Tai shan is a giant panda, born at The National Zoo four and a half years ago. He is the first panda ever born there to survive. His parents were loaned to the zoo by China. The agreement was that any offspring would be given back to China when they reached breeding age. Pandas only live in China and Tibet, and there are only about 1,000 left. Washington D.C had become very fond of the panda, along with many children, and they had come to think of him as their very own. Too bad, because the day of reckoning has come. Today, Feb. 4, Tai Shan is flying to China, along with his zookeeper and a vet. Children between the ages of 6 and 11 drew these pictures to say good-bye. China will have a a huge arrival ceremony. Our zoo staff will then stay with him in China for a week to make the transition into his new home. Lots of kids are mourning the loss of their panda. But it never really was theirs. We can be kind of like those kids. Sometimes we think that our pets, along with many other things, are ours. But here's the thing; that panda doesn't belong to us , but he doesn't belong to China, either. God will tell you who he and all other creatures belong to.
"...every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills. I know every bird in the mountains, and the creatures of the field are mine. If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for the world is mine, and all that is in it." Psalm 50:10