In this week’s news roundup, 180 participants go bald for Penang Adventist Hospital charity fundraiser, a Barbadian woman was shot to death while at an ATM, a Florida church is sued by parents of girl molested by youth program worker, a Zimbabwe church is ordered to pay suit court costs, Grace Symphony ministers through music in Fiji and New Zealand, and Adventist schools in Ghana plant trees for World Environment Day.
180 Participants Go Bald for Malaysian Adventist Hospital Charity Fundraiser. Penang Adventist Hospital in Malaysia held its third “Go Bald, Go the Distance” charity fundraiser in honor of the hospital’s Dr. J. Earl Gardner Fund for needy patients of chronic ailments. 180 participants went bald at the event this year. Penang Adventist Hospital chief executive officer Ronald Koh said that this year's “Go Bald, Go the Distance” included involvement and support from people of all walks of life beyond Penang. From The Star, “Bold move – 180 go bald for charity.”
Barbados Adventist Killed in ATM Robbery.In Barbados, Seventh-day Adventist Colleen Payne was attacked by two men and shot to death while using an automatic teller machine. The mother of one had worked for more than 30 years as a child-care worker at the Nightengale Children’s Home. Her death has left family members stunned that such a quiet and unassuming person died in this violent way. From NationNews, “ATM horror as woman shot dead,” and “Three men assisting with ATM shooting investigation.”
Florida Church Sued by Parents of Girl Molested by Youth Program Worker. Horeb French Seventh-day Adventist Church in Miami, Florida, is being sued by the family of a girl who was molested by a worker at its youth program. In a lawsuit, the girl's parents claim church officials should have known that Jerry Ameris, now 33, was not fit for any position that would put him in contact with small children. The suit also names the Southeastern Conference Association of Seventh-Day Adventists which operates the youth program. Ameris has already been sentenced to ten years in prison for molesting the girl. From Miami New Times, “Family of Child Molested in Youth Program Sues North Miami Church.”
Zimbabwe Adventist Church and Conference Ordered to Pay Suit Court Costs. The leadership of the South Zimbabwe Conference of the SDA Church has been ordered to pay the legal costs incurred during a case brought by a church member who was given a seven-month censure by his congregation. The censure barred the applicant from participating in the affairs of the church. It also prevented him from leading any church-related activity and terminating his election or appointment to all positions in church. In his founding affidavit, the applicant argued he was censured by members of the board, deacons and deaconess, and elders’ councils for confronting the pastor who indecently harassed his wife and reporting him to the police. From the Chronicle, “High Court rules against Seventh Day Adventist Church.”
Fiji Adventist Gospel Group Grace Symphony Ministers Through Music. Grace Symphony, a gospel choir from Seventh-day Adventist churches in Fiji, has become a ministry for some of its young members, utilizing their talents in serving the Lord. According to the group's lead singer Eseta Cokanasiga, who is also one of their pioneer members, Grace Symphony began in 2007 with seven girls who all had a passion to glorify God using their voices and talent. The group now has grown to 22 members, performing in Fiji and New Zealand and recording many albums. From The Fiji Times, “10 years of singing God’s grace.”
Ghana SDA School Students Plant Trees Commemorating World Environment Day. The Ghana Environmental Protection Agency, in partnership with the Ghana Seventh-day Adventist Church, has launched a tree-planting campaign for schools in the Ashanti Region to commemorate the World Environment Day. The campaign was organized to inspire children to grow trees to protect the natural environment. The EPA selected 27 schools mainly from Presbyterian and Adventist schools. Samuel Oteng, the Regional Director of the EPA, said the agency took into consideration how effective the schools would be in ensuring that the seedlings were looked after to grow well. Oteng expected that the chosen schools would plant a total of 2,200 tree seedlings. Students of the Gyinyase SDA Primary and Junior Secondary Schools said they were grateful to the EPA and to their schools' administration for educating them on the benefits of tree planting and how urgent it was that trees were planted to protect the environment. From Graphic, “EPA plants trees to commemorate World Environment Day.”
Editor's Note: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that Penang Adventist Hospital is in Vietnam; it is in Malaysia.
Pam Dietrich taught English at Loma Linda Academy for 26 years and served there eight more years as the 7-12 librarian. She lives in Redlands, California.
Image Credit: The Star
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