Wilson Meets Indonesia’s President Yudhoyono, Praises Religious Freedom
Pledges cooperation to help people in need (Posted February 18, 20213)
BY MARK A. KELLNER
, News Editor
t is an honor for us to be able to be in Indonesia and a good experience to meet with the president to share the views of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in helping the people," Pastor Ted N.C. Wilson, president of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, said to reporters after an audience with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono at the Halim Perdanakusuma Air Base, near the capital of Jakarta, on February 12, 2013.
Wilson is visiting Indonesia as part of celebrations of more than a century of Seventh-day Adventist work in the country. There are 1,547 Adventist congregations in Indonesia, and approximately 250,000 baptized members in the nation, whose majority population is Muslim.
PRESIDENTIAL MEETING: General Conference president Pastor Ted N.C. Wilson, left, greets President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia, at the Halim Perdanakusuma Air Base, near the capital of Jakarta, on Feb. 12, 2013. Wilson expressed gratitude to President Yudhouno for the religious liberty granted in Indonesia, and pledged the help of Seventh-day Adventists in the nation. [Photo: West Indonesian Union]
"We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute in this country, and I am grateful to the President for the religious freedom granted to groups in Indonesia," Wilson added.
“It's amazing to hear that Indonesia is a country with the second highest economic growth. But President Yudhoyono is also aware of the need to do more things,” for his people, Wilson explained. The General Conference president said the church is committed to help in various ways, whether social, physical, emotional, and spiritual, as well as assisting in disaster relief on the island of Sumatra after the 2004 tsunami.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute in this country,” he said.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church operates a number of facilities that serve the Indonesian people, including Adventist Hospitals in Bandung, Bandar Lampung, Manado and Medan. The church also operates 372 schools and three universities in Indonesia.
"We hope to help the people of Indonesia to solve a number of problems. God understands what is best for our lives," he concluded.
Nancy V. Wilson joined her husband in the visit. They were accompanied by pastors Alberto C. Gulfan, Southern Asia-Pacific Division president; J. Syukur Peranginangin, West Indoneisa Union president; Noldy Sakul, president of the East Indonesia Union and Lt. Gen. TB Silalahi (Ret.), a lay member of the church.
-- with information from local media reports