26 Sep

New Lay Pastors are Trained to Have Fresh Focus in Church Ministry

By Rajmund Dabrowski — Denver, Colorado…“They will be called a Denver Cohort,” said Mickey Mallory, RMC ministerial director. Twenty-two local church leaders signed up for training to become lay pastors and met at the Rocky Mountain Conference office, September 20-22.

“Equipping men and women to serve along side their pastor will be a tremendous blessing to the local church. It will allow more ministry to take place, which will translate into more people’s lives impacted for Christ,” commented Mallory.

Nate Skaife, lead pastor at the Grand Junction Church, was the instructor of this first training event. He started teaching lay pastors in 2012 while he was ministering in the Wisconsin Church. In the words of Wilton Helm, from Aspen Park, Pastor Skaife’s training “exemplified good teaching and coaching techniques while doing the presentation.”

The next Colorado training session is planned for Grand Junction on the Western Slope, October 4-6. There are six training classes before each participant receives certification. Outside of class time, there are assignments to be completed before a candidate receives a completion of training diploma.

It became obvious that the registered candidates for training expressed their appreciation to be a part of this new initiative of the Rocky Mountain Conference. “Great training, “ said Bill Oxenford from True Life Community congregation in Littleton. “It was wonderful to be engaged with so many like-minded church workers who love Jesus and are so willing to serve him and seek those who are looking for truth,” he added.

The participants were coached in how to conduct conversations. This role playing was then critiqued. In the words of Emmanuel Jean, from Agape Haitian, “My biggest take away from this training was the discussion and interaction among the peers. This training will help me to be the brighter light on the lives of my church members and the people of my community that could be facing darkness in their spiritual lives.”

Commenting on the reason to become a trained lay pastor, Mark Royer from Trinidad, concluded with a question: “If I am not motivated and dedicated how can I expect my church to be so?”

In Denver, the next training session is planned for January 31 – February 2, 2020.

Rajmund Dabrowski with Mickey Mallory; photos by Mickey Mallory

26 Sep

Alumni Come Home to Campion Academy

By Jill Harlow — Loveland, Colorado…Campion Academy welcomed home nearly 800 people over alumni weekend, September 20-22. Honor classes included all years ending in nine or four. The most experienced attendees came from the class of 1944, celebrating 75 years since graduation.

The weekend began with a vespers concert featuring Southwestern Adventist University’s and Campion Academy’s Music Departments.

Current students, alumni, and church members came together to worship in Campion’s gym on Sabbath. They enjoyed performances from Campion’s Music Department, and inspirational messages from Carl Dupper, ’09, and Dr. Neil Nedley, president of Weimar Institute.

New this year, several alumni were honored with Alumni of the Year and Hall of Faith Awards. Also, Principal Don Reeder presented the Hall of Faith award to Ann Page Maxwell, the granddaughter of Frank Page, the first principal of Campion Academy for the impact he and his family have had on Campion over several generations.

Jill Harlow; photos supplied

Read more about Campion Academy in the latest issue of The Frontier, linked on the alumni Web site. https://www.campion.net/alumni.html
26 Sep

Love Reality Tour Guests at Mile High Academy’s Focus Week

By Karrie Meyers — Highlands Ranch, Colorado…Mile High Academy received a double blessing for its annual Fall Focus Week, which was held September 16-20. Not only did students have an opportunity to lead out with music and prayer, but they were joined by the Love Reality Tour (LRT) each morning. The Love Reality Tour is a group of individuals who tour churches nationwide, sharing personal testaments of God leading in their lives.

“Focus Week is always a special event for us, and God’s presence was truly with us on our campus last week,” said Campus Chaplain and Upper School Teacher Rebecca Berg. “Our special guests blessed each of us with amazing, personal stories of how God gently leads us to be witnesses for Him. A special thank you to the Rocky Mountain Conference for bringing the Love Reality Tour to Denver and for sharing them with us.”

Karrie Meyers; photos supplied

26 Sep

Adventist Pastor Continues Teaching a Catholic Church Group

By Ruben Balaguer— Grand Junction, Colorado…Bible Studies continue with a Roman Catholic group in a hall of the San Joseph Church in Grand Junction, reports Ruben Balaguer, pastor of Hispanic Grand Junction District.  As reported in NewsNuggets [April 12, 2019] his teaching engagement at the church began in the month of March, but during the summer the church group’s main lay Bible teacher, Rosa Cisneros, traveled to Mexico and Pastor Balaguer became the group’s main teacher for six weeks.

Rosa Cisneros, who invited a group of interested believers in her church to study the Bible, asked Balaguer to continue weekly meetings “which certainly was a great blessing to me and the group,” Balaguer said. 

Both the local priest and the teacher herself are aware that Ruben Balaguer is a Seventh-day Adventist pastor. Each week she informs the priest about the subject to be covered and no objections were voiced. Every Thursday, the group uses an Adventist study guide, La fe de Jesús (The Faith of Jesus), and when she is present, we take turns teaching the group, Balaguer explained. 

“Soon we will be entering deeper doctrinal issues, such as the Law of God and the Sabbath, following the order of the study guide. And, only God knows what will happen then, so I ask for your prayers for this work in which God has guided me,” Balaguer commented. 

The Adventist Hispanic community in Grand Junction follows this development with excitement and gratitude to God for His leading. 

Ruben Balaguer, text and photo


26 Sep

Chaplain Carol Turk Receives an ACI Board Certification

RMCNews –Chaplain Carol Turk, MA, BCC, was recognized, September 17, as a Board Certified Chaplain by Adventist Chaplaincy Institute. “This milestone recognizes your achievements and competency as a professional chaplain. We are grateful for your ministry as a chaplain, and your service to the wider church, and pray for God’s continued blessings,” wrote William J. Cork, assistant director of North American Division Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries.

A member of the Campion Seventh-day Adventist Church, and a commissioned minister, Chaplain Carol was member of RMC Executive Committee for many years, and was recently voted as RMC representative on the NAD Executive Committee. She also represents the Mid- American Union Conference on the Advent Health’s Corporate Board and is also Board certified with the Association of Professional Chaplains. She currently serves as chaplain at Denver Health Medical Center.

Commenting on her road to this newest recognition, she said that, “this achievement could not have been made without Dick Stenbakken [former director of Adventist Chaplaincy Ministries] mentoring me and cheering me on. He has gone to bat for me several times and flattened several barriers in my path. I am forever grateful for his help and the help which Larry Roth [retired chaplain and field representative for ACM] and Bill Cork have given me. In addition, the Rocky Mountain Conference has supported me in several different ways.”

“Thank you to all of you and to ACM for the chance to serve in the way God has called me,” she added.


26 Sep

Flying Garuda Pathfinders Share Their Faith in the Community

By Barry Manembu — Denver, Colorado…It was a very special day for the Pathfinders and Adventurers from Colorado Indonesian-American Seventh-day Adventist Church in Denver. On 2019 World Pathfinder Day, September 21, not only did they have the chance to commemorate the 69th anniversary of the Global Pathfinder Movement, along with 2 million pathfinders around the world, they also had the privilege to share their faith on the neighboring houses via literature evangelism.

This was the first time that both Flying Garuda Pathfinders and Brave Sparrow Adventurers celebrated World Pathfinder Day. Starting with congratulatory video from Andreas Peralta, the World Pathfinder director, members and staff marched in, recited the Pathfinder/Adventurer pledge and law, and led the entire worship service.

Three young Pathfinder staff—Derwin Suyatno, Eldridge Turambi and Darlyn Tielung—presented a sermon entitled “Created with Purpose,” emphasizing the fact that God created us to be full in Him and to be a blessing to others. At the end of the sermon they challenged the congregation and made an appeal to follow and fulfill God’s plan in their lives.

Following the church service, led by Derwin, who recently served as a youth colporteur in Utah and Nevada, a group of 25 pathfinders, adventurers and staff participated in literature evangelism by sharing GLOW tracts around neighboring houses.

“Many of the children have never done a door-to-door evangelism before and were understandably anxious at first. But with much prayers and encouragement, plus a brief training by Derwin, the group was ready to visit the nearby houses,” explained Barry Manembu, leader of the Flying Garuda Pathfinder Club.

The participating groups knocked on doors, distributed the GLOW spiritual message pamphlets, and also prayed for those with a prayer request. Barry said that “many [people] opened their doors and some of them were willing to be prayed for. A man named Abdullah, for instance, asked for healing, and so a staff member prayed for him. Group members rotated on specific tasks and there was an occasion where a three-year-old Little Lamb girl offered a short prayer, which warmed the heart of a household,” he explained.

Many of the kids were undoubtedly tired after walking around the neighborhood. “Yet, they said how they enjoyed every minute of it. During the post-activity briefing some were even saying that they would like to do it again,” Barry added.

Barry B. Manembu; photos by Grace CarolindaNovie SondakhBarry B. Manembu

26 Sep

Campion Students: 10 Lessons Learned on the Mountain

By Jill Harlow — Loveland, Colorado…What resulted from a September 13-15 trip to the summit of Mt. Elbert was a series of lessons which, it their own comments, are shared by the participating students and their sponsors. These will prove themselves to be of interest to the NewsNuggets readers.

10. Be prepared
“We had to be prepared to sleep in a tent in the cold.  The first night I didn’t wear a lot of clothes, but then the second night I wore all my warm clothes and it was so much better. ” – Giovanni Silva

9. Drink water
“If you don’t drink enough water, you will feel sick at the top!” – Sydney Halvorson

8. Stick with a buddy
“You never know when you might get hurt and need a friend to help you.” – Sydney Cornett

7. Don’t be too quick to judge
“When we found ourselves blocked in at the parking lot, we were all upset at a certain red car that was parked in the middle of a lane. After thinking about it later, we realized that the red car actually had to have been parked before the entire row of cars that came in front of it, so didn’t deserve all the blame that we had been so quick to give.” – Jill Harlow
6. Encourage one another.  
“When you have a friend when things get rough, you can encourage each other to get through it.” – Kent Kast
5. Don’t look back
“Every time I looked back, I felt so high that it made me nervous.  I just kept looking forward to the goal of the summit.”  –Greg Lang
4. Relationships come first
“I learned that being the first or fastest isn’t always important, it’s the people that you persevere with, even if you don’t get to go as fast or far as you want with them, that are important in the end. – Jadon Harden
3. You can push through the pain
“I was honestly ready to give up and just turn around but I kept going even though it was difficult.  Having the accomplishment of summiting the mountain kept me going.  – Sami Hodges
2. Slow and steady wins the race
 “We set a slow pace, but we did not stop, and we were the first group at the summit.”  -Kean Jagitsch

1. Never Give Up
“When I was climbing the first false summit, in my head I thought I would just quit after that summit, but after I got there I saw the real summit wasn’t so far, so I encouraged myself to keep on going and at the end I made it.” -Jarrod Lang
 “You will have an incredible gift when you get to the top.” – Giovanni Silva


–Jill Harlow, compilation and photo 


26 Sep

When Kids Take Over a Church Service

By Michelle Velbis — Colorado Springs, Colorado…”It felt great to lead the worship,” said Elijah Lujan, 7th grader at Springs Adventist Academy. “I appreciate that they (the church) know that the children are a key factor. We are the next generation that will step up to do God’s work.”

The Springs Adventist Academy students led the worship experience at the South Seventh-day Adventist Church in Colorado Springs on September 21. The youth led out in all of the songs, prayer, scripture reading, children’s story, and worship in giving.

“Inviting and encouraging our young people to be a part or even lead in worship gives them an opportunity to be actively involved in their church. When they are an integral part of the worship service, and they have a purpose to belong, they will want to come to church,” said principal and 5thto 8th-grade teacher, Michelle Velbis.

Michelle Velbis; text and photos


26 Sep

Plans Develop For Total Health Center in Denver

Following a presentation and approval by the Rocky Mountain Conference, executive committee of RMC Health Ministry proposal to establish “The Total Health Resource and Support Center.” The ministry director, Rick Mautz, shared with the NewsNuggets his vision to open the center in the month of February 2020.  Office space will become available to use following the closure of the Denver Adventist Book Center at the end of 2019.

As the name implies, Rick Mautz, explains that this new venture will be a resource and support center for whole person wellness.

NewsNuggets:  What will the main objectives of this new project in the Rocky Mountain Conference?

Rick Mautz: There is a growing interest in prevention today.  People want to get to the cause of their health issues. They want to learn how to stay well and gain health through thing they can do themselves, through lifestyle.  This center will not only provide information through various resources and programs, but will provide ongoing support through volunteer Health Partners and Certified health coaches.  The Health Partners will use coaching skills to provide the support that participants need to make the lifestyle changes that will bring the desired health that we all want but often fail to achieve on our own.

NN: Who do you envision will provide a variety of services at the center?

RM: The good news is that the center will be manned by dedicated and skilled volunteers. That will provide the needed services with minimal impact on the RMC budget. Our goal is to be totally self sustainable through volunteers, donations and program fees.  We are actively putting together a team of health professionals and dedicated volunteers who will rotate through the center providing the needed skills to make the center a respected resource for our community and our church members.

NN: What specific programs, services and materials will be available at the center?

RM: The center will carry a limited selection of health books, health ministry supplies and some hard to find basics for making healthy dietary changes. Various health programs will be offered on a rotating basis, including such subjects as: depression, diabetes prevention and reversal, hypertension, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, smoking cessation, and more.  Also cooking and exercise classes will be offered on an ongoing basis.

NN: As a church we pride ourselves of having a health message. Can we assume that the services will be directed to benefit the community, and also our own church members?

RM: This is a perfect opportunity for any church health directors to improve their ability to provide health outreach for their local community.  We are also anticipating that our local church members will take advantage of a source that will help them improve their own health and to pick up resources to help their friends and neighbors to gain better health as well.

If you are interested in interviewing for a volunteer position in this new center or if you want to donate supplies or money for some initial start-up costs, please contact RMC Health Ministry director Rick Mautz at 303-909-8274.


Photo Credit: Rajmund Dabrowski


26 Sep

Total Health Program in Peru Impacts Community

The jungle-heavy Loreto region of Peru is home to groups of hardy, kind people that live in small villages such as Manati and Sinchicuy. These communities are remote and lack infrastructure and economical resources. This isolation leaves them vulnerable to various diseases such as anemia and there is a general lack of accessible healthcare.

After a successful Total Health program in Manati, Peru, that just finished its second year, Global Health Initiatives (GHI) set out to do the same in the small village of Sinchicuy. Total Health is a sustainable program that holistically helps a village become whole and health. To do so, GHI commissioned the building of a clinic, officially named the Center of Influence and Education. Construction on the house began in January 2019 and it was officially dedicated on June 12, 2019.

The building was designed by local Denver architects from TreanorHL who designed it to be sustainable and used locally sourced materials to further benefit the community. As a result of their work and designs, TreanorHL received an award. The Center can house 5 students and 1 coordinator who work and live there. The students are local health science interns from the Union University of Peru who are in their 5th year. Adventist Peruvian medical students live in the community for an entire school year working with projects ranging from mental health to nutrition, sanitation, clean water, and spiritual care.

During their time with the Total Health program, they teach workshops to the local community such as hand washing, proper disposal, cooking with micronutrients and meal prep, home gardens, and emotional intelligence. Most of these workshops are designed to impact families in the area, and specifically the school-age children by partnering with local schools.

Not only the people who live in Manati and Sinchicuy, but also regional government officials notice the impact of the Center on the local community. Local officials, medical personnel, regional health officials, Centura Health professionals including Porter Adventist Hospital CEO, Todd Folkenberg, and the regional governor, Elisban Ochoa, attended the June 12th dedication of the Center of Influence and Education in Sinchicuy.

In a last-minute presentation, Governor Ochoa commented on his surprise and pleasure at the obvious impact private entities are having in his region. The partnership of GHI, Clinica Adventista Ana Stahl, and the Union University of Peru was a success that the governor “would not have believed if he did not see it himself.”  This public acknowledgement is a significant step in furthering the development of similar clinics in the Loreto region and continuing partnerships with local entities to bring health and education to these isolated villages.

The specific goals for the Center of Influence and Education include:

  • Having 50% of local families involved in the educational workshops. The main challenge here is educating parents as well as children. While children are more easily involved through partnerships with the local school, GHI desires to see more parents learning how to help their children.
  • Having 100% of mothers with children 5-years-old and younger involved in workshops within a year
  • Having 100% of school-age children in educational workshops
  • Overall education on nutrition with a desired 50% decrease in anemia in children under 5

Global Health Initiatives is impacting the local communities in the Loreto region of Peru through hospitals such as Clinica Adventista Ana Stahl and houses like the Center of Influence and Education. Through strategic partnerships with local governments and mission trips led by Centura Health professionals, the impact continues to thrive and grow. GHI hopes to replicate these results in even more communities and take more teams to the area to perform surgeries, train local health providers, and strengthen our relationship with the area villages.

GHI, text and photos


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