This Antiguan Senior spent most of her adult life living in Africa, helping the children of slaves to overcome the transgenerational trauma passed down to them through the slavery of their ancestors by equipping Christian Africans to reach those in their community. Transgenerational trauma passes from generations to generation. This trauma exhibits symptoms and survival behaviours that are also transferable via bloodline.
Edit Oladele, who still expresses passion in teaching and remains keen to this very day at the age of 71, now settles in the village of Clarks Hill Antigua, after spending many years in Africa; she now occupies her time by researching and working towards upcoming projects.
In sitting with her Antiguan Trumpet was able to journey through historical moments as she reflected on how she got involved in mission work.
“The countries I served in Africa were Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Cameroon and Kenya. I mainly taught different theological topics equipping believers to reach the Africans, I believe that the only hope for these people is Christ, the redeemer for us all. My entire team within these countries were trained thoroughly to serve the people effectively, we studied the scriptures and the life of Jesus. My methods of reaching the Africans were very simple and this was by equipping the believers who are more connected to their people than me.”
Oladele shared that her first inclination to help others through mission work was at the age of 38 when she became a devoted Christian.
“At this age after giving my life to Christ, I then became a Sunday school teacher and opportunities availed itself unto me to attend different retreats and conferences throughout the Caribbean with the Methodist denomination,” she added.
In 1984 Oladele attended a conference in Hawaii where she was called upon to lead a flag parade at the opening ceremony. The conference drew many persons from all over the world and she was positioned front line holding up the flag of Antigua and Barbuda. In reminiscing, Oladele expressed that at this ceremony there was a young Methodist Minister who preached a message which she still remembers; “the minister was challenging us at the conference to become missionaries for God.”
This Antiguan Senior was wholeheartedly interested in the idea of missions, but the challenge was difficult for her because she was uninformed on what to do or how to start the quest to become a missionary.
“But when I left Hawaii I must say, I was a totally different person, my entire life transformed and God started moulding me and preparing me for the worldwide mission field as I participated in training programs throughout the Caribbean. While pursuing training, I was very active in Antigua, leading several women ministries. Women from Montserrat flew into Antigua just for the day to attend our bible studies,” she fondly recollected.
Oladele who felt refreshed to have shared a summary of her story with Antiguan Trumpet ended by saying that she feels so blessed and encouraged by the people of Africa whenever she visits there, most specifically Cameroon.
“I have accomplished what God wanted me to do and at my age, I am still going,” she testifies.