2018 enditnow® Emphasis Day is observed across Germany
The man in Tübingen presenting the enditnow sermon from the 2018 resource packet is personally affected by the emotional abuse message.
[Germany] In Tübingen, while preparing to present the enditnow® Emphasis Day sermon, Abishek Tavamani, a native of India, began to understand that some aspects of his culture which are considered normal were, in fact, abusive. The sermon provided in the enditnow® resource packet, along with the additional material, opened his mind, and he aptly shared it with church members during the morning worship service.
He emphasized the importance of words and how we say them to our partners. What we say can be psychologically traumatic and we may never even realize it. He concluded the sermon by sharing passages from the Bible that recapped the message. The sermon material affected Mr. Tavamani, and he was effective in presenting it.
Bettina Omar organized the church service. A PowerPoint presentation showed how demeaning the words we hear as children can hurt us for a whole lifetime. It stressed the importance of what we say, because even if the words are not meant to hurt, they can destroy self-esteem.
Although no spectacular activities were organized, people were invited to sign a pledge to engage in stopping abuse. The women joined Omar in expressing thankfulness for men who also understand now is the time to end all kinds of abuse.
In Hamburg, the women’s ministries group from the congregation of the international church are active, particularly with abuse prevention. In Europe the color for abuse prevention is orange.
The women prepared the program of the day. Attention was paid to how words can kill personal dreams and self-confidence and cause psychological trauma. This is true for a spouse as well as for children. As the school year had already begun, the children’s story touched on the topic of bullying.
Loving companionship was demonstrated with a potluck meal as always on Sabbaths after church. It is so important to create a loving and trustworthy atmosphere in our churches so that it can be a safe place for all. These women take to heart the counsel from Ephesians 4:29, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen” (NIV).
In Dresden, the women’s ministries team in Germany made their presence known at the 23rd German Prevention Congress held June 11 and 12, 2018, when they provided literature about enditnow® Adventists say no to violence. Women's ministries staff worked with two other Seventh-day Adventist organizations that bring awareness to abuse and violence in their own special ways: The Desert Flower Center at Waldfriede Hospital in Berlin, which primarily addresses Female Genital Mutilation and the social work department of the Theological University Friedensau. This team of three Adventist organizations were part of the 150 organizations in attendance at the 2018 national congress. Read about the 23rd German Prevention Congress here
H. Ottschofski notes in her report from Tübingen, that in spite of the fact the worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church calendar includes many special days, most of these days pass without notice. It is likely to be true in many regions that enditnow® Emphasis Day, the fourth Sabbath of August, is not emphasized—but the fact is that in many conferences around the world, church congregations are joining together and becoming vocal and visible in their territories as they march against abuse and raise awareness about violence in their cities.
Indeed, greater participation is occurring because the topic is no longer just an idea of the women’s ministries department. enditnow® is a Seventh-day Adventist initiative supported by seven departments of the worldwide church that are concerned about abuse, raising awareness of it, and working to end it. And not simply ending violence against women and children, but violence against men, the elderly, and anyone who is at risk.
Reported in Tübingen by H. Ottschofski
Reported in Hamburg by Nancy Duske, women's ministries director for Hansa Conference of North German Union Conference
Photos by Hansa Conference Women’s Ministries department
Seven departments of the world church sponsor enditnow®:
Education, Church Ministries, Family Ministries, Health Ministries, Ministerial Association, Women's Ministries, Youth Ministries
These seven departments of the worldwide church also provide resource material for enditnow® Emphasis Day sermon resource packets compiled by General Conference (GC) Women's Ministries.
Recent enditnow® Emphasis Day sermon resource packets have been contributed by these departments:
2018 “Words That Wound: The Trauma of Emotional Abuse,” was written by Dr. Katia Reinert, associate director of GC Health Ministries.
2017 “Love Protects: Healing the Wounds of Emotional Abuse,” was written by Dr. Linda Mei Lin Kohn, director of GC Children’s Ministries.
2016 “Learning to Love as He Loved” was written by Nancy Wilson, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists.
2015 “Love at Home” was written by Dr. Julian Melgosa, associate director of the GC Department of Education.
2014 “Freedom in Relationships” was written by Drs. Willie and Elaine Oliver, director and associate director of GC Family Ministries.
2013 “Jesus Is Your Refuge” was written by Drs. Claudio and Pamela Consuegra, director and associate director of Family Ministries in the North American Division.
2012 “Moved with Compassion” was written by Sharon Platt-McDonald, director of Women’s and Health Ministries in the British Union Conference.