MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

May 20, 2012

Pastor connects through creativity

(Continued)

Meet Geraldo Alonso

AGE: 29.

HOMETOWN: San Antonio.

CAREER: Pastor, Seventh-day Adventist Church; Director, Wewoka Woods Adventist Center summer camp.

EDUCATION: Bachelor’s degree in political science from Our Lady of the Lake University and bachelor’s degree in theology from Southwestern Adventist University.

FAMILY: Wife, Suzy Alonso, and daughter, Adelynn Jean, born in April.

Teaching methods

fresh, interesting

Geraldo Alonso strives to keep his teaching methods fresh and interesting. For the kids he always has new games he has created.

“I want them to think outside the box,” Alonso said.

At Saturday’s Sabbath school he blindfolded all of the children. They stood in a straight line with their hands on the shoulders of the kid in front of them; connected like a train. Alonso stood at the end and whispered a command to the last kid. It was a chain reaction with the kid behind whispering into the ear of the kid in front until the command reached the front of the line and they moved as a group.

“I wanted to teach them the importance of communication,” Alonso said. “I wanted to illustrate how easily the message could become something entirely different by the time it reached the end.”

For his adult congregation, his teachings are a little more subtle. Alonso will use gestures and continual movement to control the flow of his message.

“I don’t like to stand in one place,” he said.

But to make sure his congregation always knows when he is “getting serious” he consistently perches on his stool to be eye level with every member.

“That is how they know it is time for my main points,” Alonso said.

Growing into

his calling

Alonso’s calling started at a young age. Alonso was born and raised in San Antonio.

“My parents had been involved with the church when I was growing up,“ Alonso said.

“The more involved I became the more the desire to become a pastor grew.”

Alonso was drawn into youth ministry at his local church in San Antonio.

He went to Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio and obtained a bachelor’s degree in political science.

Then he was led to pursue a life of ministry.

“My pastor at the time, who actually used to pastor in this same church, encouraged me to consider becoming a pastor,” Alonso said.

This decision led him back to a life of studying. But this time the subject was theology at Southwestern Adventist University in Keen, Texas.

After spending eight years in college, Alonso joked about the outcome of his college years.

“Toward the end of it, I was like ‘Man, I should have planned this better and became a doctor,’” Alonso said with a chuckle.

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