Church or Soccer
The kids were so nice, and the activities so interesting,
This quarter we’ll hear stories about people who live in some of the countries of the Inter-American Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church [Show the map of the Inter-American Division]. This area has 3,714,790 baptized Seventh-day Adventist members. That’s more Seventh-day Adventists than in any other division of the world church!
Belize located between Mexico to the north and Guatemala to the west and south. Its east side is along the Carribean Sea. More than 334,000 people live in Belize, and close to 40,000 are Seventh-day Adventists.
Most of the Adventists in Belize are young. For example, if you lined up 10 random Adventists, more than likely seven of them would be young people!
Tyson and Alexandro
Our story today is about two brothers, Tyson and Alexandro, who are from Belize City. Both Tyson and Alexandro enjoyed school, and they especially loved to play soccer, which met every Tuesday after school.
One day as the boys were walking home they passed a nearby Seventh-day Adventist church. The doors of the church were open and they could hear young voices inside singing and talking.
The next week the brothers walked the same way home, and again they could hear the young people. This time Tyson was curious and said to his brother, “Let’s go closer.” Alexandro wasn’t sure that was a good idea, but followed Tyson to the front door of the church. Slowly the two peeked around the corner, hoping no one would see them.
But someone did see them! It was the group’s leader. “Please come in!” he warmly invited them. The two boys sheepishly came in and sat down, but before long they felt at home and were having a wonderful time. Tyson and Alexandro were invited to come back again the next week.
The boys hurried home and explained to their mother where they had been. “It was so interesting,” they told her. “We sang some songs, played games, and even read from a Bible. There were many other kids, and we were invited to come again! May we go back next week?”
Rather Be at Church
The boys’ mother knew all about Seventh-day Adventists because she had grown up as one. When she was older, she fell in love and married a man who didn’t love Jesus, and soon she stopped going to church. But she didn’t mind if Tyson and Alexandro wanted to go to the youth night. “Just remember you have a soccer game after school on Tuesdays,” she reminded them.
The boys looked at each other. “Oh, yeah, the soccer game,” they sighed. What were they going to do? After thinking about it, Tyson and Alexandro decided they would rather go to the youth meetings at the church than play soccer at the school. “The kids were so nice, and the activities so interesting,” they explained to their mom.
After school the following Tuesday, the boys went straight to church for the youth meeting rather than going to the soccer game. While there, another boy invited them to come to Sabbath School the following Sabbath, and they came. From then on Tyson and Alexandro began attending Sabbath School and church every week, and before long their mother joined them. After a while the boys took Bible studies and were baptized. Their mother is back in the church serving the Lord, and their father comes to church regularly.
The youth in Belize are very strong in telling others about Jesus, and they love to get together to sing, study the Bible, and learn many useful skills. The challenge for them is that there is no place where they can meet with other young Adventists from around their country. They really need a youth camp where they can all come together, have fun, learn more about Jesus and how to lead others to Him. You can help them by contributing to this quarter’s Thirteenth Sabbath Offering. Thank you for helping your brothers and sisters in Belize!