Raranta, John A. (1925–1976)

By Orsly Winston Raranta

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Orsly Winston Raranta is currently working towards his master's in religion degree in Biblical Studies at the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies.

First Published: January 30, 2021

John A. Raranta was a pastor and administrator in Sulawesi and Indonesia.

Early Life

John A. Raranta was born to an Adventist family in a small town, Langoan, North Sulawesi, Indonesia on January 25, 19251 to parents Adolf Raranta and Johana Tamburian.2 His father, Adolf Raranta, was a hardworking farmer that was born in 1876 and died on January 12, 1964 in Langoan, at the age of 88. His mother, Johana Tamburian, was a faithful wife that was born in the same town on January 2, 1901 and died on July 21, 1982.3

John was the second son of nine siblings. Together with him, are his brothers Wolter, Benny, and Piet Raranta all served as workers in the church. Wolter served as a pastor, publishing secretary and mission president before he retired in 1985. His brother, Benny, served also as a pastor, as well as a professor in seminary and mission president in North Sulawesi until he died in May 1978. Piet served as a teacher in the mission until he died.4

John spent his childhood on a small farm in Langoan. He entered a simple public school in his hometown in the countryside from elementary up to high school where he learned many practical lessons from nature. Those experiences helped him prepare to be a leader of the church.5

Education and Marriage

  • Raranta got his Bachelor in Theology degree from Indonesia Union Seminary (I.U.S.) of Gadobangkong, Bandung (now Universitas Advent Indonesia [Indonesian Adventist University]) and was married to Paulin Marie Assa in Manado on December 8, 1954.6

    His wife, Paulin, was born in Malang, West Java on August 10, 1926 to a military family of parents Paul Kosso Assa (January 29, 1903 - October 6, 1983) and Neli Lensun (August 25, 1909 - March 5, 1993). Paulin graduated from nursing school in Manado, North Sulawesi, and worked in the public hospital from 1957 until she retired in 1986.7

    From his marriage, John had four children. Leopold Raranta the oldest, born on November 12, 1956; Julinda Grace Raranta, the second, was born on November 23, 1957; Moody Donald Raranta, the third, was born on December 3, 1959; and the last, Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, was born on July 20, 1961. While he was serving as president of Nusa Tenggara Mission, in East Indonesia Union Mission, John won two first native converters, Alex Waang, fourteen years old, and Meity. John adopted them and brought them to Manado after their respective families disowned and drove them out from their homes. Later Meity was taken back by force to Nusa Tenggara by her blood brother, but Alex Waang remained in John’s family as a fifth child and took the adoptive name, Alex Waang Raranta.8

Ministry

  • John started his ministry for the church on June 3, 1946 as a colporteur at North Sulawesi Mission. He served as a colporteur there from 1946 to 1948.9 John then served as a colporteur in South Sulawesi Mission for one year (1952) and became a Bible teacher in North Sulawesi Mission from 1953 until 1955.10 John then continued to serve the church as an associate pastor in the same mission for another year (1956). From 1957 to 1959, he served as publishing secretary in South Sulawesi Mission. On January 7, 1959 John was ordained as a minister and in 1960 was transferred to Nusa Tenggara Mission as a district pastor.11 After two years of service as a district pastor (1960-1961), in 1962 he was voted to be president of Nusa Tenggara Mission.12 John served there as president for two years (1962-1963) then was elected as president for North Celebes Mission13 (now North Sulawesi Mission) for another seven years (1964-1970).14 He also served as a first trainer in East Indonesia Union Leadership Training School located in the union office in Manado.15

    While he was a mission president in North Sulawesi, John helped the church to establish another mission. In 1971 North Sulawesi Mission was expanded into two missions, which are North Minahasa Mission and South Minahasa Mission. John then served as president of North Minahasa Mission for two years (1971-1972) and then served as president of South Minahasa Mission from 1973 until the day he died in 1976.16

Later Life

During the South Minahasa Mission’s third session in 1976, John Raranta gave his last report, as mission president, about the progress of the church during a hard time of great famine where no worker was dismissed while the church was struggling with financial difficulty.17 He died on August 30, 1976 because of a disease while serving as a mission president and was buried in his own town, Langoan, North Sulawesi, Indonesia.18 His wife Paulin, was brought to America later for medical support in her old age and died on September 26, 2013 and was buried in California, U.S.19

Contribution

John had served many churches throughout his life in the entire Sulawesi (South, Central, and North Sulawesi), Indonesia. He was involved in planting many churches and schools, including college and health institution. He also helped the church to expand the mission conference from one mission, North Sulawesi Mission, to three missions: North Minahasa Mission, South Minahasa Mission, and Central Sulawesi Mission.20

Sources

Birth Certificate of John A. Raranta. In the Raranta family’s personal collection.

Indonesian Union Biennial Session, 1961-1973, West Indonesia Union Mission archives.

Marriage Certificate of Adolf Raranta and Johana Tamburian. In the Raranta family’s personal collection. West Indonesia Union Mission archives.

Minutes of Indonesian Union Mission, 1962 and 1964. West Indonesia Union Mission archives.

Personal Workers Record of John A. Raranta. Southern-Asia Pacific Division Archives, Silang, Cavite, Philippines.

Raranta, W. “Leadership Training School in the East Indonesia Union,” Far Eastern Division Outlook, May 1, 1967.

Ruhupatty, Nathan “South Minahasa Holds Third Mission Session,” Far Eastern Division Outlook, April 1, 1976.

Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook, 1963,1964 and 1976. https://www.adventistyearbook.org/.

“Union Directory” Far Eastern Division Outlook, Jan/Feb 1977.

Notes

  1. Birth Certificate of John A. Raranta, in the Raranta family’s personal collection.

  2. Personal Workers Record of John A. Raranta, Southern-Asia Pacific Division Archives; Marriage Certificate of Adolf Raranta and Johana Tamburian, in the Raranta family’s personal collection.

  3. Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, daughter of John A. Raranta was interviewed by the author, in Manado, October 17, 2019. The testimony is supported by the date in the picture of the tombs showed by Jeanny.

  4. Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, interview by author, Manado, November 5, 2019. Personal Workers Record.

  5. Moody Donald Raranta, son of John A. Raranta interviewed by the author, in Manado, October 16, 2019.

  6. Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, Interview October 17, 2019; Personal Workers Record of John A. Raranta.

  7. Personal Workers Record of John A. Raranta.

  8. Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, Interview October 24, 2019.

  9. Personal Workers Record of John A. Raranta.

  10. Ibid.

  11. Ibid.

  12. Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook, 1963, 108.

  13. Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook, 1964, 116.

  14. Personal Workers Record of John A. Raranta; Indonesian Union Biennial Session, 1961-1973; Minutes of Indonesian Union Mission, 1962-70, 30 and 1964-16, 8.

  15. W. Raranta “Leadership Training School in the East Indonesia Union,” Far Eastern Division Outlook, May 1, 1967, 10.

  16. Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, Interview October 17, 2019; Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook, 1976, 174.

  17. Nathan Ruhupatty, “South Minahasa Holds Third Mission Session,” Far Eastern Division Outlook, April 1, 1976, 11.

  18. Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, Interview, October 17, 2019; “Union Directory” Far Eastern Division Outlook, January/February 1977, 2.

  19. Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, October 24, 2019.

  20. Moody Donald Raranta, and Jeanny Poula Ivonny Raranta, Interview October 16, 2019.

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Raranta, Orsly Winston. "Raranta, John A. (1925–1976)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 30, 2021. Accessed February 29, 2024. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=DCWC.

Raranta, Orsly Winston. "Raranta, John A. (1925–1976)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 30, 2021. Date of access February 29, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=DCWC.

Raranta, Orsly Winston (2021, January 30). Raranta, John A. (1925–1976). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved February 29, 2024, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=DCWC.