Atlantic Caribbean Union

Adventist Leaders Pay Courtesy Visit to Bahamas Health Minister

Adventist Leaders Pay Courtesy Visit to Bahamas Health Minister
Communication Department, ATCU

Recently, the head of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Atlantic Caribbean region, Pastor Leonard Johnson, along with other Adventist church leaders paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Health for the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, Dr. Perry Gomez to share with him the church’s plans to launch the health program “I Want to Live Healthy” in the Bahamas as well as the Cayman Islands and Turks and Caicos Islands.

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Pastor Johnson explained that for 2015, the Atlantic Caribbean Union of Seventh-day Adventists (ATCU) has adopted the health initiative dubbed “I Want to Live Healthy,” a Seventh-day Adventist program that seeks to help communities adopt basic health principles so that they can live healthier and happier lives. "The church is committed to partnering with the government in helping to improve the quality of life of its people," affirmed Pastor Johnson.

During the visit, the delegation also presented Dr. Gomez with over three hundred copies of the world Adventist church’s missionary book of the year “Health and Hope” which will be freely distributed in communities by Adventists worldwide in celebration of Adventist Health Impact Day on April 18, 2015.

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Pastor Johnson explained that as the ‘I Want to Live Healthy’ initiative is based on the principle of individuals making health changes in their lives and then asking others to do the same, the delegation decided to present the books to the Ministry of Health so that they can first benefit from the valuable information before it is presented to the country on a whole.

Accompanying Pastor Johnson were the health ministries director of ATCU, Mrs. Shirline Henriques; the president of the South Bahamas Conference of Seventh-day Adventists (SBC), Pastor Paul Scavella; health ministries director of SBC, Mrs. Nathelyn LaCroix ; and other health professionals from SBC.

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One of the health professionals, Dr. Alpheaus Allick, an emergency room physician and a member of the Hillview Seventh-day Adventist Church in the SBC, related his experiences in the emergency room where the government spends enormous sums of money trying to cure or suppress illnesses that can be prevented through lifestyle changes.

Another health professional, Dr. Idamae Hanna, stated that many times what people need is a lifestyle coach.

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"Many people want to change, but often times they don't know how to," said Dr. Hanna. “‘I Want to Live Healthy’ is therefore offering coaches and support teams to communities in order to make lifestyle changes.”

Dr. Gomez expressed gratitude and excitement over the implementation of the program, stating that one of the major problems that the country is faced with is an increase in chronic non communicable diseases. "I have that challenge in my own home," said Dr. Gomez. "So, I know that the challenge is real."
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