December 10, 2016

Traditional Evangelistic Methods Still Make an Impact in Secular Finland



Even in secular Finland, traditional evangelistic methods can still reach people. The fifth evangelistic visit of Richard and Mary Halversen, Seventh-day Adventists from Florida, has clearly demonstrated that, with meetings held in Kuopio Adventist church, central Finland, some 236 miles (380 km) north-east of the capital city of Helsinki.

“It was God’s great miracle from the very start”

Previous series run by the Halversens have all been held in public venues. Their very first program was held in the famous Finlandia Hall, Helsinki. But how would conducting an outreach series in a local church, supported by local church members, work?

Perhaps it was the local support that made the difference. The campaign was a team effort between church members, the Halversens, and the local pastoral team, Klaus and Sibrina Kalliokoski.

Front row left: Evangelist Richard Halversen with the new members. Back row far right: Pastor Klaus Kalliokoski. CREDIT: Sibrina Kalliokoski/tedNEWS

“It was God’s great miracle from the very start,” Klaus Kalliokoski said. “It was amazing that people in secular Finland came in to listen to Bible prophecies [at meetings held] in an Adventist church.”

“I sensed the power of the Holy Spirit and peace of mind as I entered into the Church.”

Excited listeners packed the small church. For most in attendance, this was their first time in an Adventist Church. Typical responses included, “This is what I have been searching for and now I have found it,” or “I sensed the power of the Holy Spirit and peace of mind as I entered into the Church.”

Now, following five weeks of meetings and an initial baptism, ten new members have joined the Adventist family.

“It was just a joy to observe how God was working in the hearts and minds of the listeners by His Word and His servants” Kalliokoski says. As a pastor and evangelist, he also translated for Halversen, and he will continue the work alongside his wife Sibrina, a pastor and psychotherapist.

“There is still a lot interest,” she says. “There is no greater joy in the work of the Lord than to see the joy of salvation on the faces of people who have found their Savior, Jesus.”