About the department
Adventist Community Services (ACS) is the channel through which local Seventh-day Adventist churches address the needs of their immediate community, neighbourhood or city. ACS serves the whole person, a concept known as holistic ministry whose mission is to 'serve communities in Christ’s name.' We embrace the approach of Christ in ministering to the needs of communities. ‘Jesus saw in every soul one to whom must be given the call to His kingdom. He reached the hearts of the people by going among them as one who desired their good.’ The Desire of Ages, p. 151.2 (Ellen G. White).
Adventist Churches across the North England Conference are actively engaging in community service and humanitarian initiatives and are connected through the ACS department. A range of projects, social businesses and initiatives are carried out by churches and their members who care for the communities into which they are planted and seek to engage with those who need assistance in any shape or form. From charity shops to soup kitchens, the gospel message is proclaimed through kindness and neighbourly love.
Our vision is to expand the scope of community services through collaborative partnerships with leaders and organisations, providing channels of mutual growth and action. We strive to build strong relationships by connecting people with their community family. Ministering to the communities we serve includes physical, mental, social, and spiritual well-being. We empower and engage members to serve their communities by teaching, mentoring, and equipping in holistic ministry through education and mentorship.
Providing services to your community is an essential ministry function of every church congregation and can transform the area where you are serving, filling it with compassion, healing, and new life.
How does the ministry support local Churches and members across the Conference?
Projects that are innovative, sustainable, and collaborative will be supported – either with a small grant, or passed on to higher organisations. Help in applying for public funding is also available, as well as grant writing workshop and outreach training. For more information, please contact Dr Beatrice Kastrati at the NEC.
The mission of ACS is to motivate, equip, and mobilize Seventh-day Adventist Church members to meet unconditionally the expressed needs of people around them, fostering a trusting relationship between Adventist churches and their surrounding communities, and nurturing people toward a restored, abundant life in Jesus (MH 17:1; John 10:10). Learn more about the departmental goals by watching this video.
- The short-term goal is to promote a culture of learning and education among all who are involved in community service in order to ensure quality and sustainability in all initiatives.
- The medium-term goal is to encourage all community service groups to seek funding through the NEC grant scheme but also through public funding.
- The long-term goal is to make community service an integral part of each church, providing unconditional service and help to the surrounding communities and meeting their needs.
Each church should designate a community service officer who is willing to undergo training and mentoring in order to serve the community best. Each officer and their teams are welcome to take part in officer training, to submit proposals for funding and to seek advice and resources with the ACS department. A good place to get started is to contact Dr Beatrice Kastrati directly and meet for a mentoring session.
It is recommended to appear coherent and professional in all public-facing activities. T-shirts can be ordered at the department; reduced prices apply for batches of five.
- 19th – 21st July 2024: Journey to Wholeness Training with Dr Katia Reinert, General Conference
The role of the ACS director is generally to have an open ear to all ideas and queries, and to assist with brainstorming, planning, research and implementation of community service initiatives. Specifically to
- Provide training resources and grants to selected community service initiatives.
- Provide mentoring sessions and support in planning and implementation of community service initiatives.
- Provide support in seeking public funding.
- Receive progress reports and photos and audit for quality and sustainability.
- Publish successfully running community service initiatives in relevant Adventist news outlets.
On www.adventistlearningcommunity.com, there are several recommended courses:
- How to Run Community Health Programs: CHIP, Native Ministries, & Others
- Community Services & Urban Ministry Certification Program
- Church Planting Boot Camp with Refugees in Mind 2017
- The Motivation Factor by Skip Bell
- Reach the World Next Door
- Adventist Possibility Ministries - A People-Centered Approach
- Every Step Counts: A Primer to the 12-Step Recovery Process
On learning.candid.org, there are several recommended courses:
- Church Officer's Training 2024
- ACS Educational Webinars
- ACS Quickstart Guide
- Community Services Handbook
- CS Ministries of Compassion
- BUC Community Services
- NAD Community Services
- My Strengths and Qualities
- Spiritual Gifts Inventory
- Values Assessment
- Church Member Resource Assessment
- Wholistic Health Resources Order Form