Professional Dissertations DMin

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry


Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary


Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Noel Brathwaite

Second Advisor

Clinton Stockwell

Third Advisor

Richard Sylvester



The data from the Berrien County Health Department (2011b) shows that the city of Benton Harbor has unusually high prevalence of obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. In addition, the city is a food desert and residents lack good healthcare coverage which helps to exacerbate these lifestyle diseases among its inner-city residents. Also, the dearth of healthy food intake plus the lack of exercise further hampers the community's health.


A nine-week health-wellness program was opened to the community through the Harbor of Hope church in Benton Harbor. During this program community members had their biometrics screened at the beginning and end of the program. They were taught how to cook healthy, plant-based meals, and how to do regular, heart-pumping exercises for their fitness level.


At the end of the program, the community residents who completed the first and second biometric testing showed that their blood sugar and blood pressure levels were lowered by an average of four points. All of the participants learned how to prepare plant-based meals on their own. They also learned how to do controlled moderate exercises such as sit ups, push-ups, and running.


The project can be considered a success in that it achieved the two main goals that the researcher desired to achieve. The first goal was to lower the participants' blood sugar and blood pressure levels. The data showed this was achieved. The second, was to draw people to Christ through our Adventist health message. The effectiveness of our Adventist health message was clearly demonstrated by the fact that one of the eight participants who completed the project accepted Jesus as Savior and Lord and was baptized into the Harbor of Hope Seventh-day Adventist church.

Subject Area

Missions, Medical--Michigan--Benton Harbor; Evangelistic work--Michigan--Seventh-day Adventists; Harbor of Hope Seventh-day Adventist Church (Benton Harbor, Mich.)