2008 has been a busy and eventful year. Matterialism is coming to fruition creating greed, narcissism, moral confusion and its consequences, a poverty of spirit and a poverty of health and other physical needs for many. Of course poverty is usually felt by the most vulnerable: children. I am writing this short blog for Christmas week to say thank you to all those who have made the ChildLightUSA website, journal and conference possible. In spite of all the changes going on in our culture, there is much for which to be thankful. Here are some of the things that have been accomplished this year at ChildLightUSA and for which we can give thanks.
The 2008 conference, while it had some weaknesses, ministered to many through wonderful speakers who worked many hours in preparation to bring to their audience the knowledge they had to share. There were many discussions and conversations over tea and coffee as well as over meals. Evening fireside chats went on late into the evening and some even rose early in the morning for discussions over breakfast or a bird walk. There was beautiful music, astronomy, nature study, and activities by the river. Many individuals offered their time free of charge to provide words of advice and wisdom to those who needed help or encouragement. Fathers, mothers, principals, teachers from regular public schools, from charter schools, and private schools, parents from home schools and co-opts, university professors, people from Canada, the USA, and the UK as well as one teacher from Korea—all participated together to learn how one might get a better view of education and how one might change the paradigm of education in this country and around the world.
There is also the website to give thanks for. The website manager has done a wonderful job of keeping new information posted as I have sent it to him. New mp3 files have helped inform our educational practice. It is right and good to give thanks to the individuals who have allowed us the privilege of sharing their expertise online with all of you. Along with the mp3 files there is the journal.
A thank you should go to all those who have written articles and edited articles for the journal. The effort of these writers and editors have made another way to disseminate information to those interested in Mason. There are, of course, many people to thank for their untiring work to keep the journal coming out every quarter.
The blog has been truly enjoyable to us all. There have been so many interesting concepts and ideas put forth for each of us to ponder and to consider. The various writers have provided many insightful and helpful writings that have encouraged and motivated us to keep going and working towards our goal.
Without mentioning names, I am thinking of so many who have volunteered time in one way or another. Each one knows who he or she is. This blog is to say thank you to each of you for your continued commitment to this effort to put forth the educational philosophy of Charlotte Mason. Your willingness to write, edit, answer questions, spend time with people is much appreciated. I have made many referrals to various numbers of you to help those who are struggling in one way or another. You have made our year more enjoyable and the load lighter for many because of your willingness to share your time, energy, and knowledge with all of us.
Thanks to all of you from ChildLightUSA.