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7-30-14 2014 NAD Family Ministries Distinguished Service Award Presented to Phyllis Whitley-Washington
|L-R: Claudio Consuegra, Pamela Consuegra, Phyllis Washington and her husband, William Washington|
Phyllis Whitley-Washington, currently the NAD Children’s Ministries Director, began her ministry to children at age 13 as a Kindergarten Sabbath School teacher in a small rural church in Lake Union Conference. Fifty-three years later, even though she has worked with all of the age levels (including teens), the three to five year olds are still her favorite group. When asked why she is so passionate about children, she responds, “Your experiences positive or negative can become a platform for your ministry. My childhood was riddled with experiences and environments that forced me to totally depend on the Creator. I found peace and solace in that relationship when it seemed that my world, my reality was spinning out of control. My desire is that every child will have this relationship with God. It is the only thing that will sustain them in their life’s journey.” Being the product of a dysfunctional family, she understands the importance of the Christian family unit and its impact on the spiritual development of children. Phyllis is married to William Washington and together they have a blended family of 14 children, 45 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren.
The award contains figures known as INUKSHUK. The Inukshuk figures hold great symbolism here in our North American Division territory of Canada. They were stone man-like figures, traditionally used by the Inuits and constructed along the Canadian shores with the purpose of pointing the wayward traveler back home. If you were lost, you would only need to look for this familiar figure and follow in the way it was pointing. The path always led home.
Phyllis Whitley-Washington has faithfully served in the North American Division as Director for Children's Ministries and worked with our little ones for 53 years and in so doing she has made a positive impact on families. Just as the Inukshuk point wayward travelers back home, she has pointed our little ones towards their heavenly home.