From the Virgin Islands with Love

Meet Celeste M. David from the Inter-American Division.

Gina Wahlen enjoys meeting people from around the world and writing about them. She currently lives in Maryland with her husband Clinton. They have two children a son, Daniel, 17, and a daughter, Heather, 12.

Meet Celeste M. David from the Inter-American Division

Celeste (Rogers) David was born in St. Thomas and grew up on the beautiful U.S. Virgin Islands. During her pre­teen and teen years, Celeste was active in her church and Pathfinder club in St. Thomas. She participated in the drill team and youth choir, and it was there that she met her future husband, Vincent A. David.

After graduating from high school, she attended Andrews University in Michigan, U.S.A., where she graduated with a B.A. in music and a B.S. in nursing. On August 18, 1985, Celeste and Vincent were married at the Shiloh Seventh-day Adventist Church in St. Thomas. The couple have two grown children, Vincent A. David II, 22, and Chaunielle Lizette David, 19.

Dr. Vincent David has been a pastor for several years in the North Caribbean Confer­ence and is currently serving as the Education Director for that conference. Celeste works full-time as a registered nurse in pediatrics for the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Health. She also enjoys playing the pia­no and organ and working with several church choirs. In addi­tion, Celeste is involved in the church’s health ministry, giv­ing presentations and partici­pating in outreach programs and church-sponsored health screenings.

In the following interview, Celeste gives us insights into her life both as a Shepherdess and as a departmental worker’s spouse.

Shepherdess Journal: Tell us of an interesting experience that could be an encouragement to other pastoral wives.

Celeste David: Sometime during our pastorate a young woman came to me right after AY and told me that I didn’t act like a pastor’s wife. I asked her what she meant and she stated that I acted “normal.” I took it as a compliment and realized that being yourself is what members appreciate. . . . Church members appreciate pastors’ wives who are respectful, humble, kind, and understanding toward them. However, pastors’ wives should maintain a certain type of class and dignity, but at the same time display a “people person” attitude. Pastors’ wives should always aim to be spiritually mature.

Shepherdess: What is the most challenging aspect of be­ing a pastor’s wife?

Celeste: Expectations of members—what they feel you must do or be. However, if you are confident and sure about your role as a Seventh-day Adventist Christian in God’s Church, half of your stress is over. Another challenge is moving. Packing a home approximately every 4 years or so is not exactly a treat.

Shepherdess: What do you love most about your husband?

Celeste: His ability to balance travel, work responsibilities, family time, and authoring books. He loves Jesus and has a consistent prayer and devotional life. He is ambitious, a go-getter, confident and insightful.

Shepherdess: What do you love most about Jesus?

Celeste: He is faithful. Jesus is Someone that I can talk to anytime. His promises are true. He is my best Friend.

Shepherdess: Tell us a little more about yourself, your family, and your church.

Celeste: St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, is my sixth place of residence since our marriage. This assignment is unique in that my husband does not have a church assignment at this time; he is a departmental worker. I enjoy feeling like a “regular” member, and I believe that the “spotlight” may not necessarily be on me now. However, the members of the church we attend still show that respect for me and relate to me as a pastor’s wife.

Our children, now grown, enjoyed meeting new people and making friends as we moved from island to island. They grew up as normal youngsters and didn’t seem bothered by the pressures of ministry as far as human relationships. The moves were challenging for them as they had to say goodbye to friends and make new ones. We allowed them to live “normal” lives as far as possible, but taught them to make God proud of whatever they did.

My husband has recently authored two inspirational and dynamic books: He Restoreth All Things: The Elijah Message and Today’s Generation and Daring to Dream: 70 Plus Magnanimous Insights of Wisdom and Inspiration for Anyone Daring to Dream.

Shepherdess: Is there any particular ministry that interests you?

Celeste: I have a special interest and concern for the young men of our Church. This ministry includes care, support, appreciation, and encouragement in certain aspects of life—academic, social, career, and spiritual.

I hold a strong conviction that our young men need to be nurtured on a consistent basis in these important areas, thus leading to more focused, confident, mature,          and converted individuals. I have found this ministry over the years to be not only enjoyable but rewarding.

Gina Wahlen enjoys meeting people from around the world and writing about them. She currently lives in Maryland with her husband Clinton. They have two children a son, Daniel, 17, and a daughter, Heather, 12.