May 6, 2019
Strengthening Sunday School in South America
From the Superintendent's DESK
After leaving Brazil, Sam Ajayi, Director of South America Work, and his wife, Shade, traveled to Cajamarca, the headquarters for our churches in Peru. The purpose for going was to make improvements to the Sunday school program, including enabling better access to materials, stressing the spiritual qualifications for effective teaching, and providing more training. Brother Sam sent this report of their visit.
After arriving in Cajamarca, Shade and I were pleasantly surprised to see Agustin Quiroz, the leader of the work in Peru. He lives in Chiclayo, about a five-hour drive away, and had been very ill. A few months ago, he took what he thought would be his farewell trip to Cajamarca. Earlier, when informing him of our plan to visit, I had asked him to stay home and rest, but he would not be left out. He came, and we were all thankful to see how the Lord has touched him again.
We had a profitable time on Tuesday and Wednesday meeting with Sunday school teachers. Our churches in Peru and other parts of South America have faced many challenges regarding their Sunday school programs, including slow or non-delivery of materials, a lack of effective teachers, and a need for more training.
To address the issue of not receiving materials in a timely manner, we distributed new and used tablet computers, donated during last year’s Portland camp meeting. Each was preloaded with our Sunday school curriculum. In addition, the teachers were given color-coded date sheets of the Sunday school lesson schedule from the current quarter through the year 2024. The teachers were so excited to receive these tools, and looked forward to using them.
Some tablets had already been distributed during the Chile camp meeting in February, and have proved to be a great help there. They will be of even more help in Peru where our churches are scattered in diverse and distant locations. In both countries the tablets were received with much appreciation, but more are needed.
Another issue addressed was the spiritual qualifications necessary for effective teaching, beginning with obtaining salvation, sanctification, and the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Other qualifications explored were being fully yielded to the Lord’s will, and being thankful for the privilege of being used by Him to teach the Gospel.
One session concentrated on how to teach an adult Sunday school lesson. We demonstrated using lesson 140 on “Consecration.” Then three teachers were randomly chosen to practice on the rest of us. At the end of each practice, we discussed areas where the teaching could be improved upon. This exercise was well received, and the teachers left with good ideas for improvement.
At the close of the final session, each teacher was given a ten-point checklist of what to keep in mind in order to teach a lesson effectively.
We had a very joyful and productive time in Cajamarca. As we continue to make improvements to the Sunday school program, we know the Lord will supply able and effective teachers.
The Ajayis are expected to return home shortly. As we pray for their safe return, we ask that God would bless the efforts in South America and strengthen the Sunday school program there.
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