The Midyear Meetings of the Inter-European Division (EUD), the regular administrative meeting of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in this territory of Europe, took place May 21-23 at the Adventist University of France in Collonges-sous-Salève, France. Division administrators, department directors, directors of institutions, union presidents, and pastoral and lay representatives from each union met to vote on administrative matters, assess the course of the annual plan, and discuss the best means to advance mission across the EUD.
Mission was a central focus for the region’s Executive Committee, in particular the mission for the individual person and his or her needs.
“Let us mingle with people. Let us wish them well. Let us offer them good words and actions. And let us smile! We will only transmit the joy of having Jesus if we really live in Him,” EUD president Mario Brito said.
The Collonges meeting was attended by the president of the Middle East and North Africa Union Mission, Rick McEdward. As a special invitee, he shared news from that challenging field for mission.
It was also an opportunity to strengthen the bonds of fellowship and cooperation between the two territories of the Adventist Church. These two regions are very close geographically, and, although they have profound cultural and religious differences in the societies they address, they share the same purpose and objectives.
EUD treasurer Norbert Zens shared information on the latest financial data. He praised and thanked God for the faithfulness of church members. Tithes saw a 6 percent growth in 2022 from 2021, and a 26 percent growth from 2017. Meanwhile, offerings grew by 21 percent and 26 percent respectively over the same years.
Zens also highlighted the work done to mitigate losses and support the mission in the face of the challenges of inflation and market instability. “We should be very grateful to God in view of the results obtained,” he said as he called for focus and zeal in management with regards to the future.
Celebrating the 160th anniversary of the official constitution of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, EUD secretary Barna Magyarosi pointed out the importance of knowing and celebrating the history of the Adventist movement. Leaders also launched an initiative to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Adventist presence in Europe, which will take place in 2024.
As a final note, Brito thanked every field for their commitment to mission. He exhorted Adventist leaders to embrace the challenge of the missionary movement in the EUD territory. “Together, we can be connected to God, pray for the Holy Spirit, engage with people, support them in their needs, and openly and happily demonstrate the love of Jesus,” Brito said.
He added, “It pains me so much — and I know it pains you too — to witness the suffering of so many people around us. Each of them is a potential container of God's love, symbolized in the Water of Life that Jesus offered to the Samaritan woman. And we are the chosen vessels to place it in their hearts.”