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21 Comments

  1. God's Will Paramount
    03 August 2012 @ 9:45 pm

    I am curious. Is the One Project about, or for, Adventists who have had little or no experience with Jesus, or is it for the whole world wide Adventist family? Is the primary Focus and Mover of this "project" Jesus Himself, or not? If both are true, how come our church HQ at GC and its Divisions around the world are not in the forefront of this project? What do we mean by "project"? I thought being a Christian 7th day Adventist was a about a relationship with Christ. What happened to the other Persons of the Divinity? Any reason (s) why they are being left out? Can you help me?

  2. Anonymous
    04 August 2012 @ 4:02 am

    Your comments remind me of Jesus' post resurrection statement to His disciples, that He was going ahead of them into Galilee, and that they should expect to see Him there.  Seeing Jesus is a larger context seems to be exactly what we are invited to do – and what a great challenge to realize He has gone ahead of us there, and that if we are looking we will find Him already at work there.  Perhaps that larger context is where we are called to join Him!  Thanks for the reminder.

  3. Stephen Ferguson
    04 August 2012 @ 9:36 am

    Stupid questions for Nathan:

    • Is the One Project primarily a Youth-ish SDA Movement?
    • Is it similar to or have any connection to GYC (or in some ways is it a somewhat opposite movement theologically and philosophically)?

    And I do like the idea.  We forget that history in the centre of everything. The Bible itself is not even really the Word or the Truth but only word and truth (lower case).  The Bible itself tells us in John 1 that it is Jesus who is the Word and ultimate Truth (capitals), and everything else points to Him and is fulfilled in Him. A Christ-centered theological and practical movement is something the SDA Church well needs, as we can otherwise become focused in orthopraxy.

  4. Nathan Brown
    04 August 2012 @ 11:58 pm

    Thanks for your responses and questions.
    I had been hoping that some more One Project-connected folks might have a go at answering some of these questions but I can offer some responses based on my understanding.
    In an official sense, the One Project is a ministry of Andrews University that brings together among its leaders a group of pastors, chaplains and others, many of whom are based on Adventist campuses. So while not intentionally or specifically youth-focused, it has some leanings toward youth because of its campus originas and the "day jobs" of many of those who are involved.
    The two web links above give more of a background.

    • Stephen Ferguson
      05 August 2012 @ 3:08 am

      And what about GYC?  Why launch this program when there is already GYC, which is increasingly gaining GC backing? Isn't that too many cooks spoiling the broth? Or are OneProject cooking a very different dish?  

      I have looked at both websites, including the expanded philsophy by Japhet De Oliveira.  The more good-natured side of me says One Project is exactly what the SDA Church needs.  The spectical part of me thinks that One Project is indeed motivated by the growing success of the conservative GYC, which again has gone from the fringes to the mainstream by having a powerful patron in Pres Wilson, and that this might be a counter-cultural attempt to replicate GYC's sucess on the more liberal wing of the Church. 

      • Kevin Riley
        05 August 2012 @ 3:50 am

        Anything that presents a better view of Adventism than GYC is, IMO, to be applauded.  The One Project is much closer to where the church is in Australia than GYC.

        • prbigkev
          05 August 2012 @ 6:20 am

          Kevin: Have you attended any of the GYC or AYC conventions?  Have you attended any of the One Project gatherings?
          In what ways is the the One Project "much closer to where the church is in Australia"?

          • Kevin Riley
            05 August 2012 @ 11:00 am

            I have heard reports from people who have gone to both, and watched videos and read transcripts of talks at AYC.  I would have liked to attend the One PRoject, as I have heard a lot of good things about it, and like what I have heard and read from the presenters, but the location was not convenient.  As we are leaving Melbourne later this year, I am confident that the next progam will be held here after we leave :).  I find AYC to be more conservative than most church members I know, or churches I have attended.  My recent experience has been mostly in larger city churches, but the One Project seems closer in both style and substance to where most SDAs I know are, even in most of the country churches I am familiar with.  I know there are many SDAs who do appreciate AYC (including close family members), but I doubt they will reach the majority of SDA youth.  I am openly left of centre when it comes to both belief and practice (although I wouldn't use the 'l' word), so you can hardly expect me to not want an alternative to AYC.  I still believe there is room for both – and more – within the SDA church.

          • Stephen Ferguson
            06 August 2012 @ 2:33 am

            Sorry I hope my comments didn't start this, but it is illustrative of what I am talking about.  I can just see the possibility of dispute between GYC/AYC supporters and 1P supporters.  Despite Nathan saying there is place for both ministries, and Kevin saying each ministry reaches a different audience, which I both agree with, I can imagine GYC/AYC asking the legitimate question – why have two youth revival movements? 

            Moreover, isn't having two youth revival movements a potential waste of resources and efforts, and wouldn't it be better to have one?  What would happen if someone tried to start an alternative clone of Pathfinders, with the line, 'There is room for two youth outdoor movements'? 

            You can spin it all you like in PR and Church propaganda speak, but some in GYC/AYC are going to see 1P as a threat.  They are going to see the emphasis on 'Christ-centred' in 1P as a dig as if GYC supposedly wasn't Christ-focused. The discussion between prbigkev and Kevin, after Kevin said "One Project much closer to where the church is in Australia" is case in point.

          • Kevin Riley
            06 August 2012 @ 5:07 am

            We could ask – and quite a few did – why AYC felt the need to start duplicating programs already provided by the Union and conferences?  It was (according to those who support AYC) because they perceived a lack in what was offered, or an emphasis they did not agree with.  Your report of what happened in your SS class demonstrates this.  AYC strongly supports an emphasis on public and personal evangelism and conversion over all else, and see the rest of us as not taking that seriously enough.  And while I don't support some of their agenda, they aren't entirely wrong about that – although I believe they could broaden the methods to be used to do that.  Some see an emphasis on law keeping and behaviour by some (not all) AYC presenters that they believe needs to be moderated by alternative views.  I also agree with that. 

            We could see AYC as representing the 'conservative' tradition, and the One Project representing 'progressive' Adventism, and choose our sides accordingly.  Or we could see both groups as having needed correctives for the SDA community and listen to both and take whatever action we see as necessary after that.  There is no reason why they have to be in 'competition', and I doubt most of the leaders of either want it to be like that.  After all, an emphasis on a relationship with Jesus is not in any way in conflict with taking either our mission or our message seriously.  Nor is the message as presented by either group the only way to view the SDA message.  It may be good for the church to both listen to and embrace both, while knowing that one will more easily reach some people, and the other more easily reach others. 

      • Stephen Ferguson
        05 August 2012 @ 4:34 am

        So Kevin, are you agreeing that One Project might be a counter-movement to GYC?  For the avoidance of doubt, I have no problem if it is. However, I can see a bit of competition between GYC and One Project, even with different patrons (GYC via GC and 1P via NAD,SPD, Europe etc) which may or may not be a good thing.  No doubt GYC will claim One Project is not necessary, because GYC will of course claim it is also Christ-centred and Christ-focused.

        • Kevin Riley
          05 August 2012 @ 5:29 am

          I wasn't make a claim for motivation, simply making an observation.  I believe there is a need for a number of revival/reformation movements to reach all SDAs, and if The One Project and GYC both make positive contributions to that, then that is good.  I just don't believe that GYC is going to reach the majority of young SDAs, and I obviously object to some of the elements of perfectionism and legalism presented by some of their speakers, so an alternative is welcome, and if it comes from a perspective closer to where many/most SDAs are in Australia, then that is even better.  I would hope no one would feel they have to make a choice between the One Project and GYC if they feel both would be helpful to them.  That would include church leaders and institutions. 

      • Nathan Brown
        05 August 2012 @ 5:13 am

        Stephen, Motivations for initiatives or events come from many sources and are almost always mixed in various ways, so perhaps both your suggestions have some element of truth. However, for the sake of the church and of the One Project, I hope and believe that your positive comment carries the much greater weight. I am aware that there has been some dialogue between leadership of the two groups and a number of GYC leaders were at the One Project gathering in Seattle in February. To see the One Project as a rival/liberal GYC or even an anti-GYC is to misrepresent it, sell it short and miss the core passion of the One Project.

        • Stephen Ferguson
          05 August 2012 @ 5:35 am

          Nathan I hope your right and if the 1P gains popularity GYC won't see it as some sort of threat. I am all for using whatever we can reach bring revival – unfortunately movements are also composed of people.

        • Stephen Ferguson
          06 August 2012 @ 2:39 am

          And further, if GYC and 1P have been in dialogue, why can't both youth revival movements join together – explain that?  GYC is already extremely popular, has a degree of momentum, and credibility.  The only thing that logically comes to mind is that there is something in GYC that the major proponents of 1P must not like. 

          At my 'young adults' SS class last week, someone came back from 1P held in Sydney.  They ended up having an argument with the presenter of the lesson (who is more conservative), who had just come from a different Church planting course. It was like GYC and 1P going head-to-head right then and there.

          The presenter argued that we should not waste too much time on just making friends, but must spread the Gospel first, and then make friends with those who are more receptive to the Gospel.  The person who had just come back from 1P said the exact opposite, saying such an approach from not Christ-centred.

          Again, I hope I am wrong, but I guess watch this space… It has only been like 1 week, and I have already personally witnessed disagreement between 1P and GYC supporters.

  5. prbigkev
    06 August 2012 @ 6:22 am

    Those who have attended both the GYC/AYC and the One Project are of course diverse.  That is to say within the GYC/AYC group there is much diversity and likewise within the One Project group.  To label one group as "conservative" and the other as "progressive" is to risk creating an unnecessary dichotomy.  Let us pray that all drawn to attend the various events are blessed and inspired to a closer walk with God and a deeper commitment to sharing God with others.
    I recall that two or three years ago a Australian Union Conference youth/training initiative was cancelled because of lack of support.  Whereas the AYC attracted record numbers.  It seems to me that AYC (and by extension GYC) was/is offering a program that is attractive to their respective target audience.

    • Stephen Ferguson
      06 August 2012 @ 7:18 am

      And I recall one year a local lay leader in our Conference sent out a mass invite to a AYC event.  It was shortly followed by an email from the Youth Director of the Conference with words to the effect, 'This is not a Conference endorsed event.'  Let's face facts that the official Church in Australia has been less than supportive of AYC – for whatever reason. 

      • Kevin Riley
        06 August 2012 @ 12:29 pm

        I suspect that may have had something to do with AYC planning programs at the same time and advertising them as if they were official programs (as in the case of the AUC program), while not really liasing with the church. 

      • Kevin Riley
        06 August 2012 @ 12:29 pm

        I should add that in more recent times, Australian church leaders have been invited to be part of AYC programs.

  6. William Noel
    09 August 2012 @ 6:14 pm

    Nathan,

    What you describe about the One Project is exciting.  Still, I have a couple questions.

    First, the other reports I've read indicate there is a considerable amount of study from the writings of Ellen White, who specifically instructed us to use the Bible and the Bible only.  Has there been any consideration of following that admonition in the studies done at the conference?

    Second, what emphasis is there on connecting with the Holy Spirit and discovering the ministries God wants us to be doing in the power and guidance of the Holy Spirit?  That was the source of all guidance and power in the ministry of Jesus.  He connected his disciples with that power.  He commanded his followers through all time to seek and find that connection.  Is that emphasis anywhere in the One Project? 

  7. Ella M
    12 August 2012 @ 5:56 am

          What I don't understand here is why comments questioning the existence of "two" youth projects?  I am happy there are two and there should be hundreds.  Now hundreds would be a movement.