Members of Nauru Seventh-day Adventist Church finally have a building in which to worship.
The church was officially opened on April 9 by Pastor Maveni Kaufononga, president of the Trans-Pacific Union Mission (TPUM), and Nauru Government Minister Shadlog Bernicke.
According to the brief history delivered by Reagan Aliklik, the elder and land owner who donated the land for the church, in 1975 a small group of Adventists made up of Kiribatians and Solomon Islanders who came to work in the phosphate mines, started worshipping together. Later, Nauruans who went to study in Adventist schools in Fiji (Navesau High School, Vatuvonu College and Suva Adventist High School), Kiribati (Kaume High School) and Papua New Guinea (Pacific Adventist University) returned and joined the group. Church ministers were sent to nurture and grow the small group.
Today, the total membership has grown to more than 50.
At the ribbon-cutting ceremony there was joyful celebration and thanksgiving expressed by the members because, after so many years of waiting, they now have an appropriate place for communion with God.
During the worship service, Pastor Kaufononga reminded the members that the church is a lighthouse for the lost and wounded souls, and they are there to serve them.
Following the service the members served the guests a feast of food, with plenty of networking and fellowship taking place around the table.
The resident pastor was also excited as he no longer has to live in rented houses and temporary shelters because a new three-bedroom house has been built under the church.
“We wish to thank the world Church for their kind gesture and financial assistance that enabled the construction of the church,” said Pastor Ronald Stone, Ministerial Association secretary and Global Mission coordinator for TPUM. “We are also grateful and thankful for the two teams of builders from Fiji for their sacrifice and determination to complete the project despite the many challenges they faced.”