LEAPS and BOUNDS: Print at Work in SSD
Every inch that the printed page has reached spells how great the influence it creates in the lives of its readers.
Our ministry through the printed page has grown immensely in the recent years. Driven by the inspiration drawn from different stories in the field, publishing workers can’t help but to continue the commission until all will be reached through the written word.
Since its beginning, the vastness of the literature work in this part of the world has been an enduring challenge. Massive as it may seem, the Lord has been good in bestowing His lead to further His work in this form of media.
The Southern Asia-Pacific Division (SSD) Headquarters witnessed numerous written pages at work. Different accounts of literature work from within the territory testifies how the Lord abides.
Literature Ministry Turns 10 in Vietnam
In the previous years, literature evangelists in Vietnam worked strongly in distributing our books to households. This endeavor of the church grew immensely that it caught attention from the government due to its growing Christian influence. This eventually resulted in its immediate cessation.
It was only ten years ago when the publishing work started to pick up pace again. This opportunity sparked revival among Adventist literature evangelists in the country and they started visiting houses once again. Since then, the Vietnam Adventist Mission (VAM) developed. Local church leaders in the country took advantage of the potential to reach a nation gradually opening its gates to the world.
Pham Nguyen To Phuong, Publishing Ministries Director of VAM, leads the publishing work as it continues to grow within the country’s local communities. The local Adventist church in Vietnam works with over sixty literature evangelists led by three Area Publishing Ministries Leader (APML).
During the past ten years, the Adventist Book Center-Home Health Education Services (ABC-HHES) was established. The ABC-HHES is a regional office of the Publishing Ministries providing families the opportunity to enjoy health and experience happiness through the books they print and distribute. This group received government approval to produce and circulate 20 books comprising health, family, and Spirit of Prophecy manuscripts.
“When we started the work in 2007, we only had 7 literature evangelists(LE) and 2 SOP books (Steps to Christ and Prophets and Kings)”, Pham Nguyen To Phuong said. “He blessed us lavishly. Every year we printed 2-4 new books. And until we have 38 books. We also recruited new LEs each year. As of now we have 45 LEs, 3 credentialed LEs and 1 licensed LE, highest number of credentialed LE in Southeast Asian Union Mission(SAUM).
Leaders from different Adventist church institutions attended the anniversary celebration to witness such a momentous event in the country. They included Almir Marroni, Publishing Director of the Adventist World Church; Ven Bermudez, SSD Publishing Director; Abel Bana, Executive Secretary for the Southeast Asia Union Mission (SAUM) and Francis Lajanim, SAUM Publishing Director. The story of VAM’s 10-year literature evangelism journey unfold through the different testimonies of literature evangelists.
“Seeing how the Lord led this mission (VAM) in the past ten years shows the fulfillment of the prophecy and the revelation of Jesus”, Bermudez stressed. “Who can shut the door and stop the Lord’s work from fulfilling its mission?” he added.
The simple celebration also recognized several individuals who played important roles in the literature ministry in Vietnam.
Literature Ministry Seminary in South Philippines reaches 35
Streets are normally flooded by different labor unions fighting for their rights as day breaks in the Philippines on May 1 each year. But over 2,000 lay evangelists in the south of the Philippines hail this day differently for once again another year has been added in the literature missionary work.
This year’s celebration was even more special as the Literature Ministry Seminary(LMS) there turns 35. Reveling in the “Celebrating the Goodness of the Lord through LMS” theme, literature evangelists (LEs) shared memories from the early 80s to the present. The weeklong celebration concluded with LMS’ Homecoming program attended by over 200 LEs, publishing ministry leaders, and local church members at the South Philippines Union Conference(SPUC) Garden church.
The LMS-SPUC is recognized to the be the first-ever literature seminary in the world. It is one of the five seminaries within the Southern Asia-Pacific Division(SSD) furnished with complete training facilities. LMS-SPUC offers a convenient and conducive learning experience to trainees through well-ventilated rooms and a fully functional video facility for training. Currently, LMS is headed by SPUC Publishing Director, Rey Cabanero; LMS Associate, Nildo Mamac; and LMS Dean, Demetrio Taotao, Jr.
Former LMS Dean and now Adventist International Institute for Advanced Studies(AIIAS) Professor, Dr. Remuel Tornalejo was also present at the event. Tornalejo served LMS from 1996-2000, a time of trainee enrollment growth.
“It’s a privilege to celebrate and witness the growth of the LMS”, Tornalejo said. “Through the years, LMS played its role to train our LEs, devising training programs to greatly improve and meet the demands of time.”
Florante P. Ty, Philippine Publishing House president, expressed his appreciation for the institution’s continuous growth. “Reaching 35 years is very inspiring”, said Ty. “Overcoming year after year, then after reaching a certain point of existence, we come to realize how God sustains his workers and his ministry.”
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