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Parisudha, 9, loves Psalms 23, and she has memorized the chapter. (Andrew McChesney / Adventist Mission)

God’s Precious Child

Pari is learning to love Jesus at her new school.

To Sabbath School teachers: This story is for Sabbath, Aug. 12. Click here for photos to share while telling the mission story.

Pari is 9 years old. Recently Pari learned that her name means “one who is holy.” It happened when she enrolled in an Adventist boarding school.

Pari hasn’t been a student at her new school for long, but she’s already learned to love Jesus. She loves reading her Bible, and Psalm 23 quickly became her favorite Bible passage.

Pari smiled shyly as she recited the psalm from memory.

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want,” she said in her native Tamil language. “He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.” Pari paused partway through the recitation, her bashfulness causing her to forget the words. The school principal, who sat nearby, gently prompted Pari.

“He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake,” she continued. “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”

Walking Through the Valley

Pari knows what it means to walk through the valley of the shadow of death. Her father, a truck driver, was killed in a road accident when Pari was just a toddler. Sometime later her mother abandoned her, leaving her in the care of her grandfather.

Pari and Grandfather live in a little hut, and they have managed somehow. But Grandfather wondered why so many bad things happened to him. He wondered whether anyone heard his prayers. As he sought peace and answers to the reason for so much sadness, his daughter, Pari’s auntie, told Grandfather about Jesus. Auntie is an Adventist, and she told him that Jesus always hears prayers.

Story continues below

Watch the animated version of this children’s story. The video can be downloaded here. (Adventist Mission)

Pari’s New School

Grandfather is getting old, and his eyesight is poor. He has very little money to support Pari. Some of his relatives suggested that Grandfather send Pari to study at an Adventist school. Grandfather agreed, and Pari enrolled in her new school, which is more than an hour from her grandfather’s little home.

When Pari was asked if she likes studying at James Memorial Higher Secondary School, Pari smiled brightly. Yes, she loves her school, and she loves having so many new friends! She lives in the girls’ dormitory, where she now has 100 sisters. It doesn’t matter much to Pari that the dormitory is old and the rooms are crowded and perhaps not as healthy as they should be. She’s just glad she can live and study at such a good school!

Living for Jesus

Pari is learning to love Jesus at her new school. Recently she learned that her full name, Parisudha [pah-ree-SHOO-dah], means “one who is holy.” She is glad that she is learning about Jesus, who wants her to be His child.

Since coming to her new school, Pari has seen several students baptized. When she visits her grandfather, she tells him about the baptisms and about her own new love for Jesus. “I want my grandfather to be a child of God, too,” she says. “I tell him that he needs to be baptized! I know that Jesus hears my prayers for Grandfather and will answer them. I also know now that the way of Jesus is the way of Parisudha, the way of holiness. That’s what my name means!”

Please remember Pari and her James Memorial Higher Secondary School in your prayers and when you give Sabbath School mission offerings.

Pari, a 9-year-old student at James Memorial Higher Secondary School in southern India, recites her favorite Bible passage, Psalms 23. (Andrew McChesney / Adventist Mission)

For more photos, visit the Facebook page for the Mission quarterlies

For activities to accompany this and other mission stories, download the Children’s Mission quarterly (PDF)