Anniversaries are Wonderful

Ten years ago, in 2002, the Atlantic Union Gleaner commemorated 100 years of service as a faithful chronicle of work and progress of the Adventist Church in the Atlantic Union territory. This month, we celebrate 110 years.

The following is an excerpt taken from the very first issue of the Gleaner, dated January 1, 1902, vol. 1, no. 1: “We come to you with sincere wishes that the year upon whose threshold you stand may prove to be the most joyful and prosperous of your existence; that its hours may be so filled with the love, joy, and peace of the Spirit, that there will be no time for the works of the flesh to flourish; and that, at its close, you can look back upon a year of constant soul-surrender to the Lord of the harvest.”

Yes, anniversaries are wonderful and are opportunities for reflections of the years gone by and positive reflections for the year ahead.

This past year has been a happy and successful year in many ways. It has been defined by a kaleidoscope of happy memories, supportive friendships, and enduring relationships. Of course, there have also been some paths that may have been slightly more difficult to travel together. Yet, in spite of the odd stumbling blocks along the way, we have traveled through another year—together, supportive, encouraging, and enduring.

And, as we take the time to express our gratitude for a past year of many blessings, we turn expectantly to the year that lies ahead, a time to build and strengthen forged relationships even further, a time to create and cherish even more shared memories, and a time filled with dreams that are brought ever closer, and milestones—whatever they may be—achieved.

This month, as we celebrate 110 years of Gleaner history, I wish to take this opportunity to pay tribute and thanks to all who have made this union magazine so successful. We pay tribute to the editorial pioneers who have passed to their rest awaiting the triumphal return of our blessed Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ; and give thanks to all those who continue to labor tirelessly to produce a fine monthly magazine. I especially wish to express thanks to the current editor and communication director, Ednor A. P. Davison, for her competent leadership of the publication. Of course, we extend kudos also to her supportive team who help to make a significant contribution, as well—conference communication directors Sheila Holder, Rohann Wellington, Kim Kaiser, Stephen Williams, Lynn Ortel, and Frank Tochterman; assistant directors, D. Randolph Wilson and Pete Saunders; Atlantic Union College director of publications Cindy Kurtzhals; designer Haziel Olivera; copy editor Pat Humphrey; and others who work behind the scenes.

In life, I have learned that it doesn’t matter where you go, what you achieve, or what you do. What matters most is who you have beside you along the way!

Thank you—one and all—for being beside us this past year . . . and may you be ever near in the years ahead. But most of all, we thank the Lord for being beside us every step of the way, without whom we surely would stumble and fall.

May your New Year be the brightest ever as we await the soon coming of our Savior and King, Jesus Christ.

Donald G. King is president of the Atlantic Union Conference and chairman of the Atlantic Union College, Inc., Board of Trustees.