Conference E-Newsletter
October 2020 - Volume 3, Issue 10
The purpose of the Oklahoma Conference is to 
"Proclaim, Disciple, Live With Christ"
God Knows What He’s doing

Can you imagine making an appointment to see God and updating Him on what’s happening on our planet? Can you imagine also giving Him some suggestions such as who the next president should be and perhaps the best replacement for the vacancy on the supreme court? While you are there you might talk with Him about the best way to handle the pandemic and also fix our country’s financial situation. By now you may be thinking that the idea of informing God and offering advice is blasphemous for us mere creatures. However, is it possible that sometimes our worries and fears about the future are such that we have forgotten who God is? After all, God is the author of Bible prophecy which means He knows what is going to happen. We are told that God is actually orchestrating world events. Paul writes in Ephesians 1:11 that God “works all things after the counsel of His own will.” We also remember Daniel’s words to Nebuchadnezzar: “God changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings ad sets up kings.” He is working behind the scenes to accomplish His purpose and will, not the purpose and will of human beings. We remember well Joseph’s words to his brothers, “what you meant for evil, God meant for good.”  

God can take all of Satan’s and evil men’s plans and strategies and “work all things together for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose.”  Note the last part of that verse, “called according to HIS purpose.”  That’s why we should pray each day, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.” That’s a prayer God will answer. We also should pray that our will is His will and that we are cooperating as He works out His purpose.  After all, God knows what He is doing, and He is in charge. Trust Him and don’t worry about the future; just pray and watch Him work it out.

Elder James Shires, Conference President
Upcoming Events!
We're in it together! College students are invited to join and connect with other students on public college and university campuses for fellowship and inspiration! Register today and be part of the weekend event.
Free Online Training for Children's Sabbath School Teachers
The Southwestern Union will be providing a FREE Online Training in English and Spanish. This training will focus on sharing ideas and sharing resources to children's sabbath school teachers implementing CDC guidelines for COVID-19 and how to minister to children through the internet.
50th Oklahoma Conference Office Building Anniversary
The Oklahoma Conference is excited to celebrate the 50th anniversary of our conference building on October 18 at 3:00 p.m. The Celebration program will be broadcasted live online for you to join us from the comfort of your own home. WeCheck out some of the "Turn Back the Clock" pictures at the bottom of this newsletter.
Your Opinion Counts!
The Sabbath School and Personal Ministries departments of the Oklahoma Conference would appreciate your opinion. We have prepared two surveys, one for Sabbath School and one for Personal Ministries. What you think or feel is important to the success of these departments.  We are here to serve you, and to assist in your spiritual journey, so please take a few minutes to help us help you.

Ciro Castillo, Sabbath School Director
Celebrating 25 Years of Children's Ministries With Talents For Jesus

General Conference Children’s Ministries is celebrating 25 years of ministry to children and adolescents! To commemorate this event, we are calling all children and teens to show us your talents and gifts in our Kids' Talents for Jesus. The theme is "Jesus is My Best Friend." We would love to see all children send in their best piece of art, or poetry, or media production. 
All winning entries will be featured in the General Conference Children's Ministries 25th Anniversary Kids' Talents for Jesus publication. 
We excited to tell you about our next virtual evangelism series, Answers in Prophecy. Starting October 9, we’ll take a look at what ancient Bible prophecies have to say about world events. The livestream event will answer crucial questions such as: 
  • Where are we in earth’s history? 
  • Are there prophetic messages meant for people today?
  • Is America talked about in the Bible? 
Answers in Prophecy is the first part of our larger, one-year evangelism initiative called ACTS 20:21, featuring six online series. 
Register today–and invite your loved ones!–by clicking the button below.
Messiah's Mansion
Messiah’s Mansion will be open in Harrah, OK from October 24 through November 1. Free tours will run from 10:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m. Reservations are required. This will be a great opportunity to share with your friends and family. The Sanctuary tells the story of salvation from beginning to end. Check our website for more information www.tourmessiahsmansion.com or call us at 405-454-3590.
We are looking for young people ages 21 and under who would like to participate in a preaching challenge (10-minute sermons). The theme will be "Parables of Jesus."  Judges will grade each presenter and award a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. All preaching will be done from the comfort of your own home through Zoom and broadcasted live on Facebook. Apply today! Space is limited. Please contact the youth department for questions @ youth@okla-adventist.org
Out and About...
Students Make Communion Bread
ARDMORE, OKLA. - Ardmore Adventist Academy students made bread for communion at church! A while ago we practiced so that when we made the bread for a communion service, we could do it sacredly. First, we started with a Bible class on communion and had a consecration service. The pastor offered a special prayer for us. Then we went in a sacred attitude to wash hands and go to the kitchen. There we had another prayer. We carefully measured the ingredients into a gallon-sized plastic bag. The dough then was never actually handled by the students at this stage. It was mixed and rolled out inside the bags which were then slit to allow the dough to slide off onto parchment paper. It was then cut into squares and baked. A portion of each student's bread went into the communion box.

By Mary Burton
Conference Office Work Bee
OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLA. - The conference staff has been working hard the last couple of weeks to improve our office facilities. Staff have taken breaks through the day to repair/replace areas that needed repair. The entry area is getting a makeover with much needed landscaping redesign, interior walls painted, ceiling tiles replaced and areas deep cleaned. These much needed repairs come at the time that the conference celebrates the building's 50-year anniversary.
Parkview Food Drive
OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLA. - On September 11, Parkview Adventist Academy students and teachers went into the local community to hand out flyers. We were intentional about spreading the good news about our Community Service Day. Our children were not shy when they encountered people. They told everyone they saw to come by the school on September 13 to receive a fresh produce box.

Sunday was a beautiful day! God granted us perfect weather. We were blessed to serve our community with over 2,000 boxes of fresh produce! Individuals came by Parkview to get boxes, and we had a team that delivered to the elderly in the neighborhood who weren't physically able to come to the school. We got an opportunity to put our mission into action: Educating, Inspiring, and Serving. It would not have been possible without our students, parents, special volunteers, teachers, Bill Carlile, and GoFresh USA. Thank you for your hard work! We are looking forward to doing this again in the near future, so stay tuned because we will definitely need your assistance!

By Youlander Clarke
Durant Spanish Church Dedication
DURANT, OKLA. - On September 12, 2020, the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Durant had a very special celebration. With an infinitely grateful heart for our powerful and majestic God for His wonderful blessings, the Durant church had its official opening ceremony of its new church building. The Oklahoma Conference President James Shires, Secretary Apple Park, Pr. Ciro Castillo and others were present to officiate the inauguration ceremony. Pastor Moises Kindelan, pastor of the Durant Church, shared with the congregation: “It has been a victory that God has given us, a miracle and blessing of heaven. Undoubtedly God has brought a revival to our souls and we fully trust in the power of the Holy Spirit so that more people may be reached and give their lives to our God. God has a time for everything, and His times are perfect. I am reminded of the text that says, 'Therefore, my dear brethren, stand firm and immovable, always progressing in the Lord's work, aware that your work in the Lord is not in vain.' 1 Corinthians 15:58."

By Jessica Vasquez
Cherokee Church Building
CHEROKEE, OKLA. - Cherokee's newest church building arrived on September 22! It has been awesome to see how the Lord has blessed our small church plant congregation. With this new building we are adding to our classroom space to be used by our club ministries and Sabbath school. This will be such a great blessing for our young people. We have some work to do on the inside, but we are headed in the right direction. Praise the Lord!

By RL Simpson
Native Ministries Presents "Feel Whole" and CREATION Life
OKLAHOMA - One of the major goals of Native Ministries has been to promote a healthy lifestyle so that everyone “might have life, and they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10). Though in-person ministry has been hampered by COVID-19, Native Ministries Director Pastor Jim Landelius has been holding virtual meetings using FaceBook Live and GoToMeeting to reach out to tribal members and others – not just in his community, but across the nation, using the internet.  

During August and September Pastor Landelius virtually presented “Feel Whole,” a PowerPoint program focusing on five areas – Depression, Diabetes, Heart Disease, High Blood Pressure, and Obesity. Each of these topics draw strategies from AdventHealth’s CREATION Life program to help those who participate manage and even reverse these life-threatening lifestyle issues. Landelius is following this with a full CREATION Life Seminar which features Choice, Rest, Environment, Activity, Trust, Interpersonal Relationships, Outlook, and Nutrition to promote a holistic wellness system. The weekly series maintains that good health is more than just physical; it also deals with the mental, social, and most importantly, spiritual aspects of life.

Native Ministries in the Oklahoma Conference also has a strong relationship with the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) which advocates for Native Americans nationwide. In 2019, Seventh-day Adventist physicians and Native Ministries leaders met with NCAI officers at their request at the NCAI offices in Washington, DC, to establish a full health relationship between the NCAI and the Seventh-day Adventist Church (pictured above). Native Ministries has a scholarship for American Indian graduate students through NCAI which provides scholarship funds to between six and eight students every summer. This scholarship is matched by corporations and tribes and is announced every year at the annual meeting.

Native Ministries created and sponsors the Health Walk at the annual NCAI conference as well. Every year the NCAI distributes American Indian and Alaska Native Living magazine (www.aianl.com), which is published by the Oklahoma Conference, to all Tribal leaders and Tribal health officers. The magazine is published under a written agreement with Florida Hospital, as each issue draws on CREATION Life. The NCAI has given special recognition to the Seventh-day Adventist Church and each year invites Native Ministries leaders of the Oklahoma Conference to address the General Assembly at the Annual Conference of the National Congress of American Indians.

By Jim Landelius and Robert Burnette
Enjoying Beautiful Weather
MUSKOGEE, OKLA. - Muskogee SDA Christian Academy students took advantage of the beautiful fall weather by playing outside.  As you can see by the pictures, they really enjoy climbing, and this tree is perfect for that purpose.  We believe in providing our students with an enjoyable learning experience, as stated in our slogan, “Play, Pray & Learn.”   One of the great benefits of our small school is that the “bigger” kids enjoy playing with and watching out for the “little ones” – just one of the many things that set Christian education apart from the public school system.  Just watching them interact brings smiles to our faces and joy to our hearts.

By Cindy Adams
Resources
Oklahoma Conference
Join the Oklahoma Conference every Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. to spend time with the Lord. Dial (605) 468-8026 then enter the Access code: # 450698.

"Prayer is the channel of communication between our souls and God. God speaks to us through His word; we respond to Him through our prayers, and He always listens to us. We cannot weary or burden Him by our frequent heart-to-heart communications." - Ellen G. White
LifeTalk Radio Launches Online Channel for Kids
LifeTalk Radio®, a media ministry of the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists, has launched a daily, 24-hour, online radio channel designed especially for children. The division’s only owned and operated radio network now featues LifeTalkKids™, which offers a variety of Bible-based, character-building, and educational programs for children of all ages.
The 2020 Virtual Summit on Abuse on November 13 will provide valuable training that will equip and prepare you for when abuse occurs. You can make a difference. Learn more and register today.
Stupid Money TV Episode 10: Buying a Car
Watch as John Mathews, Vivian Johnson, and Diana Santos discuss purchasing a car. Doing your research can make a big difference when negotiating the purchase price of a car. Learn more tips to make purchasing your next car a breeze.
Adventist World
Adventist Youth and Young Adult Leaders Join PlayBook 2020
More than 2,200 Adventist youth and young adult ministry leaders from across North America spent much of their Labor Day weekend attending the three-day North American Division Youth and Young Adult Ministries OneTeam Playbook 2020 Leaders Convention. OneTeam Playbook was created for union and conference youth and young adult ministries directors, coordinators, pastors, and local church leaders. Young adults who are leaders or aspiring leaders in their church or school/university were also encouraged to attend.
Turn Back the Clock...
Conference Office Building
50-Year Anniversary
Groundbreaking services for the new Oklahoma Conference office were held on Sunday, March 14, 1970. Participating in the historic occasion were Elder C. W. Skantz (president), William J. Cavaness (architect), Southwestern Union Officials and staff workers, and noted laymen of the Oklahoma Conference.
Actual construction of the new building began on Monday, April 20, 1970. July 14 was the historic day when a concrete beam was placed, connecting the Conference office and Oklahoma City Central Church.
The formal opening of the new Oklahoma Conference office building was held on Sunday, October 18, 1970. Left to Right: W. J. Cavaness (architect), C.W. Caldwell (builder), R.R. Rousse (conference Secretary/Treasurer), C.W. Skantz (conference President), and Cyril Miller, Union Secretary.
Due to efficient planning the 12,000-square-foot structure was built at the low cost of $137,000.
Thou Shalt Smile...
Chipotle Pumpkin Soup
INGREDIENTS
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
Please share your church and school activities by emailing pictures and stories to Communication@Okla-Adventist.org. Invite others to sign up to receive our E-Newsletter by visiting our conference website at www.okadventist.org. The sign-up form is at the bottom of the home page.

Daniel Ortega, Communication Director
Yesenia Ortega, Newsletter Manager
Caroline A. FisherNewsletter Editor
Communication@okla-adventist.org