“It is hard to be a pastor’s wife when everyone in the church expects you to know everything,” says Linda (not her real name). The wife of a pastor plays a very important role in the church and in the district. She is considered a full time mother, expected to raise perfect kids, adviser to women and family departments, expert in telling stories, good cook, pianist, choir director and many others. These are a few of the many expectations that can often lead to physical and emotional stress.
The Adventist organization provided a place for these ministers’ spouses and it is called Shepherdess International. It is the objective of the organization to help deal with these situations. That is why, Mrs. Marivic Saramosing – the Shepherdess International Coordinator for Caraga Region, together with Mrs. Pinky Gulfan – the Shepherdess International Coordinator for Mindanao, conducted the first “Continuing Education Program Level 1 for Shepherdess International of Northeastern Mindanao Mission with the theme “Growing with Jesus.” The guest speakers are Mrs. Pinky Gulfan, along with her husband Pr. Edwin Gulfan – the new SSD Evangelist. Their combine experiences in the field for more than forty years as ministers, they shared their knowledge on understanding the life, challenges and role of the wife of the pastor and how to deal with it physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Mrs. Jeiel Jagmoc one of the forty seminarians says that “the lectures were timely and inspiring. We were able to share our experiences, opinions and expertise on the topics during the workshop which is a good thing because it is a way of learning together. Pastor Edwin and Ma’am Pinky Gulfan brought out the best we can be as Minister’s Wife and Shepherdess.” Mrs. Marivic Saramosing is planning to have a Continuing Education Program Level 2 for Shepherdess International in the future. It is her hope that every wife of the Adventist pastors in Caraga region would “grow into a spiritually mature clergy spouse,” she added. (Meljoie Pepito – Ampayon Padiay District Leader)