“Tell the World” was the theme of the 13th Adventist-laymen’s Services & Industries (ASI) General Session and Convention in the Northern Asia-Pacific Division (NSD), which was held in the Philippines from September 22-25, 2022. The NSD ASI is a group of Adventist laymen across the NSD territory who are committed to sharing Christ in their respective working environments and to financially supporting church missions. The purpose of the NSD ASI General Session is primarily to elect its leaders for the next three years and to motivate ASI members to participate more actively in this ministry, leaders said.
The pandemic has changed people’s lives in many areas, and ASI was not exempt. The previous NSD ASI event had taken place in Thailand in 2017, with the next session scheduled for 2020, leaders said. However, it was postponed for two years due to the pandemic.
The Philippines was chosen as the host country for the convention since it had the least restricted in terms of COVID preventive measures. The hope was that this would enable as many NSD delegates as possible to attend, organizers said.
Leaders shared that despite some ongoing restriction in the region, more than 50 members gathered at the SDA Language Center in the Philippines. Five delegates came from Mongolia, and the rest were from South Korea. “Though this session was a relatively smaller size of a meeting if compared to the previous one, participating delegates were revived and newly motivated to participate in various programs and activities,” ASI leaders said.
The two main guest speakers for the convention were Kenneth Swansi, dean of the graduate school at the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies (AIIAS) and chair of its business department, and NSD president Yo Han Kim. “Adventist businesspeople need to influence people who are engaged in their businesses,” Swansi said. “And stewardship will make ASI members prioritize God in their lives.”
Kim expressed a sincere appreciation to the ASI leaders and members for their dedication to God’s mission. “Lay leaders are investing their precious time and resources without anticipating any rewards,” he said. “Lay members have an important role for the advancement of God’s mission, especially as regards their roles to church ministries.”
Jong Hyun Song was re-elected as NSD ASI president after members accepted a recommendation by the nominating committee. Song then recommended the rest of the officers to be re-elected as well. “I humbly accept the decision of the body though I feel burdened, because I consider it is a call from God, asking me to help to make up for the two years lost,” Song said.
ASI leaders and all participating members reaffirmed the special mission that God has given them and encouraged each other to do their best to complete the Great Commission of Jesus Christ, NSD ASI leaders said. “They are ready to answer the call of God by saying, ‘Lord! Here we are. We will go,’” they said.