Despite inclement weather, members from around The South Bahamas Conference spent the weekend in praise at the 2023 convention held this weekend. The services reinforced the theme “Empowered by Christ, I will go” through the spoken word delivered by Dr. R Clifford Jones, keynote speaker for the weekend. Dr. Jones currently serves as Dean of the School of Theology at Oakwood University.

Over the course of the weekend, Dr. Jones presented a four-part series on Jonah and reminded the congregation of the value of listening to the voice of God and following his command,Dr. Clifford Jones speaking at Convention
Image: John Garcia
even if one must do it alone.

 "There is power in one., Dr. Jones said.  "If you are waiting for everybody to go, you will wait forever. If God has called you...if he has said to you need to declare I will go."

On Sabbath morning, the convention continued at Baha Mar, where Bahamas Academy faculty, staff, and students conducted a special sabbath school service. The service highlighted many achievements made by Bahamas Academy for this academic year, including 17 baptisms, medals won during BAISS, and a testimony shared by Senior Student Carlia Elvies on her scholarship award.

During the divine hour, Greta Kemp, Gloria Store, and Randy Johnson were recognized as the three longest-serving master guides in the conference. The family islands were also highlighted during the convention and the New Life Church located in Matthew Town, Inagua was the selected church for the Family Island initiative for this year.

Not to be left out of the weekend activities, the Children and Adolescent Ministries Department (CHAM) held children’s church at the Baha Mar resort, captivating the hearts of young attendees. The theme of the day, "Little hearts ministering for a big God," aimed to empower children and instill in them the understanding that they are never too small to make a significant impact in the service of God.

CHAM leaders encouraged children to embrace the spirit of two biblical characters, David and Naaman's slave girl, by coming dressed as these inspiring figures. The goal was to immerse the young participants in the stories of these faithful individuals and to illustrate that even the most seemingly insignificant among us can play a vital role in God's plan.

The sermonette was delivered by Daniel Delancy, a dynamic speaker and member of the Hillview Seventh-day Adventist Church. Daniel passionately shared his message with the young audience by using David and Naaman's slave girl as his foundation.

He also encouraged the children to embrace their unique abilities and gifts, reminding them that their age or stature should never hinder their willingness to serve God.

May 27 was also recognized as World Day of Prayer for Children at Risk. Recognizing the importance of prayer, CHAM Teacher Elgin Hepburn led out in prayer for this very important area of concern.

Children's Convention Church concluded with the encouragement that little hearts will continue their journey of faith and service. The event served as a powerful reminder that; indeed, little hearts can minister for a big God.

Investiture Service at Hillview
Image: Kenisha Simms
On Sabbath afternoon, 26 Master Guides from Ebenezar, Bethel, and Francophone were invested, during a historic AY service that featured music from youth groups, the launch of the youth department Strategic plan ELEVATE, and a drill presentation and inspection by the Master Guides and Administrators of the South Bahamas Conference.

At 5 a.m. on Sunday mornings, the Master Guides completed numerous honors, including Denominational History, Church Organization, Doctrines, Camping Skills, Drills, Club Organization, Cultural Diversity, Evangelism, and sermons The trainees worked tirelessly to complete the program.

During the service, the master guides conducted a drill display, recited memory verses, and presented various knot-tying skills. They also shared some of the things they learned in the past year.

Antonio Cadet of Francophone was awarded the Master Guide of Honor award for his stellar attendance, participation, and group leadership.