The Athol, MA Seventh-day Adventist church recently celebrated a Sabbath filled with milestones of discipleship and growth in Christ. During the morning service, Athol’s new pastor, Kyle Shelton, was ordained as an elder. Shelton is part of the growing cadre of bi-vocational pastors (BVPs) that the Southern New England Conference is using to help revitalize dying churches and plant new churches. His ordination gave him the ability to officially baptize new members into the body of the Seventh-day Adventist church.
Shelton did not have to wait long to use this new privilege, though, as he had the honor of officiating the church’s first baptism since 2020 later that afternoon. He is quick to credit his members for doing much of the work in helping bring their newly baptized member to this point.
“This was a process that started long before I came,” said Shelton. “Our members patiently worked with Kelly [the baptismal candidate] for a year or more, giving Bible studies and helping answer questions. It is a privilege to be able to crown the work they, but primarily the Lord, did to bring another lamb into the fold.”
The Athol congregation is eagerly looking forward to future baptisms.