A new believer is prayed for before being baptized at the Frederiksted Beach in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, on Mar. 14, 2020. Dozens were baptized as a result of evangelism efforts which drew in evangelists and pastors from across the Inter-American Division territory that led campaigns in eight English Caribbean islands. [Photo: Royston Philbert]

March 25, 2020 | St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands | Royston Philbert / IAD News Staff

Days before travel restrictions were enforced in many of the islands in the Caribbean islands earlier this month, the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the North Caribbean Conference concluded its eight-island-wide evangelistic efforts that brought dozens of new believers into the church.

More than 160 new believers were baptized across beaches and baptismal pools on Mar. 14, 2020, during the culmination of one week of evangelism campaigns led by a large team of evangelists and ministers on the islands of St. Croix, St. Thomas, St. John, Tortola, Virgin Gorda, St. Maarten, St. Eustatius, and Anguilla.

The efforts, coined as Impact 2020, drew church leaders from the Inter-American Division (IAD) and the Caribbean Union to finish the work that so many local leaders and active church members began months before.

Pastor Claudius Morgan (right), assistant to the Caribbean Union president for evangelism, leads out during a baptismal ceremony in Frederiksted Beach in St. Croix. [Photo: Royston Philbert]

Pastor Elie Henry, president of the church in Inter-America, preached for a week at Bethel Adventist Church in St. Maarten. Every evening Pastor Henry spoke about the saving grace of Jesus in preparation for His soon coming.

“What a privilege it was to be part of this great venture in St. Maarten,” said Pastor Henry. “It is always a good opportunity to present the full gospel and fulfill the mission entrusted by Jesus so that He may come soon.” Pastor Henry encouraged everyone in attendance to believe and continue to be involved in sharing the good news.

“This gospel has power and continues to be supported by men who have given themselves over to the power that changes lives,” Pastor Henry said.

At Ephesus Adventist Church in St. Maarten, Pastor Samuel Telemaque, Sabbath School director for the church in Inter-America, spoke to dozens of new and seasoned church members. He encouraged them to remain committed to fulfill the mission of the church.

Congregants meet at the Ephesus Adventist Church in St. Maarten during evangelism campaign efforts, Mar. 14, 2020. [Photo: North Caribbean Conference]

“God has called you and every member of the Adventist church to be involved in this movement of men and women to preach the Three Angels message,” said Telemaque. “Our mission is to call all people to discipleship and prepare others for the Second Coming of Jesus.”

On Tortola, Premier of the British Virgin Islands Andrew A. Fahie thanked the Seventh-day Adventist Church for its contribution to society during the opening of the evangelist campaign that week.

“Your church stands out in the community as being always engaged in the lives of the people both spiritually and educationally,” said Fahie. The premier encouraged church members and those in the community to listen to the “good news of Jesus Christ every night.”

Pastor Kern Tobias, president of the church in the Caribbean Union, spoke in Tortola on Jesus’ constant genuine love for sinners. He congratulated the team of evangelists who trained and worked arduously to lead and engage local congregations into expanding the kingdom of heaven through so many evangelistic endeavors.

Pastor Balvin Braham, assistant to the IAD president for evangelism, speaks at the Central Adventist Church in St. Croix during the evangelism efforts earlier this month. [Photo: Royston Philbert]

At Central Adventist Church in St. Croix, Pastor Balvin Braham, assistant to the IAD president for evangelism, spoke to dozens children, youth, and families on the victory found in Jesus every day over challenges and things in life. Braham praised the work of the local leaders who inspired members to lay the groundwork of the evangelistic meetings.

Local pastors and leaders were involved in extensive training by Pastor Henry Peters and Hesketh Matthew of the North Caribbean Conference as well as Pastor Claudius Morgan who also coordinated efforts in mobilizing 23 evangelists throughout the islands for the week-long impact.

“Impact 2020 is about making disciples,” said Morgan. “When we have these [impact] programs, we want serious visitations by church leaders so that we can connect with people. It’s all about making it better wherever we go.”

The impact efforts took nearly a year to prepare and coordinate, said Pastor Desmond James, president of the North Caribbean Conference. “Through this initiative, we have seen the rebirth of enthusiasm in evangelism and I am excited about seeing the wonderful impact with so many coordinated campaigns in the following weeks.” The church expects more believers to join the church before the end of the month.

Group of Adventist pastors in St. Thomas take a photo as the evangelism efforts drew to a close on Mar. 14, 2020. [Photo: North Caribbean Conference]

For Hayden Lord, a church elder from Tobago, the experience of preaching during Impact 2020 in St. Eustatius was unforgettable. As a veteran elder, he was impressed with how local church leaders came together to support the campaign.

“If we went on for another week, God would have done amazing things,” said Lord.

Organized in 1975, the North Caribbean Conference has more than 14,800 church members worshiping in 31 churches and four companies across its eight islands. The church operates five primary schools and three secondary schools in the conference territory.

To learn more about the church in the North Caribbean Conference, visit northcaribbeanconference.org

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