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A Prayer for the Start of a New Term

Lord God

At the beginning of this new term teach us to be your hands and feet where we are,

At the beginning of this new term teach us to love as you love us

At the beginning of this new term teach us to pray for those in need

So that You are honoured and glorified

Amen

By Annie Barnsdale

 

A Prayer for Teachers

Lord, grant me the strength, so I will have courage in every situation;

Grant me your love, so that I may love others as you love me;

Grant me your wisdom, so I will show others the path to success;

Grant me your mercy, so I will forgive others who have hurt me;

Grant me you peace so that I will find the best in everybody;

Grant me you hope, so I will never give up;

Grant me your joy, so I will be thankful for all my blessings;

And grant me your grace, so you will always be at my side. Amen

David Bennett

 

“What is education for? And more specifically, what is at stake in a distinctly Christian education? What does the qualifier Christian mean when appended to education? It is usually understood that education is about ideas and information (though it is also too often routinely reduced to credentialing for a career and viewed as a ticket to a job). And so distinctively Christian education is understood to be about Christian ideas--which usually requires a defense of the importance of "the life of the mind." On this account, the goal of a Christian education is the development of a Christian perspective, or more commonly now, a Christian worldview, which is taken to be a system of Christian beliefs, ideas, and doctrines.

But what if this line of thinking gets off on the wrong foot? What if education ... is not primarily about the absorption of ideas and information, but about the formation of hearts and desires? What if we began by appreciating how education not only gets into our head but also (and more fundamentally) grabs us by the gut? What if education was primarily concerned with shaping our hopes and passions - our visions of 'the good life' - and not merely about the dissemination of data and information as inputs to our thinking? What if the primary work of education was the transforming of our imagination rather than the saturation of our intellect? ...

What if education wasn't first and foremost about what we know, but about what we love?”


James K.A. Smith

Associated Christian Schools have recognized five key priority areas for the next period of Government in Queensland:

  1. Public and political recognition and support for Independent faith-based school communities.

  2. Recurrent funding to be increased in line with real costs and State department funding.

  3. Increased support for Disadvantaged Students; removing onerous or unnecessary bureaucratisation in identifying such students

  4. Capital funding Assistance for schools; equitable funding for professional development across sectors.

  5. Ongoing discussion around the core business of education

 

A full Election Statement in relation to these Five Key Priority Areas is attached.

 

Attachments:
FileDescriptionFile size
Download this file (ACS Election Statement 2015_final.pdf)ACS Election Statement 2015_final.pdf 443 Kb

Education is a key driver in securing Australia’s Future in the global market and in shaping the future nation of Australia. Members of Associated Christian Schools are partners in the education of Australians, based on their long-espoused ethics and values.

Associated Christian schools have distinguishing features that are influenced by their spiritual traditions as well as the policies and processes used to employ staff and enrol students. Whatever the affiliation, parents choose a Christian school to give their children a clear moral and ethical educational framework for life as responsible citizens.

Associated Christian Schools acknowledges and appreciates the support provided by the Queensland Government of its members. In the lead up the State Election on 31 January 2015, we are seeking continued support from the major political parties, for faith based schools to be autonomous and independent with the ability to teach within their own educational and faith based interpretation, while remaining compliant with accountability requirements to the state government.

Associated Christian Schools have recognized five key priority areas for the next period of Government in Queensland:

  1. Public and political recognition and support for Independent faith-based school communities.

  2. Recurrent funding to be increased in line with real costs and State department funding.

  3. Increased support for Disadvantaged Students; removing onerous or unnecessary bureaucratisation in identifying such students; Capital Assistance and Infrastructure planning.

  4. Capital funding Assistance for schools; equitable funding for professional development across sectors.

  5. Ongoing discussion around the core business of education

 

As we begin this new year of 2015, this prayer from Billy Graham, written for “The Saturday Evening Post” in 2008, is just as relevant this year:

Our Father and our God, as we stand at the beginning of this new year we confess our need of Your presence and Your guidance as we face the future.

We each have our hopes and expectations for the year that is ahead of us—but You alone know what it holds for us, and only You can give us the strength and the wisdom we will need to meet its challenges. So help us to humbly put our hands into Your hand, and to trust You and to seek Your will for our lives during this coming year.

In the midst of life’s uncertainties in the days ahead, assure us of the certainty of Your unchanging love.

In the midst of life’s inevitable disappointments and heartaches, help us to turn to You for the stability and comfort we will need.

In the midst of life’s temptations and the pull of our stubborn self-will, help us not to lose our way but to have the courage to do what is right in Your sight, regardless of the cost.

And in the midst of our daily preoccupations and pursuits, open our eyes to the sorrows and injustices of our hurting world, and help us to respond with compassion and sacrifice to those who are friendless and in need. May our constant prayer be that of the ancient Psalmist: “Teach me, O Lord, to follow your decrees; then I will keep them to the end” (Psalm 119:33).

We pray for our nation and its leaders during these difficult times, and for all those who are seeking to bring peace and justice to our dangerous and troubled world. We pray especially for Your protection on all those who serve in our armed forces, and we thank You for their commitment to defend our freedoms, even at the cost of their own lives. Be with their families also, and assure them of Your love and concern for them.

Bring our divided nation together, and give us a greater vision of what You would have us to be. Your Word reminds us that “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord” (Psalm 33:12).

As we look back over this past year we thank You for Your goodness to us—far beyond what we have deserved. May we never presume on Your past goodness or forget all Your mercies to us, but may they instead lead us to repentance, and to a new commitment to make You the foundation and center of our lives this year.

And so, our Father, we thank You for the promise and hope of this new year, and we look forward to it with expectancy and faith. This I ask in the name of our Lord and Savior, who by His death and resurrection has given us hope both for this world and the world to come.

Amen

© 2008 Saturday Evening Post Society.

 

 

 

From God in the dock—Essays on Theology and Ethics by C. S. Lewis, published by William B. Eerdman's Publishing Co. © 1970 The Trustees of the Estate of C.S. Lewis, first appearing December, 1957

Three things go by the name of Christmas. One is a religious festival. This is important and obligatory for Christians; but as it can be of no interest to anyone else, I shall naturally say no more about it here. The second (it has complex historical connections with the first, but we needn't go into them) is a popular holiday, an occasion for merry-making and hospitality. If it were my business too have a 'view' on this, I should say that I much approve of merry-making. But what I approve of much more is everybody minding his own business. I see no reason why I should volunteer views as to how other people should spend their own money in their own leisure among their own friends. It is highly probable that they want my advice on such matters as little as I want theirs. But the third thing called Christmas is unfortunately everyone's business.

I mean of course the commercial racket. The interchange of presents was a very small ingredient in the older English festivity. Mr. Pickwick took a cod with him to Dingley Dell; the reformed Scrooge ordered a turkey for his clerk; lovers sent love gifts; toys and fruit were given to children. But the idea that not only all friends but even all acquaintances should give one another presents, or at least send one another cards, is quite modern and has been forced upon us by the shopkeepers. Neither of these circumstances is in itself a reason for condemning it. I condemn it on the following grounds.

  • It gives on the whole much more pain than pleasure. You have only to stay over Christmas with a family who seriously try to 'keep' it (in its third, or commercial, aspect) in order to see that the thing is a nightmare. Long before December 25th everyone is worn out -- physically worn out by weeks of daily struggle in overcrowded shops, mentally worn out by the effort to remember all the right recipients and to think out suitable gifts for them. They are in no trim for merry-making; much less (if they should want to) to take part in a religious act. They look far more as if there had been a long illness in the house.
  • Most of it is involuntary. The modern rule is that anyone can force you to give him a present by sending you a quite unprovoked present of his own. It is almost a blackmail. Who has not heard the wail of despair, and indeed of resentment, when, at the last moment, just as everyone hoped that the nuisance was over for one more year, the unwanted gift from Mrs. Busy (whom we hardly remember) flops unwelcomed through the letter-box, and back to the dreadful shops one of us has to go?
  • Things are given as presents which no mortal every bought for himself -- gaudy and useless gadgets, 'novelties' bbecause no one was ever fool enough to make their like before. Have we really no better use for materials and for human skill and time than to spend them on all this rubbish?
  • The nuisance. for after all, during the racket we still have all our ordinary and necessary shopping to do, and the racket trebles the labour of it.

We are told that the whole dreary business must go on because it is good for trade. It is in fact merely one annual symptom of that lunatic condition of our country, and indeed of the world, in which everyone lives by persuading everyone else to buy things. I don't know the way out. But can it really be my duty to buy and receive masses of junk every winter just to help the shopkeepers? If the worst comes to the worst I'd sooner give them money for nothing and write if off as a charity. For nothing? Why, better for nothing than for a nuisance.

 

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