Inter-American Division, with Adventist Review staff,
A Seventh-day Adventist has credited God and the Adventist Church with her appointment as the deputy governor of the British Virgin Islands, a top position in the British overseas territory.
Rosalie Adams became the first Adventist to hold such a high government post on the British Virgin Islands with her appointment by Queen Elizabeth II through Britain’s foreign minister, Boris Johnson. Among other things, she will function as acting governor when the governor is away.
“This appointment reminds me of many persons God placed in my path to nurture me, including my late parents, my family, and those in the church and the community,” Adams said. “This high and significant recognition without question must be attributed to God and by extension His church.”
Adams, a native of Tortola, the largest of the British Virgin Islands in the Caribbean Sea, recalled how she accepted the Adventist message 16 years ago after hearing a sermon by church evangelist C.D. Brooks over the radio.
“I was listening to Pastor Charles D. Brooks on WGOD radio when he preached a message titled ‘God in Bad Company,’” she said. “It was at that time that the Holy Spirit spoke to me, and after 40 years of service to the Methodist Church, I reached out to God for salvation.”
A local church member, Antoinette Skelton, arranged for her to take Bible studies, leading to her eventual baptism in 2000.
Skelton, director of the government’s Social Security Board on the British Virgin Islands, described Adams as a faithful Adventist.
“She is a principled person who has not changed,” she said. “She is true to what she says and what she believes and does not compromise. We can be assured that she will always count on God.”
Adventists have assumed senior government posts in the past. Notably, Fiji’s first Adventist president, Jioji Konousi Konrote, was sworn into office on November 2015, about four years after his baptism. Adventists also hold a variety of elected and appointed positions at various levels of government in countries around the world.
Adams, who assumed office on Sept. 1, was appointed to the position until February 2018.
Adams entered public service in 1968 and has taught at various public schools throughout the territory before being promoted to the post of permanent secretary in the health ministry in 2005. She also served as permanent secretary in the communications ministry, and later as permanent secretary in the premier’s office. In the British Virgin Islands, the governor is the de facto head of state and is responsible for appointing the premier, who runs the government.
Adams is an active member of the Carrot Bay Seventh-day Adventist Church on Tortola, where she has served as an elder, Sabbath School teacher, Sabbath School superintendent, community services leader, and currently serves as women’s ministries leader.
“She is a humble, cooperative Christian who loves people,” said Nigel Henry, first elder of the Carrot Bay Adventist Church.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church has 1,864 members worshipping in eight congregations on the British Virgin Islands territories of Tortola, Virgin Gorda, and Anegada, according to the latest figures from the Adventist Church’s Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research. The British Virgin Islands has a population of about 28,000.
The Adventist Church also operates the British Virgin Islands Seventh-day Adventist School, which offers elementary and high school education.
Silton Browne, president of the Adventist Church’s North Caribbean Conference, whose territory includes the British Virgin Islands, congratulated Adams on her appointment.
“I am sure about her faith in God and her ability to represent the church at such a high level,” he said.