Central Asia Conference

By Jón Hjörleifur Stefánsson

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Jón Hjörleifur Stefánsson, M.A., is a Ph.D. candidate, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam

The Central Asia Conference was a church unit that comprised part of Central Asia from 1994 to 2002.

Territory and Statistics1

Territory: (Tajikistan until 1998), Kyrgyzstan (from 2001), Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan

Population: 42,287,000

Membership: 3,518

Churches: 42

Origin of Seventh-day Adventist Work in the Territory

Adventists arrived to the Caucasus and Central Asia in the late nineteenth century. For the origin of Adventist work in the territory of the Central Asia Conference, see the articles on Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

Organizational History

In 1994, the Asian-Caucasian Conference was divided into the Central Asia Conference and the Trans-Caucasus Field. The former comprised Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, and the latter Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia. The headquarters of the Central Asia Conference were at ul. Belonozhka 39, Tashkent. The starting membership was 1,122. Initial officers were President R. G. Geibel, Secretary E. A. Yustus, Treasurer S. P. Iovu, D. Y. Gainulina, S. P. Iovu, V. V. Matryashin, and P. N. Nikulshin.2

Pastor Pavel M. Nikulshin pastored the church in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan from 1993–1996. After the fall of the Soviet Union, Turkmenistan authorities required religious bodies to register again with the state. Adventists applied for registration, but were refused in 1994. Only Islam and the Orthodox Church received or retained their registration.3

In 1996, the conference headquarters address was given as 40 let VLKSM Street 33-A,4 in 1997 as Zaitun Street 69,5 and in 1998 back at 40 let VLKSM Street 33-A.6

In 1998 Tajikistan was divided from the conference into the Tajikistan Mission.7

Because Adventists were an unregistered religion in Turkmenistan, in November 1999 state authorities ordered the Church to tear down their church building in Ashgabat (built in 1992) within one week, and they complied. The congregation was eighty members and continued to meet in small groups.8

In 2000 the office address was given as Sayram Street 33A, Tashkent.9

In 2000 the Tajikistan Mission was reunited with the conference. Kyrgyzstan had also been added to the conference’s territory from the dissolved Southern Conference. The office address was now Magadanskaya Street 63.10

In 2002 the Central Asia Conference was divided into the Kyrgyzstan Conference, the Tajikistan and Uzbekistan Missions, and the Turkmenistan Field.11

List of Presidents

R. G. Geibel, 1994–2000; Rubin R. Ott, 2001–2002.

Sources

Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook. Various years. https://www.adventistyearbook.org/.

Yunak, Dmitry. “Turkmenistan Missionary Field.” Manuscript, June 2017.

Notes

  1. All information except the periods from “Central Asia Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (2003), 95.

  2. “Central Asia Conference” and “Trans-Caucasus Field,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (1995), 104, 109.

  3. Dmitry Yunak, “Turkmenistan Missionary Field,” manuscript, June 2017. It is unclear whether the two bodies retained or regained their registration.

  4. “Central Asia Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (1996), 152.

  5. “Central Asia Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (1997), 112.

  6. “Central Asia Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (1998), 117.

  7. “Tajikistan Mission,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (1999), 116.

  8. Dmitry Yunak, “Turkmenistan Missionary Field,” manuscript, June 2017.

  9. “Central Asia Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (2000), 115.

  10. “Central Asia Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (2001), 117.

  11. “Southern Union Conference,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (2004), 92–93.

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Stefánsson, Jón Hjörleifur. "Central Asia Conference." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. April 16, 2021. Accessed April 19, 2021. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=8D5S.

Stefánsson, Jón Hjörleifur. "Central Asia Conference." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. April 16, 2021. Date of access April 19, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=8D5S.

Stefánsson, Jón Hjörleifur (2021, April 16). Central Asia Conference. Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved April 19, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=8D5S.