The Sabbath School Network was born as the brain child of accounting professor David Albrecht (pictured at right) from Bowling Green, Ohio. He maintains The Summa blog, the “Debits and credits of accounting professor David Albrecht.
David originally conceived SSNET in 1992 as a forum to discuss the Adventist weekly Bible Study Guide for adults, published by the Seventh-day Adventist General Conference Sabbath School department. As web master for the Toledo Seventh-day Adventist Church, he started putting Seventh-day-Adventist-related Christian materials online. In prayer, he was impressed to start an email group for studying the Sabbath School lessons and to put up weekly outlines of the lessons. He asked and received permission to excerpt heavily from the Sabbath School quarterly Bible study guide.
In 1995 David started publishing the Sabbath School lessons in HTML format with the help of Linda Sue Martin, joined by Bob and Bryan Hanson in 1996. Check out the first lessons in our archives on “How to Study Your Bible” from the first quarter of 1996.
Early in 1997 Bob Hanson took over the job as webmaster for the Sabbath School lessons, while David managed the rest of the web site. Originally, Bob worked from the printed Sabbath School lessons and translated these into web format. Things became a lot easier when he started receiving the lessons in electronic format and only needed to convert them into HTML format. Until his retirement from SSNET in February 2012, he put the complete text of the Sabbath School lessons online every quarter, with the official permission of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists Personal Ministries Department.
Jerry Giardina began preparing lesson Helps in the third quarter of 1996. These Helps consisted of many more Bible references to the subject than the regular lesson provides plus some extra quotes from Ellen White. You can see these by clicking “Helps” at the top of any lesson. (Jerry retired from the task at the end of 2010, and Bob Hanson prepared them from the first quarter of 2011 to the beginning of 2012.)
The email discussion list began with David Albrecht moderating the contributions from a relatively small list. Recipients would see all posts coming from “SSNET.” Early in 1997 we figured out how to moderate the list by using an email program called Eudora, which is still used for moderation today (2012) because it allows “redirection” leaving the original “From:” address intact.
Subsequent moderators were
- Charles Tidwell
- Inge Anderson (currently enjoys a consulting role)
- Bob Pyke
- Johann Torvaldsson
- Ralph Seland
- Maurice Ashton (currently active)
- Andrew Anderson (currently active)
- John Rayner
- Andrew S Baker (currently active)
David Albrecht retired from active involvement with the Sabbath School Network some time in 1997 and “handed the keys” over to Inge Anderson, as he put it. She is currently responsible for the overall operation of the ministry, the Sabbath School discussion list and the mailing list for teachers’ helps, while Bob Hanson is responsible for the publication of the Adult Bible Study Guide online, which is the focus of the great majority of our visitors.