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Upgrades turn up the volume on Adventist radio ministry

Adventist World Radio's Guam station now equipped for greater reach in Asia

Upgrades turn up the volume on Adventist radio ministry

The new high-frequency curtain antenna at Adventist World Radio’s flagship studio in Guam will broaden the ministry's reach in Asia. The antenna is part of a $2.9 million studio upgrade dedicated last week. [photos: AWR]

A multi-million dollar upgrade dedicated last week at Adventist World Radio’s flagship studio in Guam will broaden the scope of the radio ministry’s outreach across Asia, administrators say.

The $2.9 million upgrade features a new radio tower and a high-frequency curtain antenna designed for even greater long-distance transmission. The antenna allows Adventist World Radio to transmit simultaneous broadcasts, reaching listeners in multiple countries during their respective peak listening times.  It also gives the radio ministry arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church options to shift scheduling.

“God wants us to ask for miracles. He wants us to ask for something extraordinary. As we stand here today underneath all of this infrastructure, we can truly say that this is an answer to prayer,” Adventist world church President Ted N. C. Wilson said at the dedication ceremony.

The first phase of the update, which was completed last year, included the relocation of one of the existing towers to accommodate the new antenna. The second phase involved pouring 822 tons of concrete to ground the new 229-foot radio tower.

AWR officials called the update “crucial,” allowing listeners in key countries such as China and North Korea to receive better-quality signals and tune in to prime time broadcasts simultaneously. Previously, the studio was only able to broadcast during prime time in one country or time zone at a time.

The governor of Guam, Eddie Bazza Calvo, spoke at the ceremony and recognized the significance of the Adventist Church’s radio ministry. “What greater mission can any human being or any enterprise have than to spread the good news?” he said.

The dedication ceremony was held directly on the antenna field at the base of the newest tower, giving attendees a first-hand look at the results of the two-year project. Typically, such a project would take five years to complete, AWR officials said.

Brook Powers, chief engineer for AWR Guam, said he “saw the hand of God leading in this project,” which he said hinged on a small team of workers, “an incredible amount of equipment and a whole lot of blessings from God.”

AWR President Dowell Chow expressed appreciation for the construction team and the “many generous donors” who contributed to the project. “We thank them many times over for the passion and commitment they continue to show for AWR’s ministry and for carrying the voice of hope to the hardest-to-reach people of the world,” he said.

The studio in Guam currently offers programs on health, family and spiritual life in 34 languages across Asia, reaching a potential audience of 3.5 billion in countries such as China, North Korea, Myanmar and Vietnam, where traditional outreach is difficult. The studio has operated for 26 years.

Worldwide, AWR broadcasts programs in nearly 100 languages through shortwave and AM/FM radio, on demand and through podcasts.