More than 3,000 young Seventh-day Adventists from 250 churches marched through the center of the Dominican Republic’s capital to discourage drug use and to point their peers to Jesus.
Participants in the four-hour march in Santo Domingo carried banners promoting the Bible, the family, and good health practices, and distributed religious literature and prayed with passersby and drivers. They also visited local homes with church leaders.
“We wanted to call … our dear youth to stay away from vices and every type of drug out there, and to allow Christ to enter into their lives,” said Robert Peña, organizer of the event and youth ministries director for the Adventist Church in the Dominican Republic’s central region.
Violence and drug use are increasing across the Caribbean nation, according to government statistics. As such, young people are needed more than ever to serve as strong witnesses in their communities, church leaders said.
The young marchers, wearing T-shirts reading, “Powerful Youth, Committed to Christ,” declared through their actions that the solution to life’s difficulties was to recognize God as Creator, study the Bible, and pray daily. They distributed thousands of pieces of religious literature.
At the conclusion of the outreach effort, thousands of Adventist young people gathered at the Pabellón de Karate Center for a praise and worship program.
The Adventist Church has about 300,000 members worshipping in some 1,250 congregations across the country of 10.5 million people.