Exactly fifty years later however, a change took place as church leaders in Europe, under the political pressures of World War I, yielded to government demands and committed its young men to military service. Note the change in position: "Most honorable Lord General and Minister of War, August 4, 1914: "…While we stand on the fundamentals of the Holy Scriptures, and seek to fulfill the precepts of Christendom, keeping the Rest Day (Saturday) that God established in the beginning, by endeavoring to put aside all work on that day, still in these times of stress, we have bound ourselves together in defense of the 'Fatherland,' and under these circum-stances we will also bear arms on Saturday (Sabbath)….” (Signed) “H. Schubert, President” Shortly after the above official statement was made to the government, approximately 2 percent of Seventh-day Adventist members in more than 14 European countries were disfellowshipped from the church for their open opposition to war and their support of pacifism.
When all efforts failed in both 19 to obtain an open and impartial hearing before the Seventh-day Adventist Church representatives on issues related to non-participation in war, and when they discovered that a reform movement within the church had been prophesied, the latter part of the original name was changed to Reform Movement.
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Many leaders and young men of the International Missionary Society died as martyrs in concentration camps, some having been denounced and even betrayed by members and leaders of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
After World War II, the International Missionary Society again grew rapidly around the world.
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Attempts to reintegrate with that movement failed in 1952, 1968, and 1993.
There are churches, mission fields, districts, fields, unions, and the General Conference.
The highest governing body of the denomination, the General Conference Assembly, is composed of delegates from around the globe, meets in full session once every 5 years to elect a 13-member governing Board, to study doctrinal issues, and to establish missionary priorities.
The original Adventist Movement had come out of the greatest religious awakening and revival since apostolic times (1814-1844), but it was not until the American Civil War (1861-1865) that expedience demanded it organize as a distinct denomination. After the war, while hoping for reconciliation with their former brethren, they found it necessary to organize in order to legally hold their collective resources and support their ministers and workers.
Note the official statement: “The denomination of Christians calling themselves Seventh-day Adventist, taking the Bible as their rule of faith and practice are unanimous in their views that its teachings are contrary to the spirit and practice of war, hence they have ever been conscientiously opposed to bearing arms.” –Letter to Austin Blair, Governor of Michigan, August 3, 1864, (Signed) John Byington, J. Since many had been members of the International Missionary and Tract Society of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, they originally organized in 1919 in Germany as "Internationale Missionnsgesellshaft der Siebententags Adventisten Alte seit 1844 stehengebliebene Richtung Deutsche Union" (International Missionary Society of Seventh-day Adventists, old movement standing firm since 1844).