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Pathfinders celebrate 70 years of history and growth

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I n 1909, a group of Seventh-day Adventists in the United States realized that they needed to promote spiritual activities for youth using a methodology appropriate to this age group. To meet this need, they began holding meetings on Saturday afternoons to study the Bible and nature.

This initiative was gaining adherents and expanding, and in 1950, the denomination’s world headquarters made the Clube de Desbravadores (also known as the Pathfinder Club) one of its ministries. Today, the “scarf army” has more than 1.7 million members worldwide, of which 256,000 are in Brazil.

The Clube de Desbravadores is known for its educational emphasis, focusing on the physical, intellectual, spiritual and social development of its participants. However, its 70 years of history have also revealed its contribution to the growth of the Seventh Day Adventist Church as a whole. Many pastors, elders and department leaders in different service areas of the denomination understand the influence the Club has had on developing fundamental life skills and spiritual principles for the youth.

In addition, by allowing people who are not of the Seventh Day Adventist faith to also join, the Club has contributed to the spreading of the gospel, even in communities where traditional forms of evangelism encounter resistance.

Another highlight is the Club’s contribution to the conservation of the faith of its members. According to the Adventist Church Secretariat for eight countries in South America, only 9% of people who were dropped from membership in 2019 due to apostasy or lack of attendance, were Club members at some point in their lives.

According to the leader of the department in the territory, Pastor Udolcy Zukowski, “the combination of a routine of activities that [young people] love [paired] with the frequent study of the Word of God, and all this in the company of friends who share the same beliefs and values, strengthens the spiritual foundation of these juveniles. As they grow up in this environment, their roots become more and more established, and they become convinced Christians of their faith”.

Celebration

Accumulating seven decades of history is a great achievement! It is true that the plans to celebrate the Club’s 70th anniversary in the striking style of Pathfinder Explorers were limited in many regions of the world because of the circumstances of the Covid-19 pandemic, but they were not entirely interrupted. In South America, the celebration took place at Spring Baptism, held throughout the month of September.

In addition, the Explorers drew the attention of their communities by wearing the yellow scarf, which is their main item of identification, for all of their individual routine activities from September 6th – 12th. The mobilization was called Handkerchief Week and it preceded World Pathfinder Day, which was celebrated on the 12th of September.

In addition to these festivities, the month of September also brings the Week of Hope . It started on the 19th, with evangelistic programs in Adventist churches, and continued through the 26th of September.

TV Novo Tempo also held a special series of sermons all sharing the same theme. These initiatives, held in the month of September, are known as “Celebrations of Hope”.

You can read the original story, here

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