Leland, James Arthur, Jr. (1902–1951)

By Alfred E. Labadisos, and Gerardo Naval Estabillo

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Alfred E. Labadisos, M.A. in religion with emphasis on New Testament (Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies), was a missionary member of the 1000 Missionary Movement, Silang, Cavite, from 2006-2008 and a missionary teacher at Chuuk Seventh-day Adventist School, Chuuk, Federated States of Micronesia, from 2013-2015. After his missionary term ended, he went to Thailand and worked as a human resource-generalist at MediaKids Academy, Pathum Thani, Thailand.  He is married to Ferndelle Leegh H. Barret.

Gerardo Naval Estabillo, B.A. in theology (the Adventist University of the Philippines), M.A. in ministry (the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies [AIIAS]), is currently (2020) pursuing his Doctor of Ministry at AIIAS. He served as a district pastor and Human Resources director of Central Luzon Conference (CLC). He is currently serving as the Stewardship director of CLC. He is married to Naomi Bambao Javier and they have three sons.

James Arthur Leland, Jr. was a missionary to the Philippines and the first manager of the Philippine Publishing House.

Early Life

James Arthur Leland, Jr. was born on November 6, 1902, in Guadalajara, Mexico, to missionary parents, James Arthur Leland, Sr. (1871-1951) and Hattie Elma Green Leland (1874-1950) from Michigan. James Arthur Leland, Sr., was also the former president of the Texas, Virginia, Chesapeake, East Pennsylvania, Potomac, and Kentucky-Tennessee, Mexican Union, and Antillian Union Conferences.1 Hattie Leland held various responsibilities, such as the Sabbath School and Missionary Volunteer departments, in the conferences and mission fields where they resided.2

James Leland, Jr. was the youngest of the three children. His other siblings were Harold, who became a medical doctor, and Julia.3 Leland accepted Christ as his personal Savior through baptism in 19144 at the young age of 12 and became a member of Adventist church in Redwood City, California.5

Education and Marriage

Leland attended Lancaster Junior College in Massachusetts and completed college at the Washington Missionary College, Washington, District of Columbia, in 1925 with the degree of Bachelor of Arts.6

Leland married Rosamond Cooper on October 20, 1925, in Cristobal, Canal Zone. Born on October 20, 1900, in South Portland, Maine, Rosa Cooper was the daughter of Clarence Edwin Cooper and Nina Estelle Hatch.7 She completed the nursing course at Lancaster Junior College a month before her marriage.8 James and Rosa Leland did not have any biological children, but they adopted Shirley Mae while on vacation in 1940-1941.9

Ministry

Immediately after graduation from college, Leland was called to be assistant manager of the Pacific Press branch in Cristobal, Canal Zone.10 After several years of faithful service, the Lelands moved to California in 1930, where James Leland was employed at the main office of Pacific Press in Mountain View, California until 1935.11 He served in the said institution until 1935 when he was called to the Philippine Islands.12

The Lelands arrived in the Philippines on May 11, 1935. James Leland became the manager of the Philippine Publishing House in Manila, serving until 1941. As the manager, he faithfully discharged his duties and responsibilities and observed good relations with the workers. He was interned at Los Banos by the Japanese occupation forces during World War II. Leland continued to serve at the Philippine Publishing House as factory supervisor from 1941 to 1951, although he was interned at Los Banos by the Japanese occupation forces during World War II. On July 26, 1951, James Arthur Leland, Jr. died at Manila Sanitarium and Hospital, Pasay City, Manila, at the early age of 48 years old due to a heart attack.13 Both of his parents died a few months before.14 The publishing work in the Philippines lost a tried and true worker. The funeral service was held at the Philippine Union College church and he was buried in Manila at the Cementerio Del Norte.15

Legacy

James Arthur Leland, Jr. was a faithful and active member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. His leadership was instrumental in the rise of Philippine Publishing House as one of the best-equipped mission publishing houses in the world. His leadership and diligent services contributed to the fast-moving ministry of the publishing work in Manila.16 His leadership and involvement in management were significant in relocating the publishing house from Pasay City to Caloocan City, Metro Manila, in 1946 after it was burned by the fleeing Japanese forces during the close of World War II.17

Sources

Capman, E. H. “Report of the Philippine Publishing House.” Far Eastern Division Outlook, July 1953.

“Hattie Green Leland obituary.” ARH, March 29, 1951.

“Hattie Green Leland and James Arthur Leland, Sr. obituary.” Pacific Union Recorder, February 19, 1951.

“Here and There.” Inter-American Division Messenger, January 1930.

“James Arthur Leland, Jr. obituary.” ARH, August 30, 1951.

“James Arthur Leland, Sr. obituary.” ARH, March 29, 1951.

James Arthur Leland, Jr. IDE Information Blank. Southern-Asia Pacific Division Archives.

“Wedding Bells.” Inter-American Division Messenger, November 1925.

Notes

  1. “James Arthur Leland, Sr. obituary,” ARH, March 29, 1951, 20; “Hattie Green Leland obituary,” ARH, March 29, 1951, 20, 22.

  2. “Hattie Green Leland and James Archer Leland, Sr. obituary,” Pacific Union Recorder, February 19, 1951, 14-15.

  3. Ibid.; cf. “James Arthur Leland, Sr. obituary,” ARH, March 29, 1951, 20.

  4. “James Arthur Leland, Jr. obituary,” ARH, August 30, 1951, 20.

  5. See James Arthur Leland, Jr., IDE Information Blank, Southern-Asia Pacific Division Archives.

  6. “James Arthur Leland, Jr. obituary,” ARH, August 30, 1951, 20.

  7. Inter-American Messenger, November 1925, 8; James Arthur Leland, Jr. IDE Information Blank, Southern-Asia Pacific Division Archives.

  8. “Wedding Bells,” Inter-American Division Messenger, November 1925, 8.

  9. James Arthur Leland, Jr., IDE Information Blank, Southern-Asia Pacific Division Archives.

  10. “James Arthur Leland, Jr. obituary,” ARH, August 30, 1951, 20.

  11. “Here and There,” Inter-American Division Messenger, January 1930, 8.

  12. “James Arthur Leland, Jr. obituary,” ARH, August 30, 1951, 20.

  13. Ibid.

  14. “James Arthur Leland, Sr. obituary,” ARH, March 29, 1951, 20; “Hattie Green Leland obituary,” ARH, March 29, 1951, 20, 22.

  15. “James Arthur Leland, Jr. obituary,” ARH, August 30, 1951, 20.

  16. E. H. Capman, “Report of the Philippine Publishing House,” Far Eastern Division Outlook, July 1953, 9-10.

  17. “Philippine Publishing House (Caloocan City South),” accessed April 3, 2020, http://wikimapia.org/1128248/Philippine-Publishing-House.

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Labadisos, Alfred E., Gerardo Naval Estabillo. "Leland, James Arthur, Jr. (1902–1951)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 09, 2021. Accessed March 04, 2021. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=7CJV.

Labadisos, Alfred E., Gerardo Naval Estabillo. "Leland, James Arthur, Jr. (1902–1951)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 09, 2021. Date of access March 04, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=7CJV.

Labadisos, Alfred E., Gerardo Naval Estabillo (2021, January 09). Leland, James Arthur, Jr. (1902–1951). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved March 04, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=7CJV.