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Second letter of Reply to the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, dated August 1, 2007

The following is a copy of the second letter sent by Pastor Fillmer Hevener to Mr. Robert E. Kyte, General Counsel of General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, regarding the issue of Guthrie Memorial Adventist Chapel using the word 'Adventist' in its name.


224 Mohele Road, Farmville, Va. 23901
(434) 392-6255

(Certified mail)

Mr. Robert E. Kyte, Esq., General Counsel
General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
12501 Old Columbia Pike
Silver Spring, MD 20904-6600

Dear Brother Kyte:

Today, July 30, 2007, I received your letter dated July 24, 2007.

Your apparent position that the SDA's trademark/service mark of the word ADVENTIST disallows non-Seventh-day Adventists' use of the word, lacks persuasiveness in practice. As I quoted in my letter of July 15, 2007, the New Light Index states that there are "some 200  Adventist denominations," the largest of these being the SDA Church.

You note that your registration covers "religious observances and missionary services." The title GUTHRIE MEMORIAL ADVENTIST CHAPEL gives no information about our "religious observances" (a belief is not an observance), and although our primary concern is meeting the spiritual needs of our members and friends, a portion of that concern includes assistance to the needy. The title does not make any claim about our offering "missionary services" or our being a missionary society. We have never sent Christian workers from the U.S. to heathen lands as mission societies regularly do. Our Christian work in India and Africa is carried on by faithful, unpaid nationals, who give freely of their time and talents to bring Christ and the hope of salvation to their brothers and sisters in their homelands. Unlike the SDA Church, we have no tithing system (which was a law given under the Mosaic Ceremonial system and abolished at Christ's death); we have only free­will giving, modeled after the teachings of the Apostles and the early Christian Church:

So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity (compulsion; margin) for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Cor. 9:7, New King James Version.)

Also, unlike the SDA system, we have no paid employees but, rather, follow Paul's practice of giving the gospel of Christ ''without charge." (1 Cor. 9: 18.)


Page 2 of 2
Robert Kyte, General Conference of SDA

Regretfully, we see no inclination on the part of the Seventh-day Adventist Church to submit this dispute to competent, Christian, disinterested mediators, as the apostle Paul instructed Christians to do. In addition, Christ stated:

If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also. And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two. (Matthew 5: 40-41, New King James Version.)

In an effort to follow this teaching of Christ, we have, so far as we are able to determine, complied with your request. As you know, we cannot be responsible for the use of any word in situations over which we have no control. Should your "name police" question our compliance, we would give prompt consideration to their complaint.

May the influence of the Holy Spirit lead in all decisions relating to
this matter.

Cordially, your brother in Christ,

Dr. Fillmer Hevener, Pastor


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