News Headlines: Record Keeper Named Among Best Sci-Fi Web Series (And More!)

The Record Keeper Places Sixth in Web-based Competitio.The Record Keeper, a web-based film series funded by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists but never officially released, has been named the sixth of nine favorite indie-made, science fiction web series by the website Inverse. Inverse describes itself as "search[ing] out emerging ideas, new technologies, and simmering trends as well as fearless innovators, designers, and thinkers. We’re compulsively curious not only because we’re fans of progress, but also because we want a glimpse of the future and the chance to better plan for and enjoy tomorrow." From Inverse.com, "Ranking the 9 best indie science fiction web series."

Auburn Adventist Congregation Ends Sabbath Homeless Breakfasts. The Auburn, California Seventh-day Adventist Church will no longer host a free breakfast on Saturdays before church services. Pastor Dan Appel and breakfast coordinator Steve Holm agreed that providing the meal closely before Sabbath School proved too difficult to continue. Some parishioners said they felt unsafe because the number of homeless individuals attending was increasing. The church still provides mental health, dental, optical chiropractic and other medical care, clothing, showers, and groceries on Tuesdays from 9am - 1pm. From Auburn Journal, "Seventh-day Adventist Breakfast Ends After Homeless Increase."

Utah Churches Host Free THRIVE Health Clinics. Adventist volunteers in Utah from the Ogden Seventh-day Adventist Church, the Community Vineyard, and the Ogden Spanish Seventh-day Adventist Church sponsored a two-day health clinic organized by THRIVE, a full-time volunteer organization run by college-aged Adventist members. Dentists at the event offered free fillings, cleanings, extractions and x-rays. Optometrists gave patients eye exams and cataract screenings. Physician consultations, massages, and lifestyle counseling was also provided. Caren White, THRIVE event coordinator said, “We could do things like help clean up houses and yards, but we figured these medical services are something that is a necessity.” From Standard Examiner, "Volunteers help inner-city Ogden get free health services."

Adventist and Muslim Officials in Malawi Receive Presidential Blessings. A 12-person delegation from the Seventh-day Adventist Church introduced Malawai President Peter Mutharika to its governing council as it transitions from Malawi Union Mission to Malawi Union Conference. Pastor Frackson Kuyama, President of the Adventist Church in Malawi, commended President Mutharika for continuing a policy of freedom of worship in the country, saying that Malawi benefits in having a God-fearing President. President Mutharika later met a delegation of the Muslim Association of Malawi (MAM) whom he praised for for its cordial relationship with his Government.

Florida Hospital Altamonte Plans to Expand Emergency Department. Florida Hospital Altamonte, part of the Adventist Health System, is expanding its emergency department as patient demand grows. By 2017, the Altamonte, Florida facility will increase its number of beds from 37 to 53. Florida Hospital is in the midst of a construction boom, recently opening the Florida Hospital Orlando Hospital for Women. It is not yet known whether the Altamonte expansion will create new permanent jobs, but at the least, it will provide construction and subcontracting work while the facility renovation is underway. From Orlando Business Journal, "Florida Hospital Altamonte to expand emergency department."

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.

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This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/7315

Auburn SDA.
How Laughable if it wasnt so tragic!!!
Just when the homeless find out it is SAFE to go to the SDA church and have breakfast,
Certain members say they are SCARED by the increase in homelessness ones attending.
What do they expect? That the homeless will be dressed well, shoes shined, hair combed, beards trimmed?
These are HOMELESS. Sleeping on the ground, sleeping out of doors, sleeping in parking garages, under bridges, in the woods. They are going to Look AWFUL! ARE going to look SCARY! HOW does one look when they pop out of bed, go to the bathroom and look in the mirror???
HOW TRAGIC!! And the Worst Tragedy about it is that it was a HEADLINE in the local newspaper.
What does THAT say about The Caring Church!!!???

Would have been BETTER to have changed Meeting Times on Sabbath than to kick the homeless out. Seems to me that Feeding poor homeless would be more Spiritual than Sabbath School. After all the members DID study their Sabbath School Lesson Seven Times that week!

Regarding SEX OFFENDERS. It doesnt take a lot to be made a Sex Offender. I have a friend who is listed as a Sex Offender and has to do all the stuff with the local Police Dept. In his younger days he was a huge “party animal”. Drank to excess and used drugs, partied with women in motels in Florida. One night during one of those activities he came out of a second story motel room on the balcony naked. Across the street was an eating place. This family with a small child, about 4 or 5 was sitting by a window. They saw him. Reported him to the police. He was arrested and put on the Florida Sex Offender list. In reality, he wasnt even near a child, so to speak. He is harmless. I’ve known him several years. Likes kids.
I have known other persons who are safe.
He should have just been cited for Indecent Exposure.
This has taught me that not all listed Sex Offenders are dangerous, and that they are out to do bad stuff to children. Some of them, like my friend, just got caught up in the system by doing something stupid once, and now paying for it for the remainder of their life.
If the Homeless are eating in a separate area away from the Kid Sabbath School rooms, and there is adequate Adult supervision of the kids, there should be no problem.
I still think it is TRAGIC.

RECORD KEEPER. WHAT a prestigious Honor!! It is recognized by the Godless, Secular world of film makers and producers. But the SDA church hides it in a subterranian vault in Silver Springs. Never to see the light of day again.

LIMITATIONS-- As Elaine has said, OUR only information is what is posted in the news article on this page. And This Page is what we comment to.

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Steve, I think we need more context before leaping to conclusions. One of the primary challenges facing the church in Auburn I have been told by family who attend is that a number of the homeless who the church regularly serves are registered sex offenders. There are difficult questions about how to both serve people who often have mental health issues, addictions, and/or criminal pasts, and also protect the numerous children who attend Sabbath school classes literally right next door. The church in Auburn should be applauded for continuing its ministry to the homeless at other times of the week, when most churches have no such ministry at all.

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The laws in California does not allow known sex offender anywhere near a school, and presumably a church when in session where there are children.

Surely, there should be sufficient adults overseeing the breakfasts to maintain decorum and it is very doubtful that there is anything during the time serving breakfast for the church members to feel “unsafe.” In what way were they made to feel unsafe, or was it merely their presumption of danger?

If that is the fear that church members have while helping the homeless, how could they feel safe working with them in any capacity?

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Sad to think how one individual (a wealthy donor) can take it upon himself to block this very unique witness from reaching the otherwise unreachable. I wish the GC would have the decency to release the rights to another entity. Had another entity created the movie, they would have been elated with the Church growth that might have resulted. Fortunately, the series can be viewed at YouTube, where thousands (not enough) have accessed it.

EDIT

In all fairness to the administrators, they have tough decisions to make. As much as you and I might disagree with the decision, we shouldn’t necessarily blame them for believing that the loss of millions from a donor might be the lesser of two evils. I’m more disappointed by the control sought by a donor and the way the BRI and GC then denigrated unnecessarily the film and the producer.

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At the risk of being perceived as insincere (due to the troubled history of the project), I want to congratulate the filmmakers and the GC for their ambitious effort and for the time and money that was spent in the making of this (Record Keeper) series. The recognition should bring more viewers to the project.
Kudos
Congratulations
High-five!

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Adventism prides itself on “having the truth” and does more to “hide” it than “proclaim” it.

Unfortunately I believe the current Adventist administration’s eyesight is myopic and, yes, “worldly” when they allow the wealthy to push their own agendas. Gutless and short-sighted describes their reaction to this excellent series from those in power.

I hope that they don’t wonder why Jesus doesn’t come…

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EDIT: http://conversation.spectrummagazine.org/t/editorial-why-does-jesus-christ-give-offense/10394/78?u=cassie

I watched The Record Keeper this evening.

I can join with many congratulating them on the award they have received for hard work well done. It was an engaging science fiction work, for a relatively low budget film.

While watching works like this, I can never, for one moment, stop analyzing it for the picture of God it is putting forth. I think nothing, in any sphere, is more important than this.

I realize that this is the Steam Punk genre, but, speaking as someone who has been in New Age circles, the place these angels inhabited was much more reminiscent of the near-earth Astral Plane than any place one would consider a pristine “Heaven.” It was a dreary place, and, FWIW, the tree artwork on the wall made me think of a skull.

So we are imagining the angels of God–and God–living where there is darkness, tension, suspicion, violence, and, not incidentally, no beauty.

Apparently the Tower of Babel language splintering intervention also affected this Astral Plane Heaven. But maybe this was just a device to appeal to a world audience.

The main protagonist, Raina, the Record Keeper angel could play the role of a Stasi interrogator without much transition. Feeling anything is anathema to her, because “Administration” just wants the facts. But she is adept at discerning lies because she has looked into the eyes of Truth. Why those beautiful Eyes never thawed out her frozen emotions is not indicated. One is left to assume, by implication, that this is a hyper-authoritarian regime she is working for.

So, the Heavenly government is a bureaucracy, one intent on recording your every deed, because, you know, this is a wartime economy, and there will be war crimes trials later, and it will become important to know who to blame (and therefore throw in the Lake of Fire) and who to exonerate.

The earth humans, made in the image of God, we’ve always been taught, are referred to as “aboriginals” by the “good” angels. I’ll have to check that, but I’m pretty sure that is true.

The “aboriginals” come across as bit players in this great Cosmic Drama, which spends most of its time on the dynamics of the evil players, not unlike the former discussions on heavenlysanctuary.com used to center on Satan and his incredible feats of derring-do. (This due to the combined influence of EGW and Graham Maxwell, I suppose.) These evil angels can do cool stuff!

Now, the good angel accuses the bad angel of watching people molest children (which the bad angel would never do, he said), but if the good angel could know that the bad angel was watching children being harmed, couldn’t he do cool stuff to intervene? No. Earth aboriginals must be allowed to molest their children. I guess.

The good angels can fight with the bad angels and they can turn themselves into the Bethlehem Star (shades of EGW), but this Great Controversy must turn out with God vindicated, that’s the really important thing, so we must all know how really, really badly Earth aboriginals can treat their children for thousands of years on end.

This is how we, and the watching Universe, will finally know that God is good and Satan is bad and how we’ll know that God must burn all the bad people and angels alive for as long as they deserve.

And we will praise God for not torturing people forever, but just as long as they deserve. And we will believe that those people deserved to be tortured, and that it is loving to torture them and snuff them out.

And we will believe that this is the only way an all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving God can solve problems: with extreme wrath and violence. A Final Solution no more imaginative than Hitler’s, just more powerful.

And this is the way we will draw people to Jesus. Because if they don’t love Him back, they will land up in the Lake of Fire with the evil angels.

Jesus, “the Prince” in this film, did not have a central role. While He lay parched and emaciated in the wilderness, Satan, “the General,” did his best feats of derring-do, and they were impressive, we were told.

Satan is always impressive in the Great Controversy narrative. Ellen White calls him, “his satanic majesty.” Yes, she does.

The reason Jesus had to die was something about God’s justice, but I’ve never really understood that. There’s something about wrath being poured on a person until they die that equals justice and love. Maybe you understand it. It completely eludes me, but I used to be too scared of God to admit that. Now I’m willing to take my chances, even though, as you read this, people are lumping me in with the bad angels.

Several pivotal moments in the film for me:

Episode 3: The Rain–start around the 8 minute mark:

Notice Raina holding her solar plexus area when she hears the cries of those God is killing in the Flood. The body doesn’t lie.

Notice her holding a baby God is in the process of killing in the Flood and looking up sobbing, “Love demands justice,” like an impotent mantra.

Then there is the place were the “aboriginals” are described as having lost their light, so they can be possessed by either evil angels or God, and if God possesses them, they can be used to take out a thousand evil angels, or something like that.

I think it was Kant who said that people are ends in themselves, and are not to be used instrumentally.

In the Great Controversy narrative, people are used by God as instruments to vindicate His character, which is a dilemma for Kant and Plato both.

Okay, finally, in our Astral World Heaven, Raina is to debrief Jesus (for the upcoming trial–everything is about the trial), so what music is playing when His Light enters Raina’s tidy bureaucratic office (Heaven is orderly–ask EGW!)?

Amazing Grace to the tune of House of the Rising Sun:


There is a house in New Orleans
They call The Rising Sun
It’s been the ruin
Of many a poor girl
And God, I know I’m one

Perfect pièce de résistance: Jesus enters Astral World Heaven to House of the Rising Sun, washed in the Blood.


EDIT: @ronaldosborn I meant to add one more thing last night.

Significantly, mention was made several times in the film to the lost “music” that was part of the pristine Earth, but was drowned out by the ground’s agonizing, unbearable screams after the first blood was shed upon it.

The Celts of old believed that the world was upheld and sustained by a single all-embracing melody: Oran MĂłr, they called it, the Great Music, and all creation was part of it.

Perhaps this is why Celtic music possesses the power to move us in unexpected ways–it touches that place deep in our hearts where legends still live, and we hear again the strains of the Ancient Song.
–Stephen Lawhead


The essence of the Oran MĂłr is that it is a story that cannot be written, told, or fully articulated by human storytellers or myth-makers (though some mystics have alluded to it), but only by Creation herself. My sense of the reason why the Oran MĂłr has not become another written or oral story is precisely that the old Celtic Creation story is actually a song that is heard, felt, and experienced through holy remembrance and celebration.
–Frank MacEowen

Perhaps the only thing compelling enough to wean our attention from the riveting narrative of The Great Controversy/Paradise Lost is the sweet, still music of Creation.

Nada Brahma. The world is sound.

Perhaps restoration of the Earth will also restore Heaven to its pristine beauty, free it from its astral entanglements.

That which is above is the same as that which is below.
–The Emerald Tablet


They serve at a sanctuary that is a copy and shadow of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: “See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.”
–Hebrews 8

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[quote=“niteguy2, post:2, topic:10399”]
RECORD KEEPER. WHAT a prestigious Honor!! It is recognized by the Godless, Secular world of film makers and producers. But the SDA church hides it in a subterranian vault in Silver Springs. Never to see the light of day again.
[/quote]

Thanks, niteguy2.

I saw The Record Keeper, too, and found it intensely dramatic and very moving. I also wish it would be released widely and commercially, but I’m glad that all eleven episode can be watched, in their entirety, on YouTube, here:

You note that “the SDA church hides it in a subterranian vault in Silver Springs. Never to see the light of day again.” However, if you’ve read “Theological Problems with The Record Keeper,” published by the Biblical Research Institute, you know that our denomination’s leaders consider the project’s hidden status the mark of success, and not the secular recognition that you affirm.

The Church’s goal was to bury this effort, because, in thirteen different ways, the series varied with Adventist doctrine. The church, rightly so, concluded that it would not circulate a sophisticated production that taught counter-SDA ideas.

We can certainly debate whether the GC should have done this; whether the church’s 13 points are valid; or, assuming they are, if they actually matter, particularly against the good work the series may have done, had it been generally visible.

But we should all be clear that the series’s “lost work” status is intentional. From the church’s position, that is not a failure, but a victory.

HA

Check out the church’s website. There are a few statements on the home page designed to familiarize you with the church (a turn-of-the-century whimsy often called a “mission statement”).

The main points each begin with “My.” It may not be coincidental that a church which defines itself by what it should do for its members has a struggle when it comes to doing for others.

It’s difficult to serve yourself and others at the same time. Service to others often makes it difficult to focus on oneself.

Of course, we don’t know all the details but it doesn’t sound very Christian; it just sounds like those people that call themselves Christians that everyone hates so much.

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