MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

May 20, 2012

Pastor connects through creativity

— He pulled out a bundle of red yarn, a box of pasta, a pair of science goggles and two aluminum cans connected by a hot pink string. As he heartily dug through the seemingly bottomless tote, his eyes lit up with excitement.

To some people, it may appear to be a tote full of junk, but when he looked in the tote he saw ideas.

A straw cut in half made a great instrument. Duct tape constructed into elongated handcuffs made a team-building exercise. Each item that came out of the tote had a lesson or lessons attached for Geraldo Alonso.

Alonso, the pastor of Muskogee’s Seventh-day Adventist Church, has always felt driven to minister to kids.

“Watching kids getting excited for Christ is what made it real for me,“ Alonso said. “The excitement of leading them to it is what made me say ‘I want to for the rest of my life.’”

The lessons he teaches in Sabbath school are not only God-inspired but also real-world oriented.

Alonso said he uses games to help the kids to grasp the importance of skills such as communication and teamwork.

While Alonso was in college he worked as a staff member at Wewoka Woods Adventist Center summer camp for three years.

Alonso still works at the camp every summer, but now as its director.

“My church is pretty awesome in that they allow me to leave for three months so I am able to do both the summer camp and be the pastor here,” Alonso said.

Both of Alonso’s jobs give him the opportunity to pursue his passion of leading kids to God and equipping the leaders of tomorrow.

“My main focus is to build youth leaders here,” Alonso said. “Preparing leaders to take over is my passion.”

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