World News Briefs - April 2008


University Completes New Medical Building

Adventist-owned Valley View University in Ghana is celebrating the completion of a new campus building, thanks to the generous support of several church organizations. Columbia Union Hall is named after the Columbia Union Conference, which pledged $200,000 of the $425,000 needed to complete the project. The building will accommodate nursing and medical equipment, as well as technology programs and a library.

SOURCE: Adventist News Network


Bicycle Donations Keep Bible Workers Rolling

For 26 of Sudan's pastors and Bible workers, visiting members and preaching sermons just got easier. Patrick Boyle, retired English pastor, organized a project to provide bicycles to spread the gospel. The first Adventist church was established there in 1974, and Sudan is now home to more than 13,000 Adventists.

SOURCE: Adventist News Network


Billionaire Donates to Adventist Nursing School

Michael Lee-Chin, currently listed by Forbes magazine as one of the world's 500 wealthiest people, donated more than $3 million to the Adventist-owned Northern Caribbean University. The funds will help construct a state-of-the-art nursing facility in honor of his mother. In addition, Lee-Chin will help finance scholarships for 25–30 freshmen entering the nursing school when it opens in August.

SOURCE: Inter-American Division


World Council of Churches' General Secretary Steps Down

The World Council of Churches is searching for a replacement for the Rev. Samuel Kobia, who announced he will not seek a second term as the organization's leader. Kobia has served since 2004 and was the first African to be elected General Secretary. The World Council of Churches represents more than 560 million churches in 110 countries.

SOURCE: Christian Post


After Centuries, Christianity Returns

For the first time since the seventh century, Christian churches are being established in the nation of Qatar. Though the nation is home to more than 70,000 Christians, strict Islamic laws have prohibited public prayers and religious services. In 2005, a pro-western ruler came to power who hopes to portray Islam's tolerance of other religions. However, critics point to quotations from the prophet, which state, "No two religions will come together on the Arabian peninsula."

SOURCE: Christian Post


Korean Pastors Appeal to China

Korean-American pastors from across the U.S. are appealing for China to grant amnesty to North Korean refugees in the country. The group hopes to mobilize a campaign against China's human rights violations ahead of the Beijing Olympics. More than half a million North Koreans have crossed into China during the last 10 years. Many refugees flee North Korea to escape religious persecution. The nation ranks as the top Christian persecutor in the world, according to the watchdog organization Open Doors.

SOURCE: Christian Post


Priests Call for End to Celibacy

Brazilian priests have spoken directly to Pope Benedict XVI asking for a revision to the canonical law making celibacy a requirement for priests. In a document explaining the requests, the priests call for two types of priesthood: one requiring celibacy and one which does not. In addition, it requests priests be able to ordain spouses and includes a provision for returning to service after raising a family. The request will now go before the Holy Congregation for the Clergy.

SOURCE: Agenzia Italia


New Pastors Aid Growing Mongolian Church

The number of Seventh-day Adventist pastors in Mongolia has increased by 50 percent after the recent ordination of two more pastors. Just 15 years ago there were no church members in Mongolia, but since 1993 its Adventist membership has grown to more than 1,200. Pastors in Mongolia serve as part of the church's Global Mission initiative and are supported by the Pioneer Mission Movement program in Northern Asia.

SOURCE: Adventist News Network

April 01, 2008 / World Church