By Paul Shalala
From the outset, let me say I have been a Youth leader in the SDA Church since 2003 and I have been an Invested Master Guide since 2006.
I have been trained in every aspect of the SDA Youth Ministry and I have led youths at all levels from the local church to what we call the Conference (for those who may not know SDA Church structures).
So what am going to explain is with authority, backed by church standards, manuals and rules.
When you look at this photo, King Ilest is not wearing a Pathfinder or Master Guide uniform as alleged in a number of online media articles.
We do not have such a uniform, the closest this can get is a Pathfinder Band uniform in North America Division were teens who play drums at functions wear white clothes.
What this guy wore is his own attire but he included insignia from the SDA Church, thats were my interest is.
In the Youth Movement, we have two sets of insignia: Recognition and Identification Insignia.
Recognition insignia are those badges we earn after writing examinations or passing physical or practical activities at camporees, fairs, etc or awards we are given for good behavior, etc.
So if you look at the insignia King Ilest wore, there is a combined chevron which is worn by Master Guides who have passed all Six Pathfinder Classes, those who passed all Master Guides exams and have been invested as Master Guide.
You do not wear that Chevron if you are not a Master Guide.
King Ilest, are you invested? If not, who gave you the authority to wear the Chevron on a non AY attire?
There is a Master Guide patch there: same with the combined chevron, you only wear it when you have passed all Master Guide exams.
Did King Ilest pass exams for him to put on the Master Guide patch?
This artist also wore three Pathfinder Class pins and when I zoom into the picture, it blurs and am not able to tell which of the six class pins it is.
Again, only those who have been invested in the respective Pathfinder Classes wear those pins.
Is King Ilest invested in Friend, Companion, Explorer, Voyager, Ranger or Ranger?
These are some of the questions he needs to answer.
When it comes to identification insignia, King Ilest wore the Pathfinder emblem and the Zambian flag which any member of the Youth Department can wear without being examined.
For the national flag, he is at liberty to wear it, but for the Pathfinder Club, only those who live according to the ideals of the Pathfinder Club are to wear the emblem.
The ideals include living according to the Pathfinder Law, Pathfinder Pledge and the instructions of the Bible.
If I may ask, the glass King Ilest is holding in his hands and the contents there-in, are they in conformity with the Pathfinder Law and Pledge?
King Ilest has alot to explain for putting on insignia wrongly and putting the name of the Adventist Youth Society into ridicule.
As Adventist Youths whose foundation dates back to 1879, we pride ourselves in only wearing uniforms at official church programs and activities.
We do not wear our insignia or uniforms anyhow because there are penalties and there is discipline which follows when we do not abide.
King Ilest, I know you are reading this and I pray that if you were just given that insignia without having earned it, may God bless you and the person who gave you.
Am hoping others who have the habit of using uniforms which you do not understand have learnt something from my write up.