Kanchipuram-Chengalpattu Section is a part of the Southeast India Union Section in the Southern Asia Division of Seventh-day Adventists. Its headquarters is in Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu, India. It was organized in 2006, reorganized in 2011, and the name revised in 2016. The section is comprised of the districts of Kanchipuram and Chengalpattu in Tamil Nadu. As of June 30, 2020, the section included ten churches with a membership of 965. The region's population was 4,452,979.
The current district of Chengalpattu was created by dividing the district of Kancheepuram in 2019. Kanchipuram itself was formed when the earlier district of Chinglepet was divided into Kancheepuram and Tirulavur in 1997.
Interest in the Adventist message in Kancheepuram was aroused by the Voice of Prophecy (VOP) broadcasts and its Bible correspondence course. In 1958, S. Thomas, the Radio/VOP director of the South India Union, and V. D. Edward, the North Tamil Section Radio/VOP director, enrolled about 800 Bible correspondence course students. Around 1500 people attended the meetings they conducted. S. Thomas later returned to conduct more evangelistic meetings, assisted by M. K. Selvaraj, P. Benjamin, S. A. Jacob, V. D. Edward, and G. R. Daniel and his wife. Sixteen were baptized at the end of 1960. About thirty-five people attended weekend services, which were conducted in the Daniels’ home.1 By 2008, the city had several churches and one school.2
In 1973, P. V. Jesudas began a series of meetings in the city of Chinglepet. Between three and four hundred people attended each night and six hundred on Sunday.3 Jesudas was assisted by several young ministers and evangelists, and the meetings resulted in eighty-four baptisms.4 With the support of church members, a church school was opened in Chinglepet in 1974. This school helped the young church grow, and within a few years the enrollment had increased to 170. The union and the section added to the generous contributions of church members. A beautiful modern church was built in 1976. The church was dedicated on March 10 by R. S. Lowry, Southern Asia Division president.5
In 2017, the president reported that in 2013 two plots were purchased in Mamandur on which to build a church, which was dedicated in December 2013. On March 9, 2014, the Thirumalisai church was dedicated.6
The Kozhivakkam church was dedicated on June 30, 2019. Mega Evangelistic meetings were planned and conducted continuously for 100 days all over the territory of the Section. During that time, community service was conducted by the members, including the youth and children. This included planting trees, cleaning village streets, conducting medical camps, helping the poor, and reviving inactive churches, which were re-opened for worship.7
Chenglepet was a part of the North Tamil Section when it was reorganized as a conference in 1995. In 2002, when the Chennai Metro Region was reorganized as a section, Chenglepet was included as a territory that required attention that the Chennai Metro Region could provide. Four years later, in 2006, when the Chennai Metro Region was re-organized into a section, the districts of Kancheepuram and Chenglepet were separated and formed into the Chengalpet-Kancheepuram Region.8 In 2007, the name was changed to Kancheepuram-Chenglepet Region, since the district of Kanchipuram was larger than Chenglepet.9
Over the next five years, after concentrated effort, Adventists entered Urapakkam, Kuduvancherry, Maduranthagam, and established schools. In 2011 the Kanchipuram- Chengalpet region was upgraded to a section.10 In September 2011, the section administration opened their own building inaugurated by Southern Asia Division president, R. John.
List Executives Officers
Directors, Chengalpet-Kancheepuram Region: Johnson Muthuraj (2006-2009), S. Ambrose (2010)
Presidents, Kanchipuram-Chengalpet Section: N. Gnananprakasam (2011-2015), Isaac Samuel (2016-2017), Edward Duraisamy (2018-).
Secretary-Treasurers, Chengalpet-Kancheepuram Region: K. V. Chellapandian (2006), N. Gunasekar (2007), Selvin Jones, (2007-2009), Christopher Robinson (2010).
Presidents, Kanchipuram-Chengalpattu Section: Isaac Newton (2011-2020), Edward Duraisamy (2021-).
Edward, V. D. “Voice of Prophecy Opens New Center.” Southern Asia Tidings. March 1, 1961.
George, M. William. “Chinglepet Church Dedicated.” Southern Asia Tidings, May 1976.
“South India News.” Southern Asia Tidings, January 1974.
Southeast India Union Section. Constituency 2011. Southeast India Union Section Records, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India.
Southeast India Union Section Constituency Reports, 2008-2020. The Southeast India Union Section records, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India.
Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook. Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 2007.
“Union News.” Southern Asia Tidings, February 1974.
V. D. Edward, “Voice of Prophecy Opens New Center,” Southern Asia Tidings, March 1, 1961, 4.↩
“Kanchipuram-Chengalpet,” Southeast India Union Section Constituency Reports, 2008, 3.↩
“South India News,” Southern Asia Tidings, January 1974, 11.↩
“Union News,” Southern Asia Tidings, February 1974, 15.↩
M. William George, “Chinglepet Church Dedicated,” Southern Asia Tidings, May 1976, 13.↩
“Kanchipuram-Chengalpet Section,” Southeast India Union Section Constituency Reports 2017, 4.↩
“Kanchipuram-Chengalpet Section,” Southeast India Union Section Constituency Reports 2020, 1-5.↩
“Chengalpet-Kancheepuram Region,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 2007), 349.↩
“Kanchipuram-Chengalpet Section,” Southeast India Union Section Constituency Reports, 2008, 3.↩
Southeast India Union Section, Constituency 2011, action #2011-234, 36.↩