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2014 Midyear Committee in Osaka, Japan
July 15, 2014

The Northern Asia-Pacific Division’s (NSD) 2014 midyear committee was held May 19-21 at SDA Osaka Center Church in Osaka, Japan. About 70 delegates from the General Conference (GC), NSD, union and local conferences gathered in order to give reports on various projects, discuss business plans, and determine regulations. They also had special devotional times focusing on “Revival and Retention” in our church. 

During this meeting, the quota for NSD delegates to the 2015 GC Session in San Antonio, Texas, United States, was approved. A total of 82 delegates were allocated for NSD: 11 for those who are members of the GC Executive Committee (GCC), 2 per Conference, 1 per Mission, 2 per Union Conference, and 14 for lay people.

Moreover, the NSD midyear committee and annual council, which is attended by all NSD administrators, included time to discuss and adopt guidelines from the GC on various subjects, such as SDA doctrines, mission, and administration. In this meeting, “guidelines for the SDA Church in responding to changing cultural attitudes regarding homosexual and other alternative sexual practices” were passed. The guidelines had already been discussed in the summit, entitled, “In God’s Image: Scripture. Sexuality. Society,” which convened in Cape Town, South Africa, from March 17 to 20, 2014, with more than 350 delegates and voted at the GC spring meeting.

The guidelines include specific ways the Church understands and responds to homosexuality and other alternative sexual behaviors which are contrary to the Word of God but are now accepted worldwide. The guidelines are to be translated into different languages and distributed by union conferences, local conferences, and churches to face contemporary society.

There was also a report on the “Retention and Reclamation” summit held in Okinawa, Japan, last February. Follow-up meetings will be held continuously in order to check progress, seek better plans, and finally bear fruition.

This midyear committee was held at Osaka Center Church not only for cost-saving measures, but to provide a boost to mission work in Japan. The report from Japan Union Conference, which included positive results from their special mission project “Tokyo13: Urban Evangelism” raised the hopes of delegates.