Thursday, December 1, 2011

Reviewing the Adventist Review

November 10, 2011
Vol. 188, No. 31

There is one article that upsets me, another deserves an inspirational “thumbs up”, and another suggests a shortsighted and uneconomic solution to an important problem. The rest of the issue is standard fare.

CHURCH TRENDS by Monte Sahlin must be regarded as a dead canary in the mine of leadership in the North American Division.

“It's really a simple question. It was asked of pastors and lay leaders in a random sample of more than 11,000 congregations of all faiths across America last year: ‘would you agree? Our congregation is spiritually vital and alive.’

“The leaders are responded to the survey could pick one of 5 answers from ‘strongly agree’ to ‘strongly disagree.’ Overall, just 28% gave the most positive response. And among Seventh-day Adventist churches it was only 16%.

“Adventist data also show fewer local (Adventist) churches involved in all areas of community ministry, except public evangelism.”

AN ANGEL’S GIFT by Dixil Rodriguez is a heartwarming story of a very sick little girl and her very real angel.

INCLUSIVE WORSHIP AND LEARNING: EMBRACING SPECIAL-NEEDS CHILDREN IN OUR CHURCHES AND SCHOOLS by Addison Hudgins is an important reminder that children with special needs should feel comfortable attending a Seventh-day Adventist church. Hudgins goes on to suggest that Adventist schools should become places where the educational needs of these children should be met.

This idea, though well intentioned, is impractical and uneconomic. These specialized programs can only be adequately funded by public education. It would make far more sense for Adventist churches and schools to publicly support the special education programs in their communities.

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