Hundreds of Ghanaian Seventh-day Adventist believers from across Europe have descended on the Dutch town of Stadskanaal to encourage one another and share Jesus in the local community.
About 900 people are attending the 22nd annual camp meeting themed “Living in Expectancy” from Aug. 15 to 21 at a vacation center in Stadskanaal, a town of about 33,000 people in the northeast of the Netherlands. Attendance is expected to swell to more than 1,000 on Sabbath.
Wim Altink, president of the Adventist Church in the Netherlands, called the camp meeting “a powerhouse of God’s Spirit” and praised attendees for setting aside Wednesday afternoon to share their faith through music and religious literature in the town.
“Street witnessing is a success from God because of the contagious singing and music,” he said. “The Dutch people stop, listen, and rejoice while we hand out leaflets and share words of hope.”
He noted that this is the fifth year that the Ghanaian Adventists have held camp meeting on the territory of the Netherlands Union Conference.
“I am honored with the presence of this large group of Seventh-day Adventists in our union,” he said. “I hope there will follow more [camp meetings] here.”
While the camp meeting provides a place for the Ghanaian Adventist community to worship together, it also motivates attendees through church outreach reports, said Isaac K. Donkor, an Adventist pastor and vice chairman of Euro-Ghanaian Coordinating Committee, which organizes the camp meetings. Attendees share reports about their mission work in various countries and the activities of Ghanaian churches in Europe, creating a stimulus for others to return home with a new motivation for mission, Donkor said.
A. Charles Bediako, chairman of Euro-Ghanaian Coordinating Committee, urged attendees to pursue outreach like Wednesday’s event in their own neighborhoods of Europe. He said the camp meeting’s theme, “Living in Expectancy,” reflected the modern age of uncertainty, perplexity, terrorism, economic hardships, wars, and conflicts. Amid all this, he said, Adventists are called more than ever to point people to Jesus’ Second Coming.