Category Archives: Changed Lives

Changed Lives – Omar

by Hugo Villalobos , Pastor of the Hermiston Spanish Seventh-day Adventist Church

One of our church members began his career as an entrepreneur a few years ago. One of his job descriptions consists of coaching and mentoring members in his business. Last winter we had an international coach come and teach the Hispanic community financial management skills. This was a total success. We had over 40 guests that signed up for follow up Bible studies. Our entrepreneur brother invited a big group from his business.

One of them was Omar, a young man from a small town about 30 minutes away from our church. He didn’t miss a night. He was eager to start his journey knowing more about the God who is the owner of all the riches in the world. We began to study with him using a Bible study packet called “truthlink“. After we finished our first lesson we decided to continue studying on a weekly basis. He called me the next week saying, “Pastor I’m already half way through the packet!” Without a doubt we had seen that the seed of the gospel had fallen onto good soil. He has been attending Sabbath school classes, church programs, outreach events, ever since.

We have just concluded a series on the book “A purpose Driven Life”. We have prayed for 40 days for a big harvest in our church. Our whole church has also prayed for Omar. At the end of this month Omar will be getting baptized with other friends that have accepted Jesus.

Comments Off on Changed Lives – Omar

Filed under Changed Lives

Changed Lives – Baptism in Frigid Waters

by John Rengifo, pastor Shady Point Seventh-day Adventist Church

Mike asked if he could be baptized in the nearby Rogue River. Though I expected the temperatures to be cold on that November 5th day and knew the temperature of the river would be frigid, I told him we would be happy to do it!

Mike was baptized at the conclusion of the Unlock Revelation Seminar held at the Shady Point Church Fellowship Hall in front of his new church family and soon-to-be fiancé on Sabbath afternoon, November 5. It was a joyous day. Many members had come to know Mike when he began attending church sometime in the summer. He had a secular upbringing and no real spiritual influence until he moved to Oregon from Illinois. Working and living on his own, he met Genesis, who later would become his girlfriend. She began to share her faith with him and sparked his interest in the Bible. Mike began to study the Bible and attend church. He began taking Bible studies and said that the things he was learning was making sense.

He reached a point of searching the prophecies of Scripture, particularly the books of Daniel and Revelation. When we announced the upcoming Unlock Revelation Seminar to be held at our church, Mike expressed a desire to come and come he did. In the midst of the series, Mike’s confidence grew in the Word of God and was intrigued by the congruency of history and Bible prophecy. He made his decision to follow Jesus and be baptized. At that point, his girlfriend, Genesis, was back from Andrews University where she graduated from the School of Aviation. She attended about 10 nights of the meetings with him, and was there when we announced his baptism.

On the last day of the meetings, a Sabbath morning, the whole church was invited to join in celebrating Mike’s new life in Christ. There was nothing exuberant he’ll claim about his conversion. He was simply a young man who opened the door of his heart to examine the Bible and came to discover a loving God who created him and has a plan for his life. Mike has found a place in the church today as he helps with the audio system at church—something he began doing even while attending the Unlock Revelation Series.

We believe God is raising up young people, pulling them from all backgrounds and revealing Himself to them and preparing them to take the gospel message to the world.

Comments Off on Changed Lives – Baptism in Frigid Waters

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning

Changed Lives – Faithful in Sharing Jesus

by Nicholas Jones, Pastor of the Sandy Seventh-day Adventist Church

Ten days before receiving the flier in the mail, Marcus had just started reading his Bible. He had finally hit rock bottom and was turning his life over to Jesus. Never before had he read the Bible, so he bought a ‘Read the Bible in a Year’ version. When his mother handed him the flier for the series “Questions I’d Like to Ask God” put on by the Sandy Seventh-day Adventist Church, he felt a strong sense that he should go.

After the first night he realized this church had what he was looking for and now he is currently studying, along with another attendee, toward baptism.

The Sandy Seventh-day Adventist Church completed an evangelistic series that consisted of 13 presentations dedicated to different questions people ask God and two follow-up meetings which delved more into health and the history of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

We wanted to try a different approach than the traditional Daniel and Revelation seminar,” said Nick Jones, pastor of the Sandy Church. Each meeting consisted of a presentation of 25-30 minutes and small group discussion for 15 minutes afterward. Church members and guests alike enjoyed the opportunity to create friendships and discuss the challenging questions each evening.

Child evangelism was available each evening as the church wanted the children who attended to be exposed to the same topic their parents were discussing each evening. Amy Quinn and Melissa Leslie coordinated a program with crafts, activities, and songs based upon the presentations which Pastor Nick provided.

Each guest had an opportunity to receive a complimentary copy of several books. For attending any three meetings, a guest would receive Steps to Christ. After attending any five meetings, a guest would receive The Desire of Ages. When attending any ten meetings The Andrews Study Bible was given.

When Marcus received his Bible, the joy on his face was contagious. He finally had a Bible of his own and could look up texts studied each evening. Seeing his joy upon receiving the Bible was a reminder to all involved of the importance of evangelism and the reason we are faithful in sharing Jesus.

Comments Off on Changed Lives – Faithful in Sharing Jesus

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning

Changed Lives – Living Life for Him

IMG_0575by Sergei Kuzmin, Pastor of Russian-Ukrainian Seventh-day Adventist Church

During our “Unhidden Mysteries of Revelation” event, Vasily told his story about how Jesus revealed the Biblical truth to him.

He was not satisfied with his life and he wanted to be better. He tried using his own power, but all was in vain. He started to pray and to read the Bible and suddenly noticed he was getting better and better, and it had happened, not just by chance, but by the power of Jesus. He started to pray more and to read Bible more and by each day more new good results were happening.

He said, “my heart was full of happiness because of the love Christ just gave me. I made the decision to live for Jesus, That decision really impacted me because before I was somewhat selfish and made choices I regret. But I wasn’t baptized and was thinking that it was sufficient just to be a good Christian. But when I started to get to The “Unhidden Mysteries of Revelation” program, I was able to get IMG_0529 (1)to know the profound meaning of Revelation, especially the last time events which are going to come. I began to realize that we are living in the very last days, and this is no time to delay with my baptism. After my baptism, Jesus helped me to make better choices and live my life for Him, not for me. I pray often to God and read my Bible more.”

His mother Helen is not a Church member. She was attending the program along with her son. She shared her feelings saying that when she saw Vasily being baptized, her heart was beating very fast trying to jump out of her chest. She said, “I am so thankful to the Lord, who gave the wisdom to my son to make a baptismal decision. We had prayer and serious conversations in our family. Vaslly was asking me about his decision. All our family are very happy for his decision.”

When I asked Vasily’s mother about what kind of impact she felt after her son’s baptism she replied, “I am thinking over the decision to be baptized soon”

Comments Off on Changed Lives – Living Life for Him

Filed under Changed Lives

Changed Lives – Story of Two Families

Story of Bill and Jammie
captureOne day, Jammie received an invitation to attend Lee Venden’s “It’s All About Jesus Seminar” in 2012 at the Myrtle Creek Seventh-day Adventist Church. She did, and there discovered what was missing in her life. In November of 2015 Jammie began attending the Myrtle Creek church regularly. In March of 2016, she began studying the Bible with Cindy Schurch (the wife of Pastor Chester Schurch). When Cindy told Jammie about the Unlock Revelation Series that she and her husband would be conducting at the Myrtle Creek SDA church, Jammie decided to attend. It was there where she felt God impressing her that she needed to be baptized. But the story doesn’t end there.

Jammie’s husband, Bill, who works at a local lumber establishment and had been raised in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, but had drifted away from God for 30, was watching Jammie’s spiritual growth. Deep inside, as he would be out in the woods each day, God was speaking to Bill that he needed to come back to God and His Church. When Jammie told Bill of her decision for baptism, imagine Jammie’s surprise when Bill stated, “I want to be baptized, too.” They celebrated their baptism together on November 19, 2016, as their family and friends in the Myrtle Creek Church looked on. What a blessing and inspiration it was to see them commit their lives to God.

Story of Two Brothers, Ryan and Jaden
brothersRyan and Jaden are two brothers ages 17 and 20. They were raised in a good Seventh-day Adventist Christian home where their parents provided every opportunity for them to know and love Jesus. Both Ryan and Jaden had the privilege of attending Seventh-day Adventist Schools growing up. Each time they had been invited to be baptized they didn’t feel that it was the right time, so neither had taken that step.

When they heard that the Unlock Revelation series was to be held in the Myrtle Creek Church, they decided to come, and to bring their younger brother to the children’s meetings as well. One night, early in the meetings, Pastor Schurch was giving an appeal at the end of a presentation, but he noticed on this particular decision card there was no entry which invited the people to be baptized. Pastor Schurch felt the impression of the Holy Spirit to invite those in attendance to write down on their card if they would like the experience of baptism.

That evening, God spoke to both Jaden and Ryan, who separately signed that they would like to be baptized. On November 19, with family and friends, and proud parents in attendance, the Myrtle Creek Church witnessed their baptism and all felt the joy of seeing young people make a full commitment to Jesus.

Comments Off on Changed Lives – Story of Two Families

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning

Momentum – Praying for Understanding

by Gerald Margil, Pastor of the Hispanic Group of Heyburn

Photo of a spanish language Holy Bible.Since the middle of 2014, I was invited as a part-time pastor to work with a group of Hispanic congregations in south-eastern Idaho that had never had an assigned pastor. One such congregation is Heyburn. Heyburn is a small community that has seen an outstanding economic awakening in the area which has translated into a growing community of Hispanic population in the sector.

However, that growth has not made any impact on the growth of the local Hispanic congregation.On the contrary, since it has been decreasing. From about 7 members in the middle of 2014, by the beginning of 2016 they would be only 3, attending regularly. It was thus, through prayer and conversation with one another, that we decided to launch a three-month evangelistic plan. The work has been hard, but the results have been worth it.

The surprising thing is that when we went out into the street and tried to contact people, we gradually realized that the people with whom we started studying the Bible confessed that they had been praying for someone to come and will help to understand these Biblical truths that they, today, listened to.

Such was the case with the family of Mrs. Faustina, who gladly accepted the Adventist message with all her family. She had been attending a Sunday church for many years. When reading the Bible on the Sabbath, she felt the need to know more, which she couldn’t do in her previous congregation. Nobody seemed interested or informed about the matter, until finally our brother Carlos contacted her and her husband, the first thing they did was to ask about what the Bible said about Saturday. As we study the truth more deeply, we have no doubt that God was calling them out of Babylon.

Perhaps another of the most remarkable miracles of this evangelistic campaign has been the impact on the members. Those who have seen God perform miracles by touching hearts. In addition, these same brothers have greatly benefited from the experience of accompanying me on visits and Bible studies. It has enabled them to establish themselves in the faith, and to know more deeply the doctrine of the apostolic message of the Adventist Church.

Today, things look different in the Hispanic group of Heyburn, since more worship the Lord every Saturday in the church, and there have been 7 baptisms in all. We give honor and glory to our great Lord and Savior, whom we also pray to continue to grow the community of believers in Heyburn, thus preparing a people ready to receive our Savior in the air, as well as helping others to be ready.

Comments Off on Momentum – Praying for Understanding

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning

Momentum – End Time Messages From Jesus

dsc_0143by Pedro M. Canales, Pastor of the Milton-Freewater, College Place, and Walla Walla Spanish Churches

The district of Spanish Churches in the Walla Walla Valley had two weeks of Prophecy Evangelism lead by the church pastor, Pedro M. Canales. We had excellent church participation during these two weeks, where they presented the messages of the “End Times From Jesus.” This was an evangelism series prepared by the General Conference that Dr. Pedro M. Canales translated to Spanish.

As a result of the evangelism and lay members work, two souls were baptized. One of them a young boy, Eric, from the Milton-Freewater Spanish Church who approached the pastor and asked for baptism. After a pastoral visit with the family, Eric was baptized in his Milton Spanish Church. Also, in College Place, another visitor who was taking Bible studies, José chose Christ and the Adventist message and decided he wanted to be baptized.

The Lord has been good to us in adding these two new members and there are others taking Bible studies that will be baptized soon. We praise God because His promise is faithful!

Comments Off on Momentum – End Time Messages From Jesus

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning

Changed Lives – It’s Never Too Late to Come Back Home!

leanneby Jose Galvez, Pastor of the Silverton Seventh-day Adventist Church 

As a result of a recent two-week Bible seminar, conducted by Jose Galvez, Silverton Seventh-day Adventist Church pastor, two church attendees finally made their decisions to join the church. Ramon Fernandez-Mesa and LeAnne Kramer formally became part of our membership by joining by profession of faith.

LeAnne used to be a Seventh-day Adventist who led the church over 50 years ago. She attended many other churches until finally coming back the Silverton Seventh-day Adventist church where she felt right at home because of the love and acceptance that she received from many of the church members and friends.

Ramon was also a previous Seventh-day Adventist member. He went to spend time with family outside the country and after coming back, he realized that somehow his membership was dropped. He felt rejected and not wanted for a long time. That feeling left when he walked into the Silverton church where he felt that people cared and accepted him.

Instead of having the new members stand by the door at the conclusion of the service to be greeted by those leaving the sanctuary, Pastor Galvez invited the congregation to come up to them on the platform. What joy and closeness was felt by all as they mingled together as brothers and sisters in Christ.

May God grant us more of these blessed experiences.

 

 

Comments Off on Changed Lives – It’s Never Too Late to Come Back Home!

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning

Changed Lives – Prophecy Seminar Makes Alaskans Fishers of Men!

Map image of Bristol Bay and the Aleutian Islands in Alaska

by Jason Morgan, Evangelist for the North Pacific Union Conference

Alaska’s Bristol Bay supports the worlds largest Salmon fishing runs that attracts fisherman from all over the world. Many flood the small town of Dillingham during the Summer months to take advantage of the abundant fishing opportunities. The Dillingham Seventh-Day Adventist Church decided to do some fishing of their own, but this time they wanted to follow the call of the Savior to be fishers of men!

As they say there’s never a perfect time to do public evangelism, because the Devil will compete with you every single time. Prior to opening night of the Amazing Prophecies Revelation Series, the handbill mailing was distributed two weeks earlier than expected. The temptation was to panic and conclude that many within the community might forget about the meetings. As pastor Howard Williams lead out in prayer and claiming God’s promises, we witnessed people from the community excited to be coming to the series night by night!

Patty Jones came opening night with her Bible in hand to learn more about Revelation and how to prepare for the soon coming of Jesus Christ. What’s interesting is Patty somehow did not receive a flier in the mail, she had a Continue reading

Comments Off on Changed Lives – Prophecy Seminar Makes Alaskans Fishers of Men!

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning

Changed Lives – No Interest in Church

CaptureMauricio and Maria are a young couple that were invited to our evangelistic meeting in February. Maria used to attend our services in the past. She didn’t miss a night of our series. A member from our church saw the family at our local Walmart a week before the series began and gave them a flyer of our meetings. Every night Maria came with her husband and her two young daughters. She began to express happiness and joy on her face as she told me she had been praying that her husband would start attending church. She told us that her husband never found interest in coming to church before, but now she has seen a change in him. I asked for their contact information and went to visit them at their home. I began to ask him what he thought about the series and he began to tell me that he felt as if all the messages were directed toward him. I told him it was the Holy Spirit who was beginning to work in his heart.

On the final night Mauricio went up to me and said “Pastor, I want to get baptized!” There was peace in his heart that night. He had accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. We planned a date for the coming month for his baptism ceremony and invited him to join one of our small groups. He gladly accepted the invitation and once again this lovely new family is evidence that God is mighty to save and is working powerfully in our city.

– Pr. Villalobos, Pastor of Hermiston Spanish SDA church

Comments Off on Changed Lives – No Interest in Church

Filed under Changed Lives, Soul Winning