Seventh-Day Adventist Church

Orosi Seventh-day Adventist Church Seventh-day Adventist Church


Your Ministry

     Greetings, dear family, and welcome to the 1st edition of “What Is Your Ministry?”, a series of profiles the Communications Department will produce this year. Each profile will introduce to you members of our congregation whose service to the Lord you may not be aware of. We are very familiar with our own interests and ministry focus, but are often unaware of what the brother or sister sitting beside us is doing as service to the Lord. The body of Christ has many members with diverse talents and spiritual gifts. It will be exciting to discover how the Spirit is working through each of us for the good of all who love God and are called according to His purpose.
     Berdel Lewis was living in Los Angeles more than 3 years ago, one of the millions of Californians who reside on the other side of the Grapevine. A busy life filled with work, church and family occupied most all of her time. The pace of life that Berdel was accustomed to was no different than that of friends, coworkers or even other church members. How can you want something different for your life when what you have is comfortable?
     God began to work and show Berdel that He had a plan for her. Berdel, with her husband Eustace, decided that the Lord had a place far different than Los Angeles for them to live. It is not easy to step out of what is familiar and go to a place you know not. A series of Spirit directed happenings allowed Berdel and Eustace to act on faith and relocate to the mountain community of Squaw Valley .

     In this mountain setting Berdel has discovered an aspect of spiritual growth that is not easy to find amid the hustle and bustle of a city. Peace, quiet times and moments of meditation are now common place during her day. She finds delight in clouds filtering across the sky, spotting a squirrel scamper along the ground or hearing the wind blow through the trees.

     Amidst this mountain retreat, Berdel invites family and friends to come and be separate from the world for a time. She desires for others to experience the renewing of spirit that time alone with God can offer. For folks unable to make the trek up the mountain, Berdel uses other ways to provide support.  The jingling of her phone is often a friend or family member calling for a prayer partner, seeking advice, or just wanting to talk with one who cares. Ask Berdel about the decision she made three years ago and you will hear no doubt or waver in her voice. Berdel’s spiritual growth, her family, her marriage, every aspect of her life is confirmation this is the place and this is the ministry God has for her.

    Born in Pasadena the youngest child of three is where Robert Cummings got his start in life. You might think Robert was born into a family of skilled artisans but you would be wrong. The talents and skills given to Robert were not evident in either of his parents. An appreciation and aptitude for drawing was created in Robert, and as a child he would often be found engaged in this activity. During Robert’s teenage years he wrote and illustrated a comic strip which ran in the local school paper. Making people laugh because of something he’d drawn gave evidence that Robert had a funny, as well as an artistic side.
    As Robert moved through life God was not someone who was given importance or paid attention to. His father was an atheist and Robert didn't pledge allegiance to any god. Whenever he would be talking amongst friends and a Christian would approach the group, Robert would inwardly groan and look for a quick exit.  His path in life was certainly not in accordance with the will of a Creator God.  Robert’s gift of drawing was seen by many, but the Giver of this gift was certainly receiving no honor because of it.

    Robert’s artistic ability and attention to detail had helped him find numerous jobs, and by chance he decided to try his hand at sign making.  Along with his wife Karla, he joined the fair circuit. Living out of an RV with sign booth in tow, they traveled from city to city.  This particular venue was very lucrative and allowed the young couple extended periods of freedom. For 12 years Robert created beautiful signs with the skills and talents endowed by an as yet unknown God.

    At the right time and place though, this unknown God introduced Himself to Robert.  In 1986 Robert was baptized and joined the church.  No longer would he inwardly groan at the sight of an approaching Christian.  Instead, he himself would wonder if others now groaned as he approached.  The shoe was now on the other foot.  This Creator God had turned Robert’s life upside down.

    Now an integral member of the Orosi SDA church, Robert finds that he still loves to draw and create beautiful things  For more than one year he has been creating the backdrops and scenery used during the Children’s Church program.  From a little cabin in the woods where old man Shem lives, to a ninety foot golden statue of Nebuchadnezzer, Robert has done it all.  Who could know that little boy who loved to draw, would one day use his special gift to introduce other boys and girls to the Creator God he has come to love.

     Coming to us from Truth or Consequences, New Mexico , Vera (Martin) Williams moved to Orosi in 1990. Vera had been a Dorcas leader and children’s division leader in New Mexico . Upon joining our church she was delighted to continue working in this capacity with the Community Services department. Every scrap of material was saved to be sewed into quilts for those in need. Vera would often gather cans for redemption and donate the proceeds for Christian education.

     Her grandfather, Harmon Scantlin, learned about the Seventh-day Adventist message by reading a paper called "Signs of the Times" to a blind neighbor. This spirit of caring for and helping others was passed on to his granddaughter Vera. When Harmon moved his family to  Battle Creek , Michigan , he learned more of the Seventh-day Adventist message and showed his acceptance of the faith by being baptized.

     Vera was born on July 30, 1915 in Wewoka, Oklahoman in the comfort of her parent’s log cabin. Vera learned early the meaning of responsibility. As a youngster she often had the job of caring for her two younger sisters and a brother while her mother worked in the field.

     When Vera was a little older, her family moved to New Mexico . It was here that she received her Christian education and it influenced her to help others whenever she could. Vera was never afraid of hard work and worked in a variety of jobs---including a furniture factory and as a nurses aide. Her strength would even put some men to shame as she would lift heavy mattresses by herself. Her life exemplified the proverb found in Ecclesiastes 9:10 that says "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might"

     Vera had married a friend of her brother’s, Floyd Reynolds, who served in the National Guard and fought in the Philippines during World War II. Vera had been praying for a son and after the war, the Lord gave her a boy whom she named Howard Joseph----but we know him as Joe.