News Briefs for June 7, 2019

News reports from Sweden, Walla Walla University, Loma Linda University Health (LLUH), Courage for Life and Southern Adventist University:

The Adventist Church in Sweden has issued a statement on the need to lovingly minister to LGBT+ individuals. The five-page document is titled “Room for Everyone.” It is subtitled “The Values of the Swedish Union of Churches Conference of Seventh-day Adventists in Relation to LGBTQs.”

An excerpt from the document reads:

“The Seventh-day Adventist Church in Sweden has failed in its relationship to LGBTQs and has neither promoted confidence nor created conditions for constructive dialogue. For a long time, the Church has had a hard time recognizing and managing the complexity of the LGBTQ issue. Although the Church has clear theological explanations concerning sexuality and marriage, these often lack guidance for pastoral and spiritual care in congregations. This lack of knowledge and insight means that members and employees often fail in their response to LGBTQs. There is a lack of clarity about concepts and phenomena, and often the definitions of terms such as sexual orientation, gender identity and sexual practice are confused, which can lead to condemnation of LGBTQs solely for their sexual orientation.”

The full statement is available in both Swedish and English on the Swedish Union’s website.

The new Walla Walla University Center for Humanitarian Engagement (CHE) has opened under the leadership of executive director David Lopez. The CHE will play a primary role in university initiatives related to service that include local and global opportunities for evangelistic and humanitarian work.

The CHE is a contact point for dreaming about new ways to serve and for making progress on existing initiatives such as the Student Missions program, the WWU chapter of Engineers Without Borders, and the annual WWU Service Day. Lopez is initiating cyclical projects as well, such as Saturdays of Service in the local community, and one-time projects, such as summer mission trips.

From a LLUH press release: May 31, 2019 — Loma Linda University Health has been named to Becker’s Hospital Review as one of its 2019 list of the “150 Top Places to Work in Healthcare.” The May 21 announcement included the organization as one of the top hospitals, health systems and healthcare companies that promote diversity within the workforce, employee engagement and professional growth.

“Our employees are the foundation of our organization. Their dedication to providing the highest quality service every day is key to how we fulfill our mission daily,” said Richard H. Hart, MD, Dr PH, president of Loma Linda University Health. “Their dedication to excellence is what enabled Loma Linda University Health to achieve this accolade.”

Becker’s Hospital Review is a leading hospital industry publication focusing on business, legal news, and analysis. The organizations featured on this list offer benefits and opportunities for employees to build successful careers above and beyond the average healthcare provider or company; they encourage professional development and promote leadership from within. Many members of the list offer unique wellness and personal benefits to ensure employees strike a positive work/life balance.

The Courage for Life ministry had partnered with two-time Grammy-nominated artist Amik Byram to create the first female-narrated New Living Translation (NLT) audio Bible. It is available through a free app.

“There is comfort in hearing your mother, best friend or grandmother tell you a story,” said Ann White, founder of Courage for Life according to Religion News Service. “In the same way, the Courage for Life all-female narrated Bible delivers God’s word in a comforting, friendly voice.”

A group of eight students and seven alumni from the School of Visual Art and Design at Southern Adventist University has partnered with other film professionals to produce a new eight-part video series, in partnership with Stewardship Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists. The series is titled “Smoky Mountain Rescue,” and the first episode will air at the Pathfinder International Camporee this summer.