Conversation With Reformed Christian Churches Will Facilitate Exchange
Silver Spring, Maryland, USA .... [Bettina Krause--Source: Adventist News Network]
A series of conversations between the Seventh-day Adventist Church and
the World Alliance of Reformed Churches will provide a forum for
exchanging ideas, said Dr. Setri Nyomi, general secretary of the
Alliance, on a February 22 visit to the world headquarters of the
Adventist Church in Silver Spring, Maryland.
Nyomi, a 46-year-old theologian from Ghana, met with Adventist leaders
at an informal gathering, telling them that he has experienced the
positive witness of the Adventist Church close to home through his
father-in-law, who is an Adventist Church member. Nyomi also
expressed special appreciation for the work of the Adventist
Development and Relief Agency and their decades of humanitarian work on
the continent of Africa.
Nyomi's visit comes on the eve of a planned dialogue between
representatives from the Adventist Church and those from the Alliance.
Dr. Bert Beach, director of inter-church relations for the Adventist
Church worldwide, says that papers presented at the meetings will probe
issues of identity, including how the Adventist Church views itself in
relation to the Reformation. Other papers will explore how Christians
respond to issues of injustice in the world. The meetings, running
from April 1 to 7, will take place in Switzerland.
Calling the upcoming conversation "a very important new chapter" in
fostering mutual understanding, Nyomi said one of the central topics
under discussion will be "what Christians do for society, and why we do
The Alliance has become increasingly known for its willingness to speak
out strongly on issues of social justice, offering a Christian
perspective on problems ranging from economic inequity to racial
discrimination to environmental concerns. This social awareness caught
international media attention in 1982 when the Alliance voted to expel
a number of South African churches for their pro-apartheid stance.
When asked how Christians can be a strong force for social justice
without being drawn into partisan political processes, Nyomi says that
the right motivation is paramount. "When people suffer, Christians
must respond," he says. "On some issues, the government may welcome
your message; on others, the opposition may say 'Amen.'" But, Nyomi
adds, the message should never be affected by political considerations
or allegiance to a particular party.
The World Alliance of Reformed Churches, founded in 1875, represents
some 75 million Christians in 108 countries. Its 215 member
organizations are primarily Presbyterian, Reformed, United, and
For more information about the World Alliance of Reformed Churches, go