Adventist Heritage Ministry to celebrate 25th Anniversary
The 25th anniversary of the founding of the national Adventist Heritage Ministry will be celebrated the weekend of March 16-17, 2007 in Calimesa, it has been announced.
Royce Thompson, local coordinator of the two-day event, says that members of more than 50 Inland Empire congregations have been invited to join the members of the Calimesa Seventh-day Adventist Church in noting this unique part of the denomination’s national program.
Guest speakers from the Church’s international headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland, will be the featured speakers. They are Jim Nix, director of the Ellen G. White Estate and chairman of the board of the ministry, and Thomas Neslund, Adventist Heritage Ministry president.
The celebration gets under way at 7:00 on Friday night when stories and songs of the early pioneers of the Church will be featured in song, costume, and pictures. On Saturday, March 17, the program continues with a combined Sabbath school of all study units at 9:45 a.m. and will conclude in the afternoon starting at 3:00.
Adventist Heritage Ministry began a quarter century ago. It now owns and operates a three-block piece of land in Battle Creek, Michigan, the area where the early pioneers of the Church lived and worked. They also own farms of Church pioneers Hiram Edson and William Miller, two of the founders of the denomination in the 19th century.
To date the organization operates through donations by hundreds of supportive Church members and occasional church grants from church entities. Thousand of visitors annually visit the Historic Adventist Village and the two upstate New York homesteads of the pioneers.
The Calimesa event is one of six such celebrations staged throughout the United States. Others were held in Freeport, Maine; Apopka, Florida; Portland, Oregon; and Berrien Springs, Michigan. The Calimesa event is the only one in southwestern California.
One of the speakers for the weekend program, Tom Neslund, says, “From time to time all of us feel a need for renewal. It is important to review experiences out of life and times of the pioneers so that we will not forget their sacrifices.” Mr. Neslund will relate stories of how this activity of the Church began and how it has been nurtured.
The heritage of the Church will be the theme of the sermon that will be presented at both the 8:30 am. and 11:15 a.m. services of worship by the church’s senior pastor, Chris Oberg. Included in the program is a major skit by the drama team of Mesa Grande Academy under the direction of Jerry Kopitzke.
Mr. Thompson has announced that the program is open to the public and visitors are welcome.