From the Worldwide Faith News archives www.wfn.org
Adventist Church President Calls for Primacy of Family Values
"Christian B. Schäffler" <APD_Info_Schweiz@compuserve.com>
01 Oct 1998 05:09:53
October 1, 1998
Adventist Press Service(APD)
Christian B. Schaeffler, Editor-in-chief
Fax +41-61-261 61 18
CH-4003 Basel, Switzerland
ADVENTIST CHURCH PRESIDENT CALLS FOR PRIMACY OF
Foz do Iguacu, Brazil (APD/ANN) Speaking at the opening of
the Seventh-day Adventist Church's Annual Council, world
Church president Robert S. Folkenberg called for a return to
the primacy of family values, particularly in the "family of
Identifying the Church as a real family, Folkenberg said
that members needed to recognize the implications of what that
meant, for example when writing letters to Church leaders.
"I'm amazed sometimes at the acid that drips from some of
these letters from people who claim to love their church!
Obviously, there is a place for constructive dialogue between
brothers and sisters, but we must do so in love, in the spirit of
Jesus. I'm bewildered at how some who claim to love their
Lord and love His Church-His family-can manifest such an
unloving, hostile, fault-finding attitude toward other family
The primary characteristic of God, Church, said Folkenberg, "is
the love that exists between the members, one for another."
Such an attitude of love makes actions such as racism
impossible, he continued. "Spiritual unity rejects any form of
discrimination within the body, whether it is ethnic, cultural, or
The greatest need for the Church is to be true children of
God, he affirmed. "We are God's children-now! We belong to
His family-now! But a day is coming soon when we will see
our heavenly Father face to face! The family of God on earth
will be merged with the family of God in heaven," he
The Church president's address opened the Council's theme,
"Experience the Fellowship of His Family." The so-called
message and mission theme will be featured by special
presentations at the outset of each day's deliberations of the
Council. These presentations serve as spiritual emphasis to be
later shared with the local Church communities around the
world. This year's theme responds to the Church's interest in
sharing a better understanding of the Church as a faith
community and its role in the world.
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