Southern Asia-Pacific Division’s Views of Seventh-day Adventist Church Programming
If you were asked to recall the most meaningful church program you have ever attended, what would come to your mind? Perhaps it was a riveting presentation by missionaries, a moving musical program, or an inspiring evangelistic series. Whatever the case may be, the program no doubt led you to a closer walk with Jesus.
Churches work hard to provide meaningful, beneficial programming for their members. Ultimately, the goal of all church programming – including services – is to bring members to a closer relationship with Jesus and inspire them to share the Gospel with those around them, bring others into the family of God. While many times the efforts of the church are successful, there are times when the attempts fall flat or church members seem apathetic about the programming.
Recently (2013), a global study was conducted of the nine divisions of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The research for the Southern Asia-Pacific Division was led by Dr. Jimmy Adil from Mountain View College and conducted under the direction of the Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research. This study was designed to assess the views of church members regarding different aspects of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and church life, total n=3,337 people.
Church members were asked if they look forward to programming provided by the church. Over three-fourths (79%) indicated that they “almost always” or “often” look forward to these programs. Only a tiny percentage (2.6%) indicated that they “never” look forward to church programming.
Similarly, respondents were asked how frequently they attend church programming because of their own desire to attend. A resounding 85.3% indicated that they “almost always” or “often” go because of their own willingness and excitement about attending. Once again, only a very small percent (3.2%) indicated that they “never” go of their own desire to attend.
As stated before, the ultimate goal of church programming is to bring members to a closer walk with Jesus and equip them to share the Gospel with those around them. How successful is the church in the Southern Asia-Pacific division in growing its members’ relationships with Christ?
The results from the study were very encouraging! Nearly nine in ten respondents (89.8%) indicated that the church “almost always” or “often” helps one grow closer to Christ. Only 2.2% of respondents said “never.” Can you imagine if all of our churches worldwide reported such vibrancy?
Now consider your own church. What areas of strength does your church have – specifically in regards to programming? What about growing relationships with Christ? How do you think church members in your congregation would respond if they were asked how the church is growing their relationships with Jesus?
If you answer positively on both of these questions, then keep going – doing what you’re doing! However, if you do not feel your church would respond positively – either regarding programming or regarding their personal growth in Christ – then it’s time to do some serious reevaluation of the way things currently are in your church.
Our time on earth is short, and we know the Second Coming is fast approaching. If we, as Christians – specifically Seventh-day Adventists – are not doing all we can to hasten the Kingdom of God and bring as many as we can into the Family, then we are not using our time on earth to its full potential!
For more information, read the Division Report for Southern Asia Pacific.
Created in collaboration with the Institute of Church Ministry.