Berean SDA Church turns 77 years old
On this past July 4, our nation celebrated its 237th birthday, while two days later, the Baton Rouge Berean church observed its 77th. It was the church’s third annual celebration since current pastor Robert Davis took the reins in as many years. In keeping with the tradition, not only was it an anniversary, but a homecoming as well. Therefore, it was only appropriate that a “native son” be invited to present the Sabbath message. Chairperson Margaret Lawrence thought it fitting that in commemoration of the reason for America’s beginning that we emphasize the need for religious liberty awareness. Thus the scripture from Hebrew 11:16 “We seek a better country, an heavenly…which God has prepared for us” adorned the proudly displayed red, white and blue banner and the cover of the souvenir booklet.
Festivities began on Friday night with an “A Night of Reflection” and the celebration of our Lord’s Supper. The Sabbath service was especially poignant in that it included a salute to Berean’s veterans by our Pathfinder club. As the various branches of military service representatives faced the congregation, our Pathfinders saluted them – then presented each man and each woman an American flag. Member Arlene Mossey followed with a past religious liberty experience involving Sabbath observance and her job. We joined her in praising God that her faith was rewarded and that her employer respected and honored her Sabbath convictions. A salute to our public servants was next. According to Davis,”because we endorse causes, not parties, it is most appropriate (even on Sabbath) that we recognize and thank our elected officials.” District 61 State Representative Alfred Williams and District 2 Councilwoman Chauna Banks-Daniels were both recognized for their contribution to the communities encompassing Berean Church. Each received a personalized plaque.
Our speaker Clarence L. Wright, a native Baton Rougean, is a pastor and director of church ministries in the Southeastern Conference. However, his ministry began here in Southwest Region. He began his message by commending our two honorees for their acknowledging God in their various positions. Then his trip down memory lane took us to 1939 when Berean was established and the costs of certain necessities at the time. “Gas was .10 a gallon, a new car costs $665.00, and the average worker earned $1713.00 a year” to the chuckles of many. His message “Is It Worth the Risk?” directed us to the experience of Daniel and his friends in Daniel 3:8-22. We would learn that unlike those four Hebrews, “Too many of us don’t want to do anymore than necessary,” Wright emphasized. “The definition of ‘risks’ scares some folk because this modern generation is a slave to the circumstances that bind them. We must stand up for God and realize He is trying to teach us to build our foundation today on what we experienced from Him in the past,” he continued. The fellowship dinner coordinated and prepared by our residence-chef and First Elder Robert Landry brought the weekend’s program to a fitting close. Berean remains grateful for God’s continued leading as we look forward to still another year’s celebration.
Evelyn M. Edwards
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