Alberta Adventist News October 2020

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ALBERTAADVENTIST.CA/AAN

To Be Like Jesus, Part II:

Broken on the Rock Alberta Conference Branding Guidelines for Stationery, Signage and E-Signatures brochure insert

OCTOBER 2020 EDITION

Abandoned The Life I Pray For Our Destiny Sweet Benediction


Highlights

To be like Jesus:

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Discipleship and Biblical Spirituality in the 21st Century Sin and Repentance: Broken on the Rock

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n part 2 of this 5 part series, Pastor Olaf Clausen explores the meaning and method of discipleship and biblical spirituality in ancient times. He asks how we might live better lives as modern disciples of Jesus.

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; C Communication unless otherwise noted. Submission Guidelines: albertaadventist.ca/aan; Submissions: aan@albertaadventist.ca

ELECTED OFFICIALS: President Gary Hodder; Secretary/VP for Administration Wayne Williams; Treasurer/Chief Financial Officer Keith Richter; Board Members/EXCOM: Gary Ho Hetland, Curtis Letniak, Lara Melashenko, Japheth Ndhlovu, Terri Proud, Melanie Semchuk, Middin Galve-Sumiller, Deborah Silva, Sheldon Trenchuk, Griffin Webster. Departmental Clausen; Human Resources Officer Jennifer Williams; Education Superintendent Ronda Ziakris; Planned Giving & Trust Services/Philanthropy Director Lynn Mc Dowell; Foothill Project Development Director Llew Werner. ALBERTA CONFERENCE OF THE SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST CHURCH: Address: 5816 Highway 2A, Lacombe, AB, T4L2G5. Office Hours: M Twitter: ABAdventist, Facebook: ABAdventist, Instagram: ABAdventist, Website: albertaadventist.ca


OCTOBER 2020 EDITION 04 Message from the President 06 From the Editor 08 Devotional

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10 Poem 21 Department News 32 Education News 36 Church News 37 Announcements

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38 Means & Meaning

16 Drummed Out of Church. It seems there is no

agreement on what principle or set of principles guides the use of drums in Adventist churches. In this essay, Pastor David Hamstra proposes (1) we have been looking for such principles in the wrong place and (2) our practice is better than our theory.

34 In The Boat. Whenever I have remembered the story

of Jesus rebuking the storm, pictures usually portrayed only one boat. Realizing there were other boats in the sea makes a difference. When Jesus rebuked the wind and waves and said, “Peace be still,” He did it for everyone. Jesus can calm the storm!

Co-Editors Jenny Nickel & John Simon; Graphic Design Mishell Raedeke/omnidesign.ca; Photo attribution: Alberta Adventist

odder—chair, Wayne Williams, Keith Richter, Benjamin Arias, Miguel Brown, Norman Ewing, Massiel Davila-Ferrer, Vicky Ford, Rayette l Directors/M inisterial & Evangelism Director George Ali; Sabbath School, Children's and Personal Ministries Director Olaf ls Camp Director Troy McQueen; Youth Director Lyle Notice; Communication/IT/Media Director Eric Ollila; Risk Management/ Monday-Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Phone: (403) 342-5044, Fax: (403) 775-4482 Email: info@ albertaadventist.ca SOCIAL MEDIA


MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT

ABANDONED

T

his summer, Almyra and I were challenged to find things to do that would not involve being with many people. The summer of 2020 will be remembered as the COVID-19 summer. We have always enjoyed visiting historical places and so decided to visit the nearby abandoned (ghost) town of Bulwark. It is located a few miles east of the town of Stettler. The first thing to greet us as we arrive at Bulwark is the historic local cemetery. As we walk through the well-caredfor cemetery, we become acquainted with the family names of people who lived in Bulwark during its active years. We even saw the name of one individual who shared the same name as my great grandfather: William Harding. No relation, I am sure. Bulwark was first settled shortly after the turn of the 20th century by homesteaders, enticed by the federal government with free land and the promise of a prosperous future. When the railroad came from Coronation in 1914, it was the Village of Bulwark's

official birth. Like so many other new settlements at that time, there was great hope for a bountiful future. It never had a population of over 100 citizens. Still, it grew to be a thriving community, important meeting place for grain farmers, and social center in which to buy supplies, attend a church function, and play sports. At one time, it had few businesses, including three lumberyards, two general stores, a post office, and two churches. Financially, Bulwark was the heart of a huge grain district. One year, the little town’s Alberta Wheat Pool elevator took in the second-largest grain of any Alberta elevator. Today, Bulwark is an abandoned town. The school closed in 1960, and the rail company closed its spur line a few years later. The alreadydwindling population read the writing on the wall and left. There are still a few, old, dilapidated buildings onsite — mostly homes. There are also a few cars left to rust in the tall grass. Among them is an old Ford pickup from the forties. Jesus

knew the meaning of the word “abandoned.” As He hung on the cross, He lamented, "My God, my God, why have you abandoned me." He must have felt the darkness of going through this experience seemingly alone. Perhaps you have felt, at times, like you were living as one abandoned. You may be a senior citizen who now lives alone, and your fellow church members have largely forgotten you. Your spouse has left you abandoned. Perhaps your workplace has abandoned you during this time of pandemic, and your future prospects do not look bright. You might feel like you are living in Bulwark today with its eerie streets and forgotten past. Jesus offers us hope for these times in our lives. Not only did He die for our sins, but He promises to call us to a far better future. One day, this world will be made new — no COVID-19 anywhere to be seen!

Gary Hodder

President Alberta Conference

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Alberta Adventist News

OCTOBER 2020


ALBERTA CONFERENCE CHILDREN’S MINISTRIES AND CHILDREN’S SABBATH SCHOOL LEADERS AND VOLUNTEERS

BEST PRACTICES FOR ONLINE CHILDREN’S MINISTRIES

Alberta Conference Children’s Ministries Department in partnership with Prairie Adventist eSchool (PACeS) are excited to present tips and tricks for improving your Sabbath School and Children’s Ministries virtual programs.

SESSION 1 MONDAY

19

OCTOBER

7-8 PM

Tips and Tricks on How to Use Zoom Settings and Features for Children’s Programs

SESSION 2 MONDAY

26

7-8 PM

Best Practices and Ideas for Engaging Children Online

Q&A AND GUIDED PRACTICE TIME INCLUDED

FREE EVENT

This event will be delivered virtually via ZOOM. Please register at: albertaadventist.ca/ChM2020

If you would like more information, please contact Pr. Olaf Clausen by email at oclausen@albertaadventist.ca or by phone at (403) 342-5540 x211


FROM THE EDITOR

Dear Alberta Conference Family and Friends:

C

OVID-19. Think back with me one year ago. What were you doing? With whom did you live or spend the majority of your time? Where did you work? What was important in your life? What plans were you making for this year and your future? Were you happy or fulfilled? Compare that with today. What has changed? Has your answer to any of these questions changed? For most of you reading this article, I would assume a mixture of things have either changed or stayed the same in your life. When I look back a year ago, I see a few things that were the same as last year on my calendar. There are a few items that haven't changed too much from last year. I think

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of some of the long-term goals for which I have been aiming at home, work, and in my personal life. Many of those seem to be on track. However, significant disruption has occurred to several short-term goals and plans in my life. Annual travel plans experienced total annihilation for my family and me. COVID-19 has made it difficult to visit family living in the United States and return without mandatory isolation. Even travelling around to the different churches in the Conference and preaching has all been disrupted. The people with whom I live have changed. Last year, our household consisted of my wife, daughter, and me. This year, we have added

OCTOBER 2020

our niece and nephew (ages 4 and 5, respectively). They both came to stay with us in February, right before COVID-19 hit. Due to COVID-19 and the US/ Canada border restrictions and some other factors, both children are still with us. Numerous other short-term plans and goals experienced radical disruption and delay. Some of them have caused awkward circumstances and placed tremendous pressure on our family — my wife and me individually. Maybe some of you have also experienced some severe, life-altering changes since COVID-19 hit. COVID-19 and all its attending circumstances on our world and lives have helped me realize, in a new way, what I want in life. It has helped peel away


It has helped me realize that most of the things I've considered a permanent fixture of life are merely human inventions and can vanish overnight." some of those outer layers of distraction. It has given the clarity of vision on the core of what I want. It has helped me realize that most of the things I've considered a permanent fixture of life are merely human inventions and can vanish overnight. COVID-19 and the shutdown that we all experienced globally confirmed that even my notions of what "church" means needed a reality check. What I want in life can be nicely summarized with a Bible verse: “You will show me the path of life. In Your presence, there is fulness of joy; at your right hand, there are pleasures forevermore" (Psalm 16:11, personal translation). I want to be in God's presence. I want Him to show me the path of life. And I want to experience the

fullness of joy and pleasures that God offers forever. In times of uncertainty, disease, and death, what better confidence can you have than to know God is showing you the path of life? In times of isolation and aloneness, what better comfort can you have than to know God is present with you? And in times of sadness, disappointed hopes, disrupted goals, and extended delays, what better hope can you have than to know that the God in whose presence you dwell provides the fullness of joy and pleasures forever? For me, that is a beautiful promise, and I am thankful for it. In this edition of Alberta Adventist News Magazine, we wanted to point your eyes to Jesus — to give you hope, not in this world or anything dependent upon

us as humans, but in Jesus. I hope you will spend some time on this issue, reading the devotion and features: The President's Message and the various updates and news from the schools and churches. We have also included the new branding manual for the Alberta Conference, which is currently leading the way in this regard by undertaking to rebrand the entire Conference. Please check it out. We think you'll enjoy it.

Eric Ollila

Communication/IT/Media Director Alberta Conference

OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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DEVOTIONAL

OUR

DESTINY

'You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles' wings and brought you to myself.

I

t seems like every time we open our browsers, turn on the TV, or switch on the radio, something catastrophic is taking place somewhere in the world. COVID-19 has taught us there is no safe place in this world (even though there are a handful of countries that have not reported any cases). If it isn't the coronavirus, it's some kind of natural disaster. There is nothing more troubling than knowing that a calamity has threatened your home. After all, we have always believed there is no safer place than at home. The wildfires in California, Oregon, and Washington have been giving us a different

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story, though. The reality is this world is not our home. In fact, we are on a journey; we are traveling. Our destination is not a geographical place, but a Person. Our destination is God. The second book of the Bible describes the journey of Israel's people from Egypt to their destiny. Most people think their objective is to reach the Promised Land (a geographical place), but God Himself gives us a different account. “You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles' wings and brought you to myself � (Exodus 19:4). Do you see it? According to God, He is the Purpose; He is our Home; He is the

OCTOBER 2020

Destination. We will face calamities, disasters, and many distractions along the way, but we are not home yet. God is bringing us to Himself. Please do not get so comfortable that you despair when obstacles appear on your way. Remember, we are going home. Our Lord is our destiny!

Rodolfo Alvir

Senior Pastor Red Deer SDA Church


HOLIDAY REFLECTIONS ALBERTA CONFERENCE

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT WEEKEND

U NSSSH HA AK KA B L LE U E N UN U NOVEMBER 28, 2020 TIME / QUESTIONS & ANSWERS: 4:00 PM

Speaker:

Pastor Mathew Feeley Spastic, Ottawa ON

Evangelism has been a large part of Mathew’s ministry. During his summers off from CUC he worked for the Ontario Conference as a Bible worker at the Toronto North Church, among the Filipino Churches in the GTA and in Northern Ontario at the Elliot Lake and North Shore Churches. After his graduation from CUC he spent much of his time as a Pastor conducting evangelistic series throughout Canada, the United States, the Caribbean and Brazil. He also assisted It Is Written Canada in several of their evangelistic efforts.

ZOOM information: Meeting ID: 967 6436 5155 Passcode: 648129

More information: Dr. Lyle Notice

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


POEM

The Life I Pray For By Marjorie Landicho

The world that we live in now is far from perfect, we all know; The life that it gives never satisfies but disgruntles, It gives us grief and despair, never to cast out worries and fears; It makes us doubt the goodness of God, pulling our thoughts away from the light into darkness; Our life and circumstance, though different in forms, shapes, weights, and occurrences, Are all but just the same; we all experience tears and pain. Never will I want to continue living in such a world of disarray A world with no hope, no true love, never cares; What gives joy in my heart, I say, is knowing that there is One, And knowing that I have a God who is love. And a God who cares and never forsakes.

It gives me hope to think that in His Love, I'm saved. Saved from this world of pain And saved from the things there is and same; With conviction, I dare say, there are hope and a better way To finding love and life, I may, because Jesus is with us every day. With God from whom everything came Is the same God who delivers and cares, He will, I'm sure, take us all in, to the heavenly home when He returns; We will be free from this world of sin, eternal life His glory we can claim, This life, I pray for all of us, for as long as we believe in Him. From the Word: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

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OCTOBER 2020


HOLIDAY REFLECTIONS ALBERTA CONFERENCE

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT WEEKEND

UN NSSH HA AC U D U N CK L E D AC DECEMBER 5, 2020 TIME: 11:30 AM | QUESTIONS & ANSWERS: 4:00 PM

Speaker:

Pastor Ron Sydney Detroit, Michigan

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. Pastor Ron loves preaching and loves sharing inspiring messages to young people.

ZOOM information: Meeting ID: 950 6127 9593 Passcode: 648129

More information: Dr. Lyle Notice

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


FEATURE

PART

II

TO BE LIKE

Discipleship and Biblical Spiritualit

In this five-part series, we will be exploring the meaning and method of disciple in ancient times and ask ourselves how we might live better lives as modern dis

Sin and Repentance: Broken on the Rock

I

n our last installment, we discovered that one of the foundations of worship in Jesus’ day had become the study of the Word of God as led by master teachers in the synagogue. Through the development and continuation of spiritual practices (see Nehemiah 8) and protection of the oracles of God (see Romans 3:1), the

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synagogue had preserved a system of master-student discipleship (rabbi-talmid), which protected the faith of the Jewish people and its future generations. However, this same system was prone to the human condition's failings, in that leaders and teachers could easily become headstrong, proud, and corrupted as

OCTOBER 2020

they were celebrated by their disciples and the community at large. Indeed, by Jesus' day, this was very much the case as we observe Jesus upbraiding the rabbis and rulers of the time (see Matthew 12:28–40; 23:15; Mark 12:40) while still upholding their teaching system (see Matthew 23:3). Indeed, Israel's spiritual leadership had so lost its


E JESUS:

ty in the 21st Century

eship and biblical spirituality sciples of Jesus. By Olaf Clausen

Sabbath School, Children’s, and Personal Ministries Director

way that it could no longer humble itself as their great prophet Moses had done, even to the point of desiring the death of Israel's Messiah. This is not to say that all the leadership was corrupt. Jesus' appeal moved Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea to the leadership. Indeed, the Scriptures tell us that many priests and rulers

came to faith in Jesus after His resurrection (see John 12:42; Acts 4:36–37; 6:7). Nevertheless, something was missing in Israel's attitude toward God and sin: humility and repentance. In fact, this was the whole point of the sacrificial system — maintenance of the stark awareness that one's own sinfulness causes death

and, ultimately, the death of God's own Son. Even the prophet Moses was prone to this same lack of humility when he struck the life-giving rock in the wilderness in disobedience to God (see Numbers 20:9–12). Despite the daily flow of blood emanating from Israel’s sanctuary, it was still possible for God’s people to forget or become desensitized to their need for humility before Him. Accordingly, the holiest day of the Israelite calendar was Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement (or, more specifically in the Hebrew, the Day of Covering). On this day, all Israelites were to humble themselves before the Lord, forgiving one another of their sins and, in turn, asking forgiveness. The people fasted and prayed, abstaining from food and water as they anxiously awaited the sign from the high priest that God

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Alberta Adventist News

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FEATURE

had forgiven them of their sins. The greeting and prayer in those days leading up to Yom Kippur was Kotvenu b’sefer he-hayyim, "May you inscribe us in the Book of Life." From this liturgy, we can infer that true humility and repentance are a prerequisite to entering the kingdom of Heaven, and I would suggest this was Jesus' primary concern. As we survey the Scriptures describing Jesus’ life and teachings, we come away with such a profound sense of His humility. Beginning with the very Son of God condescending to be born among a sinful people to humble circumstances of toil and derision and culminating with His terrible crucifixion as the sinless Lamb of God, every word and action of Jesus implored His disciples 14

Alberta Adventist News

Accordingly, the holiest day of the Israelite calendar was Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement or, more specifically, in the Hebrew, the Day of Covering. On this day, all of Israel was to humble themselves before the Lord, forgiving one another their sins and, in turn, asking forgiveness." (indeed, all of humanity) to be humble and repentant. Is it any wonder that Jesus taught His disciples to be humble servant-teachers who avoided grandiose titles and public accolades? Only He could be the true Master, the true Rabbi, and consequently, He commanded His disciples not to take on these titles (see Matthew 23:8). For the disciples of Jesus, putting on titles and airs is dangerous to the human condition and can lead even the most devoted to fall (Peter’s repeated denial in Mark 14 is a case in point). Is it any coincidence

OCTOBER 2020

that just before the disciples’ greatest trial, Jesus washed their feet. Friends, the lesson is clear: to be a truly great follower of the Master, you must not only accept but also joyfully seek out the role of a servant, that you may remain humble (see Mark 10:45; Luke 22:24–30; John 13:12–15; Philippians 2:5–8). For those of us born to sin, this is a tall order. Just like the leadership of Jesus' day, all of us innately desire to be esteemed, even worshipped by our fellow human beings. Today, our whole social media culture revolves


around the cult of celebrities and influencers. Dare I mention church celebrities and influencers also? Many of our children are bombarded by the message that they must receive riches and adulation to be an acceptable member of our culture, and sadly, so many of them sacrifice their integrity on that ineffectual altar. Surely, Jesus’ message of becoming a servant is all the more detestable in today’s culture, but ironically, it’s the only way to true happiness and immortality. The catch is that we can’t get there by ourselves. Only the Rock can break through our stubborn, sinful nature: Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people, producing the fruit of it. And he who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it

falls, it will scatter him like dust. (Matthew 21:43–44) Friends, the truth is, left to ourselves, we can never make that decision to fall on the Rock, but praise God, He has sent us a Comforter and Guide in the person of the Holy Spirit to enable us to make that decision! Theologians call this “prevenient grace” — the grace that comes before. This means what we consider to be “our” decision to follow God and become His disciples is, itself, an enabling of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, even in this decision, there is nothing of merit in us. Isn't that good news, friends? We must even rely on God to help us choose Him! Likewise, through His power, we are enabled to become truly humble and repentant servants of the kingdom of God. Today, while the world beckons us

to strive for the most likes and followers, let us resolve to be more like Jesus and be His truly humble followers. Join me next time for Part 3 of our exploration of biblical discipleship, entitled Forgiveness and Growth: There is a Balm in Gilead. Pr. Olaf Clausen, MA is the Alberta Conference Director of Sabbath School, Children’s, and Personal Ministries. He is a specialist in Judeo-Christianity for the SDA Church in Canada and North American Division Jewish Ministries.

Olaf Clausen

Sabbath School, Children’s, and Personal Ministries Director

OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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FEATURE

DRUMMED OU

Evaluating Music for

• Drums are acceptable in worship as long as they don't play certain rhythms. • Drums may not be seen in worship, but may be played as part of a prerecorded accompaniment track. • Drums arranged as a drum kit may not be played in church, but traditional African drums like bongos and djembes may be played in church. • Drums arranged as a drum kit may not be played in church, but a wooden box rigged to sound like a drum kit (a cajón) may be played in church. • Drums are not to be played at all in church, but they may be played at youth events, however the youth like it. • Drums at church should either be contained behind a sound barrier or electronically mixed so they don't disturb sensitive ears. That's a sample of various stated and unstated customs restricting the use of drums in worship I have encountered in various Adventist churches. Given the diversity of approaches, it seems there is no 16

Alberta Adventist News

agreement on what principle or set of principles guides the use of drums in Adventist churches. In this essay, I propose (1) we have been looking for such principles in the wrong place and (2) our practice is better than our theory is. Philosophical Frame work: Time and Reason To explain what I mean by that, I will need to introduce two different ways of reasoning about things relative to time.1 The first comes from an assumption baked into the grand tradition of Western philosophy since Parmenides: what is really real is what doesn't change. Consequently, to make reliable inferences, we need to find ways to think about what is in time and changes by relating it to what is outside of time and cannot change. Much of science, for example, operates on this assumption by explaining changes we observe in the world as the operation of unchanging laws of nature. I will call this the analytical mode of reasoning because analysis often means defining unchanging structures of reality in terms of their constituent parts.2 With that said, what if

OCTOBER 2020

what's really real really does undergo change? As a Christian, I understand God as the Creator and Sustainer of all that is; He is the Being in whom everything else that exists holds together (see Acts 17:28). While God has revealed properties of His being that are consistent through all time — for example, His character (see Malachi 3:6) — He has also shown us in His sanctuary that His experience —  thus, His ultimate reality — is subject to change. Though the bisection of the space where God dwells — a division that demarcates a two-phase heavenly ministry of the Son before the Father — the architecture of heaven shows us that ultimate reality involves change and time. The biblical sanctuary further demonstrates that what's real about where God dwells is not completely disconnected from human reality, so we do not need to escape from our changing world into a changeless, divine reality to connect with God. Rather, we connect with Him by joining our stories to His story, especially as told in the sanctuary and its services. This has profound and far-reaching implications for


UT OF CHURCH?

r Adventist Worship how we are to reason about the human relationship with God. However, in this article, I will focus on those that relate to the evaluation of music for worship. Joining our story to God's story requires a mode of reasoning that makes inferences by relating past, present, and future. Such inferences seem arbitrary to those who intuitively reason analytically because no one narrates their experiences in exactly the same way, but if what's really real is changeable, we need to have a way of reasoning about our experience, which is, after all, organized by time. I will call this the phenomenological mode of reasoning because phenomena are aspects of reality as we experience them (as opposed to reality as we analyze it). How we experience reality is determined by:

These are always changing and particular, yet not so unique that we do not share commonalities of experience connected by shared physiology, culture, and/or conviction.3 Thus, phenomenological reasoning doesn't have to describe what is true for everyone in order to arrive at the truth. Instead, it aims at conclusions that are true

as far as they go or to explain why different kinds of people experience things differently. For example, biblical typology reasons from past to present and future to show, among other things, what changed in the experience of God's people: where people connected to God's story in the past had to offer animal sacrifices, in the present, they do not.

1. Our habits, customs, and overall background that has been shaped by our past 2. Our bodily and conscious states and all else that directs our attention to the present moment 3. Our goals, commitments, and other exercises of the will that open up new possibilities for the future OCTOBER 2020

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FEATURE

The Failure of Analytical Evaluations of Worship Music Because music and worship are embodied in human cultural practices that change over time and have different effects on different kinds of people, I propose that phenomenological reason is the correct mode of reason for evaluating the role of drums in Adventist worship. We cannot resolve a phenomenological problem by asking an analytical question. The failure of this analytical approach is laid bare not only by the plurality of practice in Adventism, but also by the General Conference's disregard for what it has plainly stated in its Church Manual: "Any melody partaking of the nature of jazz, rock, or related hybrid forms ‌ will be shunned" (p. 150). This statement is adapted from page 10 of the outdated 1972 "Seventh-day Adventist Philosophy of Music" guidelines voted by the General Conference Executive Committee, which also counseled against the extensive use of jazz chords (specifically, "the seventh, ninth, eleventh, and thirteenth chords," p. 10). Yet 18

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when I heard the Breath of Life Quartet sing at the 2015 General Conference Session in San Antonio, they "saturated" their music with beautiful jazz chords that made it past a rigorous vetting process. Examples could be multiplied to illustrate my point: Attempts to define the right and wrong forms of music using music theory's analytical tools have proven unworkable in the Adventist experience. They also tend to elevate forms of music associated with white culture and denigrate forms of music associated with black culture. Yet there is a cottage industry in Adventism claiming to have discovered the timeless properties of music suited or unsuited for worship. Drums are often a focus of these attempts at analysis. Such teachers may claim that because percussion instruments are not on the lists of instruments played in the sanctuary, they are not suited for Adventist worship; or they may claim certain rhythms always produce certain effects on human consciousness. Whatever their rea-

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sons, what these self-appointed guardians of Adventist worship have in common is a mode of reasoning that, while intuitive for many, cannot adequately account for change through time and, thus, also experience. Evaluating Worship Music as Phenomena The structure of music can be explained analytically. Still, its suitability for worship can only be assessed by its effect on human consciousness (which is not to say the technical proficiency of worship music cannot be evaluated analytically). This is similar to the biblical criteria of fruits (see Matthew 7:20) or the test of God's blessing proposed by wise Gamaliel (Acts 5:38–39). It is the reasoning "from cause to effect" that Ellen G. White counseled in a variety of situations, but is perhaps best illustrated by this counsel regarding diet in a sermon she preached in 1908: There is no door in our stomach by which we can look in and see what is going on; so we must use our mind, and reason from cause to effect. If you feel all wrought up, and everything


seems to go wrong, perhaps it is because you are suffering the consequences of eating a great variety of food. (Letters and Manuscripts, vol. 23, Ms. 41) Like food, the effects of different kinds of music can vary from setting to setting and individual to individual across time and place for reasons that are hidden from us ("there is no door"). However, we can aim at evaluations of worship music that are generally true for particular Adventist communities. We make those evaluations by observing the results of steps taken to improve the quality of our worship music relative to our common background and the goals of Adventist worship ("perhaps it is because …"). By

repeating this process, we can tell a story about the community's relationship with God in music and worship — a story we can evaluate by synchronizing it with God's story. It turns out this is what many Adventist communities have already done with the question of drums in worship, even if they haven't been aware of why it works or how best to accomplish it. What appears to analytical intuitions as confusion about timeless principles turns out to have prompted the first steps toward phenomenological clarity. In 2004, the General Conference replaced its proscriptions of genres and chords with guidelines that take a phenomenological approach:

The following philosophical and theological overview is based on my careful reading of Fernando Canale's 1983 PhD dissertation: "Toward a Criticism of Theological Reason: Time and Timelessness as Primordial Presuppositions" (digitalcommons.andrews.edu/dissertations/22). It is also informed by Canale's later work on the sanctuary, most succinctly captured in his 1998 article, "Philosophical Foundations and the Biblical Sanctuary," in Andrews University Seminary Studies (digitalcommons.andrews.edu/auss/vol36/iss2/2). For an accessible summary of Canale's dissertation, see Sven Fockner, "An Introduction to Canale's Criticism of Theological Reason," in a 2016 collection of scholarly essays in honor of Canale's work entitled Scripture and Philosophy. Fernando Canale is a theology and philosophy professor, emeritus, at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, Andrews University. 2 My definitions of analytical and phenomenological are limited to the purposes of this essay. They are not intended to describe those philosophical traditions or the other ways those terms are used in scholarly discourse. 3 In this description of the constitution of persons, I am drawing on Thomas Pfau's 2013 study, Minding the Modern, which critiques modernity as an attempt to escape the historical nature of reasoning about the human experience. 4 Available at adventist.org/articles/a-seventh-day-adventist-philosophy-of-music.

laying out the goals of Adventist worship and leaving it up to individual Adventist communities how to best meet them.4 For guidance on how to do that, I recommend the 2010 book, In Tune with God by Lilianne Doukhan, professor of music, emarita, at Andrews University. She is a musicologist trained to observe music as a phenomenon. Her book helpfully walks readers through the ways music affects our experiences and how our experiences affect the way we individually and collectively interpret music. Based on these understandings, she gives practical guidelines for how music in worship, including the use of drums, can be evaluated.

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David Hamstra Seventh-day Adventist Minister

OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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OFFICE 365 ZOOM + OFFICE 365 + TEAMS

Integrated Microsoft 365 and Zoom licenses Did you know that the Alberta Conference offers free are available for a special Microsoft 365 E1 licenses for all church officers? discount for all Alberta Conference Churches. If you serve your church in any of the officially recognized areas such as church board, elder, deacon, deaconess, clerk, treasurer, Sabbath School, personal ministries, pathfinders, adventurers, master guides, worship, Contact us today for more music, audio/visual, IT/technology, communications, hospitality, or other information and pricing: officially recognized capacities in your local church, then you qualify.

For more information email itsupport@albertaadventist.ca eollila@albertaadventist.ca Certain limits and exceptions apply. Microsoft E1 Licenses are web-based only Microsoft E3 and E5 licenses are available upon request. Charges will apply.

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OCTOBER 2020


DEPARTMENT

NEWS

Janet Griffith and Geri Seidel serving up macaroni and cheese casserole in the kitchen.

TEAMWORK at the Red Deer Soup Kitchen

"A

s the dew and the still showers fall upon the withering plants, so let words fall gently when seeking to win men from error. God's plan is first to reach the heart. We are to speak the truth in love, trusting in Him to give it power for the reforming of life. The Holy Spirit will apply to the soul the word that is spoken in love" (Ellen G. White, The Ministry of Healing, p. 157). Teamwork is the name of the game at the Red Deer Soup Kitchen. Central Alberta Adventist churches support the ministry and outreach at the downtown kitchen on 49th Street. A rotation of teams from the various churches pitch in to donate items, make hot meals, sandwiches,

salads, and desserts for over 100 people who stop by to pick up a bag lunch or two. The first Sabbath of September and the following Thursday were organized and managed by the Sylvan Lake Adventist Church. It was the first time for Pastor Tyler, and he took to his station at the doorway to meet and greet and hand out the generous meal in a bag. Other helpers worked in the production line to prepare each meal and package it, while still others worked on the upper level in preparation and clean up. Since this ministry is close to my heart, I want to draw attention to a chapter in a recent book I have written and published, Learning to Live OCTOBER 2020

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DEPARTMENT NEWS

The assembly line to create the best hot meal handout in the city! Bert Frost on mac and cheese, Ron Griffith on salads and buns, and Wayne Rachal on dessert and cutlery, plus bottled water for each order too.

Lightly: The ABCs of How To Get There. It is available on Amazon Kindle and will be available in paperback by the end of September. Proceeds from the book will be donated to the soup kitchen, so be sure to order several copies and pass them around. The chapter to which I am referring is titled “Darby and the Soup Kitchen.” We do our best, but sometimes the end of the story is not so good. We appreciate our communities' efforts and financial support as we keep in mind the needy among us. We want to offer God's love and mercy and demonstrate the spiritual world's reality right here at home. There is a great controversy going on, and we are 22

Alberta Adventist News

Pastor Tyler Rosengren, greeting clients at the window handing out hot lunch.

There is a great controversy going on, and we are in the middle of it." Jane Holmes

in the middle of it. "By our love and service for His needy children we prove the genuineness of our love for Him. To neglect them is to declare ourselves false disciples, strangers to Christ and His love" (Ellen G. White, The Ministry of Healing, p. 205). — Submitted by Red Deer Seventh-day Adventist Church

OCTOBER 2020

Author photo and Cover Jane Holmes, Red Deer Seventh-day Adventist Church


DEPARTMENT NEWS

Didn’t get a chance to watch

Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting?

...That’s okay! They are still available to watch, at your convenience. Visit:

albertavirtualcampmeeting.ca PROGRAMS AVAILABLE: Adult – All meetings except morning devotions. Youth – All meetings. Children’s – All meetings. Concerts – 1st and 2nd Sabbath Afternoon Concerts. Dialogue with Debbie – All sessions.


DEPARTMENT NEWS

Recap of Virtual Camp Meeting Alberta Conference's Reflecting the Shepherd Virtual Camp Meeting 2020 Provided a Full Week of Spiritual Engagement During COVID-19 Crisis

SEPTEMBER 16, 2020

By Eric L. Ollila

Communication/IT/Media Director, Alberta Conference

E

very year at Foothills Camp and Retreat Centre, thousands of families gather together in one place to connect with friends, family, and faith, but this year, that changed. We cancelled the traditional Alberta Conference Camp Meeting due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. In its place, Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting: Reflecting the Shepherd (July 17–25, 2020) was introduced. The event was streamed on every central platform,

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Alberta Adventist News

including YouTube, Facebook Live, Vimeo/ Livestream, and its website, albertavirtualcampmeeting.ca. Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting featured children, youth, and adult programs, including morning and evening devotionals, concerts, interactive prayer meetings, weekly Sabbath School classes, and worship. Perhaps the most remarkable feature of the event was the enormous collaborative, cooperative effort it took to successfully

OCTOBER 2020

pull the event off. Over 250 individuals served in various areas, including production, planning, support, or participating with music, singing, or speaker presenting. The Virtual Camp Meeting highlighted a vast array of talent from every corner of our conference, including the Northwest Territories and Alberta. And as several attendees remarked, it empowered local pastors and highlighted local church talent.


DEPARTMENT NEWS YOUTUBE - JULY 17–25, 2020

111,238 24,843 5,393 4.6

Impressions Made Program Views Unique Devices Views Per Device

On YouTube alone, during the week of July 17–25, there were 111,238 impressions made, with 24,843 program views on 5,393 unique devices and 4.6 views per device. Those figures do not consider viewers from Facebook live, Vimeo/Livestream, or those who engaged in the interactive Zoom meetings. Nor does it encompass all the additional viewers who were watching programs from shared devices. With 8,399 family units and 12,212 members in the Alberta Conference (as per the date of this writing), it is not far-fetched to assume roughly 64% of the Alberta Conference membership's family units were reached through Virtual Camp Meeting on YouTube during that week. Considering what would have happened if we had cancelled the traditional Camp Meeting and didn't offer the alternative virtual option, it seems the initiative was a worthwhile endeavour. Despite the COVID-19 Pandemic and its corresponding isolation of members from one another, Alberta Conference Virtual Camp Meeting provided a spiritual retreat for many during a global health and financial crisis. And all of its programs remain available for viewing to this day online. If you'd like to be blessed by the fantastic programs provided, please visit us at albertavirtualcampmeeting.ca. OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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DEPARTMENT NEWS

Foothills Camp Fall Update F

oothills Camp has been a very different place since the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of you are aware from my camp meeting video update with Debbie Schwarz, that Foothills Camp is currently shut down and most all camp staff have been temporarily laid off because of COVID-19. With that said, I want to let you

know that there are still many things needing to be done at camp each day. This is a short report to let you see some of the things that have been accomplished at Foothills Camp over the past several months. With the river eroding the road to Sherwood Forest more and more each year, we have had to build a new road that leads away from

the river. You can see from the photos below that the new road has now been completed. For safety purposes, it will now be a one way loop around to Sherwood that leads away from the river. At the SAGE Education Centre we were able to complete some major road repair and at the same time we put in a spot for parking. This should make any visit to the

Photos by Troy McQueen

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DEPARTMENT NEWS

Education Centre a lot more accessible and cleaner. Thanks to a few helpful volunteers, the new heritage plaque has now been mounted onto the little white church. Another new addition to the camp is

a beautiful memorial garden that has been designed and built by Ted and Dorothy Proud. And the final thing I’d like to mention is very exciting, we were approved by Alberta Transportation as well as Red

Deer and Mountain View County’s to have four new highway signs installed that direct visitors to the camp. I’ve shared a few other photos with you that highlight the beauty and wildlife of Foothills Camp.

— Submitted by Troy McQueen, Foothills Camp and Retreat Centre Director

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

eollila@albertaadventist.ca

OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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DEPARTMENT NEWS

Sculpture Commissioned by City of Lacombe from MANS Students/Philanthropists

O

n September 26, in a public ceremony with city dignitaries and members of the Maskwacis community, he City of Lacombe unveiled a sculpture created at Mamawi Atosketan Native School (MANS) by two students and vice-principal Mike Willing in the Leon Ingraham Industrial Arts/CTS Building. The City’s public art committee enthusiastically endorsed the proposal for Miweyihtowin (Cree for “affinity for each other”), which was created over the summer by Eileen Firingstoney (grade 11), Tessa

Potts (class of 2020), and Mike Willing (vice principal, junior and senior high school). The artists invested 450 hours in the welded steel sculpture that was installed adjacent to the traffic circle at the intersection of College Avenue and Calgary-Edmonton Trail. Firingstoney and Potts, upon learning of unexpected costs for COVID-19 measures mandated this fall, donated a significant part of their commission proceeds to MANS, thus becoming the school’s first major donors from currently-enrolled students and recently-graduated alumni.

Miweyihtowin, (Cree for “Affinity for Each Other”) depicts sharp-tailed grouse, also known as “prairie chickens,” which were an important food source for both First Nations and settlers after the bison were decimated. Photo by Todd Vaughan, City of Lacombe Photo by Todd Vaughan

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DEPARTMENT NEWS

Alberta Conference Ministerial Update

COVID-19 By George Ali

Ministerial Director, Alberta Conference

Mike Willing addressed the unveiling attendees on behalf of Eileen Firingstoney (centre) and Tessa Potts (right), who designed the sculpture and were the primary welders.

Growing Up and Giving Back: Eileen Firingstoney (L) and Tessa Potts (R ) not only demonstrated welding skill and worked long hours to deliver Miweyihtowin on schedule, the MANS student and recent graduate also donated a major gift from their commission proceeds to help fund new COVID-19 safety measures at MANS.

Go to mans1.ca to watch the video of the event, which includes interviews of the student and alumna artist, as well as Willing’s speech. Firingstoney and Potts also talk about their connection to welding in two short videos, First in My House (Potts) and Eileen’s Gift (Firingstoney) in the site’s video section. Willing’s speech is posted in the “Impact Stories” section of the website.

— Lynn McDowell, Director of Planned Giving | Philanthropy

September 30, 2020

T

o date, we have about 80% of our churches open and are doing both face-to-face services and livestreaming. Face-to-face pastoral visitation is limited. However, many pastors and church leaders meet the needs through video conferencing on Microsoft Teams, Zoom, or traditional phone calls. Other services, such as baptisms and communion, require creative approaches that respect the social distancing guidelines. Some pastors have opted to stand outside the baptismal pool while the candidate is inside. After a pastoral prayer and the baptismal pronouncement, the candidate submerges himself or herself into the water. Soon, phase 3 of the COVID-19 health response will open, and things may change. Overall, the churches have been adaptable to the changes required and are generally doing well. However, there are still challenges and a need for some pastors and church leadership teams to plan more adequate worship services. We encourage the churches to follow the Alberta Health guidelines, be cautious, and stay safe.

Unveiling photo by John McDowell

OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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DEPARTMENT NEWS

Reminiscing About Better Together Women's Retreat 2020

How a "Plan B" Virtual Women's Retreat overcame the COVID-19 disruption to years of planning and proved an immense blessing.

T

he Alberta Conference Women's Retreat for 2020 was to be the best yet! Over 300 women registered to enjoy a weekend of spiritual feasting, fellowship, praise and worship, etc. After several years of inviting her, Dilys Brooks, Chaplain at Loma Linda University, had finally arranged her schedule to come as our guest speaker. Her theme for the weekend was “Better Together,” based on Ecclesiastes 4:9–12. We were to be blessed with another special guest: Heather-Dawn Small, the Women's Ministries Director for the General Dilys Brooks, Chaplain at Loma Linda University

Conference, was also going to join us. She would share what women around the world were doing for outreach to their communities and inspire us as members of our worldwide church. Heather-Dawn would also bring practical wisdom and encouragement in her workshops. Our own Sarah OlivieraAugustin, wife of Calgary Bridgeland Pastor Joseph Augustin, prepared morning worships and music to share. Women's Retreat Leader, Denise Nichols, had worked hard to organize with her committee members all the many details to make April 17–19 a blessing. Sarah OlivieraAugustin

Sarah Oliviera-Augustin's photo by Lauren Barney Photography

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DEPARTMENT NEWS There's an old saying: "The best-laid plans of mice and men, so often go awry." An email from Dilys let us know that due to COVID-19, LLU employees were not to travel out of their district. Government restrictions in Alberta soon made it evident that the retreat would not happen. With great regret, the notification was sent out to the registrants who were understandably disappointed. As Denise considered the emails she received from the ladies, she felt for them because, this year of all years, with the major upheaval caused in their lives by the virus, the retreat seemed vital. An idea sparked, and she embarked on “Plan B” — a Virtual Women's Retreat. Dilys and Sarah recorded their messages. Unfortunately, Heather - Dawn was ill, but she had several sermons on YouTube. Eric Ollila, Director of Communications/IT/ Media for the Conference, and Scott Nischuk, the Conference IT Assistant, worked hard to post the messages on the Conference website. The ladies were notified of the plans, and the sermons were available for all Alberta women. Grateful emails from Alberta women included comments such as these: "I enjoyed the Retreat and was blessed"; "All the messages were timely and empowering"; "Thank you for implementing PLAN B"; "We women must unite [sic] and truly realize we are better together." As the ladies arrive at each retreat, they are warmly greeted and presented with a bag of goodies. Each year, the committee searches for a meaningful gift to be included in the pack. This year, a small packet of God's promises — 20 colorfully illustrated Scripture

Denise Nichols, Retreat Leader

memory cards — had been ordered for the ladies. It seemed like God had genuinely led in choosing such an appropriate gift, and the committee was thrilled to be able to mail these out to all the registrants. It is Denise and her committee's prayer that the promises will provide strength, comfort, and inspiration. It is with sadness that the Women's Retreat bids farewell to Denise. The committee has affectionately called her “Our fearless leader.” They admired her investment of time and energy for the past five years in this volunteer position. Her vision, organizational skills, and commitment to the women of Alberta deserve commendation. She will be missed, but we pray God will bless her for the blessing she has been. — Submitted by Jenny Nickel

It is the same with my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it. Romans 15:13 (ESV)

OCTOBER 2020

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EDUCATION NEWS

Parkview Adventist Academy Transition News Interview with Alberta Conference's President and Education Director

O

n September 28, 2020, an interview took place in Lacombe, AB regarding the transition of Parkview Adventist Academy from Burman University to the Alberta Conference. A transcript of that interview follows.

Eric: Hi Gary & Ronda, Thank you for taking the time to do this interview and hopefully help our readers understand what is happening with the Alberta Conference and Parkview Adventist Academy. By way of introduction for our readers, we have Gary Hodder. He serves as the President of the Alberta Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Alongside him, we have Ronda Ziakris, who serves as the Education Director for the Alberta Conference. My name is Eric Ollila. I currently serve as the Communication/IT/ Media Director for the Alberta Conference. Gary and Ronda, we understand from previous announcements that Parkview Adventist Academy is transitioning from being a Burman University-ownedand-operated entity to an Alberta Conference-owned-and-operated school. Is that still correct? Will PAA be owned and operated by the Alberta Conference? And as a brief overview, can you tell us what it will mean in practical terms? Ronda: Yes, that is correct. In practical terms, it means that PAA joins the other ten Alberta Conference schools regarding support, reporting, employees, PD, financial management, and governance.

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OCTOBER 2020

Eric: To date, what has taken place and what still needs to happen with the transition? Ronda: Most everything has taken place, as mentioned above. The biggest (and it's BIG and EXCITING) piece yet to take place is building a new school building so PAA can transition out of the Burman-owned building. Eric: This question is for either one of you. What is the long-term vision for this transition? And why did the Alberta Conference decide to engage with Burman University and take this step of change with PAA? Gary: The Alberta Conference felt it was vital to maintain an Adventist high school in the Central Alberta region, therefore adding PAA to its current school system. A vision we have for PAA would be to preserve and strengthen its longstanding presence in this province by providing a relevant, strong educational experience for every student. Eric: What benefits do you see coming out of this for PAA, the students, and the Alberta Conference? Ronda: Our hope and prayers are that the benefits, for all stakeholders, would be a school with a strong network of support. We want all students who graduate from PAA to leave with a strong sense of who


EDUCATION NEWS they are as children of God and a lifelong commitment to serving their communities. Eric: The next few questions are mainly for Gary, but Ronda, feel free to add anything you wish to share. Gary, I heard plans are underway for a new facility for PAA. Can you share a little about that? Where is it going to be? What is the proposed timeline? Do you know the anticipated move-in date? What will happen to the old building? Gary: The new building will be located across the street, to the north of College Heights Christian School. It is too soon to comment on a move-in date, but we are in dialogue with the builder, and plans are certainly underway. Eric: Who is overseeing the transition of PAA from Burman University to the Alberta Conference? Is there a committee, project manager, or anything like that? Gary: A transitional school board is in place until the new constituency is formed, and the school board is elected. A building committee is overseeing the new building project. Eric: This question is for Ronda. Can you share with the readers what is happening at PAA right now? Are students in school? Is Burman University or the Alberta Conference still running the school? How does all that work with a transition going on? Ronda: Yes, students are back in the building after transitioning to online learning in March due to COVID-19. PAA is now owned and operated under the Alberta Conference umbrella. We are excited about maintaining the quality educational experience that is the legacy of PAA. Eric: How is everyone holding up so far? Principal? Teachers and staff? Students? Parents? And how are you holding up?

Ronda: We have an excellent team of educators at PAA who demonstrate commitment and excellence. They report that the students are thrilled to be back in the brick-and-mortar setting and administration and faculty continue to partner in ensuring success for the students. Eric: This question is for both of you. What are some of the challenges you see coming ahead? What are some of the things you need or are seeking to meet those challenges? Gary: Both a challenge and an exciting opportunity will be building the new school. I firmly believe the joys and rewards will outweigh the challenges of a building project of this magnitude. Ronda: Enrollment is an area where we will seek ways to grow. We are excited about implementing a new marketing committee. We are confident God has tremendous blessings in store as we move forward. Eric: Is there anything you would like to take this opportunity to share about PAA or the transition? Is there anything you'd like the Alberta Conference members to be aware of that we haven't discussed already in our interview? Ronda: I want to thank the PAA faculty for their commitment during this transition period. They have demonstrated resilience and professionalism and continue to put the students' needs first. Also, to the parents who have entrusted their children's education to PAA's care, we thank you. We take the responsibility seriously and pray that as we move forward in faith, God will continue to bless, lead, and grant us wisdom. Eric: Well, thank you both for taking this time to share with our readers. We certainly wish you, the Alberta Conference team, PAA principal, teachers, staff, and students the best as you make this transition. God bless! OCTOBER 2020

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EDUCATION NEWS

IN THE

BOAT Leaving the crowd behind, they took Him along, just as He was, in the boat. There were also other boats with Him. Mark 4:36

By Brent van Rensburg

Education Associate Director, Alberta Conference

I

have always loved different bodies of water, especially the oceans. I have also enjoyed watching various types of boats sailing along, like cruise ships, catamarans, yachts, and giant cargo ships. A Navy Lieutenant once said, “You can put a boat on a ship, but you can’t put a ship on a boat.” It reminded me of the biblical story of Jesus calming the sea. His disciples were on the boat, but He was in the boat. In Mark 4:36, it says, “Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him”. Whenever I have remembered this story, pictures usually portrayed only one boat. Realizing there were other boats in the sea makes a difference. The disciples were not the only ones on a boat who were afraid, but there were many others

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OCTOBER 2020

on different boats as well. When Jesus rebuked the wind and waves and said, “Peace be still,” He did it for everyone. Jesus can calm the storm! During this pandemic, many of us have been on our boats trying to navigate the storm of COVID-19. Our “boats” have been tossed and turned, and we have been battling each wave that comes our way. Individually, we try our best to make it through the storms of life, but there comes a time when our “boats” need to be loaded onto the “ship” of Jesus Christ. Better yet, I want Jesus to always be in my boat wherever I go, for I know He is my Peacemaker, Comforter, Counsellor, Friend, and Provider. These are all things I can count on Him to be.


EDUCATION NEWS

Many questions have been asked, anger and frustration vented, and the uncertainty of what tomorrow holds resonates in the minds of many. This is the time we need to hold onto our faith, be strong in the Lord, and encourage each other. Our schools are re-opening, and families are getting ready to face the challenges ahead, but I am encouraged to know a caring and loving Father in heaven will take care of all our needs and worries. Our leaders in our schools and conference office have been working diligently together to make and keep our schools safe during this worrisome time. In Romans 8:31, it says, “If God is for us,

who can be against us.” God never promised there will never be storms in our lives, but He did promise to take us through them. With God on our side, we will make it through COVID-19. Brené Brown stated, “One day you will tell your story of how you overcame what you went through, and it will be someone else’s survival guide.” This chapter in our lives will be one that will always be remembered. Each of us needs to continually, earnestly pray for the safety of all our schools and claim the victory over this pandemic. Let us journey together, remembering that Jesus is in our boats!

OCTOBER 2020

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CHURCH NEWS

Awe Inspired at Wonder Pass and Marvel Lake

A

The Mountaineers Master Guide Outdoor Club of Calgary, hiked over 70 km taking in the scenery of Mt. Assiniboine.

s an initiative of the North American Division (NAD), the Master Guide Outdoors (MGO) ministry aims to "Connect all people with God by exploring His creation." Nearing the close of its first year of active ministry in working toward this vision, the Mountaineers MGO Club, from Mountain View SDA Church in Calgary, has enjoyed a year filled with amazing natural experiences. They also built incredible relationships with each other and God. Weekly meetings encouraged spiritual, social, and leadership skills development as the group shared personal insights and worked together through various Master Guide requirements. Club outings that encouraged practical camping and survival skills include various day hikes, a November 2019 winter camp at Waiparous Creek, and a February 2020 winter family camp in Waterton National Park. As COVID-19 restricted normal activities, the Mountaineers MGO Club didn't miss a beat and continued to meet each week 36

Alberta Adventist News

virtually, using Google Meet video conferencing. This summer, the club was excited to welcome six new members, most of whom had recently invested as Guides in the Mountaineers Pathfinder Club. As restrictions on outdoor activities were eased, a bonfire and backpacking training event was planned for June 13 to welcome the new members and provide training for an expedition into the Siffleur Wilderness area, which took place July 10–12. When the NAD-sponsored MGO Rocky Mountain Expedition event in Colorado was postponed due to travel restrictions, the Mountaineers MGO Club planned their local challenge for the same

OCTOBER 2020

dates, August 6–9. Members of the club hiked more than 70 kilometers over four days to experience the incredible scenery of Mt. Assiniboine and the surrounding wilderness. The aptly named Wonder Pass and Marvel Lake inspired awe and a new appreciation for God's incredible creation. — Submitted by Chris Olhmann, Deputy Director For more information, please visit the Master Guide Outdoors section of the Mountain View SDA Church website (mountainviewadventist. ca/master-guide-outdoors-club) or the Master Guide Outdoors section of the NAD club ministries website (clubministries.org/masterguides/ master-guide-outdoors-mgo/).

The Mountain View Seventh - day Adventist Church Mountaineers MGO Club.


ANNOUNCEMENTS Ninety eight Years of Blessings Alex Trynchuk was born on September 11, 1922, in Myrnam, Alberta to immigrant parents. He was the second child of Carolyn and William Trynchuk. Ten other siblings followed him. He married Rose Eliuk on July 2, 1944, and they lived in Mannville. Alex and Rose had four children, three girls first and then one boy: Gloria, Rachel, Elvine, and Dwayne. They had nine grandchildren and thirteen great-grandchildren. Alex was raised a Seventhday Adventist and held many elder positions in churches in his communities over the 85 years: Myrnam, Innisfree,

Vermilion, and Beauvallon. He farmed in Mannville until the age of 85. He was the best mechanic any farming operation could have. He loved machinery and fast cars. He still asks to have his driver’s license renewed. Alex loves gospel music and old-time hymns. He loves to share his faith in Jesus. In his earlier years, he enjoyed playing baseball with his kids and church members at church picnics. At retirement, Alex and Rose moved to Red Deer and had their membership at the Red Deer Church. Alex lost his dear wife

of 73 years in 2017. Alex and Rose started the Alex and Rose Foundation, of which the Alberta Conference is presently the annual beneficiary. — Submitted by Elvine Skoretz

50th Wedding Anniversary Pastor Romulo Daquila and his wife, Lila, served at Ayer Manis for six years as high school teachers. They also served as a pastorevangelist, youth directors, and secretary-treasurers for nine-and-a-half years at the Suriname Mission in South America. They served as pastorevangelist in Fresno, California. For seven years, they pioneered in establishing the Central Valley FilipinoAmerican Seventh-day Adventist Church.

They moved to Toronto to pastor the Filipino Canadian and Bramalea Seventh-day Adventist Churches for six years, then served as the Personal Ministries and Stewardship director for five years for

the Ontario Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. In 2002, they moved to Red Deer to serve as the Vice President of Administration for the Alberta Conference of the Seventh-day Adventists until he retired in 2010. Lilia served as a teacher and a licensed practical nurse. They have three children and three grandchildren. Congratulations to both! — Submitted by Romy Daquila

OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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MEANS & MEANING

SWEET BENE

MANS 2003 Founding Donors Recogn A “Thank you” is more than good manners. And saying it

But here and now, the Alberta Conference says thank you again to the members whose pioneering vision for Mamawi Atosketan Native School has made a difference in so many lives." 38

Alberta Adventist News

O

n my office desk is a framed note on Delta Hotel stationery, written by a housekeeper on April 6, 2013. I was attending the Women’s Ministries Conference in Kananaskis and had left a tip on my pillow — perhaps a little more than the woman who made up my room was expecting. “Thank you very much for your generosity Ms. McDowell, Lynn,” the chambermaid wrote. “May God bless you always. Thank you.” I treasure that note. God

OCTOBER 2020

had blessed me, and I had made a difference to someone who was grateful for my shared blessing. Not only that, this stranger wished me more of God’s blessing! What could I do but leave her another, bigger tip? When the Alberta Conference made the decision to build the First Nations school that opened its doors in 2003 (now MANS’ elementary section), nearly 600 families and individuals responded. Many of those members donated their time and money. Their generosity was


MEANS & MEANING

EDICTION

nized on New Donor Wall can change more than you might think. BY LYNN McDOWELL celebrated when the building opened 17 years ago and honored with several 8”X10” framed lists hung in the school entrance — appropriate for the time. However, as the Conference committee that guided The Bridge Campaign contemplated its donor wall for the new high school building, it became clear that times had changed when it comes to saying thank you. They recognized MANS — high school as well as elementary — wouldn’t be what it is without the supportive

church members who put their hearts and hands into building the first, 2003 phase of this extraordinary school. At the opening of the high school in September 2018, the names of the 2003 donors were displayed on five postersize boards placed beside the history and video display for people to view while they had refreshments in the new gym, but the Conference had already voted to do something more permanent and inline with the donor wall in the new building. Therefore, when classes

started on September 1 this fall, MANS elementary students saw, for the first time, in a very big way, how many people had invested in them and wished them the best — including an understanding of how much Jesus loves and cares about each one of them. Who knows how that new, big “Thank You,” with the names of real people who cared enough to build a school, will impact the little ones? Eternity will reveal many surprises, but here and now, the Alberta Conference says, “Thank you” again to the members whose pioneering vision for Mamawi Atosketan Native School has made a difference in so many lives. We would like to borrow the words of a wise and grateful chambermaid and offer this to all who gave to make the vision real: “Thank you for your generosity. May God bless you always.”

Lynn McDowell, JD, CSPG

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

OCTOBER 2020

Alberta Adventist News

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ALBERTA CONFERENCE YOUTH DEPARTMENT SMALL GROUPS INITIATIVE

Bubbles We have come up with a concept called “Bubbles” which is a small group initiative that helps youth/young adults to stay safe and provide resources amid the global pandemic “COVID-19.”

More information: Dr. Lyle Notice Youth Director The Alberta Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church freshalbertayouth.ca