Twenty-four pastors kids accompanied their moms and dads to the Ministers and Shepherdess International Seminar held in Baptist Camp, Pattaya, Thailand, on June 4-6, 2007. The children were of different nationalities, but their parents were working in the different missions under SAUM: Vietnam, Singapore, and the host country, Thailand. Mrs. Debbie Saul-Chan, SAUM Shepherdess Coordinator, and Mrs. Julie Griswold, TAM SI Coordinator, invited Ms. Emily Alejandro, a teacher from the Adventist International Mission School, to create a special program for these children. Ms. Alejandro then recruited three other teachers: Nerliza Sales, Belle Morley, and Marizel Belnas, who willingly dedicated their time and effort to implement this program. The children were divided into two groups according to their ages. Children ages 0-5 were under the supervision of Teachers Belle and Marizel, while children ages 6-14 had their own program under the care of Teachers Emily and Nerliza.
With the theme “I’m a PK, I’m Special”, children participated in every activity prepared for them. Activities such as singing, storytelling, cutting, coloring, pasting, painting and outdoor play were enjoyed by the little ones. T-shirt printing, figurine painting and pictureframe-making were done by the older children. They learned lessons on how to be co-workers with their parents at home, in school, in the church, and even in their own communities. Activities such as a sound maze, tower-building, puzzle-solving, and blind-foldwalking enabled them to learn these concepts. They experienced how to lead a group and speak in front of others. For many of them, this was the first time they had particiated in a special program for children while their parents had meetings. As one child commented, “I really like this. I thought we just had to sit down with our parents in the session hall all through the seminar, but they have a special program for us—the PKs.” The children also participated in the social night; in fact, four children led some of the games.
The program ended with a performance by the children in the last session—the commitment service for the adults. The younger children sang a medley of “Jesus Loves the Little Children,” followed by a slide show of pictures of all of the things that they had done during the program, and the children sang an interpretative song entitled “For God So Loved the World.” Not only did the children enjoy their program but their parents did as well. One parent said, “It was nice to attend the seminar without any interruption from our children.” The adults could concentrate on the seminars because they knew that their children were in good care, learning something from all the activities prepared for them.
The children went home that Wednesday afternoon full of enthusiasm and ready to face the challenge of being pastors’ kids.