By ELIAS LARI
P ASTOR Margaret John in Enga believes that good things will happen when children are taught early in life the importance of honesty, obedience and good character.
These values she believes will address common issues such as corruption, hate and violence.
She hopes to see an education system which promotes positive mental attitude and thinking among children.
The Seventh Day Adventist church member managed to reach Grade 10 before deciding in 1998 to start the End Time New Generation Gospel Ambassadors ministry at her Alumanda village in Tsak, Wapenamanda.
In 2009, she also set up the Candle Self-Examining School focused on teaching children strong good values to help them stay away from crime and sin. The curriculum was based on good character and personality, loyalty and learning about God.
Parents send their children to the school because of the lessons offered and the education standard at elementary level. It later catered for primary, high and secondary school students too.
There are 36 teachers working as volunteers at the school.
She plans to set up a university to offer tertiary education facilities later.
The education she is focused on is mostly based on God’s principles.
“Today, the Government must focus on the education system if it is serious about changes because what children are taught at elementary level will guide them as they grow up.”
She believes too that education in PNG is corrupted by selfish people, resulting in some students unable to progress.
She hopes the education gurus will introduce a new syllabus in schools based more on godly principles and teachings as children come mostly from Christian families.
“We have to make changes to see what we can do for the good of our country as citizens.”
Her husband Sukuru John who had been supporting her throughout passed away last year, leaving her and their four children behind, plus their three grandchildren.
It had not slowed her down nor dampened her enthusiasm to complete what they had started.
Friend Joe Ariga describes her as hardworking and selfless who is spending her time and resources to help others.
Joe hopes that more people will follow Ps John’s lead and example and make the country a better and more prosperous place to live in, without asking anything in return.
She plans to build more schools in provinces where her ministry has set up camp including Western Highlands, Southern Highlands, Jiwaka, Eastern Highlands, Chimbu, Madang, Morobe, Port Moresby and Oro.
Ps John knows she still has a long way to go but is determined to achieve what she set out to do for a better education system for PNG children.
The words of Michael Josephson ring more true than ever: “If we don’t invest now in building character into children, we will surely invest more tomorrow in trying to repair adults.”
By ELIAS LARI