Public Campus Ministry

Adventist Christian Fellowship.jpgAs we face the era when churches are also fascinated by statistics, 70% was the number that caught my attention a lot. You can go online, search “Adventist young adults leaving Adventist church,” and you will find lots of articles that talk about this phenomenon, which, I believe, is a significant challenge for all of us. Many of the articles mention “about 70% of Young Adults have left the church in recent years”. The Adventist Church is not alone in this struggle. Many Evangelical Christian denominations are going through similar struggles dealing with the phenomenon of Christian youth and young-adults dropping out from church.

The other 70% figure that challenges me was also the number of Adventist college students attending public colleges and universities. As a person who went through Adventist educational system from kindergarten through graduate school, I fully support Adventist education. However, we cannot ignore the fact that we are facing a reality of having about 70% Adventist college age students in North America attending public colleges and universities. It seems an interesting coincidence of having very close the number “70%” on both reports. In this article, I am not trying to solve why these two reports have similar statistics and what is a connection between these two. However, it simply gives us significant enough reason to approach to our Adventist students on public colleges and universities in order to be connected with Adventist church communities and create safe environments where our youth and young adult members can have a meaningful relationship with Jesus for their future spiritual journey.

In the State of Minnesota, there are many public college campuses. One example is University of Minnesota, which had over 51,000 enrolled students in 2013-2014 school year. University of Minnesota campuses are in Minneapolis, St, Paul, Crookston, Duluth, Morris and Rochester. Others schools are like Minnesota State University (over 15,000 enrolled students), Bemidji State University (over 5,000 enrolled students), St. Cloud State University (over 15,000 enrolled students) and we have more schools around. These campuses are not only attractive locations for Adventist students because of their college brand (reputation) and their school size, but also, these school campuses can be huge evangelism opportunities for Adventist Churches if they are in the same community with those schools.

Minnesota Conference leadership takes this ministry opportunity seriously. For the first step, we want to create a channel of communication to be connected with our current Adventist college students in those campuses. We want to provide opportunity for current and future college students to meet, and have fellowship together on campus. Moreover, we want to provide resources and trainings for our current Adventist college students in order to reach out to public university campuses as ambassadors of Christ.

On March 11-13, 2016, at the North Star Camp, there was a very special retreat for current college Adventist students and also those who are interested in college campus ministry. Pastor Ron Pickell, who is a pastor at Berkley SDA Church, and also serves as Adventist Christian Fellowship Volunteer Coordinator for NAD, presented his personal experiences based on his thirty plus years of ministry on public campuses and provided resources for students and attendees. Pastor Pickell shared how to lead small group bible discussions, and why should our Adventist students be connected on public campuses and reach out to others. We have student attendees from University of Minnesota Twin Cities, Duluth campus, Bemidji State University, Minnesota State University Mankato and several other colleges in Twin Cities metro area. These students and attendees had worship, fellowship having fun together throughout weekend, and everyone had a meaningful conversation on Sabbath afternoon on how can we be more connected and organized as Adventist student groups in different locations.

Please keep praying for Public Campus Ministry in Minnesota Conference, and let the conference Youth department know if anyone you know, plans to attend public universities in Minnesota, so that we may be connected and do great things for God on those campuses. Let us share the Light to those college campuses with our Adventist students!

Sean Lee, Minnesota Conference Youth Pastor

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.

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Maplewood Academy Music Department Visiting Churches

MWA music 3Our Maplewood Academy (MWA) Music Department has had the privilege of visiting several churches around our conference and sharing the love of Jesus through music. Our MWA Choraliers (select choir) visited both the Litchfield and Dodge Center churches earlier this semester. MWA music 1The Choraliers were joined by the MWA Band and MWA Bell Choir on a recent tour to the Duluth and Cambridge churches on March 19, 2016. What a blessing it is to travel to different parts of our conference and worship with many of you! Your love and hospitality towards our students is very much appreciated. MWA music 4 potluckThe amazing potlucks are talked about for many days after the tour!

If you are interested in scheduling the Maplewood music groups for the 2016-2017 school year, please contact David Ballesteros at 320–587–2830 or dballesteros@maplewoodacademy.org.

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.

Belize Mission Trip

Group Pic-Mission TripOn March 3, 2016 at 10 pm, nineteen Maplewood Academy students, along with four Maplewood staff members piled into the big, yellow school bus and made their way to the Minneapolis airport. This group was excited—the long anticipated Belize mission trip was officially underway! For many, this was their first mission trip, and for some, their first time outside of America. The adventure of a lifetime was about to begin.

The group arrived at the airport by 11:30 pm and eventually met up with the rest of our Minneapolis­based travel companions. The check-in counter wasn’t scheduled to open until 3:30 am the next morning, so we made ourselves comfortable and waited. We were the first people in line to check in when the counter opened that morning.

As is to be expected, checking in to an airport with a large group of people is no short task. Our plane was scheduled to board at 4:30 am, and we arrived at the gate just in time to start the boarding process. We were not on the plane for long though before we returned to our seats at the gate. Due to a mechanical issue, our plane was going to have a delayed departure. What was originally a twenty-minute delay, became a five hour and fifty-five minute delay. Our layover for our connecting flight was only five hours, so this delay would likely result in a missed flight. Thankfully, after discussing our situation with the gate agents, it was worked out that our Houston flight would wait for our delayed arrival before their take off. Even with the delay, we arrived in Belize only minutes after our scheduled departure time.

Upon arriving, we de­planed, went through customs, met up with the final two members of our group, and waited for our ride. Our transportation was the definition of a mission trip experience: We piled all of our suitcases high into the beds of two pickup trucks and all thirty of us packed into a small orange bus, affectionately nicknamed “the pumpkin”, that was not designed to fit quite so many of us.

Mission 4During the months of mission trip preparation leading up to this trip, the group had decided on specific goals for the trip itself, namely continuing construction on the new Seventh-­day Adventist Elementary School in Ladyville and hosting a student led week of prayer for the academy students in a nearby town. However, upon arriving we soon realized that plans do not always go as intended. Mission 2Due to various circumstances, the academy week of prayer became a one day worship session and three days of morning worships were added to the schedule at the Ladyville elementary school. Maplewood students also took turns assisting in classrooms and working one-on-one with the children firsthand, as well as leading out in the church service for our second Sabbath in Belize. In spite of any added confusion, God worked in each and every situation. Something that repeatedly kept coming to my mind over the course of this trip is the little saying, “blessed are the flexible, for they shall not be bent out of shape.” If there was one thing we learned time and time again during this trip, it was how to be flexible.

Oliver and the KidsThe children melted our hearts. Seeing them each day gave us an even bigger desire to work as hard as possible on that school. It was evident how much they appreciated our help, and their overwhelming happiness, welcoming smiles, and plentiful hugs brought joy to our days as we worked. Mission 8Some of the children would voluntarily come to the work site after classes were finished for the day and sing songs for us, or help us however they were able. The days were long, the work was often difficult, and many of us had no prior construction experience, but seeing the energized faces in the elementary students frequently brought a much needed burst of energy to get us through the day.

Worshipping with the people in Belize was another huge blessing. Whether it was during the morning worships with the children or the Sabbath services, there was no doubt that these people love the Lord. It was refreshing for our group to have this experience and it reignited a flame in many of our hearts to grow closer to God in our own lives.

Mission 5While our main focus throughout the trip was on building the school and sharing Jesus with those around us, we were able to experience a few other adventures during our time in Belize. Mission 10Our first Sabbath afternoon, we were blessed with the opportunity to visit an orphanage and spend some time with the children. It was truly a humbling experience for many of us. We were also able to see the beauty of God’s creation while touring the Mayan Temples, snorkeling off the coast of San Pedro Island, going for walks around our village, and visiting the Belize Zoo.

Our last day was bittersweet. Saying goodbye to all of the wonderful people we met throughout the trip made us long for heaven all the more. While we were only in Belize for a short time, a piece of our hearts will remain their forever. Since arriving back in the states, we have heard that the roof has now been installed, and the school is one step closer to their goal of opening its doors for the 2016-­2017 school year.

We praise God for the opportunity to be a part of such an amazing experience.

Danica Eylenstein, Maplewood Staff

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.

Missing Child Drill

We held a missing child drill at The Edge on March 26.  Pastor Daniel da Silva helped to organize a Safety Committee from among church members and they started preparing for this drill.  Edge drillThe committee met with Kimberly Czapar of the Brooklyn Park Police Department on Wednesday, March 23 to go over what aspects they would need in order to carry out this drill.  After the main service, Head Elder Lester Bentley made the announcement that we had a “missing” child and asked that everyone would please remain in their seats.  Edge drill childTen volunteers were assembled and were given maps of the facility and instructed where they should search.  After four minutes, the “missing” child was found safe.  Many of the members were impressed with how the drill was conducted and were very supportive of having future drills.

Wendy da Silva, The Edge Christian Worship Center Communications Secretary

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.

New Horticulture Class at Maplewood

MWA Horticulture 5Maplewood Academy has added a Horticulture class to our Spring Semester 2016 course offerings. This class will focus on a basic introduction to the horticulture industry and will include an overview of general plant growth principles, including soil and growing medium(s), fertilizer, pesticides, temperature, sunlight, water, and more. MWA Horticulture 1The course will also include a general overview of the basics of growing fruit and vegetables, annual and perennial greenhouse production, trees and shrubs and ornamental plants and flowers. The student have also taken a field trip to our local nursery.

MWA Horticulture 2Students have a significant hands on component starting many vegetable plants from seed including 8-10 varieties of tomatoes and peppers, eggplant, various herbs, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, watermelon, cantaloupe, summer and winter squash, beets, and more. These seedlings will be planted by staff and students on our MWA farm for the upcoming growing season. MWA Horticulture 3What a wonderful opportunity for our students to be out in nature, God’s second book! This program provides summer jobs for students as well as food to sell at our local community farmers market all summer. The farm products are also used in our cafeteria throughout the fall and winter.

We are excited to add this class to our curriculum. It is a wonderful opportunity for our students to learn life-skills and support this new industry at Maplewood Academy.

Stacy Stocks, Maplewood Academy Principal

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.

English Field Trip

Students at Romeo  Juliet Imersion ExperienceOn February 12, 2016 the Maplewood Academy English Department coordinated a field trip for our students on both campuses to attend the Park Square Theatre in St. Paul. They participated in the Shakespeare Immersion Program where actors divided students up into small groups and spent time teaching them about the various aspects of performance art.

Sound technicians took the students behind the scenes in the production studio to demonstrate how to use sound to add emphasis to a variety of scenes. They worked with choreographers and voice coaches on sound projection and movement on a stage when presenting. This added depth and hands-on experience to their study of literature and great suggestions for students who perform on stage, both in dramatic and nondramatic way.

The students were able to watch a full production of a play and then talk with the cast and directors afterwards. In addition to discussing the dramatic elements, the director led a conversation about the themes within the play. The students were also given an opportunity to ask the actors questions about their performance. Overall, it was a great opportunity for our students to enhance their learning experience and participate in the immersion program.

Stacy Stocks, Maplewood Academy Principal

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 India

India Alt call

The 2016 MN Conference India Mission Trip in February was plagued with plenty of challenges. After much prayer the villages were selected, tickets were bought, and those needing visas had applied. It took several phone calls, but finally Pastor Doug Hardt’s visa arrived only two days before his departure. Elder Brian Mungandi’s visa had not arrived by departure time, so the original plans were readjusted. I would need to fill in until Elder Mungandi arrived. Each speaker, Pastor Eric Mokua, Pastor Doug Hardt and I would have 5 villages coming together at one center to preach the gospel each evening. The first evening, attendance ran from 30-200 in the three sites. We definitely could see the Lord’s leading.

By the third day, Sunday, our plans changed again, as Pastor Doug Hardt had some situations that arose and He felt God was leading him to return home to the United State to attend to the situation. Elder Mungandi’s visa still was not issued, but I felt strongly God’s word saying to me, “Stay on the path that the Lord your God has commanded you to follow.” Deut 6:33 The support team and speakers decided to regroup villages to two sites and each night “…the Word of the Lord continued to increase and prevail mightily..” Acts 19:20

Baptismal photo - Pastor MokuaAnother unanticipated change in plans was coming as well. The land had been bought and the church was to have been started, completed and dedicated while the Minnesota Conference mission team was in India, with the dedication planned for the last Sabbath. The land was cleared and the builder was ready to start construction, only to be told that there was objection from the surrounding community in having a Seventh-day Adventist church on that property.   Another location in the same area was selected, and again we were told “You can’t build a Seventh-day Adventist church here.” So negotiations continued with the same landowner and again “No” was the answer. Finally it was agreed to build the church in another village that had been coming to hear Pastor Eric Mokua preach.

India Baptismal photoThe Lord was determined to save His people in this area. Thirty people were already baptized in the village where the church was now going to be built. It was incredible to see many of the village people attending our meetings and coming up for prayer and asking for baptism in spite of the many challenges we encountered. The final baptism report was 169 souls and one new church started for Christ. Praise God!

Barb Christiansen

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.