Article-Regional Conferences-Segregation in USA

    Did you know that the Seventh-day Adventist church in the United States is segregated and prone to discrimination because of the regional conferences?

  There are eight regional areas in the United States called Union Conferences with a total of about one million members.

Here is a map of these eight . . .

  

  These regional areas or divided into local conferences as described on this webpage https://www.diggingfortruth.org/library-links/unions-and-conferences-in-nad

   About 70 years ago the church restructured the organization of six unions by creating a segregated conference in each union to serve the needs of African-American members. The territory of the black conference overlapped the territory of the Union Conference so that for any place in the territory there were two local conferences for black and non-black members to choose from. Before this change there was no overlap and any address in the union's territory was serviced by only one conference. Here is a list of black conferences in the United States.

 In the Atlantic Union Conference (see https://atlantic-union.org/ ) it is Northeastern Conference   www.northeastern.org  with headquarters in Queens county, New York City.

  In the Columbia Union Conference is was Allegheny Conference which divided in 1967 into Allegheny East HQ in Pine Forge, PA  www.visitaec.org  and Allegheny West in Columbus, Ohio www.AWconf.org

  In the Lake Union Conference it is the Lake Region Conference (Established: 1944)   https://lrcsda.com

  In the Mid America Union it is the Central States Conference   www.central-states.org 

  In the Southern Union Conference it is the South Atlantic Conference HQ in Atlanta, Georgia     http://sacsda.org/

  In the Southwestern Union Conference it is the Southwest Region Conference, HQ in Dallas, Texas  ( Established in 1947 )  www.mysouthwestregion.org

  In the seventy years since these regional conferences were created the culture has changed, the laws have changed. Even neighborhoods have gentrified from all black to multi-ethnic and the black church no longer represents the demographic of the neighborhood around it.

  Now in 2019, many things have changed but some have not, this will be discussed on several on-line forums for Adventists and some key points will be incorporated into this article.  

    LINKEDin  groups discussing this topic:   

   E-ventists in Law Practice   - -   SouthWest Region Conference   - -    E-ventists in Washington, DC    - -    E-ventist Network    -  -    Linking SDAs    -  -    Linked SDA's   -  -    E-ventists in New England   -  -   E-ventists in Texas   - -   E-ventists in Education  (published 4/12)   - -  

 

  Comments posted on the groups listed above:

  On June 20, 2015, Elder Don Livesay, president of the Lake Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists issued an official apology to the constituents of the Lake Region Conference for the failings of the churches within the Lake Union to live above the cancerous culture of racism that lead to the formation of Black Conferences. Here is LINK to the video and transcript of his apology - - https://lrcsda.com/about/lrc-70th-celebration/ 

 

The Northeastern Conference has a web page about its history -  https://www.northeastern.org/abt/the-conference/history-of-northeastern - It says, "The Negro membership had grown to the degree that the necessity of making a singular appeal to this largest minority within the American population became apparent . . . The existence of such a situation here and else ware was recognized by the general conference and resulted in the organization of what came to be known as Regional Conferences."

 

Comment on group for Lawyers - April 12:   "It makes it sound like the regional conferences are the cause of racial discrimination within the church. Instead, I would suggest this minor edit: "Did you know that regional conferences based on race were established within the Seventh-day Adventist church in the United States because of racial discrimination within the Church?"   In addition, any article that addresses this division without discussing some specifics of incidents that were the catalyst of this division, misses the mark."

 

 

 

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