In 1848, God sent the first and most important message to the prophet Ellen White regarding the publishing ministry, and she conveyed to her husband, James, “You must begin to print a little paper and send it out to the people. Let it be small at first; but as the people read, they will send you means with which to print, and it will be a success from the first. From this small beginning it was shown to me to be like streams of light that went clear round the world” (Life Sketches of Ellen G. White, p. 125, emphasis added).
The light of the printed (and now electronic) word is indeed still a big contributor to spreading the saving light of the Gospel throughout the world!
This ministry and a plan on how best to carry it out was discussed by the leaders of the Publishing Ministry Department of the Euro-Asia Division (ESD) as they participated in a consultative meeting that took place May 5–7, 2023.
A special advantage was the presence and participation in the meeting of Almir Maroni, Publishing director for the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. Pastor Maroni's spiritual messages, topical seminars, timely consultations, and participation in discussions were a blessing and support for the participants of the meeting.
Along with the existing difficulties in the publishing ministry, Daniil Lovska, director of the Streams of Light Publishing House, also presented successful trends in the preparation, publication, and delivery of books and materials to the most remote places of the ESD. Streams of Light is working on the preparation and publication of a multi-volume Adventist commentary on the Bible, a series of methodological books and materials for Adventist schools, and a Bible with additional reference materials for young people. Additionally, the publication and circulation of Bibles of various formats, Bible study guides, Bibles for children, and other sources is increasing. A special project and blessing for the church is the annual Missionary Book of the Year project. In recent months, over 150,000 copies of The Great Controversy have been delivered and distributed to all congregations and groups in the church throughout the division.
Union leaders, while presenting ministry reports, shared amazing stories of dedicated TAs, church members, pastors, and youth spreading the printed word and bringing a message of hope to the people during this difficult time. Millions of newspapers, books, and lessons being distributed are the seed sown in the soil of human hearts, and through the influence of the Holy Spirit, it will sprout for eternity.
Maroni, listening to the reports of leaders, statistics of publications, and distribution of printed publications, stated the fact that the ESD has the highest quantitative level of distribution of newspapers, magazines, and books in relation to the number of church members. He thanked everyone involved in this important ministry and prayed for wisdom to continue this ministry no matter what.
All the leaders during this meeting agreed that everyone needs to plan more organized training in literature ministry for youth, continue to involve all church members in distributing the book of the year, especially where the evangelist has not yet set foot, and also actively expand the number of students at the Bible school. It is important to organize students in the ministry of literature evangelism, encouraging young people to gain irreplaceable personal experience in the spiritual life by being involved in this ministry.
Literature evangelism has its own glorious history, but it has a real demand and results in this time. The book remains an important carrier of information and truth today. Rededicating to this ministry, Adventists believe the Gospel will be preached all over the world and literature will play a key role in this. May God help us in this effort! This is His business!
The original version of this story was posted on the Euro-Asia Division Russian-language news site.