Sue Nelson – Lincoln, Nebraska … Two Pathfinder teams from Rocky Mountain Conference won first prizes at the Mid-America Pathfinder Bible Experience (PBE), which was held on February 18 at the College View Church in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Aurora Las Aguilas and Loveland Cougars had both received first place at the RMC Finals in Denver on February 4, which allowed them to move to the Union level. Out of the sixteen teams representing Dakota, Central States, Kansas-Nebraska, Iowa-Missouri, Minnesota, and Rocky Mountain Conferences, a whopping 10 teams received first place recognition to advance to the NAD level!

The Loveland Cougars had an unusual experience in-route to Lincoln. One of the Pathfinders had a severe allergic reaction to a medication and had to be taken to the Ft. Morgan hospital by ambulance where she was admitted overnight. This put half the team behind and unable to reach Lincoln on Thursday as planned. The doctor at the hospital happened to be an Adventist and offered his home to the family. On Friday, the Pathfinder was released, and they were able to continue to Lincoln where they joined the rest of the team that evening.

Alex Rodriguez, Pathfinder director, explained that an hour or two after arriving at the Airbnb, “another one of the team members began to complain of severe abdominal pain. With little explanation for why the pain was occurring, the Pathfinder was also rushed to the ER. They returned to the house around 2 a.m. with very few answers. The pain continued Sabbath morning and it was touch and go whether the team would be able to test with their full roster. By noon, the pain had reduced enough that they felt they could endure it and made plans to join the team.”

Rodriguez explained that the team showed up for testing with frazzled nerves, a bit numb, and sleep deprived. “They weren’t themselves the first half but were able to relax for the second half. Through the grace of God, they remembered what they have been diligently studying and scored high enough for first place.”

The competing teams are made up of 2-6 Pathfinders in full dress uniform, and a club may have more than one team, explains Sue Nelson, executive director of RMC Club Ministries. “Within each team, there is a captain, scribe, alternate, and a runner. The captain makes the final decision on the answer to a question. The scribe writes the team answer on a paper, and the runner takes their answer to a table of judges on the platform, who then grades the answer, which scorekeepers then record. Those getting 90% of the top score, receive first-place standing and can move on to the next level.

The questions are written by the NAD PBE staff. Each level (area, conference, union, national), has questions which get progressively harder.”

According to the pamphlet, “How to Guide Pathfinder Bible Experience,” from the North American Division Pathfinder Ministries, “The purpose of The Pathfinder Bible Experience is to promote and encourage in-depth Bible study and memorization by Pathfinders, so their understanding of scripture will increase and their relationship to Christ will grow.

Each team competes against a standard, and all who perform to the designated percentage advance. Meeting together adds a sense of excitement and an additional level of adrenaline that spurs participants on to higher levels of recall. Yet any and all can advance, based solely on their efforts.”

Both participating RMC teams are now eligible to attend the North America Division (NAD) PBE, April 21-22 in Tampa, Florida.

“We wish both teams success at the Division level,” stated Sue Nelson, “as they continue to study the Gospel of John, as well as the Andrews Bible Commentary on the same book.”

—Sue Nelson is executive coordinator of RMC Club Ministries. Photos by Judith Lopez and Venus Douglas.

Aurora Las Aguilas Pathfinder Team
Loveland Cougars Pathfinder Team