Stories from the Bahamas, Hollywood, Nairobi and Union College

Pastor Silas N. McKinney, retired head of the Adventist denomination in The Bahamas, was buried Sunday in a state funeral attended by top officials. Prime Minister Perry Christie and Governor General Marguerite Pindling, the head of state and representative of Queen Elizabeth II, were present as was parliamentary opposition leader Hubert Minnis, cabinet ministers and ambassadors. An honor guard of police and military carried the casket, reported the Tribune. McKinney had been president of the denomination’s Bahamas Conference and later president of the West Indies Union Conference, including Jamaica and a wider area in the Caribbean at the time. He was 89 and passed away July 16 from health problems he had struggled with for years. He is survived by Ruth, his wife of 60 years, and five children, six grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

The “trailer” for Hacksaw Ridge, the Hollywood movie about Adventist hero Desmond Doss, has been released. A “trailer” is a short promotional film distributed in advance of a major cinema release. The famous actor Mel Gibson is the director of this movie and major Hollywood producers are behind it, as well as an Adventist documentary producer who released a film about Doss last year. Doss is the only noncombatant to receive the Congregational Medal of Honor in the history of the United States military. He served as a medic and held on to his Adventist principles of peace and Sabbath-keeping. The trailer can be seen on the Web at

The Adventist Center for Care and Support in Nairobi has been a partner in a pilot project for slum children with special needs and their parents, along with the Special Olympics and Catholic Relief Society. Over the last three years the project has started six early childhood development centers and served 270 children with disabilities, reported the Catholic News Agency. The program includes positive parenting classes and mentoring to help mothers and fathers deal with the needs of special needs children.

A new entrance to the campus and surrounding neighborhood will be built as part of the 125th anniversary of Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska. One of the original Adventist institutions of Higher Education, the planned brick walls and archways are intended to demonstrate the college’s ongoing commitment to the city, reported the Lincoln Journal-Star in its story about a vote by the city council approving the project. The college and the College View Seventh-day Adventist Church are raising about $600,000 for the design, construction and landscaping involved in the project which will be located just east of the intersection of 48th and Prescott streets in the southeast sector of the city. The college opened in September 1891 and a neighborhood grew up around it, originally known as Peanut Hill because of the Adventist promotion of alternative sources of protein for a vegetarian diet, it is now known as the College View neighborhood.