From mid-August the summer holidays already feel as though they are drawing to an end. Exam results bring with them exultation and delight for some, anxiety and crushed hope for others. Options may have to be weighed, and dreams face reality. September brings new beginnings, change and transition, and myriad hopes and fears.
Some timeless words from Janet Erskine Stuart RSCJ, from conferences she gave to educators over 100 years ago...
Education is not a thing to be marketed. We give it for the love of God.
We must teach our pupils to love grappling with difficulties.The object of education is not storage, but development.
To be a good teacher you must delight in what you teach.
The best questions are those that elicit the most from a child, not merely a 'yes' or a 'no'.
For some of us there are also non-academic transitions: we may be changing home or work, or embarking on a new way of life or relationship. In this Province, several RSCJ changed community over the summer or are in the process of sorting, packing, saying goodbyes and preparing for what lies ahead. In Rome, a group of young RSCJ are gathering to begin preparation for making their perpetual vows. This prayer, from Janet Stuart's writing, can help all of us who are facing new beginnings and transitions at this time, academic or otherwise...
Loving God, unseen Companion of our life,
give us faith and eager expectancy as we begin
this fresh stage of our journey.
Take from us all fear of the unknown
and teach us to wrest treasures from darkness and difficulties.
As the days come and go,
may we find that each one is laden
with happy opportunities and enriching experiences;
and when this year reaches its completion,
may our best hopes be more than ever fulfilled.