Participant group photo.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church in the West-Central Africa Division held her Year-End meeting in Grand Bassam, Côte d’Ivoire, from the 29th to the 31rst of October 2017. Participants who came from all over the 22 countries of the Division territory met in Grand Bassam at Afrikland Hôtel to evaluate their past activities and plan for 2018.
Led by the Administrators of the Division and the leaders who came from the GC, delegates debated on important issues concerning the outcome of the Church and Evangelism in WAD. After the various reports and observations made, all participants agreed to move ahead with determination as they planned to hasten the grand reunion with the Lord by spreading the three Angels’ Messages ( Revelation 14: 6-12), making disciples of Jesus Christ and preparing the world for Christ return.
This fourteenth Year-End council recorded 92 participants from the GC, the headquarters of the Division, from the Unions and our Institutions and even laymen. The theme of the gathering was “Faithfulness to His word”. The special guests who came from the GC, Elders Billy Biaggi, John Thomas, and Tim Aka gave a new impulse to the activities that went on through their leadership.
Before the end of council, some changes occurred in two of the Unions. In the ESUM, the Executive Secretary, Elder Djossou Komlan was appointed as President and the Director of Communication/PARL and YM, Pastor Emmanuel Kra as Executive Secretary. In the CAUM, Pastor Joseph Parfait is giving way to the former President of the ESUM, Pastor Assienin Salomon who is taking over as President.
A Press Conference was also held and three of our leaders, Pastor Elie Weick-Dido, President of the West-Central Africa Division, Pastor Biaggi, Vice President of the GC and Professor Tayo Ademola, Babcock University Vice Chancellor, meeting with the press men helped clarifying certain issues related to the Church and how the Church meets the expectations of all. According to Pastor Weick, “There are matters depending on circumstances and situations around us in the world. The world is in a turmoil, and we need to focus more our efforts on the underpriviled areas, strengthen our educational system because we have to help governments. To achieve this, new schools, hospitals… are needed. And as the matter of fact, the church is planning to offer 3 containers of medicines to the martyred populations in the western part of Côte d’Ivoire”. The President also recalled the deworming exercises that went on in Marcory and Abobo were more than 17000 pupils were dewormed.
Pastor Biaggi addressed another issue, the importance of the message of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. “Our message is a message of hope. We need to admit realities in the world. Some news are not good. People are running after the things of this world. Many think that realization is when you have power, or when you have accumulated knowledge or even riches. But we are convince that realization in life is to have hope”. According to Pastor Biaggi, hope is the most important thing we all need to seek for. Many have bank accounts with huge amount of money but still, they are empty, and are not satisfy. To palliate to this emptiness, the Church through ADRA as a NGO brings help to people in distress but also uses her educational institutions, hospitals and universities to impact knowledge and ethical values.
Speaking on the issue of the Adventist educational system, Professor Ademola Tayo explained to the journalists that education matters a lot for the Adventists because “God want us to come out of our ignorance”. We ought to inform people and not to allow them to be deformed. For him “when you are equipped with knowledge, it gives you power to overcome diseases and ignorance”. Babcock University being the premier private university in Nigeria, the problems of culture, nationalities and even religious matters have been overcomed by the university leaders. “We believe in religious liberty. We tolerate people from other religious persuasions, only that when you are within the confine of the institution, you respect the rules and regulations binding upon the students,” said the Vice Chancellor.