Synergy in uplifting educational and moral template of children
By Polycarp Onwubiko
May 27th has been aside as Children’s Day. Government directs heads of public schools and proprietors of private schools to prepare the pupils their pupils and students for march past at the stadium and open places in the local government council headquarters. In spite of the elaborate activities in the May Day coupled with impressive pronouncements of government, hardly have meaningful policies and programs incorporated in the annual budgets geared towards meeting the requisite infrastructural facilities and amenities in the primary and secondary. Added to that is the pride of place lacking in raising the moral template of the designated “leaders of tomorrow”.
Lamenting on the apparent lip service being paid by governments every May Day, a national daily in its editorial contended as follows: “Today’s Children’s Day celebration affords the nation another opportunity to evaluate the state of the Nigerian child. What, exactly, is the fate of children in the country today?
“As we ponder this poser, we must never forget that our children represent the future of this country… The future leadership that we like to ascribe to our children means that they deserve very sound foundation upon which they can build solid structures…The foundation that we are given to our young generation is at best, poor and shaky.”
Decrying the state of facilities, dearth of instructional materials public schools and lack of motivation of teachers, the editorial said: “The state of public schools, especially primary and secondary schools is nothing to write home about. Our public schools are no more building blocks of character and careers for our children.
“Class rooms and physical infrastructure are mostly rundown and grossly inadequate.
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“Teachers are not enough and the ones available are poorly motivated. Though most states have a free education policy, it is only so on paper. In reality, the children are still made to pay all sorts of levies, a number of them illegal, but facilitated by the general corruption and indiscipline in the system.”
It is in the light of the shortcomings in public and private schools on the imperative of moral component inchild education that the Mountain of Fire Miracles Ministries, Zonal headquarters Ameny-Awka instituted and celebrate annual Children’s Day. It was held on Sunday, December 10, 2017. The event has acquired uniqueness as children’s ministry is supported by the Pastor to prepare the children for concert displays, singing, carrying out assignments meant for church workers like taking offering, delivering of sermon but under guidance.
The importance of children’s day cannot be over-emphasized as it has become a special occasion to harp on the need for parents and guardians to take due cognizance of the teaching of the Bible to complement educational programs in their school in nurturing their children and wards to become proud of their upbringing as well as grow to become responsible citizens to the community in particular and the society in general: “the leaders of tomorrow”, as it were.
The occasion is always exhilarating as children are drilled to take up functions meant for church workers like ushering congregants to their seats, taking offering and preaching then sermon. Other side attractions include concert, play-acting, singing, gifts and light refreshments provided by the adult and church administrator.
Drawing sermon from Proverb 22, Ms. Onyinye Onbiajulu exhorted her fellow children to be mindful of the people they regard as friends and refrain from bad company so as to abide the word of God in the Bible to become God-fearing and responsible citizens in the society.
“Obey your parents and guardians and as well your teachers in the school. Don’t form the habit of using foul language and respect your seniors both in the homes and school. Listen attentively in the class and carry out assignments given by the teachers and refrain from cheating in the examination.
Enumerating the characteristics of children under Godly tutelage, Onyinye said: “Pray for the spirit of godliness, God loves children as Jesus Christ said and readily considers children’s supplication expeditiously. Before appealing to your parents and guardians for favours, first of all ask God in prayers.
On the expected role of parents in children up-bringing according to the word of God in the Bible, the burden evangelist advised parents and guardians to be marching their words with actions since children tend to believe that whatever their parents do is always then correct thing and worthy of emulation.
“Parents please don’t use abusive words against your children when they misbehave and becoming mischievous. Use cane mildly since the Bible admonishes the use of it to correct erring child to get him or back on tract. Always consider their observations, dreams and utterance since the Holy Spirit could use as medium to relay important message or stir their spirit to say things that might be unbelievable but factual when properly considered and prayed over.”
In his brief comment before praying and anointing the children, the Zonal Pastor Iyke Uloka commended the children’s mentors in the church for the marvelous outing. “Our children going today’s performances are safely in the hand of God. I am highly impressed especially in the recitation of Psalms and portions of the Bible. The Holy Spirit is preparing the ground for promising evangelists and men of God with fire in their bones.
Speaking to Orient Daily after the service Pastor Uloka spoke on the importance of the annual children’s day as a unique opportunity to assess the progress of the children on the activities of the church including sermons and programmes that upgrade the spiritual knowledge of the congregants. The fiery man of God also harped on the imperative of raising children in the fear of God so that the moral hurricane blowing in the society will not pollute them.
“Today’s observation of children’s day depicted that the children of this church has proved to be under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I am advising the children in this special children’s day that it is the period to actually know why God brought them in this world. It is to let the children know that God brought them into the world for a purpose and not go about the things of the world according to their whims and caprices.
“The celebration is specially packaged to teach the children that they have a lot to contribute for the advancement of the kingdom of God. To make them realize their divine destiny and not just mere existence like the unbelieving world.
“We want to make them know that the right way of life is to be properly groomed and taught in the kingdom principles which will shape their lives and make them truly responsible citizens and thereafter enjoy eternal life in Heaven. In our country today, agents of darkness are fast recruiting people and even innocent children have been fallen victims for rituals in quest of wealth. My prayer is that we will nurture the children to fulfill their divine destiny and become leading lights in the spread of the gospel of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.”