November 17, 2015

Adventist Teacher Gives Bible to Panama’s First Lady

A Seventh-day Adventist schoolteacher has presented a special women’s study Bible to Panama’s first lady during a parade to celebrate the 112th anniversary of the Central American country’s independence.

Mildred de Cubilla, a teacher at the Metropolitan Adventist School, gave the Bible released by the Adventist world church’s Women’s Ministries department to first lady Lorena Castillo de Valera as the first lady watched the parade with her husband, President Juan Carlos Valera.

“This is a Bible that the Adventist Church has prepared in a very special way for women,” Cubilla told the presidential couple as students from the Metropolitan Adventist School played their percussion instruments and marched to the beat of the band in front of the presidential palace during Panama’s annual independence celebration.

Students from the Metropolitan Adventist School playing during the march in front of the National Palace during Panama’s 112th anniversary celebration. (Angel Famiglieti / IAD)

“We wanted to give this to you so that it can be you main guide as you lead this country along with your husband,” she said, offering the Bible as a gift from the school.

Castillo de Valera later wrote on her Facebook page that she had prayed for a message from God when she opened the Bible to read it for the first time.

“I opened the Bible to Psalm 112 — 112 years of independence — it cannot be more clear,” she said. “The Lord continues to guide us. THANK YOU.”

Psalms 112 describes the blessed state of the righteousness and begins with the words: “Praise the Lord! Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who delights greatly in His commandments. His descendants will be mighty on earth; the generation of the upright will be blessed. Wealth and riches will be in his house, and his righteousness endures forever” (NKJV).

The women’s study Bible contains the complete Old and New Testament together with more than 100 commentaries, study materials and profiles on major and lesser-known female biblical characters written by Adventist women. The Bible was unveiled during the Adventist world church’s Annual Council business meetings in Silver Spring, Maryland, in October 2014.

Read Adventist Church releases first women’s study Bible

Hundreds of schools and organizations joined in daylong festivities at the palace in Panama City, marking Panama’s 112th year of independence from Colombia. The celebrations were carried live on national television throughout the day.

This was the first time that an Adventist institution has given a Bible to Panama’s president and first lady, said Javier Castrellon, education director for the church in Panama.

“This was a great opportunity for our Metropolitan Adventist School to represent dozens of our institutions here in Panama, all of which follow the Adventist philosophy and principles of the Bible to fulfill the mission of the church,” Castrellon said.

The Adventist Church operates 34 educational institutions with 368 teachers and 5,634 students in Panama.