romy Daquila

Daniel Mbewa

Rainier Vidal

Socrates Somigao

Enoch Mochache

Jane Holmes

Gesklin Etienne

Sudhan Muthiah Group.

Sherry Silk and Bradley Elliot.

Patricia Wynne.

Pastor Romy Daquila's group. JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News



A select few church members sharing how they celebrate Sabbath in their countries.

International Sabbath


e often marvel at the vastness of our planet; however, we are taught that God has the whole world in His hands. International Sabbath at the Yellowknife Seventh-day Adventist Church showed us the power Christ must bring us together. Our congregation spans 18 countries from five continents. On February 27, 2021, we were blessed to be in Yellowknife, where we could gather in person. Our service was full of beautiful culture and education, which illustrates the divine

creativity and thought our Father put into making us. We learned "Happy Sabbath" in Ndebele, Kinyarwanda, Tagalog, and Dene from a few of our brothers and sisters. Two young brothers dazzled us with their vast knowledge of Tanzania, and two girls performed a jig, a dance culturally significant to the Northern Dene. A brother from Scotland shared a story of being your brother's keeper, then played his shield to close. Yes, you read that right. Some families shared their beautiful gift of music

with us. We concluded with a panel discussion, where we discussed different ways we celebrate the Sabbath in Jamaica, South Africa, the Philippines, and Canada. All in all, this event put an exceptional shine on Sabbath, which we already cherish so deeply. Collectively, we missed the potluck that was sure to happen if not for the pandemic. After the pandemic, I am excited to see the culinary side of the International Sabbath. Out of many, one people. — Submitted by Chantal Grey

Brothers and Sisters representing their Celtic, Filipino, and Indigenous Heritage through cultural outfits and gears.


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

Okotoks Seventh-day Adventist Church Baptisms



Carol and Ro into the w y Wittman before ater. emerging

t finally happened! It was a very long wait for Carol and Roy Wittman to get baptized after learning that Saturday was the true Sabbath day. Due to COVID-19 and illnesses, the requested baptisms were postponed several times. On November 21, 2020, the happy day finally arrived. The Bridgeland Church in Calgary had been so kind to allow the Okotoks Seventh-day Adventist Church to use their tank. Only ten people were allowed to be present, but other members were able to watch on Zoom. Pastor Jinwook Lee, pastor of Okotoks, baptized a joyous Carol and Roy, whose wishes were finally fulfilled. Praise God!

Roy Wittm an baptize d by Past or Jinwoo k

— Ria Schurig, Church Communication Director


K-12 Adventist Education

Registration for K-12 Adventist education for the next school year (2021-2022) has been open since February 1, 2021. Check out your school and teachers and register your child!

Our Schools

JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News


ANNOUNCEMENTS Congratulations Shaneek


haneek Roasting, one of the MANS Class of 2020 Valedictorians, completed her freshman year at Burman University and will be talking to Lyle Notice about her year on Sabbath Morning Live, the first weekend of virtual Camp Meeting, Sabbath, July 10, 2021.”

Sonny and Violie enjoying life and a long marriage; family trip to London, United Kingdom in 2019 with their three daughters, Michelle, Marielle, and MM.

Cheers to their 36th Anniversary!


iolie and Sonny Diaz were married on May 6, 1985. They moved from the Philippines to Canada in 2005 with their three incredible daughters and resided in Edmonton, Alberta. Violie has been the treasurer of the Edmonton-Filipino Church since it was established in 2006. Sonny works in the oil and gas industry. With God's endless grace and blessing, they celebrated their 36th wedding anniversary this year.


Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021

August 26–29 Fil-Can Virtual Camp Meeting

Christ: Our Victory In Distress Theme Song: Christ Is the Victory Fil-Can Executives: Lady Diane Bondoc, President; Helina Perez, Secretary; Waynedale Geollegue, Treasurer Regions: Banff/Canmore, Bonnyville, British Columbia, Calgary Fil-Can, Calgary Metro, Calgary Northwinds, Calgary Parkdale, Chestermere, Edmonton, Ft. McMurray, Grande Prairie, Lacombe, Okotoks, Lethbridge, Red Deer Fil-Can, Saskatchewan, Wetaskiwin/Canmore During Sabbath meetings, each area is requested not to have its own meeting. Please join via Zoom or watch Facebook Live.

This Fil-Can Virtual Camp Meeting would have been our 19th annual camp meeting if not for COVID-19. We want to take a moment to give respect to some of our fellow believers who were taken by this terrible pandemic. We cling to the promise of our Lord Jesus Christ, who commanded us, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen” (Matthew 28:19–20). Meetings: Broadcast live both in Zoom and Facebook Live. — Submitted by Ben Barboza






August 26 - THURSDAY

7:30 p.m.

Evening Worship

Red Deer Fil-Can Group

Pastor Benjie Arias

August 27 - FRIDAY

6:00 a.m.

Morning Worship

Calgary Fil-Can/Chestermere Fellowship

4:00 p.m.

Sports and Parlor Games

7:00 p.m.

Vespers (Live Broadcast)

7:45 p.m.



7:00 a.m.

Morning Worship

Calgary M.E.T.R.O.

9:30 a.m.

Sabbath School (Live Broadcast)


11:00 a.m.

Divine Service (Live Broadcast)


11:00 a.m.

Divine Service—Youth


Pastor Benjie Arias Each region will send three videos of their participants.

August 28 - SABBATH

Calgary Parkdale Pastor Benjie Arias

Pastor Joseph Batiancila

2:00 p.m.

Afternoon Concert

Nanette Quines

5:00 p.m.

Sundown Worship


Pastor Benjie Arias

Pastor Dave Sulite and Helina Perez

Each region will send three videos of their participants. You may win a prize, which will be announced during Sunday’s closing ceremony.

7:30 p.m.

August 29 - SUNDAY

Each region will send three videos of their activities

Social and Cultural Night

7:00 a.m.

Morning Worship

Calgary Northwinds

11:00 a.m.

Closing Ceremony

Executive Committee JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News



“Third Angel” of MAN 2020 Appeal Takes S After 5 years of involvement, retired Enbridge CFO Richard Bird finds a lot to love about Mamawi Atosketan



ichard Bird is the first to admit that he's had advantages. He grew up as part of Bird Construction, the Canadian construction company established by his grandfather, which recently acquired Stuart Olson for $96.5 million. He graduated from good schools, including the University of Toronto and the University of Manitoba. His distinguished career included a long tenure as CFO of energy giant Enbridge, from which he retired in 2015. Bird knows he's fortunate, and "leveling the playing field" by investing in schools and other institutions that focus on disadvantaged groups — especially youth — Is a long-standing family value. A Monitoring Eye As one might expect, Bird keeps

an eye on his investments. He likes Mamawi Atosketan Native School (MANS) — enough to step into the financial gap created this year by COVID and federal policy on Indigenous education, making the largest of three five-digit contributions to the 2020 yearend appeal for student aid. Why would an astute businessman named by his peers as Canada's Top CFO in 2010 for his vision as well as professional expertise take note of a church-run Indigenous Kindergarten-Grade 12 school in Central Alberta? "We know we can't give everyone all the advantages we have," says Bird, "but we can at least give some children and youth a hand up along the way." The family's Ptarmigan Foundation has established many institutions around the

world, including orphanages, schools, and children's hospital programs. "But as we got some distance down the path," says Bird, "we realized that we have a pretty significant segment of disadvantaged youth right here in our own backyard in Canada — and that's among Indigenous people." The Bridge Campaign: Connecting with Values When a letter arrived on his desk in 2016 regarding MANS' campaign to build a high school, Bird responded with some key questions drawn from his previous experience with Indigenous education. The Ptarmigan Foundation supports several other primary, secondary,

We know we can't give everyone all the advantages we have, but we can at least give some children and youth a hand up along the way." 54

Alberta Adventist News

JUNE 2021


NS’ Stock and post-secondary education programs for Indigenous youth and physical fitness, sports, and outdoor adventure programs. After visiting the school, Bird's foundation became a major donor to MANS' Bridge Campaign. After watching MANS for five years, what does Bird like about MANS? Six things stand out: Solid Education Delivered in an Indigenous Context During Bird’s exploratory visit, he was looking for specific danger signs as well as things that, in his experience with various Indigenous endeavors, work. He asked pointed questions. What he saw and heard told him that MANS was being effective in delivering solid education to its 100% Indigenous student body. Positive Testimonials from Students and Parents Bird pays close attention to what’s in The Bridge Update newsletter (

Indigenous Culture Incorporated

Sound Governance and Oversight

“I like that we have a cultural centre there,” says Bird, “because I do think we need to keep Aboriginal youth connected to their history and their culture. Obviously, that’s something we’ve done the exact opposite of for most of our interactions since Europeans came to North America, so I really like that aspect of the program.” Indeed, when Bird made his first major gift to the building campaign, it was the cultural centre that most interested him as a naming opportunity, and he specified that “Cree” be part of the name, resulting in the name “Ptarmigan Cree Cultural Centre.” The Bird Construction Building Technologies Shop was named when his foundation made a second major gift jointly with Bird Construction. Bird continues to support the operations of the Centre and the Shop.

While strong and respectful relationships with band leadership are important to Bird, he also favours an independent governance process which which focuses on the educational needs of Indigenous children and youth.

Practical Exploratory Pursuits Bird knows that the hands-on skills taught in the Bird Construction Building Technologies Shop and other industrial arts options at MANS are not only satisfying and confidence-building, they’re also the backbone of many industries.

Open Door Inclusiveness “I also like the fact that the door is open to new students whether they happen to fit into the government funding formula or not,” says Bird. “I think that’s a very right way — a very good way — of looking at what we need to do for these children.” Looking to the future, the Ptarmigan Foundation has arranged to sponsor the Spirit North outdoor adventure program at MANS starting this fall. Spirit North is led by Beckie Scott, Alberta’s cross country skiing Olympic champion.

Lynn McDowell, JD, CSPG

Director of Planned Giving | Philanthropy Alberta Conference (403) 342-5044, ext. 233

JUNE 2021

Alberta Adventist News



Articles inside


page 52

Okotoks Seventh-day Adventist Church Baptisms

page 51

International Sabbath

page 50

Alive and Well

pages 48-49

Farewell, Pastor Honey and Clinton

page 47

Mountaineers Master Guide Outdoors Club

pages 46-47

Blessed by Small Group

pages 46-47

The Adventures Continue

page 44

Pathfinders Went Tubing

page 42

Grade 12 Student Wins MANS Healthy Food Contest

page 34

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting 2021 STRONGER TOGETHER

pages 20-30

Is the Pandemic Unchurching our Church?

pages 16-18

The Character Diamond

pages 12-14

Outward, Not Inward

page 10

Keys for Success in Every Endeavor

pages 8-9

A Few Good Words

page 4

“Third Angel” of MANS’ 2020 Appeal Takes Stock

pages 54-56

Leaders For Today

pages 40-51

Staying Strong

pages 36-37


pages 38-39

Stronger Together

pages 6-7

Victory in Jesus

pages 32-35
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