SDA Kinship News

Surf, Sand, and Sea… and Kinship!

by Ellen Henderson

Every spring, something very special happens on the Eastern Seaboard. Members of Region 2 (and friends) gather at a small beach house in Rehoboth, Delaware, for some much-needed time of relaxation and fellowship.

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KINSHIP COLOMBIA


Colombia is a country located on the corner of South America, bathed by two oceans and crossed by a beautiful mountain range, full of valleys and deserts. This diversity can also be observed in our Kinship family that has flourished in three cities: Bogota, Medellin, and Cartagena. This year we will be starting the groups of Barranquilla and Bucaramanga, cities with a high Adventist presence in our country.

Kinship today has grown in fronts such as spirituality, healthy recreation, and healthy lifestyles, as well as support in the work of our members, all supported by some fronts of the Colombian state, which has provided spaces and resources for it.

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MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT


This past week has been a particularly difficult one for Kinship members in the United States and Kenya.

In the United States, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed the Equality Act, which would amend the Civil Rights Act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment, housing, public accommodations, public education, federal funding, credit, and the jury system. It has only just moved on to the U.S. Senate, yet the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and the North American Division have already cosigned a statement condemning it.

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MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT

I’ve just returned home from our annual Kinship Region 2 mini-Kampmeeting. Each year around this time, our region descends on Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

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MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT


If there was ever any question about racism in the Seventh-day Adventist church, one only has to look at the most recent Visitor, the magazine for Seventh-day Adventists in my union. The cover story is about Lucy Byard, a Black woman who converted to Adventism at the age of 25 in 1902.  She was one of only five Black women who pioneered the Adventist work in New York City. As an avid musician and cook, she entertained many great African-American Adventist pioneers, according to Dr. Benjamin Baker.

But in her mid-60s, Byard developed liver cancer. As she and her husband James considered which hospital to admit her to, they decided to go to the Washington Sanitarium in Takoma Park, Maryland, and they were approved ahead of time. When they arrived, though, they were turned away because they were Black. Before this, the hospital had allowed a few Black patients to be admitted, but only if they could be treated in the hospital basement by off-duty staff. The Byards were then sent to the Freedman’s Hospital, now Howard University Hospital, which served Black people. The hospital later said they didn’t realize the Byards were Black when they agreed to accept them.

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ADVENTIST SOCIOLOGIST SHARES HIS RESEARCH


Ron Lawson’s study of Adventism began in North America; and he spent a year driving 28,000 miles around the United States and Canada, interviewing pastors, teachers, administrators, leading laypersons, and students as he traveled. His itinerary included attending the General Conference session in New Orleans where he saw that the church was globalizing, and this caused him to broaden the scope of his research to include other divisions around the world. During his travels, he conducted over 4,000 interviews in 60 countries.

Until recently only academic sociologists have had access to most of his writing on the sociology of religion. Now you, too, can read them at RonaldLawson.net

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MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT

 

I imagine many of you watched the Oscars the other night. Some viewers were interested in what the stars wore while others hoped that their favorite movie won Best Picture or their favorite artist won Best Actor. There are so many categories at these award shows that there’s something for everyone to root for.

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HOW SDA KINSHIP MEMBERS INTERACT WITH EACH OTHER

SDA Kinship members interact with each other online via Facebook and WhatsApp. If you aren't already connected with one or more of the groups (main, men, women, youth, seniors, etc, etc), please send a note to info@sdakinship.org or send Floyd Poenitz a private Messenger note and ask to be added to these groups. If you use WhatsApp, let us know so you can participate there too.

If you speak Spanish or Portuguese, be sure to ask us to add you to the Kinship en Espanol or Kinship Brasil groups!

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MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT

Here in Maryland, January is leaving us with the coldest temperatures in a very long time. I feel for our members in the Midwest! I hope everyone in the Northern Hemisphere stays warm and safe. For those in the Southern Hemisphere, enjoy the beautiful weather.  We will feel warmer thinking of you. 

What I really love about SDA Kinship is that it’s always been a safe space for members to be who we are, regardless of where each of us is on our journey. Some members are in long-term relationships and some are married. Others feel that celibacy is right for them, and still others are dating. All of us want to be on a path that works best for our lives.

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CHURCH RELATIONS

Between 3,000 and 4,000 members of the LGBTIQ community participated in the annual Creating Change Conference in Detroit, January 23-27.  I was glad to be a part of the Spiritual Care Team and meet hundreds of participants in the Many Paths spiritual space including a number of Seventh-day Adventists who were attending the conference.  Along with a number of plenary sessions, there were hundreds of workshops available, making it a challenge to figure out which ones to attend. 

I had the privilege of being the guest lecturer for a class on Religion and Gender at La Sierra University.  I shared the story of my journey and had a conversation with the students regarding their questions about our community.

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FEELINGS & EMOTIONS

Caring words from John & Carolyn Wilt - Family & Friends Coordinators

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Moving Forward: Let Them Know You Exist and You Belong

This month, two events affecting Adventist members of the LGBTIQ community fell on the same day.  October 11 was National Coming Out Day, and it was also the beginning of the Seventh-day Adventist Church’s Annual Council—the governing body of the world church between General Conference SThis month, two events affecting Adventist members of the LGBTIQ community fell on the same day.  October 11 was National Coming Out Day, and it was also the beginning of the Seventh-day Adventist Church’s Annual Council—the governing body of the world church between General Conference Sessions.

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