The success of Health Expo evangelism began in 1982, when the Far Eastern Division invited Wilbur & Dorothy Nelson to design a health component for Neal Wilson’s series in Manila, Philippines. Interactive exhibits and platform presentations on health topics provided a continuity between the Expo and the Sermons. Since that first program there has been refinement and wide presentation of Health Expo on every continent. Health Expos have resulted in tens of thousands of baptisms over the past thirty plus years. These new members are well informed on the Adventist Lifestyle and are prepared to more consistently maintain a Christian experience through the health instruction the Expo has given them. They also have an appealing message to share with their friends as they witness to “what great things the Lord has done for them.”
Variations of the evangelism format are Wellness Weekends, mini-Expo programs in local churches; youth Expo campaigns in towns and on television; Expo programs as exhibits in shopping malls, schools, camp meetings, and other outdoor meetings. It is especially effective in a world that “is open for it”. Today, as never before, there is a “fitness” interest world-wide. TV, magazines and the news media keep the population constantly alerted to the importance of nearly every one of the “8 Principles.” But only Adventists show the integrated impact that they bring when combined as a Lifestyle.
The great chapter on the blended health ministry is “Teaching and Healing” in the book “Ministry of Healing”. Here is material where the health professional and the ministerial worker are brought together and portrayed as an inseparable team. How profound and instructive is the central statement of this chapter:
“Christ’s method alone will give true success in reaching the people.” MH 143. Now note carefully the following six components of the ministry which “ALONE CAN GIVE TRUE SUCCESS”:
“The Saviour mingled WITH MEN (CONTACT)
As One who desired THEIR good. (CONCERN)
He showed His sympathy for THEM, (COMPASSION)
Ministered to THEIR needs, (COMMITMENT)
And won THEIR confidence. (CONFIDENCE)
THEN He bade them, ‘Follow Me.’” (CONVERSION)
We are to present a message which will lead people everywhere to understand that the message presented will prepare a people who are MENTALLY ALERT, SPIRITUALLY COMMITTED, PHYSICALLY FIT, and SOCIALLY CONCERNED.
Listen to Eld. Neal Wilson speak on Health Expo at its 20th anniversary in 2002. I f you are not able to hear the audio download the file here.