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SLM’s Newsletter – Friday 16 March, 2018

South Leeward Mission Places in Talent Parade | Principals Attend Workshop | Why is My Child Ignoring Me? | Transformed For Faithful Service

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South Leeward Mission Places in
Talent Parade

Extreme left –  Allana Martin of the Antigua/Barbuda Secondary School along with other students from around the Caribbean Union (Picture from the NCC Facebook Page)

March 7th, 2018 | St. Joseph, Trinidad | Eulalie Semper
The Antigua and Barbuda Secondary School placed second in the talent parade held in Trinidad and Tobago on March 7, 2018.  Allana Martin, a fifth form student, represented the South Leeward Mission and did an outstanding job. After her performances in the prepared speech and the impromptu speech, the room buzzed with appreciation, and many spoke of the student who had an ‘excellent memory’ and ‘was quite intelligent.’  The other students were from St. Thomas, St. Croix, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada,  St. Vincent, Bequia and Tortola.

The Antiguan flag was proudly displayed each time Allana walked on the stage. The spirit of camaraderie, topped with smiling faces and with momentary bursts of laughter, captured the electric atmosphere that pervaded the room. The topic debated was – Is human activity a substantial cause of global warming?

Through prepared speeches, impromptu speeches, and talent display, the students from around the Caribbean Union displayed the highest level of oratory skills. The talent display included drama, poetry and music.

Congratulations to Allana Martin of the Antigua Secondary School who was awarded most outstanding student in the impromptu speech and second in the prepared speech, missing this second award by one point. To God be the glory; great things He has done!  May God continue to bless our schools.

 Principals in South Leeward Mission Attend
Education Workshop in Trinidad
Front: L-R Pastor Johnson Frederick – Secretary CUC; Dr. Eulalie Semper – Education Director SLM, Dr. Hilary Bowman – President USC.  Middle: L-R  Vivian Nicholas – Principal Antigua SDA Primary School, Yvette Blanchette – Principal St. Kitts SDA Primary School, Zelphia Daley – Coordinator Antigua Early Childhood Center. Back L-R Robert Nicholas – Principal New Bethel Academy, Cheryl Morris – Principal Antigua SDA Secondary School

March 6th, 2018 | St. Joseph, Trinidad | Eulalie Semper
The Education Department of Caribbean Union Conference hosted a workshop in Trinidad and Tobago on March 5th and 6th for directors and principals, under the theme – ‘Transformational Leadership for Excellence in Adventist Education.’  Principals Cheryl Morris, Yvette Blanchette, Vivian Nicholas, Robert Nicholas and Coordinator Zelphia Daley from the South Leeward Mission attended this workshop.

The richness of the workshop resulted from the experienced presenters who kept the interest of the directors and principals alert, interested and focused. The topics selected were meaningful and touched on key issues that impact principal leadership in school. The topics included areas such as: “Understanding the Human Resource Function,” “Progressive Discipline,” “Transformational Leadership,” “Principles for Leaders in Adventist Education,” and “Leadership and Influence.”  Through interactive forums, video presentations, lectures, songs, games and school reports, directors and principals were kept engaged in what some described as ‘a truly inspirational workshop.’

The passionate presentation of “Towards a Greater Understanding of the Disciplinary Process of the Church,” by Pastor Johnson Frederick, provoked spirited responses. However, he was careful to remind us that in spite of the fact that we fellowship as brothers and sisters in the church setting, great care should be taken to manage the schools as professional organizations but not as Sabbath School. Principals were challenged to insist on accountability, to keep detailed records and to approach leadership responsibilities with professionalism and grit.

The issue of competition with other schools was another debated topic. Dr. Hilary Bowman clearly pointed out that all schools should discontinue any form of in-house competition which promotes rivalry and isolation.  He clearly stated: “None of our schools should, in any form or fashion,  be involved in competitive sports with government schools.”

The strong support of Christian Education by  President Kern Tobias and the Executive Secretary, Pastor Johnson Frederick, was noted and appreciated by the attendees.

It was an excellent workshop that combined perspectives, current educational practices and Adventist philosophy to help directors and principals realize that ‘Transformational Leadership for Excellence in Adventist Education’ should be relentlessly pursued so that our schools can experience increased success at all levels.

“Why is My Child Ignoring Me?”

March 13th, 2018 | St. Johns, Antigua | Shereen Braithwaite

The Home and School Association (HASA) of the Antigua/Barbuda SDA Primary School saw the need to organize a seminar to empower parents as we all struggle in the ‘school of life’ called ‘parenting.’ On Tuesday, March 13th, we gathered at the school’s auditorium for the first of two seminars; the other being scheduled for May 1st, 2018.

Why is my child ignoring me?” was the chosen topic because of the rising complaints of parents that their children just don’t seem to listen or as we would say locally, “dem too harden.” 
After the regular formalities and greetings from the HASA President, Principal Vivian Nicholas and Ps. Frederick Alfred (Chairman of the School Board), our facilitator, Mrs. Maricia Samuel, was introduced to the attendees.  Mrs. Samuel is a teacher and a school counselor, but she represented the parents of the school.  Her presentation was informative and very practical. 
Here are a few nuggets:
  • Parents are our children’s greatest teachers, as they mimic us and learn from what they see.  She quoted from Robert Fulghum who said, “Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.”
  • Parents are also guilty of ignoring their children, especially when they are busy doing something and don’t want to stop to hear what the child has to say.
  • Many parents have not taught their children to listen actively, and this could be because we, ourselves, don’t know how to be active listeners.  We don’t pay attention to the children, neither do we focus on them or show interest in what they are saying.  Thus, we have become poor role models.
  • Our children also ignore us because we habitually speak in loud instructive tones.  This manner portrays the authoritarian figure that we expect the children to respect.  “I brought you into this world, and I can take you out.”  This is the kind of mentality that children often face.
  • Children like to test boundaries to see how far they can go without facing consequences.
  • Children find that parents are nagging.
  • Children choose to ignore parents so that they can manipulate us.
Parents were encouraged to improve the listening skill of their children by the following:
  • Modeling how to be an active listener:  be present by giving your full attention.
  • Stop what you are doing/remove distractions.
  • Acknowledge what they are saying to you by responding appropriately – eg. “really” or “wow”
  •  Be Sure that the child can really hear you – ensure eye contact as much as possible.
  •  Ask questions to ensure that they understood the instructions.
  • Be clear and specific – avoid giving too much information at once.
  • Use calm, firm and positive tones.
  • Avoid accusing, criticizing or threatening words.
  • Use praise and rewards to encourage the desired behavior.
  • Set limits and choose your battles.
  • Be consistent – follow through with consequences.
  • Use a timer – encourage them to complete tasks in a timely manner. 
One of the quotations that was used to close off her presentation was by Jane Nelson who said, “Children will listen to you after they feel listened to.”  Her final words to the parents were:  “Parenting is a work in progress – Be intentional!!!”

L-R: Pastor Shewin White – Pastor on Montserrat, Pastor Orville Joseph – Community Service Dir., SLM; Silvia Ham-Ying – Health Director, SLM; Dr. Carson Greene – President, SLM; Dr. Wayne Knowles – Exec. Sec., SLM; Hazel Adams-Riley – Elder; Bro Morales – Bible Worker; Arthur Morris – Elder; Pastor Miguel Vanderhost, Spanish Coordinator, SLM

February 26th, 2018 | Brades, Montserrat | Hazel D. Adams-Riley

Evangelism Field School, Youth Connect,  Island Convention, Sabbath School Award Ceremony, Joint Church Board Meeting, and Sabbath School Officers Meeting were just some of the activities in which the Montserrat Constituency was engaged during the period February 22nd to 26th.  On island for these events were members of the South Leeward Mission Administrative team:  President – Dr. Carson Greene, Secretary – Dr. Wayne Knowles, Health Director – Sis. Silvia Ham-Ying and Sabbath School Director – Pastor Orville Joseph.  The meetings, which were held at the New Ebenezer Seventh-day Adventist Church, were both inspirational and informative.

The Evangelism Field School, conducted by Dr. Wayne Knowles, attracted elders, deacons, Personal Ministries leaders, Sabbath School teachers, youth leaders, prayer warriors, and other persons interested in being trained in soul winning. Topics covered included:  Personal Witnessing, Small Groups and Public Evangelism.  This training  was very timely, as the island prepares for evangelistic meetings, starting April 6th.

For the first time, the youth had the chance to meet the newly installed President, Dr. Carson Greene, on Friday, 23rd February.  This session was held at the Brades Arts and Education Centre and attracted Adventists, as well as a few non-Adventist youth.  They were encouraged to tell what they liked and did not like about the church and to make suggestions as to what the church could do to be more relevant and enjoyable to them. At first, the youth were shy about sharing but later, warmed up and made some valuable observations and suggestions which President Greene promised to take on board in his planning and ministry to the youth in the Mission. The youth were encouraged to keep in connected – iConnect.

Convention Day was a high day!  The constituency studied, facilitated by Pastor Joseph; were ministered to by President Greene for the adults and by Sis. Ham-Ying for the children; and fellowshipped around the physical food provided and served by the ladies of the church, assisted by a few men. 

The Sabbath School Award Ceremony, the first in the region, brought tears to the eyes of some and joy to the hearts of all, as they received pins and basked in the recognition given to them for the years of service to the Sabbath School.  All agreed that they had served, not expecting a reward, but that it felt good to be so awarded.  Superintendents Vernitha Weeks and Maudlyn “Rose” Greaves, along with Verna West and Kathleen Greenaway (in absentia), were singled out for their contribution to the Sabbath School department over the years and were given special plaques.
The opportunity to receive a midterm report from their leaders was appreciated by Board members who were updated by the Departmental leaders who were present at the joint Church Board meeting.

In the final session for the action packed weekend, Sabbath School officers were encouraged to do a self-assessment as to the state of their Sabbath School, particularly as it pertained to lack of growth. They were challenged to consider the question, “How can I move from where I am to where I need to be?”

“When the spirit o
f God takes possession of the heart it transforms the life.” DA p.173

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