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 Agape Teacher's Conference 2014 

On October 3rd 2014, we held a conference for our teachers who teach Bible lessons in orphanages weekly. 33 people, all Agape staff and volunteers, attended the conference. Our goal was to let every teacher be heard, sharing experience and needs. We wanted to encourage and inspire them for the new year of orphanage ministry ahead. Agape Ministries Director, Alexander Fedorchuk and Fred Ilyin, our guest from Canada encouraged and counseled the teachers. (Fred is a sponsor who supports our orphan camp ministry.)




Fred shared from the Word, providing encouragement and support for our staff and volunteers. The following were his main points: 

-Live your faith before the children, and they themselves will come to faith in Christ.

-Be a light for the children, and they too will begin to shine.

 The teachers had time to discuss their own ministry experiences, sharing their problems as well as their success stories. They also learned new interactive games and new songs that they could use in their lessons.

Each teacher was given the opportunity to share the answers to three questions from the group. A few examples:

Q. “What do you personally get out of orphan ministry?

 A. “Joy and love.”


Q. “What is your dream as a teacher?”

A. “To see a large number of children commit their lives to Christ.”

Q. “What are some of your personal challenges in orphan ministry?”

 A. “Building decent relationships with orphanage staff who are opposed to the Bible lessons and establishing solid relationships with the older orphans.” 


Q. “How do you go about befriending the older (teen) orphans?

A. “One time I noticed that some of the kid’s clothes needed mending, and asked if I could mend them. That helped me become their friend. That brought me to the following conclusion: You have to do more than just teach and give advice. If you go beyond teaching and try to really see and understand their needs, they value that and it really helps them see you as a friend.”


The teachers were able to discuss what results they’ve seen from their ministry as well.

Here is one of the testimonies shared:
“All too often we want to see the result of our ministry today, right here, right now. God tends to look at things differently. Let me share one example of this. I’d invited some teens from the orphanage over to my house. We had tea and sang songs together, just had fun visiting. After they left, I noticed that several things were missing. I was very upset and disappointed in them. Almost immediately, I found myself thinking, “you put everything into these kids, pour out your heart and soul… and this is the result?” A few days later I was at the orphanage again. I’d just finished a lesson with the 4th graders when in walked Sasha, one of the teens I’d had over. He held out his hand…with the missing items, and said “Forgive me, take this back. God has been convicting me and my conscience won’t give me any peace.” I was simply overwhelmed with joy - thanking and praising the Lord for working in Sasha’s heart!”


 Here are some of the conclusions everyone came to after this encouraging and profitable time of teaching and sharing:

-It’s very important to spend time talking with the kids outside of class; one on one, making contact, looking them in the eyes. That’s when children really open up, sharing their ups and downs, their joys and sorrows. That’s when they’ll ask some question that’s been on their mind for days and share their secrets with you as a friend.

 -Without one on one time, your orphanage ministry is left open-ended, unfinished.

 -When a teenager shares some sin they’ve committed, there should be no hint of shaming, blaming or condemnation from the teacher. You need to listen attentively, hear them out. Then if possible, give appropriate advice from the Bible.


The teacher’s conference wrapped up with a special dinner in appreciation of the teachers and volunteers present.  Everyone had a great time and went away inspired and enriched by the time together… as well as thinking about how to apply what they’d heard to their own ministry this year. 

Thank you for your prayers for our teachers and volunteers working in orphanages across Ukraine! Please continue to keep them in your prayers as this new school year gets underway.

May God bless you!

        Agape Ministries Staff