Adventist Giving Option

Dwayne Mauk (MN Conference)“I wish the offering plate, or on the back of the pew, or near the door, there was a credit/debit card reader, where one could just swipe the card, and have my donations processed” one member said. I also thought; “I often find myself on the road, but want my donations to still be received by the church that I attend. Not wanting to hold several checks or cash until my wife and I actually get back to our church, and not really wanting to send my donations to the treasurer’s home, I am not left with many options.”

In the past 5 years, the option called “Adventist Giving” an option has been growing quietly in the background. At the end of June, 30, 2013, the total giving in the North American Division using “Adventist Giving” on-line option, crossed over $28 million dollars. The Minnesota Conference totals for the same time frame, in which our members used this means of giving, reached $232,029.

When I am on the road and helping conduct various bi-annual reviews of the local church books, and observe which churches currently use “Adventist Giving”, I have come to appreciate this new option in that not only does it give the church member another option to give, but that the accuracy of the church books improves. Tithe envelopes often leave the treasurer guessing as to what the donor wants, even to the point of wondering who the donor is, because of illegible writing on the envelope.

One might ask how the process occurs and what the advantage of this process is. The church my wife and I attend, signed up several years ago, and then put a link on their website. (Any church that doesn’t have a web page can have one set up at no cost, and with very little maintenance, where the general public can see it.) If I want to turn in my tithes and offerings, I just click on the link and sign in. New donors set up a login, password, their address, email address, and the process of whether they want to donate using their checking/savings accounts, or credit card/debit cards. Using the check/savings option only costs $0.16 cents per transaction. Using a credit/debit card, costs about 3% of the total donated. Once the member donates, they have the option of printing off a receipt, or having a receipt emailed to them. General Conference, North American Division, Mid-America Union, Minnesota Conference and local church funds are all able to be processed through this option. Deposits land in the church bank account, and match the reports that the treasurer is able to print off, and enter into the system.

In addition to accuracy of the donations going where the church member wants it to go, another issue is addressed that I hear time and again during audit reviews; anonymity. Church members don’t want their donations known by those who count the offering each Sabbath morning. Using this process, only the treasurer receives the report and enters it into the local church system.

We hope to increasing numbers of churches signing up for “Adventist Giving” and making available this option for their members. Ask your church treasurer if this option has been set up, and where the link is for the local church. If your church doesn’t have this option, ask the treasurer to contact the Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists to start the process and get the local church signed up. The benefits of using this process, and the ability to know that your donations are not misdirected due to the envelope not being readable, or due to someone being gone, is worthy taking notice of.

Dwayne W Mauk, Associate Treasurer

e-TNL Staff: Brian Mungandi, Director; 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.

Reenergized

The bonuses God gave to us through the remodeling work of our church building.

Korean Group Celebrates UpgradesSoon after I came to pastor the Minneapolis Korean Church in 2011, our board members gathered together one Sabbath. The issue was regarding the bad smell from the sanctuary. We had already come to the conclusion that we needed to replace the old carpet, but the item was rejected due to a lack of funds in our budget.

Mungandi at Korean Ch CelebIn September of 2014, three years later, we had a special ceremony to celebrate the completion of remodeling our church building, with Elder Mungandi, Vice President of MN Conference. Not only did we get new carpet installed, but new siding, new tiled floor in the dining area, new kitchen remodel, painting and rebuilt restrooms. Once we got started, we accomplished far more than we expected in 2011, even though we have about the same number of church members. We could not afford $4,000 at that time, but we invested more than $40,000 in total, and still the church budget is more sufficient than before. It is an amazing result in our view, and it is definitely our God’s big blessing for us.

Korean Church Building Painted

But I think what was more amazing was this. On one Sunday morning in 2011, our church members were supposed to gather together for general church cleaning to prepare for the coming winter; on that day we had just three people. But in this journey of remodeling work, we completed all the work by church members’ hands, except the siding and carpeting works. One young family came to church every few nights per week during the winter season. They came after their work, with their baby and his playpen, and they did the tiling and painting work. When the winter season was over they went back to their regular work. I then noticed that the other church members started to work together, and we finally finished the kitchen area and the restrooms.

I also noticed that almost every Sunday, 8 or 9 people would be working together. Almost all the male church members would be available. Two deacons would be sanding the wall of the women’s restroom to get the walls ready for painting, one elder and one deacon would be cutting woods for the new wall of the men’s restroom, two other people would be working on setting the sheetrock on one wall, and some people were on ladders. They all looked happy doing hard work.

As the pastor, I gave thanks to God because of the joy in our hearts doing something for our God. We were doing something together and we were in the same frame of mind. We invested way more than $40,000, because we invested our time and hearts in our church. I believe, now our church members love their church even more. We have better relationships between ourselves, a better facility, more enthusiasm for God and a better budget. These are all bonuses God gave to us through this journey.

Young Kim, Pastor of Minneapolis Korean SDA Church

e-TNL Staff: Brian Mungandi, Director; 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.

Spiritual Evangelistic Crusade

The Maranatha Seventh Adventist Church conducted a two-week evangelistic campaign from August 18 – 30, 2014. The venue was held at St. Lous Park, Prince of Peace Lutheran Church.

The theme of this campaign was entitled “Preparation for the Second Coming of Jesus Christ”. The theme verse was Revelation 22:12 “Behold, I am coming soon! My rewards is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done”

Brian Mungundi (MN Conference)The guest speaker was Dr. Ernest Nyakina Motaroki from South Kenyan Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Kenya. He was assisted by two other speakers; Ev. Riche, who preached on the aspect of prophesy in the first week, and in the second week, Pr. Brian Mugandi the Vice president Minnesota Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, who emphasized on faithfulness in our stewardship relationship to God.

Throughout the two weeks, the guest speaker stressed on the mission statement of the Seventh-day Adventist Church as revealed in Revelation 14:6-7, “Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth, in every nation, tribe, language and people. He said in a loud voice; Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.”

The speaker contrasted the lukewarmness of the church members and their inactive involvement in God’s mission, as unbelief in the divine saving power of the gospel (John 3:16). In Romans 1:17 the Bible says “For in the gospel is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it written; the righteous will live by faith.” The speaker reiterated that the certainty of Jesus coming will be a reality in the last-day church when believers will accept the free gift of righteousness in Jesus Christ.

Nicodemus Nyagaka (Maranatha pastor)The host church Pastor, Pr. Nicodemus Nyagaka and his team of elders assisted the guest speaker in conducting house to house visitation. They visited both church members and non-church members in their respective homes. There were two sessions conducted, one at noon after the morning session of visitation, and another one in the evening after the afternoon visitation program. However, in the second week, we omitted the first session and emphasized more on house to house visitation.

There were an impressive number of attendants in the evangelistic campaign, both church members and non-church members. We managed to receive thirteen new church members at the end of the spiritual campaign; seven new members were received through baptism and six members took vows to accept the Adventist faith through profession of faith. At the closure of the spiritual campaign, church members observed that there was still need for more spiritual emphasis in their church, since this exercise was their first experience of its kind in a very long time.

In contemplation of the helplessness of the crowd who sought for him, Jesus likened them to sheep without a shepherd. Jesus said to his disciples, “the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field” (Matt 9:37-38).

Pr. Nicodemus Nyagaka, Maranatha SDA Church

e-TNL Staff: Brian Mungandi, Director; 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.

When Jesus is Lifted Up

Karen Lewis (Stillwater teacher)The Southwest District of Minnesota, which includes four churches (Artichoke, Marshall, Pipestone, and Windom), invited Karen Lewis to speak for our District Rally on August 30, 2014. Karen graciously agreed to drive the three hours to the Windom SDA Church in order to present and train our members on how to do personal evangelism. As always, her presentations were stirring and inspiring for everyone in attendance. Her unique Bible study approach of “Lifting Up Jesus” before ever presenting doctrine or prophecy has been very effective in anchoring people in God’s Word and in faith.

The following Tuesday I met with my Head Elder in Marshall to talk about our little church. We prayed for God to use us and to help us apply the things Karen shared just three days before. We poured out our hearts and opened ourselves up to the Holy Spirit’s leading in the city of Marshall. Usually I do not spend the entire day in Marshall, but that day I did. While I was at the church some other members were there as well. As we were visiting, a man named John walked in the door and began to tell us his story.

John explained, “Six weeks ago I was fed up with the life I have been living so I decided to douse my TVs and electronics in gasoline and set them on fire!” What John said next absolutely shocked me and the other two ladies with me. He said, “I kept one TV and after hooking it up to my antenna I was able to get two channels; NBC and 3ABN.” (At that moment I felt like a giddy little child on Christmas Eve and I could not help myself from grinning ear to ear. I must have looked like the Cheshire Cat.) John continued to say, “Every day I take notes while I watch Pastor David Asscherick on 3ABN followed by two hours of reading my Bible to see if what he said is true.”

I was in disbelief! How can God answer my prayers before I even pray them? After a few more minutes of talking with John I found out that he quit his job because he wanted to honor the Lord’s Sabbath; he went to the library to look up the closest Seventh-day Adventist Church; and he thinks Ellen G. White is a “really neat lady” and asked if we had a copy of Steps to Christ! “Of course we do,” I blurted! The two ladies with me were so excited they practically invited him to next year’s Camp Meeting, but I chuckled and said, “Let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves.” I have been studying with John every Tuesday for the last three weeks and he has come to church two weeks in a row. Hallelujah!

Tyson Kahler (Pipestone pastor)God is amazing, but my story does not end there! After prayer meeting that evening I stopped by a church member’s apartment whom I had not seen for a while but he was not home; however, his two roommates were. Both men are in their twenties and I had seen them before when they visited our church. Since I had spent a year in Kenya, it was easy finding things to talk about with a Kenyan and Rwandan my age. They were so surprised that I am a pastor because I am so young. And somehow that led to a discussion of what Adventists believe. Two hours later we were wrapping up an impromptu Bible study on the validity of the Bible and the importance of the Sabbath. We prayed together at the end and I asked them if they would be interested in studying more about the Bible on a regular basis. They both said, “Yes! We would love to.”

I have now been studying with Franklin and Joshua for three weeks and they are as excited as ever. To date, God has sent five people for me to study the Bible with and present the good news of Jesus. Up until three weeks ago I had not had one Bible study in the city of Marshall since I started working in this district. I am convinced that Jesus was absolutely serious when he said, “And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” John 12:32 The Lord was waiting for myself and the Marshall Seventh-day Adventist Church to LIFT HIM UP.

I encourage you, whether you’re a pastor, a full-time mom, a student, a deacon, or even a pew-warmer, open up your life to be used by God and he will do great things through you. If we are willing to be an instrument used by God, He will gladly bring you in contact with just the right person who is ready to receive Jesus today. It’s not about what WE are or what we do; it’s all about who HE is.

Pastor Tyson Kahler

The names of the individuals in this article have been changed for privacy.

e-TNL Staff: Brian Mungandi, Director; 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.

Mission Trip to India in 2015

India1 (2)Would you be interested in investing a few of your dollars and two or three weeks of your time is doing something which is guaranteed to forever inspire your spiritual enthusiasm? January 16 through 30 the Minnesota Conference will again be supporting a mission trip to India. We will probably be actually leaving on the 12th or 13th and get home a few days after our meetings end. We need speakers, children’s story tellers, and health talk presenters. Our work will not be in any large cities, but in small rural villages in the district of Andhra Pradesh.

India2 (2)If you are involved with a new church plant, your meetings will probably be outdoors with only a tarp strung up for a ceiling and there will be dirt for the flooring. But you will be working with some of the most gracious, kind people in the world. And as a result of your being there with them when you leave, the nucleus of a new church plant will be left behind. During the year following a church building will be built, and should you return the following year, you will see the church full of happy people, radiant with Christ’s love.

Should you volunteer to be a part of a team which will be holding revival meetings in a church already established you will be excited by the enthusiasm of the local village people’s love for Jesus and their appreciation of what He has done and is doing for them.

Pray about this. God may just be calling you to the adventure of a lifetime. Each person is responsible for their own airfare/transportation costs, food, lodging, passport and visa. For more information please call Barbara Christiansen, 715-792-2527 or email keithandbarb.christiansen@gmail.com.

Sherman McCormick, Ministerial Director

e-TNL Staff: Brian Mungandi, Director; 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.

Share Your Talents

McCormickSThe campmeeting committee is endeavoring to plan one of the best campmeetings ever for June 12-20 of next summer. One of the features of the second weekend is always the music festival in the afternoon. This is a time when you, or your musical group, have the opportunity of sharing your love for Jesus through music.

If you are interested in participating in this campmeeting’s musical festival, please contact Sherman McCormick at 218-349-9871 or icanoe2@live.com.