Pastor Elie Henry (center) president of the Inter-American Division leads the Mid-year Executive Committee Meetings next to Ivelisse Herrera (left) treasurer, and Pastor Leonard Johnson (right) executive secretary, on May 7, 2024, in Miami, Florida, United States. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]
Pastor Elie Henry (center) president of the Inter-American Division leads the Mid-year Executive Committee Meetings next to Ivelisse Herrera (left) treasurer, and Pastor Leonard Johnson (right) executive secretary, on May 7, 2024, in Miami, Florida, United States. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

Adventist Leaders in Inter-America Vow To Combine Efforts To Expand the Mission

Executive committee members vote on upcoming plans, initiatives and activities for the 24 unions.

News May 14, 2024
Pastor Elie Henry (center) president of the Inter-American Division leads the Mid-year Executive Committee Meetings next to Ivelisse Herrera (left) treasurer, and Pastor Leonard Johnson (right) executive secretary, on May 7, 2024, in Miami, Florida, United States. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

Executive committee members vote on upcoming plans, initiatives and activities for the 24 unions.

May 14, 2024 | Miami, Florida, United States | Libna Stevens, Inter-American Division News

“We are here because we want to finish the mission that God has given us as a church and vow together to recapture the spirit of mission that Inter-America has always been passionate about and is known for,” said Pastor Elie Henry, president of the Inter-American Division (IAD), as he addressed more than 160 administrators and church leaders during the last day of annual business meetings last week.

“It’s all about mission and we want to continue mobilizing the family of God throughout the territory, inspiring to be engaged in mission, with programs and activities to spreading the gospel further and reach more for the Kingdom of heaven,” said Pastor Henry.  Pastor Henry thanked his IAD team and the union administrators for their invaluable dedication and commitment to creating and implementing strategies, initiatives, and activities to that end. “All we want to do is keep advancing in mission together and not be a stumbling block with your local programs and activities,” he said.

IAD President Pastor Elie Henry challenges executive committee members to continue doubling efforts to fulfill the mission across the territory, on May 7, 2024. [Photo: Keila Trejo/IAD]

Keeping the Momentum of the Mission

The responsibility of keeping the momentum of the mission advancing rests on the shoulders of executive committee members and the thousands upon thousands of active church leaders and members who are committed to spreading the gospel tirelessly every day, every week, and every month, IAD administrators said.

The time has come to continue working together and give collectively as a division to advance the work, said Pastor Henry as he referenced General Conference Treasurer Paul Douglas for his call to join efforts not in one project, or a special region, but united with the world church in gathering resources to expand the mission.

“The ‘All the Family in Mission’ initiatives need to continue to be embraced throughout the entire territory with its comprehensive joint initiatives to spread the gospel of Christ, continuing to mobilize the members throughout the Inter-American Division,” said Pastor Henry. “We can surpass the 4-million-member mark through the help of the Holy Spirit.”

Executive committee members listen in during the second day o business meetings in Miami, Florida, United States, May 7, 2024. [Photo: Keila Trejo/IAD]

Total Member Involvement Initiatives

The Seventh-day Adventist Church’s Mid-year Executive Committee Meetings saw leaders reviewing and approving strategies focused on mission initiatives for greater involvement among the church membership in joint evangelism efforts, in Miami, Florida, United States, May 6-7, 2024.

IAD department and ministries directors presented ongoing mission initiatives taking place throughout the territory since last year and upcoming ones which align with the I Will Go mission initiatives during the rest of the year as well as in 2025.  These included from discipleship programs across churches and congregations, community impact initiatives, as well as evangelistic efforts, and many more.

Leaders voted to carry on the “All the Family in Mission” into 2025 pending additional input from union administrators to continue expanding on the initiative and the strategic plans for the years to follow.

IAD departmental directors take turns on stage to share the ongoing mission initiatives they have been leading since 2023 in support of the strategic plan voted for the 2020-2025 quinquenium. [Photo: Keila Trejo/IAD]

“The missionary focus seen here during the meetings has touched my heart in a very special way,” said Pastor Ignacio Navarro, president of the Chiapas Mexican Union. “I saw with joy how the executive secretary gave his report with such intentional missionary focus, saw the treasury report with such defined mission focus and saw department heads more than I have ever seen along with Pastor Elie Henry on what’s in his heart for mission for every union. I praise God for what is being done here and I see that we are staring a new era for mission in all the levels of the territory???,” said Navarro.

“On behalf of myself and the administration in Chiapas, we will stick as closely as possible to the [IAD’s] mission programs in the context of territory.”  Navarro went on to praise the creative richness and experience of the executive committee leadership and appealed to the IAD administrators to provide more spaces where executive members can dialogue together in synergy in upcoming strategic planning meetings.

“Chiapas has distinguished itself as a missionary territory, but we want to double our efforts for mission,” Navarro said.

pastor Ignacio Navarro, president of the Chiapas Mexican Union, shares his positive impressions on the mission-driven initiatives discussed during the second day of business meetings, May. 7, 2024. [Photo: LIbna Stevens/IAD]

Committee members voted on survey commission reports to organize the Los Bosques Chiapas Mission, becoming the 9th local field in the Chiapas Mexican Union. The new field will cater to a large district of indigenous people in the northern part of the state.  In addition, Los Tuxtlas Mission from the Inter-Oceanic Mexican Union will be upgraded to conference statues. The union is comprised now of 11 conferences.

Promoting Scriptures and Spirit of Prophecy

Church leaders were reminded to ensure that the study of the Scriptures, the Spirit of Prophecy writings as well as the fundamental beliefs that deal with salvation by faith, the sanctuary, and the second coming expand across educational institutions, local churches, and everywhere.

Recommendations from the General Conference to hold more bible conferences and Spirit of Prophecy conferences throughout institutions in Inter-American Adventist Theological Seminary (IATS) campuses , increase the promotion of ‘Back to the Altar’ prayer initiatives, short spiritual messages in all available digital platforms, train more local pastors for post graduate theology degrees, and much more, was voted by committee members.

Church leaders pray during one of many prayer sessions during the May 6-7, 2024, executive committee meetings. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

Next year’s missionary book Living With Hope by Marcello Niek and Bruno Raso, which will highlight seven keys to improve mental health and emotional intelligence, will see a distribution of seven million copies throughout the IAD, leaders voted.

Church leaders were updated on upcoming training in each union territory for the new digital Hope Bible School, which replaces the Bible Correspondence School of years past, articles still pending for the Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists, as well as the new term Urban Missional Churches to reach urban and secular communities instead of the term “Friendly Churches.”

Leaders prayed for upcoming plans and evangelistic efforts and for the recapturing of the spirit of mission among the church membership, especially in countries facing difficulties and economic challenges throughout the IAD territory.

Twenty-three-year-old medical student Xabisa Hamilton, a youth lay representative from Guyana, Caribbean Union, was impresed to see the church leadership voting plans to make a difference in local churches. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

Upcoming Events and Activities

Church leaders also voted on policy amendments, were briefed on delegation numbers for each union and overall 2025 General Conference Session in St. Louis, Missouri, July 3-12, as well as upcoming events and initiatives as follows:

  • GAiN Conference, July 10-14, 2024, Chiang Mai, Thailand
  • SeLD Conference, July 22-25, 2024
  • ASi Inter-America Convention, August 14-18, 2024, Panama
  • All the Family in Mission programs
    • Baptismal celebration, June 29, Guadeloupe, French Antilles
    • Baptismal Celebration, September 28, Jamaica
    • Congress, November 9, Montemorelos, Mexico
  • IAD Ministerial Retreats in September 2024
    • Cancun, Mexico, Sep. 2-5, 2024 for 5 unions in Mexico, Belize, Dutch and South Colombian Unions
    • Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, Sep. 9-12, for Atlantic Caribbean, Caribbean, Jamaica, Dominican, French Antilles, Haitian, and Puerto Rican Unions.
    • San Salvador, El Salvador – Sep. 16-19, for El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama and South Central American Unions
  • Spirit of Prophecy Symposium, October 18-20, Northern Caribbean University, Jamaica
  • Possibility Ministries Spiritual Retreat, Feb. 17-23, 2025, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
  • Publishing Congress (IADPA territory) Mar. 23-26, 2025, Panama
  • Spirit of Prophecy Symposium, Oct. 24-25, 2025
Mid-year Executive Committee Members stand together for a group photo, at the IAD Headquarter’s Bender L. Archbold Auditorium, May 7, 2024. [Photo: Libna Stevens/IAD]

Inter-American Division’s next executive committee meetings will be held Nov. 9-12, 2024, in Montemorelos, Mexico.

To learn more about Inter-American Division’s initiatives, events, and activities, visit us at

The original version of this story was posted on the Inter-American Division news site.