July 15, 2010

Telling the Adventist Story

Telling the Adventist Story
Adventist Heritage Ministry on display in Atlanta

BY EVAN KNOTT, sophomore religion and communication major at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan, United States.capAdventist Heritage Ministry is on a mission to preserve the history of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The organization responsible for preserving historic Adventist sites that include the William Miller Farm, the Joseph Bates Home, and the Historic Adventist Village in Battle Creek, Michigan, was pres­ent at the Exhibition Hall in Atlanta promoting awareness and gathering support.
“We are trying to preserve the buildings that are significant to Adventist history so that we can tell the story of the sacrifice and commitment of the early pioneers of the Seventh-day Adventist Church,” exhibitor Bernard Andersen says.

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DIGGING DEEP: Bernie Andersen, Adventist Heritage Board member, explains one of the free items distributed a the AHM booth in the exhibit hall.

Adventist Heritage Ministry aims to be a way to spread the message of the Seventh-day Adventist Church to people who would not otherwise hear it.

“We can witness to non-Adventists who come through. They may never attend a church service, but they will go to a historic site,” Andersen says. “So they are able to see what early Adventists believed in and why it was so transforming to their lives.”
But Andersen believes that it’s not just non-Adventists who benefit from visiting these historic places.
“A lot of Adventists just don’t know Adventist history. Even if they were in Adventist schools, a lot of times they aren’t being taught it. So this helps give them some background. The other thing is that a lot of backslidden Adventists who attend some of these historic sites recommit their lives to Christ.”
Visitors to the Adventist Heritage Ministry exhibit are invited to buy facsimiles of stock certificates signed by James White in 1861. The funds will go to help raise money for building a replica of the publishing house in the Historic Adventist Village. The publishing house will be a place where, among other things, the story of the Adventist Review can be told.          
“We’ve got a working steam engine that will run the press,” Andersen says. “We hope to be able to actually publish a page of the Advent Review and Sabbath Herald that will be a keepsake for people who come to the Village.”
Andersen says that building the publishing house is going to take more than $200,000 and that they still have a long way to go. To find out how you can help support Adventist Heritage Ministry and preserve these historic Adventist sites, visit www.adventistheritage.org.