Dillingham Experiences a Pizza Miracle

The Dillingham Adventist School is a mission school in "bush" Alaska, located about 300 miles southwest of Anchorage in Bristol Bay. Only two students come from Adventist homes, and almost half the students are sponsored by local church members, on top of the regular church subsidy.

Winters are cold, and heating fuel is very expensive.

The school was only three months into this school year when board members realized there would not be enough money to pay the bills through the year. But Dillingham members firmly believed God's promise that with faith as small as a grain of a mustard seed He would move mountains! They discussed ideas and decided to make pizzas and sell them to raise money.

A week before Super Bowl Sunday (prime pizza time), they ordered enough ingredients from Anchorage to make 50 pizzas. By midweek, they had orders for 35 pizzas with a promise to deliver them on Friday. But the supplies hadn't come. Members started praying God would supply the need.

Thursday morning one of the parents said, "We can do this! I'll get my wife to make the crusts today, and we'll just have to buy enough stuff from the local store for these pizzas." He got in trouble with his wife later, but she worked like a trooper all day, carrying on her normal job and making batches of pizza dough in between. They had plenty of dough, but nothing to put on it once it was rolled out, and the pizza boxes had not arrived from Anchorage. So they headed for the local store.

When they explained their project and their dilemma to the store manager, he said, "We had a bunch of donut boxes come in the other day that we didn't order. Let's see if they'll work for you." But what he discovered in the storeroom was not donut boxes at all, but pizza boxes! And not only that—exactly 50 of them, all the perfect size! Talk about goose bumps!

But that was not the end of the surprises. When asked how much money he wanted for them, he said, "Oh, you can just have them." Then he asked, "Where are you getting the rest of the stuff for the toppings? Why don't you just send someone down with a list, and we'll donate everything you need to finish them off? You guys are doing a great job up there at the school, and we want to help out where we can."

That evening, several people showed up at the school, and set up an assembly line. Crusts were rolled, vegetables were chopped and cheese grated. Boxes were constructed, and what 24 hours before had seemed like an impossible mountain, was soon a pile of pizza-filled boxes ready for pick up the next morning.

"Before they call, I will answer, and while they are yet speaking, I will hear," Isaiah 65:24.

It still brings tears to their eyes, when members think how much God cares for a little struggling school, way out in the middle of nowhere.

The financial challenges Dillingham members face for next year seem almost too big to comprehend. Even if they can sell fifty pizzas every week all year long, it will not begin to scratch the surface. They have received six new enrollments for next year, all of whom need sponsors. Despite the hardships, members are making plans to start a pre–K program. They can't wait to see how God is going to move their mountains.

July 01, 2009 / Alaska Conference