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Outstanding Lay Evangelist and Local Elder Dies

Vernal Theophilus Rolle

February 23, 1942 to March 28, 2017

The administration and workers of the South Bahamas Conference of Seventh-day Adventists regret to announce the passing of one of the leading local elders and award-winning enthusiastic lay evangelist of the Church, Vernal Theophilus Rolle. He was 75 years old. We extend sincere condolences to his wife Annie, his children, grandchildren, and extended family. He died on March 28, 2017, after a battle with cancer. He fought a good fight and was faithful to His God, family church and country. Funeral service will be on Sunday, April 23, 2017, at 1:00 p.m. At Hillview Adventist Church.

A memorial service will be on Friday, April 21st. At 6:30 p.m.

Vernal T. Rolle, Sr. was born on February 23, 1942, in the settlement of High Rock, South Andros Island in the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. On September 10, 1963, he was baptized into the Adventist Church by the late Pastor Silas N. McKinney, former Union President and subsequently became a member of the Grants Town Seventh-day Adventist Church. He served as a faith local leader in several churches, including the New Providence and the Real Harvest Seventh-day Adventist Churches.

Words that can describe Vernal T. Rolle are: energetic, lively, colorful, deeply spirit-filled, prayerful, playful, the life of the party, fun-filled, no nonsense, down-to-earth, practical, real, fair, gregarious, generous, kind and tender-hearted, a child of God.

In 2013 he was given special recognition for being a lay evangelist. The Northern Caribbean (NCU) Board on the nomination of the administration of South Bahamas Conference awarded Vernal T. Rolle for outstanding service in the field of lay evangelism. The 2013 Laity Award recognized the valuable services of laypersons within the field of Atlantic Caribbean Union (ATCU) and Jamaica Union (JAMU) in support of the World Church’s Year of the Laity. To be eligible for the award the awardee must:

      • fulfill his calling from God by living his life in service to others
      • model servant –leadership both in the context of his life and his ministry
      • advocate Christian Education and
      • strive to promote Christian dignity

This award was presented at the NCU Baccalaureate Service on Saturday, August 10, 2013.

Vernal Rolle's evangelistic efforts began in 1976 and after just three years, his outstanding performance qualified him to attend the Festival of the Laity (held in Barbados) as the champion lay bible worker of the Bahamas Conference with over 100 souls baptized as a result of his lay efforts. From 1976-2013, Brother Rolle's baptismal Record confirmed that well over nine hundred and fifty-five (955) souls were baptized into God's Remnant Church. He was instrumental in establishing two (2) Churches in the Bahamas, namely The Real Harvest and High Rock Adventist Churches. He also was a charter member to establish the Bethany Adventist Church and served as one of elders and Personal Ministries Director.

Our prayers are with his family, and we are not without hope because we believe that Jesus will soon come and make all things new.

Additionally sincere condolences are extended to the McPhee Family on the passing of Francis McPhee of South Andros and her entire family. May the God of al comfort strengthen you all.

Paul A. Scavella, President