The dream scared Helen Yen, a retired housewife in Taiwan’s capital, Taipei. In the dream, she would go someplace and then realize that she couldn’t find her way back home. The nightmare tormented her nightly.
The daylight hours were more pleasant. Helen spent time with her husband, adult children, and granddaughter. She began attending free menopause classes at Taiwan Adventist Hospital.
In the classes, Helen heard that the nearby Sung Shan Seventh-day Adventist Church was seeking volunteers for a new community outreach program. The church planned to offer Tuesday classes on Alzheimer’s disease, a major challenge in the local community, as well as cooking classes and Bible studies on Wednesdays and Thursdays.
“I had always wanted to volunteer in the community,” Helen said in an interview at the church. “I had never heard of Adventists before. But I just came to this church, and the pastor invited me to help in the kitchen.”
Helen went to the church at 6:00 a.m. on Tuesdays to bake bread to sell at the Alzheimer’s classes. The bread, also offered to the church’s 180 members, helps supplement outreach funding from the Taiwan Conference.
Helen said volunteering gave her a new sense of fulfillment and joy. She began to visit the church every weekday and soon was attending Bible classes led by the pastor’s wife, Brenda Huang, who oversees the outreach. Helen, a Sunday churchgoer, heard about the seventh-day Sabbath.
“I felt something strange in my heart,” Helen said. “I couldn’t go on with the way I was living after discovering this new information.”
She started to worship at the Adventist church every Sabbath. “Before, I thought, I’m very blessed because I have a husband, children, and a granddaughter,” she said. “Then, I realized that there is something more to life.”
Nearly two years after Helen started volunteering, she is preparing to join the church through baptism. “She is our first fruit,” said the church’s pastor, Raymond Ko. In all, 300 people have visited the church’s Sabbath services as a result of the outreach program, he said.
Helen had had the reoccurring nightmare about not being able to find her way back home for a year. “But after I came to this church, I stopped having this dream,” she said. “I realized that the Seventh-day Adventist truth is the way home—to heaven.”
Your Sabbath School mission offerings help support community outreach programs such as the one that led Helen Yen, left, to baptism.