Thousands of Seventh-day Adventists in Chiapas, Mexico, welcomed Ted N.C. Wilson, president of the Adventist World Church, on Mar. 24, 2018, during a special celebration to highlight the ongoing service young people are providing in their cities and communities this year. The regional initiative is coined as “Jesus in my City” where young people are encouraged to shine the light of Jesus through acts of kindness and outreach activities.
“On behalf of the world family of Seventh-day Adventists, I want to thank everyone of you for what you are doing for Christ, reaching people in the cities,” said Wilson, as he addressed young people at the Polyforum Convention Center in Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas.
Young people reported praying for their municipal leaders and providing food and special prayers for families of those in hospitals, donated blood, provided water in needy communities, beautified parks, distributed literature and much more.
“What a wonderful opportunity just before Jesus returns to be fully engaged in service for Jesus,” said Wilson. The Adventist leader challenged young people to be faithful to God’s Word, to dedicate their talents to Him, and to answer the call of service wherever God leads them.
Answering the call to service is what church leaders in Chiapas and the rest of the church throughout the Inter-American Division (IAD) territory were encouraging young people to commit to through the church’s “One Year in Mission” (OYiM) initiative. The initiative sends young people to preach the gospel during a one-year mission assignment or a shorter period of time in an area where there is no Adventist presence.
The five-hour celebration was also part of a special focus of the OYiM initiative in Inter-America in which young people will commit to 100 consecutive days of mission service in a specific area.
According to Pastor Al Powell, youth ministries director for the church in Inter-America, the OYiM relaunch initiative seeks to get more young people across the 24 major church regions to sign up with their local union office, receive an initial training on Apr. 28, then receive youth evangelism training on June 2, and be a part of youth-led evangelism campaigns July 1-7, 2018.
“Jesus is calling you to be sent by Him, so that people can hear, so that people can believe, so that people can call on the name of the Lord,” said Wilson. “You are part of a growing number of young people who are part of that outreach including OYiM,” he added as he encouraged young people in Chiapas and across Inter-America to sign up for additional training for the upcoming youth preaching campaigns this summer.
Wilson was joined by Israel Leito, president of the Adventist Church in Inter-America (IAD), Elie Henry, executive secretary of IAD and Ignacio Navarro, president of the church in Chiapas, to answer questions on church leadership, the role of young people in the church, what it takes to fulfill the mission, and more.
Top church leaders prayed for several young people who were baptized during the youth celebration program.
A highlight of the live online program featured the four families who were forced out of their homes because of religious intolerance in the San Miguel Chiptip Community in Chiapas.
“You are truly giants for Jesus because you have accepted the full truth and you are willing to die for the truth,” said Wilson. “My heart rejoices to see you, to see your faithfulness to God’s Word.”
Top church leaders also met with local pastors and leaders to strengthen for greater member involvement across the more than 3,000 churches and congregations in Chiapas.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church in Chiapas, Mexico, has more than 230,000 members worshiping in 3,087 churches and congregations. The church oversees eight conferences and missions, operates one university, and 51 primary and secondary schools.
To learn more about the church in Chiapas, visit umch.org.mx
To view the online program, click HERE
Find out more about Inter-America’s One Year in Mission initiative at interamerica.org