Dr Patrick Allen gets second five-year term as Adventist head
PASTOR Patrick Allen was last Thursday re-elected to serve for a second consecutive five-year term as president of the 230,000-strong West Indies Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, at its quinquennial session in Mandeville, Manchester.
Pastor Allen, the 54-year-old leader who was baptised into the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Fruitful Vale, Portland at age 11, was nominated by a nominating committee comprising 41 delegates. The general body of 285 delegates then ratified the nomination, by raising voting cards signalling their approval.
"I will serve the Lord and his people as best I know how," said Pastor Allen in his acceptance speech.
".We have tools to offer to the needy, we have tools to offer for the healing of the sick and we have tools in offering hope to the dying. The church must go out in the communities.
Not only must our doctrines and beliefs be appropriate for the time, but our outreach and intervention must also be shaped to fix the specific need of our contemporary society and the communities in which we live," said the Adventist head.
He added: "There is a need for the church to address issues such as HIV/AIDS, child and spousal abuse, teenage pregnancy, crime and violence and unemployment. These issues must not be swept under the carpet and allowed to wait.
"We don't have the luxury of being bystanders, we don't have the luxury of being idle watchers, we don't have the luxury of basking in Laodecia lukewarmness," he said. "Our response must be appropriate and it must be prompt," he added.
Pastor Allen, a former school principal who was trained for the pastoral ministry at the Adventist-run Andrews University Seminary in Michigan, USA, pastored several churches in St Catherine and Clarendon, including May Pen and Spanish Town.
He rose through the ranks to become president of the Central Jamaica Conference and also the West Indies Union Conference in 1998 and 2000, respectively.
Other officers elected at the session were Pastor Derek Bignall, executive secretary; Pastor Herman Ming, treasurer; vice-presidents, Pastor Enell Hall and Pastor Milton Gregory; and field secretary, Pastor Wendell McMillan.