Hi guys, this is an introduction into the PK Chronicles. What is a PK? I hear you ask, well that just simply means Pastor’s Kid. This post was written in the context of an African church and home, however it is based on my experiences both in Nigeria and in the UK, some of these are funny while others are much more serious things that I’ve questioned a lot growing up. Anyway enough of me rambling, let’s get on with it…
16 things I’ve learnt as a PK
- Sometimes Pastor parents find it difficult to marry Parenthood and being Pastor, so PK’s almost stop listening because why should I listen to my mom telling me not to sin when I know she will soon have a go at me for not washing the plates or cleaning my room. Conversations go from 0 – 100 really quick!
- Sometimes questions are answered from the pastor’s point of view and not that of a parent. Following on from the previous point, a lot of the time the need for understanding is sometimes lost. My parents used to always say I couldn’t get a tattoo and when I asked why, without even blinking or missing a breath I’d hear them say “because the bible said so!” Parents sometimes forget that they are dealing with individuals that are growing rapidly and experiencing so many different things at the same time which is why understanding is key!
- Quite frankly; by the time most PK’s hit 15, we can tell when we are talking to daddy or pastor in any conversation. Sometimes I honestly think they forget that they are talking to their children and not a congregation member, whatever mode their in usually determines if I’ll even bother continuing with the conversation or not.
- Every church has at least one Aunty that polices your every move. She doesn’t hesitate to remind me that “sebi you know you’re a pastor’s daughter, ehen how can you do that?” It’s almost as if we don’t exist outside who our parents are. While I understand that what I do reflects on them, surely I should have the chance to be my own person.
- School/Uni mates always confidently saying “Pastor’s Kids are the worst omg” even when they are aware that you are a pastors kid. This is hands down one of the most irritating things you could tell a PK, from my experience anyway. It’s suffocating and almost as if we are not allowed to be young and stupid anymore, the person you are complaining about literally did the exact same thing you’ve done time and time again but because they are pastor’s child they are immediately expected to be perfect.
- You will join the choir, no ifs or buts. You will also have full knowledge of the inner workings of the technical department and are almost always a stand in as an accounts assistant.
- We all listened to those counselling sessions behind closed doors, don’t lie! If you are a PK, you’ll inevitable be aware of alot of the issues going on within the church.
- Pastors and their families need prayers too seriously! (Who covers the shepherd?). One of the most frustrating things I have noticed as a pastor’s child was that church members of the church and people in general often forget to pray for their pastors. Pastor’s spend so much time praying and interceding for the Church that sometimes their own families’ are left uncovered.
- I must not be seen talking to the opposite sex outside church, all hell would break lose, “Olori has begun to fornicate!” However, every aunty and uncle is waiting to tie gele at my wedding so I should be engaged and courting once I finish university. How sway?!
- A lot of pastor’s kids are sheltered in the sense that we weren’t allowed to experience a lot of the things that our age mates did early on in life. I think this is why some act out on getting to university, as it’s usually the first time most have had a real taste of freedom.
- University is also where a lot of PKs’ have to find God for themselves as they’ve been raised on morality instead of fellowship “you can’t be like other children or do what they do… because you are a child of a pastor instead of God won’t be happy with it/it’s the wrong thing to do”
- Going to a party/event/friend’s birthday on a Saturday is a MYTH because “you know we have church on Sunday”. God forbid they actually let you go and you come home late, my mom always hit me with the Yoruba proverb loosely translated as “a good child doesn’t walk around at night” plus the fact that she’s waiting for you in the living room when you get back. You know for sure that the preaching on Sunday is going to be used to roast your entire life.
- You will always be the first to get to church and last to leave, this is undebatable. It was a beautiful day when I drove myself to church and my parents allowed me to leave before them. Lord knows my heart skipped a few beats when I said “Mom I’m going to go home now” and then she said “Oh ok’. Unbelievable!
- Church culture, yes it exists and you are fully expected to conform to it a lot of times. If you happen to question it, “you are backsliding”.
- Unfortunately, your parents are no longer yours. You share your parents with so many people, it used to burn when I would be talking to my parents or need their attention for something and a church member would say something like “you have them at home all the time, here they are our mommy and daddy”. Imagine!
- On the plus side, people love to bless the pastor, whether for honest or selfish reasons I don’t know but Christmas and birthdays are always lit especially in Nigeria! Hampers and presents everywhere, we wouldn’t need to buy much for ages. However, People constantly invite themselves to your house especially during celebration time. I come from a family where all the kids are private and close knit. We have our own family banter that we are quite protective of so when ‘random’ people turn up at the door, especially on Christmas or boxing day all you’d hear in my house is “what happened to their own house?”
Although there appears to be more negatives than positives, I can honestly say that it’s a journey, one that I’m starting to enjoy. It isn’t always rosy but I don’t think I would have it any other way. If any other pastors child is reading this and has had a similar or different experience to me let me know, it would be lovely to hear from you.
WRITTEN by Olori M