ASI came into existence to meet a mutual need of Seventh-day Adventist Church leaders and self supporting organizations to have an established way of relating with each other . Beginning in the early 1900S, many lay-operated ministries supportive of the Adventist Church came into being largely due to the efforts of Madison College , which taught practical courses and encouraged lay ministries to support the church .
ASI was born at a meeting on March 4 , 1947, in Cincinnati, Ohio , attended by 25 self supporting institutions, along with Elder N.C Wilson , president of the NAD ( and grand father of Elder Ted Wilson , GC President) , Elder Ochs , president of the columbia union conference, and other church leaders . A Tentative constitution and Bylaws was adopted , officers were selected , and the course of ASI was established “as a means of uniting the self -supporting workers , encouraging and enlarging of this type work and making a stronger tie between the self -supporting work and the regular organized work of the denomination.”
ASI was first called ;Association of Seventh- day Adventist institutions .
From it’s beginning ASI prospered as a result of the international effort of the Adventist Church and self supporting organizations to work together in the spread of the Gospel . Word got around that ASI was an effective organization in uniting the laity and church leaders , with an unequaled synergy . Other lay persons wanted to become members , but ASI membership was only for self-supporting institutions. Gradually in the 1950S , for profit health care nursing homes and hospitals became ASI members . By 1970 Businesses , Professional practitioners, and service providers were included. In 1981 the church organization ASI related to , changed from the General conference to the North American Division .
What hasn’t changed is that the managing Board of ASI includes both laity and highly placed church leaders , including a liaison for working together respectfully .
Through out its 70 years , ASI and its members have maintained their original purpose: To support the mission , message, and leadership of The Seventh-day Adventist Church and it’s 28 Fundamental Beliefs . In fulfilling this purpose, ASI members have contributed untold millions in funds and services, health care , food, churches, schools , picture rolls , church roofs , publications, clinics, teachers , missionaries, and converted multiple thousands of new church members , all at no cost , and almost no administrative effort. This is certainly an unprecedented affiliation of laity and church in the history of the Christain church . This harmonious partnership is a clear sign that the Seventh-day Adventist Church is the remnant of scripture.
Though now 70 years old , ASI ‘s cooperative relationship with The Seventh-day Adventist Church has only just begun , with the best ahead of us.