NET 2006 Reaches the World From Phoenix
rom March 10 through April 8, “Revelation Speaks Peace—Unlocking the Signs” (NET 2006) was uplinked live from the Celebrity Theatre in Phoenix, Arizona. At the end of the series, pastors baptized more than 550 people in Phoenix, in addition to thousands more across the nation.
JOY IN THE LORD: More than 550 people in the Phoenix area were baptized. [IIW photo]
Although it was a North American Division (NAD) event uplinked by the ACN/Esperanza Channel (and also uplinked by the Hope Channel and 3ABN), It Is Written heard from people in places as far away as Australia, Mexico, the Philippines, France, and South Africa. “We received calls and e-mails from people all over the world who were watching the series in a local church,” said It Is Written speaker/director Shawn Boonstra. “Thanks to the hard work and prayers of local pastors and church members, these people made decisions for Christ.”
According to local coordinators, approximately 3,000 people attended at least one of two daily evening sessions held in Phoenix on the weekends. During the week, attendance averaged 1,500 people nightly.
In addition to the local turnout, Boonstra said he felt encouraged by the efforts of the Arizona Conference and Souls-West volunteers. Souls-West is an outreach ministry training school in Scottsdale, Arizona. “Each night, 100 to 200 pastors and church members helped us with hosting, greeting, grading Bible studies, and other activities at the theater. Their commitment was outstanding,” he said.
Event organizers expressed surprise at the audience demographics for NET 2006. “We had a very young audience—it was thrilling to see,” said Arizona Conference president Duane McKey. “And we had absolutely no drop-off in attendance throughout the entire event, which is the first time I’ve ever witnessed anything like that.”
“Evangelism is an extremely valuable tool in North America, and I was thrilled with the many stories I heard during NET 2006,” said NAD president Don Schneider. “It’s amazing what can happen when a ministry like It Is Written, pastors, and church members come together to share Christ’s love with others.”
KENYA: Women’s Ministries Provides Refuge for Maasai Girls
A group of women from the New Life Adventist church in Nairobi, Kenya, are making a difference in the lives of young Maasai girls in their community with a new facility called the Kajiado Adventist Education and Rehabilitation Center. Starting in 2000 with 14 young Maasai women, the program has grown to 85 girls currently living at the center to avoid being forced into very early marriages and possible mistreatment and abuse.
|MAKING A DIFFERENCE: Heather-Dawn Small (fourth from left), GC Women’s Ministries director, visits with Maasai women living in the new Adventist-run center in Nairobi.
Jacintha Loki, principal of the center and herself a Maasai, explained that it is customary among the Maasai people for girls as young as 8 or 9 years old to be forced to marry, and by the age of 12 many often have already given birth to one or two children. The mission of the center is to protect these young women from that practice.
“When they come here some of them have never seen a bed,” said Loki. “So we teach them everything—how they make their bed, how they need to shower, and even how they are supposed to put on clothes.”
The center also provides classroom instruction for girls in grades 1-8. Once their elementary education has been successfully completed, the young women then enter high school. Financial challenges, however, make it difficult for the girls to enter this next level of education.
According to Heather-Dawn Small, Women’s Ministries (WM) director of the General Conference (GC), who visited the center in June, GCWM is seeking sponsors to financially assist these young women with their high school education.
“My heart breaks for these young girls,” says Small. “But I am also filled with joy when I think about the difference we can make in their lives and give them hope for the future, with God’s help.”
To learn more about the program or to make a donation, call 301-680-6608, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. ---Mosaic/AR.