Adventist pastors embrace two new believers in Anguilla before they are baptized after taking part in the recent evangelism series across the Caribbean Union territory. There were 2,314 new believers who joined the church after a historic online evangelistic campaign that swept through dozens islands this year. [Photo: Caribbean Union]

May 31, 2021 | Port-of-Spain, Trinidad | Connell Hunte and Libna Stevens, Inter-American Division News

More than 2,300 new believers joined the Seventh-day Adventist Church after a recent four-week evangelistic campaign that was streamed across dozens of islands comprising the Caribbean Union. The virtual event drew thousands of viewers every night and finished off with the largest number of baptisms ever reached during the territory’s annual evangelist efforts.

“This online campaign brought the entire union together as never before,” said Pastor Claudius Morgan, assistant to the president for evangelism in the Caribbean Union. Morgan, who was the keynote speaker of the evangelistic series, said that in previous years, evangelists and pastors focused on visiting one particular island for evangelism impact while the other islands continued their own evangelism efforts during the same period across each conference/mission. However, because of on-going COVID-19 restrictions, union evangelism efforts were set up to be carried entirely online from Barbados to the rest of the territory.The hour-long evangelistic program ran five days every week and featured music by youth from throughout the territory, prayer and bible study on God’s greatness, the Sabbath, the Christian lifestyle, the gift of prophecy, baptism, stewardship, and more. ­­ More than 25,000 viewers connected every evening with over 50,000 viewers during the Sabbath worship programs, church leaders reported.

Pastor Claudius Morgan, assistant to the Caribbean Union president for evangelism and keynote speaker at this year’s evangelism campaign that was held online from Barbados, Feb. 20 to Mar, 26, 2021.  [Photo: Caribbean Union]

The programs main livestream point was the Caribbean Union’s YouTube channel and was re-streamed throughout the conferences and missions across the Caribbean, Jamaica, and specific locations in North America. The series drew a large team of church leaders, young people as technicians and social media managers who worked together to advertise and shed light on the historic event through various online platforms including Zoom, and also radio and television.

“We have seen so many people give their lives to the Lord in a matter of weeks,” said Pastor Claudius Morgan, assistant to the Caribbean Union president for evangelism and keynote speaker during the online series. “We keep praising the Lord for that.” Many more were added long after the online series ended on March 26, he said. “A number of persons had to put off getting baptized until Covid-19 restrictions were lifted in April and this month as well,” he added. So far 2,314 have been baptized across the 10 conferences and missions throughout the Caribbean Union.

Professional Cricket Player Brian Calista (second from left) of St. Lucia, pose for a photo with his family before they are baptized as a result of the online evangelistic series led by the Caribbean Union. [Photo: Caribbean Union]

“A medical doctor in Tortola gave his life to God, a famous cricket player in St. Lucia and his family were baptized,  as well as a Sunday-keeping evangelist and her daughter were also baptized in Barbados, and many hundreds more across Guyana, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago, North Caribbean islands and more,” said Morgan.

Just two weeks ago, another person was baptized in Guyana, bringing the total reached during the evangelism efforts to 1,123, reported Pastor Exton Clarke, president of the church in the Guyana Conference.  “We accepted the goal set by the Caribbean Union of 1,000 baptisms, setting a goal of five baptisms for each of the 227 congregations in our conference,” said Pastor Clarke.

The goal was surpassed thanks to the commitment of the 32 district pastors, five ministerial interns, and 13 pastor administrators and directors who worked together in specific evangelistic strategies before, during and after the evangelistic series, he said. Strategies included a blended approach of using live streaming as well as pre-recorded sermons for churches without internet connectivity, strong prayer movement through teams of intercessors in the districts where campaign sites were operational, planning forums and regular meetings with pastors and local church leaders for visioning, feedback and problem solving, as well as upgrading equipment, distributing hundreds of bible lessons, and more.

New believers in Grenada get ready for baptism during the online evangelistic campaigns held in March. [Photo: Caribbean Union]

“At the time of launching this virtual campaign, our country was on a stringent curfew, but we learned that there is great potential for online evangelism,” said Clarke. The nightly attendance on the conference’s Facebook and YouTube platforms reached an average of 3,000 persons nightly, an overwhelming amount, said Clarke.

The sentiment was felt throughout the rest of the conferences and mission territories in the Caribbean Union, said Pastor Morgan. This year’s campaign surpassed the 2,112 total baptisms reached in the Caribbean Union for 2020.

“Amid the challenges that the pandemic brought us in 2021, we saw more collaboration, commitment and more engagement as we moved together with this digital production in reaching many more souls for the kingdom,” Morgan said.

Sonja Rogers a former Sunday-keeping evangelist is baptized in Barbados, earlier in May. Rogers’ daughter Summa was also baptized in Barbados. [Photo: Caribbean Union]

Leaders are looking to intensifying efforts during next year’s annual evangelism efforts across the Caribbean Union territory.

To learn more about the Seventh-day Adventist Church across the Caribbean Union, visit caribbeanunionadventists.org

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