The lyrics of a famous pop song go like this “school’s out for summer.” That is a resounding chorus filling the air of early June. Now we find ourselves in the dog days of August which bring forth lyrics from a much older song; “school days, school days, good ole golden rule days.” While the latter lyrics may seem to involve that which we identify as Christian – since it speaks of the golden rule – truth be told our Lutheran Schools have a much greater ethos to offer than simply the golden rule. I am not belittling the fact that Scripture admonishes us to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” A world, a school, a church where that is followed would indeed be a pleasant place. But did you know that the golden rule is a cornerstone in at least five other major world religions? Therefore it is not uniquely Christian and not uniquely Lutheran.
Our Lutheran Schools and our catechetical classes have much more to offer than simply proper behavior. We do not start with behavior in our instruction. We start with the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We start with the cross – the very place we were justified before God the Father. We start with the beautiful splash of water with the Word that brought us out of the kingdom of death and into the marvelous light of life. We start with the forgiveness of sins and the new life we now have in He whose behavior was perfect, yet suffered in our place so that we may enjoy the blessing of eternal life in Christ.
It is an immense honor to be given the vocation to teach the Word of God to His lambs. It is a privilege undeserved- – yet graciously granted – that we may impart saving truths to these whose ears are open to the sweet taste of divine food. God has selected each of you to be His mouth piece in a classroom setting. Whether it is daily in the school or weekly in catechesis you are called by God to articulate and teach His saving grace in Jesus Christ.
We have three new teachers Called to our IDE schools and one DCE. They are
- Laura Kester- Dubuque Lutheran, Dubuque
- Michael Paulson- Trinity Lutheran, Davenport
- Rachel Wegener- Valley Lutheran, Cedar Falls
- DCE Jessica Dvorak- Concordia, Cedar Rapids
As each school and congregation welcomes them, I encourage all of you to do so as well. It is always beneficial for our IDE congregations to lift to the Throne of Grace our principals, teachers, support staff, DCE’s and everyone in our congregations who teach the Holy Word. Pray for the students and their parents. Pray for them in divine service, in daily devotions, and throughout the year that the blessings of the Catechism are learned and carried out in their lives.
I know we dare not change lyrics under copyright but maybe this time of the year our Lutheran schools and congregations can sing “school day, school days, good ole Lutheran learning days.”
Or maybe this stanza would suffice:
Lord, help us ever to retain
The Catechisms doctrine plain
As Luther taught the Word of truth
In simple style to tender youth. (LSB 865)
God bless you all in this upcoming catechetical year.