Project Documents

Date of Award

1978

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Don Jacobsen

Second Advisor

Walter Douglas

Third Advisor

C. Mervyn Maxwell

Abstract

Problem

It is estimated that of the almost 20,000 West Indian immigrants who settled in the province of Ontario, Canada, from 1966 to 1975, fifty percent now reside in the city of Toronto. Of the total West Indian immigrants baptized in Toronto during the stated period, about 2,000 of them have become members of five local Seventh-day Adventist churches. An evaluation of Seventh-day Adventist evangelism during the ten-year period is necessary to determine the relative effectiveness of evangelistic programs West Indians perceived to have introduced them to Seventh-day Adventist doctrines, and influenced them most, to become members of the selected churches.

Method

The methodology divided the study into four areas: (1) a description of the principles of evangelism which may be utilized in more effectively reaching West Indian immigrants in Toronto; (2) a brief discussion on the theology of Seventh-day Adventist evangelism as understood from the writings of Ellen G. White; (3) the gathering of data through a questionnaire administered to a randomly selected number of members baptized in Toronto from 1966 to 1975 in five Seventh-day Adventist churches in Toronto, and personal interviews with pastors and members of these churches; and (4) the data received was sorted and analyzed in order to identify the relative effectiveness of the various evangelistic programs influencing new members to join the church.

Results

The results of the study were closely related to the research objectives: The majority of West Indians baptized in Toronto first became acquainted with the teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist church through relatives. Other prevailing influences were neighbors, friends, and the Seventh-day Adventist ministers. The most significant person or agency influencing people to join the Seventh-day Adventist church in Toronto were also relatives, with neighbors,friends, and Seventh-day Adventist ministers respectively ranked as the next strongest soul-winning agencies. The right Bible doctrines had the greatest impact on people before baptism, and obedience to God's law was the most frequent reason given for joining the church.

Conclusion

Some of the conclusions of the study are as follows: (1) The selected churches in Toronto should seek to enlist, educate, and utilize the entire laity for more effective soul-winning. Emphasis should also be placed on the proper presentation of the unique Bible doctrines of the Seventh-day Adventist church; especially, obedience to God's Law; (2) A survey instrument should be developed for periodically evaluating the ongoing evangelistic programs of the Seventh-day Adventist churches. This tool would aid in planning future evangelism more effectively.

Subject Area

West Indians--Ontario--Toronto; Evangelistic work--Seventh-day Adventists

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