1986 . . . Adventist Recovery Ministries (ARMin) began as Seventh-day Adventists for the Extinction of Addictions (SDAXA) in January 1986 when Hal Gates, a recovering alcoholic, drug addict, child of God, renewed by the power of Jesus Christ – Hal’s Highest Power – listened to God’s call. After his positive life changes began in 1981, through the influence of Livvie (who would become his wife) and the Holy Spirit, Hal, as a middle aged man, was called by the Washington Conference to work as a “task force” pastor at a small church in Willapa Harbor, Washington. Then came the call to be a pastor at the newly formed West Seattle Seventh-day Adventist Church. It was there that he responded to God’s voice to start a support group ministry for alcoholics and addicts.
1987 . . . Patricia Mutch, then Director of the Institute of Alcoholism and Drug Dependencies, invited Hal to come to Andrews University, Berrien Springs, Michigan to help her teach a class of graduate students at the Adventist Theological Seminary. He brought two large boxes of materials which he used to help alcoholics and addicts back in Washington state. She recognized the value of this material and agreed to take time to edit these resources and get them published. The result was the Regeneration Manual.
Pr Ray Nelson, passionate about the power of the recovery ministry, became the director of Regeneration Ministry and was instrumental in expanding the ministry and building a strong network.
The General Conference Health Ministries Department took on the responsibility of publishing the Regeneration materials.
The North American Division (NAD) Health Ministries Department has over the years supported the Regeneration Ministry. Three awareness tours were planned and financed.
2002 . . . East Coast – Maine to Miami
2004 . . . Midwest – New Orleans to Chicago
2005 . . . West Coast – Seattle to Southern California
Annual Regeneration seminars were offered at NAD Health Summits. Other leadership conferences were held periodically at the General Conference for the training of facilitators and recovery ministry leaders.
2006 . . . Additional support from the North American Division included the development of Journey to Wholeness – a user-friendly Christ centered recovery resource to be used in 12-step meetings. These materials started to be developed with funding by VERSACARE to be used in weekly Christ centered 12-step support groups.
2008 . . . The Association of Adventist Parents and Adventist Regeneration Ministries united in May 2008 and collaborated in organizing retreats and conferences.
2010. . .The Regeneration Ministry board of directors voted to restructure the ministry and transfer the leadership and ministry to the General Conference, through its North American Division.
2011. . .The former Regenerations organization was dissolved and a new name – Adventist Recovery Ministries (ARMin) – was chosen. ARMin became an official ministry of the Adventist church under the direction of the Health Ministries department in North America. At that time, the former director, Pr Ray Nelson, became a member of the newly formed NAD ARMin Advisory Committee and Dr. Katia Reinert became the first NAD ARMin director.
2012-2013. . .ARMin launched Unhooked in collaboration with Hope Channel – a TV series Channel featuring 28 episodes discussing various addictions with real stories of people sharing how they found recovery in Christ. The co-producers received a Telly Award for an outstanding show. The successful series was developed into a 10-DVD set for accessibility.
2013-2015. . . The ARMin Journey to Wholeness facilitator and participant guides were completed and a new ARMin Facilitator Training Curriculum was developed by NAD and General Conference Health Ministries leaders and addiction recovery experts. ARMin trainings were conducted at NAD health summits, in all NAD Unions, and in Europe, in an effort to equip leaders and inspire people to become facilitators. Union and Conference Health Ministries directors became ARMin directors and appointed ARMin coordinators to facilitate expansion of the ministry. ARMin Awareness weekends were also held in churches by request. New resources were developed, including the Journey to Life newsletter and Dr David Sedlacek became the first editor, followed by Pr Ray Nelson.
2017. . . ARMin Global was born as the ministry expanded from North America to all regions of the world. ARMin Global Facilitator training is being held around the world, and contextualized across cultures as a way to reach people in large cities and remote regions of the world.
2018 . . . ARMin Global and the General Conference White State collaborated to develop a Steps to Christ Recovery Edition. This invaluable resource is used along the Journey to Wholeness materials.