Inauguration of Ellen G White Estate branch office in the Philippines
Adventist history unfolds as the church inaugurated an Ellen G White estate branch office, the second outside of the United States, on June 28 at the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies (AIIAS) in Cavite, Philippines. Formerly an Ellen G White research center in AIIAS, the office will continually provide resources needed for research in Adventist heritage.
The Ellen G. White Estate, Incorporated is an organization created by the last will and testament of Adventist church co-founder, Ellen G. White, to act as her agent in the custody of her writings, and handling her properties. Her writings are also known in the Adventist church as Spirit of Prophecy (SOP).
Representatives from the General Conference EG White Estate, Dr. James Nix and Dr. Alberto Timm, were on hand for the ceremony.
“Elevating the research center to an estate branch has been a dream of mine for several years as this (AIIAS) is a General Conference institution [and thus] …eligible to have a branch office. What we are doing is acknowledging what you already know - that international students come [here] to AIIAS to prepare to work for the Lord’s cause,” said Dr. James Nix, director of the Ellen G White Estate located in Maryland, USA.
The General Conference has elected Dr. Reuel Almocera as director of the branch office, making him an assistant director of the EG White Estate.
“We are not just upgrading to an EG White estate branch but we have incorporated this under the center for Adventist research in Asia (CARA) – a new organization with an expanded vision to collate local, indigenous and resource materials on Adventist heritage in Asia with the EG White Estate branch office and the Asian Mission Study Center as components,” explained Almocera.
Almocera further added that the office will fulfill and expand its function by working with SOP coordinators to establish mini-research centers, develop portable exhibits and provide fun activities like trivia games for church programs.
“The church celebrates Heritage Sabbath on October 22 every year and we can serve as resource persons for local churches and academic institutions. The battle ground is not [always] in the academic circle but in the local churches among members who needs to be aware of the Heritage of our church,” noted Almocera.
When asked whether a building expansion is imminent due to the additional services and resources being developed, Almocera thinks that the growth of the office is not to be determined by the physical presence of those who come to conduct research at the center since all related resources will be available online. Rather, CARA is determined to combine the past and future- Adventist heritage and mission - by adding to the collection of content for quality of study.
Dr. Alberto Timm, associate director for the E G White Estate, observed that a “branch office like this is for everybody- old people, adults, young people, children. This is not restricted for Adventists but also for those who want to know more about Ellen White like theologians from other church organizations who intend further research. Programs for awareness would need our Adventist teachers to serve as links between the [students] and these centers.
Nix invites everyone to “Come, study, read, absorb and believe. If you don’t let it touch your life and believe that God is speaking through these messages to us, then really it is not worth much to you to come and spend the time unless you just want to know some history. So come and enjoy the fruits from Ellen White as she points to the Bible and help us on our way to heaven.”
There are an estimated 15 languages translated from the writings of EG White available at the EG White estate branch office in AIIAS with The Desire of Ages and The Great Controversy being the most translated. Other EG White Estate branch office locations include Andrews University in Michigan, Loma Linda University in California, Oakwood University in Alabama and Adventist University of Africa in Kenya.
AIIAS is a graduate level institution that trains leaders not only from Asia but around the world. It continues to spread influence in both traditional classroom and through worldwide virtual education. There are now over 80 nationalities represented in the campus.
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