Cities Evangelism

Plans are being made that in 2015 a city-wide coordinated evangelism effort will happen in Minneapolis & St. Paul, Minnesota.  Below is the conversation Jeff Wines had with Ed Barnett and Doug Inglish.

_Jeff WinesEd Barnett head shotDoug Inglish

Jeff:  Ed, what is your vision for evangelism in the Twin Cities?

Ed:  We are planning a massive outreach for the Twin Cities.  There are 3.5 million people within a 30-mile radius.  This is the largest metropolitan area in the Mid-America Union living right here!  We have 30 to 40 churches that will be engaged in this evangelistic push.

Doug:  This is a cooperative effort between the Mid-America Union, Central States Conference and the Minnesota Conference.

Ed:  We are very excited to have Shawn Boonstra and Robert Costa each holding meetings.  Shawn is from the Voice of Prophecy and Robert, formerly an evangelist from It Is Written, is currently the Associate Ministerial Secretary for the General Conference.  They are going to be speaking in March of 2015 to wrap up the evangelism campaigns.  However, all of the churches are a part of this evangelistic series of meetings.

Doug:  Every church in the Twin Cities will be having at least one evangelism series from the fall of 2014 to the spring of 2015.  Elder Barnett will be doing a series in one of our churches as well as Mid-America Union President Tom Lemon.

Ed:  One of the things that we are trying to do is to fulfill the challenge that the General Conference gave to reach every major city in the world.  This is our response to reaching the population in our area.   This is also in keeping with the mission and vision of the Minnesota Conference.

Mission:  To help people realize they are accepted in Jesus Christ, and come to know, love, serve, and share Him.

Vision:  Recognizing that Jesus will return soon, we will all actively engage in ministry.

Doug:  Our efforts are broader than the Twin Cities-wide evangelism campaign.  We also have a plan to reach every mailing address across Minnesota with information about how to know Jesus.  Sherman McCormick, our Ministerial Director, is coordinating that program.

Ed:  We are continuing to do evangelism seminars across Minnesota.  Currently, I am helping Pastor Bill Nixon lead an evangelism series in Red Wing, Minnesota.

Jeff:   There are a lot of NADEI (North American Division Evangelism Institute) training events coming up in Minnesota.  How does this tie into the evangelism events of 2014 to 2015?

Doug:  The workshops and seminars are designed to help our members across the Conference be engaged in their local churches, which will help to build healthy churches.  Such as the seminar coming in March of 2014 entitled “Invest in Life” where Richard Moore (a business manager) will be dealing with subjects of “time, talent and treasure”.  In May, Ron Clouzet (Professor of Christian Ministry and Pastoral Theology at Andrews University Theological Seminary) will lead a weekend of Christ-centered, spiritual training bringing people to a deeper relationship with Christ.  For more information on the seminars go to http://www.mnsda.com.

Ed:  All of these seminars help to get our lay people trained.

Doug:  People will also have the opportunity to understand their role in the church as well as where God is leading them to work for His kingdom.  Churches will need to know how to engage the new members joining through the evangelism series so they can have a role in ministry.

Jeff:   What leaders are involved in these efforts?

Ed:  I am coordinating the evangelism meetings and Doug is planning the training seminars.

Doug:  Karen Lewis is training Bible workers for the next two years in the Conference and Pastor Rob Lechner is assisting part time in the personal ministries department to help facilitate the programs.

Jeff:   What financial commitment is the conference making?

Ed:  The Minnesota Conference has already guaranteed that they will put in $300,000 for this effort.  Part of this money is renting the Conference Center in downtown Minneapolis.

Doug:  The Conference is also supporting each of the individual meetings of the local churches as well helping to provide some promotional materials.

Ed:  At this time we are also in discussions about putting the meetings on satellite.

Jeff:   What type of follow-up is happening after the meetings?

Ed:  We will continue to have training seminars.

Doug:  Karen Lewis is also helping to coordinate Bible studies and training of Bible studies following the event.

Ed:  In addition, we are trying to get the youth motivated to be apart of this.

Doug:  Several months after the meetings in 2015 we are planning a major rally!  This may very well be the largest gathering of Seventh-day Adventists in the Cities.  We are anticipating Shawn Boonstra and Robert Costa returning for this rally.  Additionally, we hope to have a collaborative youth rally happening on the same day and at the same location.

Jeff:  Taking off my Communications hat for a moment and putting on my Youth Director hat, I am thrilled to see what is happening with evangelism efforts in the Minnesota Conference, we want the youth to be involved in evangelism.  We will be having several 2014 youth rallies and the Minnesota Camp Meeting, all of which will be pointing to this culminating event in 2015.

Ed:  Jeff, that is exciting!

We will be doing everything we know how to do to further the Kingdom of God through these evangelism efforts.  Our prayer is that God’s Spirit will lead in people’s lives, guiding them to make decisions to be baptized and be a part of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.  We are hoping to realize at least 1000 new members from these meetings!

Ed Barnett, President & Evangelism Coordinator of the MN Conference

Doug Inglish, Personal Ministries Director

Jeff Wines, Communications & Youth Director

e-TNL Staff: Jeff Wines, Director; Carol Lyons, Editor; Melisa Mauk, Website-editor
E-mail: mnsdanewsletter@gmail.com
Website: www.mnsdanewsletter.wordpress.com

e-TNL is an informational bulletin issued by the Communications Department of the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. You are free to re-print any portion of the  bulletin without need for special permission. However, we kindly request that you identify e-TNL whenever you publish these materials.

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We’ve Planted the Seed, Now it is up to the Lord

How many of us remember how evangelism was done back in the early 80’s? How many of us remember how evangelism was planned? How many of us remember whether one of these seminars brought us to the Lord? The Bible mentions in Matthew 13:1-9 the parable of the sower, and later Matthew 13:18-23 explains the significance of hearing and receiving the word of God.  I personally like how Ellen G. White explains this parable by saying: “Because of its simplicity the parable of the sower has not been valued as it should be. From the natural seed cast into the soil, Christ desires to lead our minds to the gospel seed, the sowing of which results in bringing man back to his loyalty to God.” COL 33.

Let’s focus on the last sentence: “…the sowing of which results in bringing man back to his loyalty to God” – As mentioned before in regards how evangelism was done back in the early 80’s and whether one of these seminars brought us to the Lord, I can personally testify to this type of evangelism and whether a seed can stay in our hearts until the Lord finds us.  I remember when I was 13 years old, my family was invited to one of these seminars, and it was amazing how the message of God was presented and where the seminar took place.  Of course, I cannot tell you how it was planned, but I can tell you that this experience changed my life forever.

First of all, the setting was very unusual because it was done under “white tents.” Yes, I said: “tents”- there were hundreds of people and the church worked together to bring as many people as they knew to the Lord.  People were not ashamed nor embarrassed to pass flyers or sell Adventist books from door to door.   The message of the second coming and the truth about the Sabbath was clear and delivered without fear. There was a certain type of unity that these members had with one another and their fellow man. I am sure that there was planning and money involved, but based on what I remember, I can tell you that it didn’t have to cost as much to spread the Word of God as it is done today.

Today, I am proudly married to Pr. Carlos Rodriguez, and the gaps of planning and the effort that it takes to organize an Evangelistic series have been filled in.  I can tell you that my husband also remembers how it was done before because he experienced it through his father, who also organized evangelistic series the way I remember.  Because of his father and the good memories those times, today my husband takes the best techniques from the past and combines them with the best skills of today and makes an evangelistic series an unforgettable moment for all involved.  He truly believes that planting seeds is the most important part of evangelism and that we are called to spread the Word of God, and that baptisms are only the result of bringing man back to God.  He says: “We’ve planted the seed, now it is up to the Lord.”

Another evangelistic series was organized by Pr. Rodriguez at the Cambridge SDA church. Another opportunity was presented for another church to work together and show unity and love for the fellow man. The Cambridge church was called to spread the Word of God and plant seeds as per Matthew 28 commissions.

It started like any other evangelistic series he organizes and prepares.  He started by equipping the church members with training classes weeks before the evangelistic series.  His training teaches how the church can be involved and help plant seeds.  After their hearts and minds were ready to what was to come, the serious work began.  Night after night the members were willing to work and put in their time, from helping with setting up the stage and equipment to welcoming guests.  The members of the Cambridge church truly displayed a sense of unity and took ownership towards their responsibility.

Cambridge evangelistic 1Planting seeds never became as clear as it did for us this time around.  In the beginning, the visitors were impressed with the flyers they received and how nicely and professionally they were done. They wondered why all of the study materials were free.  Visitors were wondering why we were not asking for any money! “There has to be a catch,” they mentioned.  The visitors waited and waited, but no offering was picked up.  Finally, some of the visitors started to ask and we kindly replied: “We are just doing the Lord’s work.” They couldn’t believe the thoughtfulness and love we have towards our fellow man! – I mention this because we also experienced love towards us.  Sherman McCormick, our MN Conference Ministerial Director was visiting us one evening to obtain feedback in regards to how the evangelistic series was coming along and needless to say; he experienced it himself. Elder McCormick decided to spend a relaxing evening talking to Pr. Rodriguez and perhaps giving him some moral support because sometimes these evangelistic series can be stressful and physically exhausting.  When they arrived at the restaurant they ran into a few of the visitors who were faithfully attending every night. The visitors approached them and complimented the approach towards delivering the message of God and how the Lord was using Pr. Rodriguez in regards to their personal relationship with God.  The comments of course were flattering and humbly accepted, but that was not the highlight of the evening.  When elder McCormick and Pr. Rodriguez were ready to pay for their meal, the waitress informed them that the bill was already taken care of by the visitors they encountered at the restaurant.  What a way to experience “love for your neighbor!” The deed spoke louder than words. We were experiencing the Holy Spirit working in every person attending the seminar.

The Cambridge church was also contributing towards the fellow men.  There was prayer every night in almost all corners of the facility. Visitors were bringing friends and marketing the event for us.  We even had newly baptized members working for the Lord in a mighty way.  One member in particular who was a four month old baby in Christ, was continuously bringing from 5 to 8 visitors every night.  She was truly a gladiator and was experiencing her “first love” for Christ.  She was bursting with love for the fellow man; she was truly living Matthew 28 and planting seeds.

Cambridge evangelistic 7We were blessed to have baptized a total of 4 visitors and followers of Christ.  Actually, the number was supposed to have been 5.  This is where “the sowing of which results in bringing man back to his loyalty to God” comes into play. You see, the 5th visitor had passed away on the day the baptisms took place.  Pr. Rodriguez was informed of the situation that morning and the message before the baptism was bittersweet for everyone.  Pr. Rodriguez started by quoting Philippians 2:12: “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” He started it this way because, the visitor who had passed away was truly working out her salvation as well as planting seeds.  She was taking the message received each evening and was evangelizing to her family! She was talking about what she had learned to her children, and close ones. She was experiencing that first love, and wanted for everyone who was close to her to make it to heaven.  Her fiancée, who was also attending the seminar with her, was baptized on the last evening of the seminar, and brought her whole family to witness the event.  It was very hard for everyone involved because of the sadness and tears that surrounded the last night of the evangelistic series, but it was another opportunity for our church to come through and become a pillar of strength and hope for this family.  We planted seeds that evening by giving each of them a Bible and just being there for them and showing our support.

Yes, it is unfortunate that our evangelistic series had a nostalgic ending but God does not give us what we cannot handle.  The Cambridge church was ready for this event.  Each of the members had been equipped with the message of hope.  Our members no longer possessed seeds in their hearts, they all had sprouts and fruit that had been growing in their hearts through their walk with Christ and were ready to share with their fellow man.  Perhaps, this was not what it was like in the early 80’s and we did not have a tent, but the atmosphere and church unity felt the same way as it was back then.  The Cambridge church planted many seeds during this seminar, especially that last evening.  Only this time, it felt good to hear my husband say one more time: “We’ve planted the Seed, now it is up to the Lord.”

Elizabeth D. Rodriguez Principal, Capital City Adventist Christian School

e-TNL Staff: Jeff Wines, Director; Linda Wreed, Guest Editor;
Melisa Mauk, Website-editor
E-mail: mnsdanewsletter@gmail.com
Website: www.mnsdanewsletter.wordpress.com

e-TNL is an informational bulletin issued by the Communications Department of the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. You are free to re-print any portion of the  bulletin without need for special permission. However, we kindly request that you identify e-TNL whenever you publish these materials.

Dorcas Ministries Returns $17,000 to Brainerd Community

Dorcas BrainerdIn 2013, Dorcas Ministries Thrift Store was able to return to the Brainerd community more than $17,000 in cash to organizations like Bridges of Hope, the food shelf, KOPJ Christian Radio, Meals on Wheels, Brainerd Lakes Ministerial, North Star Camp, Timber Bay, New Pathways, Oak Street Christian School, disaster relief, and more.

Dorcas Ministries exists to provide ultra-affordable clothing and household items to those in need and to use the proceeds to return to the Brainerd community. The only reason that Dorcas is able to give back so much is thanks to the many volunteers who donate thousands of hours of their time as well as to those who drop off donations (not to mention those who shop at the store). Thank you!

Donations may be dropped off at any time at the Dorcas donation room at 2910 Oak Street. Store hours are Mondays and Thursdays, 11 AM to 4 PM and the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays from 4-7 PM.

By Jeff Scoggins, Pastor of Brainerd District

e-TNL Staff: Jeff Wines, Director; Carol Lyons, Editor; Melisa Mauk, Website-editor
E-mail: mnsdanewsletter@gmail.com
Website: www.mnsdanewsletter.wordpress.com

e-TNL is an informational bulletin issued by the Communications Department of the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. You are free to re-print any portion of the  bulletin without need for special permission. However, we kindly request that you identify e-TNL whenever you publish these materials.

Greene Valley School Hosts First Annual Outstanding Scientist Awards Night

What a night October 31 was at Greene Valley School as it hosted the First Annual Outstanding Scientist Awards Night! Five of the top scientists in history were present. Green Valley science 5Albert Einstein, in a nutshell, shared his theory of relativity; Linda Brown Buck confided that she had never dreamed of becoming a scientist until her father, an engineer, introduced her to power tools;Green Valley science 2 Alexander Graham Bell was very proud that he had been the third person to win the prestigious Volta Prize which had originated with none other than Napoleon Bonaparte himself;Green Valley science 3 Chien-Shiung Wu began her scientific pursuits, which included working on the Manhattan Project, in China but became an American scientist; and last but not least, Edward Teller wowed the audience with his accomplishments explaining that he also worked on the Manhattan Project as well as predicting the Jahn-Teller effect and developing the theory of shock-wave propagation.

Green Valley science 1The evening concluded with the audience choosing Alexander Graham Bell to receive the Outstanding Scientist Award. Bell was ecstatic as he accepted a million dollars (candy bar LOL), some rather counterfeit-looking change, and a variety of candies to be shared with his fellow scientists.

By Trudy Smith, Greene Valley SDA School Principal

e-TNL Staff: Jeff Wines, Director; Carol Lyons, Editor; Melisa Mauk, Website-editor
E-mail: mnsdanewsletter@gmail.com Website: www.mnsdanewsletter.wordpress.com

e-TNL is an informational bulletin issued by the Communications Department of the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. You are free to re-print any portion of the  bulletin without need for special permission. However, we kindly request that you identify e-TNL whenever you publish these materials.

Seeking both vegetarian and plant-based (vegan) recipes

cook book receipeA cook book is being developed for use in the Minnesota Conference. Seeking both vegetarian and plant-based (vegan) recipes for entrees, soups, salads, lunches, snack, breads, spreads, and deserts. Ethnic recipes (French, Hmong, Karen, Korean, Nuer, African, Russian, Spanish and any other ethnic or country not mentioned) are especially needed. Recipes can be emailed to turnerranch@msn.com. Please include your name so credit can be given when recipes are published. Thank you for your consideration.

Dr. Scott Turner, Minnesota Conference Health Ministries Coordinator

e-TNL Staff: Jeff Wines, Director; Carol Lyons, Editor; Melisa Mauk, Website-editor
E-mail: mnsdanewsletter@gmail.com
Website: www.mnsdanewsletter.wordpress.com

e-TNL is an informational bulletin issued by the Communications Department of the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. You are free to re-print any portion of the  bulletin without need for special permission. However, we kindly request that you identify e-TNL whenever you publish these materials.

Witness for Life

NADEIOver the weekend of November 15-17, 2013, Twin Cities School of Evangelism continued with the second in a series of eight seminars from NADEI was presented. Over 130 people attended part or all of Witness for Life, presented by Dr. Ed Schmidt.

The seminars, designed to promote healthy churches in Minnesota, are sponsored by the Personal Ministries Department. They are open to all adults, with available child care, and are especially beneficial to churches planning to conduct evangelism in the near future.

Our next seminar, Invest for Life, will feature Dr. Richard Moore, who will be speaking about using all your resources in a responsible way that meets your family’s needs and builds the Kingdom of God. It is scheduled for March 21-23, 2014, at the Park Place DoubleTree Hotel, 1500 Park Place Blvd, Minneapolis.  Further details, including a schedule of all seminars and registration information, are available on the Minnesota Conference website.

By Douglas L. Inglish Personal Ministries Director Assoc. Director Gift Planning & Trust Services

e-TNL Staff: Jeff Wines, Director; Carol Lyons, Editor; Melisa Mauk, Website-editor
E-mail: mnsdanewsletter@gmail.com
Website: www.mnsdanewsletter.wordpress.com

e-TNL is an informational bulletin issued by the Communications Department of the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. You are free to re-print any portion of the  bulletin without need for special permission. However, we kindly request that you identify e-TNL whenever you publish these materials.

2013 Women’s Retreat Hosts 280 Ladies

2013 Wm Retreat 4The Women’s Retreat is meant to be a time to come away from the busy-ness of life, reconnect and refresh one’s relationship with God, and build relationships with others.  As the committee was planning this year’s retreat, we prayed for God’s guidance in selecting the theme for the weekend.  It seemed fitting that the theme we heard was ‘Be Still and Know’, Psalm 46:10.  What a great text and theme to focus on in our ever increasingly crazy and chaotic society!

2013 Wm Retreat 8The theme seemed to strike a chord in the ladies across Minnesota, South Dakota, Iowa and Manitoba, CAN, as well, because 280 ladies came to the weekend on October 25-27, 2013, looking for a way to revitalize their walk with Christ.  It is always amazing to be part of a diverse group of people, in age, culture, philosophy, and politics, but like-minded in wanting to serve and love Jesus. This weekend was one of those times. It was transforming and full of the Spirit of God.

2013 Wm Retreat 5Ruth Williams Morris, professor of educational psychology at Southern Adventist University, was the keynote speaker for the weekend.  She spoke on the theme as well as encouraging us to realize how loved we are so that we can love those around us with that same awesome love.  Five breakaway sessions were also offered touching on the theme while focusing on our families, marriages, personal spiritual life, and physical well-being.

God moved in wonderful ways and ladies were ready to return home ready to face the day-to-day struggles of finding balance between work, relationships and time with God.  We look forward to planning next year’s offering and hope you will plan on joining us for this time of refreshing.

Kristin Breiner, Minnesota Conference Women’s Ministries Director

e-TNL Staff: Jeff Wines, Director; Carol Lyons, Editor; Melisa Mauk, Website-editor
E-mail: mnsdanewsletter@gmail.com
Website: www.mnsdanewsletter.wordpress.com

e-TNL is an informational bulletin issued by the Communications Department of the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. You are free to re-print any portion of the  bulletin without need for special permission. However, we kindly request that you identify e-TNL whenever you publish these materials.