South American Division Ministerial Association

We had recently arrived at a new district, and my husband was mentioning the names of the brethren who were the elders of the church.

They would preach when my husband was going to be away visiting other churches. Their phone numbers, home addresses, and personal information were also recorded as very important.

Standing outside with the luggage that had recently arrived, I observed as they got organized and talked. I could clearly see that these men were going to be a support to my husband. They were going to be the ones who would give directions, including where to go on visits to the church brethren, and what were the less dangerous times to go out. They would accompany him to the hardware stores for purchases to remodel and build churches. And they would be the ones who would stay with the congregation when we got transferred, and would take care of the church that had elected them—elected them as local "pastors."

But what I treasure the most in my heart is a deeper sense of gratitude when I remember some on them, such as the elder who presented to the Lord my oldest son. He took the small baby in his arms, and pleaded before our heavenly Father's throne of grace that He would protect and accompany that child throughout his entire life. The same occurred with our younger children. And while my husband and I, as parents, were kneeling down, the church elder, prayed pleading for the pastor's son and for the pastor's daughter. What's impressive is that as the years went by, we had to accompany him the day he left one of his own sons in the last dwelling place on earth, but the elder held firmly to the promise of resurrection for his son.

Things apparently so simple repeatedly take place in our lives, yet they are deeply significant to our spiritual experience.

But I not only remember these occurrences. There was one church that was very significant for me, especially on Sabbath days.

As usual, I sat in the very first row to avoid my children getting distracted. My husband was not always on the platform to listen to the message from God every Sabbath, but there was always a brother, a church elder, who would exhort us in a divine message from the Bible. But the moment that would fill me with most thankfulness was when he prayed for our needs, for the sick, and for the church families. Every Sabbath the elder would include us as a family before God. Kneeling down, by his own free will, this elder would mention our names and ask God to strengthen my husband, as he labored, set an example, went about his work. When this elder prayed, my heart would overflow with thankfulness to God, because I felt that in our Heavenly Father, we were real brothers and sisters.

He felt the need to present us as a family to God because he knew that we had to struggle against the hosts of darkness, and he wanted us to be victorious. Many times these simple prayers would strengthen me in my Christian walk. Though I never confided this to the church, how good it is to work in harmony and peace with all our brethren. I wish to thank every elder of the church for their prayers, and for the support they offer each pastor who arrives at their district, each one of them quite different from the other, but all of them called to do God's work in the churches.

Your prayers are like showers of blessings for the pastoral family—the pastor, his wife, and each one of their children.

Your patience and tolerance are an encouragement to go on every day. Your advice, given in love, is a path that helps to trace the pastor's work.

Your example reaffirms our children to continue being faithful to God, to love the church, and to learn that one can commit himself unselfishly to a cause that represents the truth, and that represents our heavenly Father.

What else could I say as a pastor's wife?

Thank you for loving the pastoral family who arrives at your district, for trying hard to get to know them, and for taking good care of their spiritual needs and encouraging them to accomplish their work successfully.

Thank God there are elders in our churches.

From the South American Division Ministerial Association