WELSH MISSION SESSION ENDS ON A HIGH
18th October 2016
The newly renovated Swansea Seventh-day Adventist church was the venue for the triennial Welsh Mission Session on Sunday 16 October. Over 200 delegates came together comprising a positive diversity in age, culture, gender and geographical range. Newly elected President Pastor Emanuel Bran opened the proceedings welcoming all delegates and BUC President Pastor Ian Sweeney followed with the devotional message.
Highlights of the day included hearing the Secretariat report presented by Pastor Paul Lockham reporting of steady growth in the Mission. During the triennium the membership has shown net growth of 5.5%. The changes in membership includes a total of 31 baptisms during the period, 22 joining the Church through profession of faith and 69 people transferred in. On the other side, it was reported that 29 are missing, and 36 transferred out of the Mission.
Former President Pastor John Surridge, gave a pictorial PowerPoint overview of his term in office. He highlighted the achievements of each department with newly rebuilt Swansea church being a project that ended with his term of presidency.
Mr Pilmoor expressed appreciation to the Mission for their financial faithfulness and being a good example of stewardship. The Mission has shown consistent returns in tithe despite the lack of dynamism within the Welsh economy compared to other territories.
The delegation appreciated the reports with minimal questioning, but were very proactive when the debate took place on plans for the future. It was evident there was a desire to see further growth and unity within the Mission. Questions arose as to how the churches can work more effectively together and become a catalyst for reaching those who are seeking to know God. Other delegates challenged the readiness of some churches to embrace new people if they are already having problems accepting each other. The discussion was amical and moved forward with a united desire to get to know more of the various cultures that now make up the Mission.
Other departmental reports were presented by sponsors Pastor Tremeer who oversaw the Youth, and lay members Irving and Lil Saunders for Health Ministries. Retired pastors David Foster and Brian Phillips showed their willingness to continue serving by helping in Family Camp and Trust Services respectively.
The delegates accepted the Nominating Committee's report of sponsors for the following departments:
Children's Ministries Mrs Eileen McKenzie
Communication Mrs Diana Balmer
Family Ministries Mr Ndaba & Mrs Chipo Ndebele
Health Ministries Mrs Lil Saunders
Pathfinder Ministries Pastor David Rancic
Stewardship Pastor Emanuel Bran
Trust Services Pastor Brian Phillips
Women's Ministries Miss Samantha Fessal & Mrs Elidah Nota-Muza
Youth Ministries Pastor Jeremy Tremeer
Youth Ministries Assoc. Pastor Jovan Adamović
Brecon Family Camps Refer to incoming Executive Committee
The Session ended with an inspiring message by Mission President Pastor Bran who spoke of the excuses Moses made when being called to service and reminded the delegation that in working for God, He has already foreseen any obstacle and made provision for them in our lives. A vote of thanks and appreciation was given to former President Pastor John Surridge and ended with prayer by Pastor Sweeney. On departure, one delegate attending for the first time said, "the whole experience was very positive, it was just good to see how the Church operates in an open way."