September 17, 2019

September 17, 2019
The last two weeks have been hectic here at the conference office in preparation for the upcoming 65th Constituency Session on Sunday, September 22, 2019, at 7:55 a.m. at the White Memorial church. By the way, I encourage every church member, and obviously the delegates, to visit the session website ( to become acquainted with this vital event impacting the ministry of our conference.

During these weeks, the officers concluded the town hall meetings, the communication team has been completing video reports and the support staff has been compiling materials and organizing them to be ready for that important day.

Also, I want to highlight a couple additional events during the same period:

More than 270 young people attended the traditional Hispanic Youth Camp held on Labor Day weekend, and Jonathan Leonardo, from The Love Reality Tour Ministries, was the speaker. This annual gathering has become a tradition among the Spanish (and now English) speaking young people for more than 50 years, to seek the Lord together, to participate in sports (volleyball, basketball, swimming, etc.) and to build new friendships; some have even found their life companions! Kudos to the Hispanic Region pastors for their excellent job planning and leading this memorable encounter.

The next weekend, Esther and I headed to Lake Arrowhead to attend the La Sierra University Board of Trustees Retreat. What a peaceful place! We had the opportunity of enjoying God’s creation and had wonderful fellowship with other trustees and their spouses as they shared their spiritual journeys.

During Sabbath hours, the trustees had the opportunity to listen to three remarkable stories of how God has lead La Sierra University (LSU) for 97 years to become an icon for higher education in the Seventh-day Adventist Church and the Riverside community, impacting thousands of lives which now serve all over the world.

The presenters of those stories were Attorney Kent Hansen, Pastor John Brunt and Dr. Katherine Koh. These firsthand stories were presented by alumni who have served LSU as legal counsel, board trustee and faculty member respectively. These, and other stories, will be included along with historical pictures in the upcoming LSU centennial book in 2022. Look for it.

On Tuesday, September 10, the current SCC Executive Committee had its last meeting for this quadrennial term. This group of 31 church members representing all segments of our church membership and leadership across the conference has been faithful in their fiduciary and ecclesiastical responsibility. A million of thanks to each one of them, especially the lay members who many times had to leave their work earlier taking personal time in order to attend these meetings. May the Lord keep blessing you and your families.

Last Sabbath, September 14, I had the privilege to join the Central Filipino church 62nd anniversary celebration. During the entire weekend, these church members remembered beautiful stories of how God was the leader of that congregation throughout the past six decades. This church is the great-grandmother of all the Filipino congregations we have in the North American Division. Keep your eye on the Recorder magazine for a story with more details in a future issue.

Our deepest gratitude to Pastor Simeon Rosete and his wife, Ellen, for 27 years of ministry in that congregation, having a break of service at the conference office as the Asian Pacific Ministries Director from 1993-1996.


• 65th SCC Constituency Session: This important meeting will be held on Sunday, September 22, 2019, at the White Memorial SDA Church from 7:55 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Your fellow traveler,

Velino A. Salazar
Southern California Conference