Janelle Scantlebury of IAD Secretariat joins in one of several prayer sessions joined by church leaders and staff members during the first worship service of the year at the headquarter office in Miami, Florida, United States. Church leaders prayed for God’s leading and protection for many the office staff who are sick with Covid and for the church membership across the territory through the pandemic.  [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

January 6, 2022 | Miami, Florida, United States | Libna Stevens, Inter-American Division News

Seventh-day Adventist leaders and staff members of the Inter-American Division gathered to praise, pray and renew their commitment to serving the church wholeheartedly, and bring hope and strength to many still struggling through the pandemic in the large territory.

“We have had a year of challenges. We have prayed for the Lord to give us good health and we continue to count God’s blessings and praise Him for His goodness,” said Pastor Elie Henry, president of the church in Inter-America.  Pastor Henry encouraged the nearly three dozen employees gathered at the headquarter office in Miami, Florida, on Jan. 4, 2022, and a dozen more watching online still recovering from the recent variants of COVID-19, to press on with the work set out to grow the church.

IAD President Pastor Elie Henry welcomes leacers and staff members during the first worship of the year held in Miami, Florida, United States, Jan. 4, 2022. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

“We must focus on the mission God has called us to do as we celebrate His providence, affirm His values and pray for a special year for the Lord as we commemorate the 100th anniversary since the Division was organized…and prepare people for His Kingdom,” said Pastor Henry.

It’s about keeping the mission focus that early pioneers worked ardently to spread the gospel and grow the church across the Inter-American region, said Pastor Henry. “God put men and women in place to pave the way and help us to move forward beyond the 100 years. We must work together and move together to prepare the church and its community for the Second Coming of Jesus,” he said.

The year promises to motivate the 3.7-million-membership to educate, evangelize and serve in their community with activities and initiatives already voted and have been set in motion at the union, conference/mission, and local church levels.

Staff members listen in on the special message via Zoom by Mrs. Audrey Andersson, executive secretary for the church in the Trans-European Division, who encouraged leaders to reflect on God’s guidance and goodness as they lead and celebrate the centennial anniversary since the  Inter-American Division was officially established in 1922.  [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

“So many lives have been transformed across Inter-America, and there is still more to reach still, so we must seek God’s blessings to create change and transformation everywhere throughout the territory,” Pastor Henry said.

Guest Speaker Mrs. Audrey Andersson, executive secretary for the church in the Trans-European Division, reflected on God’s guidance and goodness.

“Just as the Israelites looked at their 20-year journey of the past they repented and experienced repentance, a renewal and victory with God as they sacrificed and set a stone Samuel called Ebenezer, we need to look back to our individual and collective ‘Ebenezer’ moments,” said Andersson.

Richard Powell (left) and brother Nathaniel Powell sing a duet during Inter-America’s first worship of the year on Jan. 4, 2022. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

“God wants to reach out, seek and save people all around but wants us to engage others to do the same,” she said. Andersson challenged leaders to have courage and tell stories of the goodness of God in the past, step into the new year with greater confidence from God to lead and intervene in the future before He comes home for eternity.

Church leaders sang and prayed for the sick among the staff, their extended families and for the membership across the IAD territory.

IAD leaders also met throughout the day and the week to polish initiatives, events and activities which will be held within the centennial celebrations in the coming months.


The Inter-American Division oversees the work of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Mexico, Central America, The Caribbean and French Antilles, as well as Colombia and Venezuela. The IAD and its organizations look after thousands of churches, hundreds of schools, universities, hospitals, and clinics.

For more on the church in Inter-America, visit us at interamerica.org


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