Connecting Columbia Union Seventh-day Adventists

Allegheny East Conference

News from the Allegheny East Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, which includes churches and schools in Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.

Harriet Langley, a member of Allegheny East Conference’s Pisgah church in Bryans Road, Md., could never forget the Jefferson family. As a long-serving member of the church’s Adventist Community Services (ACS) team, she had helped many, many people, but this family was different. “The father had gotten hurt on the job and couldn’t work,” she recalls. “When they couldn’t pay the bills, he and his family were put out of the trailer they were living in.”

During the 11 o’clock service on Sabbath, January 5, Brenda Billingy, senior pastor of Allegheny East Conference’s (AEC) Metropolitan church in Hyattsville, Md., looked from her chair on the podium to the back of her church and wondered, “Why is the [Columbia] Union president here?” She soon found out. Her associate pastor, Marquis D. Johns, had planned a surprise ceremony, that included Columbia Union president Dave Weigley, executive secretary Rob Vandeman and treasurer Seth Bardu, to celebrate her ministerial credentials that had been recently revised to indicate that she is an ordained Seventh-day Adventist minister.

During year end meetings last week, Columbia Union Conference Executive Committee members voted to give $40,000 to the Allegheny East and New Jersey conferences to aid them in their super storm Sandy relief efforts. The three union officers then prayed over José H. Cortés, New Jersey Conference president; and Henry J. Fordham, Allegheny East Conference president; as well as for the efforts of volunteers throughout New Jersey.

Delegates to Allegheny East Conference’s (AEC) Fourth Quadrennial Constituency Session elected two new officers, four new departmental directors, extended terms of office to five years and spent considerable time discussing their constitution and bylaws Sunday at their daylong meeting in the northeast corner of Maryland.

When the delegates to Allegheny East Conference’s Fourth Quadrennial Constituency Session elected Henry Fordham president Sunday morning, he told them he had come full circle. “In my family we had 27 ministers, two union presidents, six conference presidents and several teachers,” he announced. “God has enabled me to join this group of servant leaders.”

At the annual Day of Fellowship for Allegheny East Conference’s (AEC) Spanish Council of Churches, held last Sabbath at the conference’s headquarters in Pine Forge, Pa., attendees had much to celebrate. In addition to enjoying a day of worship, workshops and fellowship, the conference’s Hispanic members celebrated their first graduation from the School of Discipleship, Master Guide promotions, 18 baptisms, recognized five pastors with certificates of ministry and welcomed five new churches into the fold.

If you are ever in Baltimore on a Friday evening, you can find Yehuda Mordechai in the basement of an old Jewish synagogue. Allegheny East Conference’s Berea Temple now occupies the building, but its Jewish history holds special significance to Mordechai, who is working to build up the newly established Baltimore Hebrew Adventist congregation in an area with a large Jewish population. It is in this place that Mordechai leads a Friday night Shabbat service designed to reach Jews for Jesus.