Tullahoma Church Celebrates 65 Years

The history culminating in the organization of the Tullahoma, Tenn. Church on October 29, 1949 is an interesting and extensive one. It went from a small group that began meeting at the old Presbyterian Church in Tullahoma in 1941 to a vibrant congregation of 134 in 2014. On October 25, 2014, a celebration was held for the 65th anniversary with a homecoming.  “It took time, effort, and money to locate members that are no longer members of our church and to also locate the pastors that had previously led our church,” says Chuck Arellano, who together with other members organized the event. The celebration started on Friday night with an AGAPE feast followed by a communion service led by Nelson Mercado, current pastor, and Jon Weigley, pastor 2008-2012.  After the communion service, there was a song service and a time for group prayers.

On Sabbath, it was a delight to see previous members who came to visit. The Sabbath School lesson was led by Gil Floyd, pastor 2005-2008, and Richard Teller, pastor 1998-2004, had the sermon. A celebration is not complete without good food and time for everyone to share and fellowship together.  So, a potluck was held after the church service.

A media show highlighting the history of the church was shown in the sanctuary; and, the evening ended with an inspirational musical program. The Tullahoma Church members thank God for leading the church for 65 years and pray that it continues to be a blessing to the Tullahoma community for many years to come.

—BY NELSON MERCADO

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Highland Academy Outreach

In October, Highland Academy students were on a mission for Bigger and Better. The Bigger and Better game was the beginning of one of the many Highland Academy outreach days.

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The students were separated into groups and given $1 to begin their assignment. Each student group with a faculty member went into residential neighborhoods, knocked on doors, and asked if they would be willing to trade something that was bigger and better for the dollar. In turn, the item(s) or money collected would then be donated to help those in need in the greater Nashville area.

After each group played Bigger and Better, students took their items to a local mission store to help the needy. Then the student groups went to downtown Nashville with $10 per group and had a second assignment:  find someone to help. Students went in search and soon found ways to help a variety of individuals. For example, a guitar string was purchased for a homeless man so he could play his guitar again and a sweater was bought for a homeless lady whose sweater had been stolen.

Chaplain Nolan Williams shared, “It opened the students’ eyes to others’ situations and their ability to meet the needs presented.” Junior Isabella DeWeez added, “I noticed when we were asking for donations for the needy, the larger homes gave less than the smaller homes. It reminded me of the widow in the Bible who gave all she had. It inspired me to give more.”

As a result, several residential neighborhoods were able to participate with Highland Academy students in helping meet the immediate needs of several homeless individuals, and a significant donation was made to a local mission store for those in need.

—BY AMY CIRIGLIANO

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Literature Evangelism is Expanding

The Martin Memorial church in Centerville, Tenn. has begun a ministry that is growing in the Kentucky-Tennessee Conference. Ana Paula Swingle, formerly a student magabook canvasser, now married with a lovely 7-year-old daughter, sensed the conviction that God wanted her to work again in literature evangelism. Since she didn’t want to work alone, she shared her convictions with other women in her church.

A date was scheduled to begin with a morning training seminar and canvassing in the field after a late lunch. It was thrilling to see four adult women and three teenage young ladies in attendance. Preparations with a van, two experienced leaders, two-way radios, canvassing bags, and inventory were ready in advance.

The team is well prepared for evangelism, complete with GLOW tracts and correspondence Bible lessons. There are no doubting halting spirits here, only strong faith that souls will be harvested for heaven.

The Taylor Mill church in Covington, Ky. has expressed a desire to start a magabook program.  They have already contacted the Publishing Department to schedule training and a start date.

“The church must give her attention to the canvassing work. This is one way in which she is to shine in the world. Then she will go forth, fair as the moon, clear as the sun and terrible as an army with banners.” RH January 1, 1901

—BY ROCKY DAVIS

Nashville Area Community Center Changing Lives

Nashville Area Community Center Changing Lives

The Adventist Community Service Center (ACSC) serving the greater Nashville area sponsored an outreach booth at the 2014 Tennessee State Fair.  Free blood pressure checks and nutritional counseling was provided along with the distribution of Christ centered literature.  Drawings were also held for a Family Bible and a children’s book.  Praise God for the many contacts and seeds of love that were planted.

The Thrift Store and Outreach Center is staffed by 6 – 14 non-paid volunteers. Hours of operation are Monday – Wednesday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Thursday 1 – 8 p.m. From Jan. 1 to Sept. 30, 2014, 10,624 hours were volunteered. The Thrift Store makes it possible to assist over 110 families monthly with over $6,000 in financial assistance for housing expenses, utilities, food, clothing, medication, and miscellaneous household items.

—BY DEAN FLINT, ACSC DIRECTOR

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The Next Step Men’s Conference

The Lord blessed with stunningly beautiful fall weather as, for the second year in a row, the men of the Kentucky-Tennessee and South Central conferences gathered together at Indian Creek Camp for a joint Men’s Ministries Conference.  Approximately seventy-five men were in attendance from Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio, and Tennessee.

Everyone was blessed with a series of presentations by Michael Christian, Ph.D., a highly experienced therapist and Christian counselor who has worked closely with Seventh-day Adventists in the Nashville area for a number of years.  Christian is the founder of Intimacy Seekers, a group of therapists dedicated to the mission of helping individuals, couples, and families to live fully and experience healthy intimacy in their relationships. His greatest qualification is that the message he presents is not based merely on his training or his own experience in clinical practice, but rather on the timeless principles found in the Word of God. The theme for the weekend was The Next Step.  The ultimate goal is always to be better Christian husbands and fathers, and Christian offered valuable perspective on the steps we can take to strengthen our relationships with our spouses and with our children.

Of course not all of the time was spent in meetings.  The men had ample opportunity to enjoy Center Hill Lake, and to fellowship together as brothers in Christ. The warm hospitality, good food, and beautiful scenery of Indian Creek Camp were greatly appreciated.  Preparations are already being made for next year’s conference – Set Your House in Order – to be held October 23-25, 2015.

—BY AARON RAINES

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Youth POWER Event

Fifty-three young people and sponsors participated in the 2nd Annual Youth POWER Event, September 24-27.  Participants this year came from Madison and Highland academies and the event was held in Manchester, Ky.  The POWER (Prayer, Outreach, Witnessing, Excitement, Revival) Event consisted of working on various community service projects in an area that has been deemed one of the most economically depressed areas in the United States and ended with a youth rally on Sabbath.

The first day two groups were formed and sent to different work sights. Assignments included everything from pulling weeds and spreading gravel to building wheelchair ramps. It was a lot of hard work, but the lives of four families were changed. The main objective was to witness for God and show others how very much He loves them.

Some of the participants had this to say about their experience at the POWER Event.

What, for you, was most satisfying about this outreach? “Getting to experience different cultures and different places.” – Maddie Hallam, Highland Academy (HA) Sophomore

What did you do during this outreach to improve someone’s life? “I don’t think it is what we physically did, but the company we gave to the people we helped.” – Ashley Gonzalez, Madison Academy (MA) Senior

Did you see God during this outreach? “Yes, because I saw Him giving patience to all of our leaders. When we didn’t understand something, they were there to help.” – Dante Cheese, MA Senior

What did you like most about this outreach? “Getting to learn new skills and meeting new people.” – Mark Harrison, HA Sophomore

Why did you come to this event? “I enjoy helping people and I feel like it is what God would want me to do.” –  Macy Hulin, HA Freshman

What have you learned from this experience? “When you have a need, sometimes you don’t realize that you have that need until it gets too big. But, it’s not always for us to handle. God will make a way.” – Thyrell Smith, HA Junior

—BY CLAIRE ASHCRAFT, HIGHLAND ACADEMY FRESHMAN

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Neely’s Bend Fun Run

Over 350 people from across the greater Nashville area gathered for the 5th annual Neely’s Bend Fun Run on October 19 at Peeler Park in Madison. The event began with the Madison Campus Pathfinders Color Guard and a Madison Academy Senior, Imara Majors, who sang our National Anthem. The 1 mile and 5/10K races followed. At the finish line, runners were treated to water, bananas, grapes, bagels, and chocolate milk from several different donor organizations. The race raised over $10,000 to benefit the Athletic Departments at both Madison Campus Elementary and Madison Academy. Special thanks go to Vicki and Will Anderson, Kristin Fulton, and the many volunteers and benefactors who made the event possible.

Step Up

Going up steps is always harder than coming down.  It takes stamina, determination, and a reason to climb!  The theme for our annual Young Women’s Retreat (YWR), “Step Up to God’s Calling”, was a challenge to live like Jesus in thought, dress, and relationships.  On September 12, fifty seven young women from Highland Academy, Madison Academy, Louisville Adventist Academy, Memphis Junior Academy, Nashville Christian Academy, and home school students from Kentucky with sleeping bags and pillows in tow made Indian Creek Camp their home for the weekend! With white steps as a backdrop and Madison Academy’s praise team the weekend was filled with music, study, and sharing.  YWR coordinator Michelle Arant used paper dolls to lead the girls in a modesty exercise for Sabbath School.  Adel Torres, our special guest speaker, shared her personal story of tragedy when at the age of 8 she lost her father and two brothers in a plane accident.  She challenged the young women to let go of their brokenness and let God fill the holes in their hearts.  The Sabbath afternoon “Survivor” activity tested each “tribe” as they competed to accomplish their specific given tasks.  The winners all received t-shirts!  Saturday evening was hot chocolate, popcorn, and movie night!  A huge thank you goes to all those who gave of their time and energy to make sure our young women were blessed and well cared for!  If you missed this year mark your calendar for 2015!

—BY GAIL McKENZIE 

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Photos by:  Chelsea Soapes
www.chelseasoapesphotography.com