The home of the WGOD 97.9 FM radio station located on North Side in St. Thomas. The North Caribbean Conference recently bought the station in partnership with Adventist World Radio to minister to the more than 250,000 people across 13 islands in the British Virgin Islands, U.S. Virgin Islands and surrounding islands with the message of the gospel.  [Photo: Royston Philbert/NCC]

February 16, 2021 | St. Croix, US Virgin Islands | NCC Staff and Inter-American Division News

The Seventh-day Adventist Church in the North Caribbean Conference which oversees a cluster of islands in the British and United States Virgin Islands, recently announced the purchase of a radio station thanks to a partnership with Adventist World Radio. As the new owner of WGOD 97.9 FM, the church will be able to launch an enhanced radio ministry soon, church leaders said.

“This acquisition could not have come at a more opportune time, when the church in the North Caribbean Conference is remodeling its media ministry to be more diverse, more inclusive, and more relevant as we give urgency to the proclamation of our message and the powerful fulfillment of your mission,” said Pastor Desmond James, president of the church in the North Caribbean Conference. This is a tremendous achievement for the church and we are doing all we can moving forward with the guidance of God.”

WGOD-FM, which is the radio station licensed in Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, in the U.S. Virgin Islands, was owned by the Three Angels Broadcasting Company and Mr. Reynold Charles, a Seventh-day Adventist on the island, and features a mix of teaching programs and Christian music. The station will be heard on the airwaves and via the internet, church leaders said. According to Pastor Royston Philbert, communication director for the church in North Caribbean Conference, the radio station will continue to serve a population of approximately 250,000, including some 16,000 church members.

Pastor Desmond F. James (right), president of the church in the North Caribbean Conference meets with Sam Gregory (center), resource engineer for Adventist World Radio, and Mr. Reynold Charles (left) sit in the recording studio of WGOD discussing the acquisition of the station on Dec. 13, 2019. [Photo: Royston Philbert/NCC] (

The plan is for the station to offer local programs 24 hours a day to the US Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands, St. Maarten, St. Eustatius, Saba and Anguilla islands, he said. “We believe this is God’s time for His church to proclaim His Word through this radio station,” said Philbert. “The ministry plans to offer programs on the gospel, health, family and youth issues.”

The acquisition has been in the works since 2019, when Adventist World Radio officials traveled to St. Croix and St. Thomas for assessments and final discussions on the venture, explained Philbert.  “AWR leaders assured North Caribbean Conference leaders of their support of strengthening the radio ministry in spreading the gospel,” he added.

The radio ministry, which is positioned as one of the strategic initiatives of the North Caribbean Conference, is expected to support the growing evangelism across the territory, said Pastor Wilmoth James, executive secretary for the church in the North Caribbean Conference and chairman of the Strategic Planning Committee. “This is a journey we are taking by faith and we believe that the members will support the idea and contribute to the project,” said James. “I am excited about the church continuing from where Brother Charles started years ago and, today, God is opening the opportunity for the Seventh-day Adventist Church to continue the legacy. The church is indispensable in the life of many people here in the territory.”

Part of the studio at the WGOD radio station in St. Thomas, recently purchased by the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the North Caribbean Conference. [Photo: Royston Philbert/NCC]

Additional studio equipment has been acquired in preparation for the transition and the antenna will be refurbished to maximize the reach of the station, said Philbert. Improvements are expected to begin on the existing building and personnel will be sourced in the coming months.

“It’s all about proclaiming Jesus’ last message of salvation,” Philbert said.

The North Caribbean Conference oversees a church membership of more than 16,000 throughout 36 churches and congregations in Anguilla, British Virgin Islands (including Anegada, Jost Van Dyke, Tortola, and Virgin Gorda), United States Virgin Islands (St. Croix, St. John, and St. Thomas), and the islands of Saba, Sint Eustatius, and Sint Maarten. The conference operates five primary and three secondary schools.

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

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