Finally, my siblings in Christ, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you is not troublesome to me, and for you it is a safeguard.
1 Philippians 3:1
Effective teaching reaches far beyond the classroom. Think back to a teacher that taught you a life lesson that has followed you throughout your entire lifetime. The impact that a teacher has, even from the earliest stages of development follows a student throughout his or her educational career, as well as in daily life. As the above reference from Philippians suggests, teaching can be quite repetitious. In fact, that’s what “catechism” means – to drill questions and answers until the teaching is committed to memory.
But teaching is so much more than just getting children to memorize information. Quality teachers have dedicated themselves to life-long learning, and have enrolled in countless hours of education, both in college and continuing education classes. Dedicated teachers prepare lesson plans, set goals for students, and cultivate a learning environment that encourages students to want to learn. Teachers share knowledge and help to promote critical thinking skills, as well as to promote hands-on exercises that help students grow. Finally, teachers provide thoughtful, considerate, and respectful feedback on the development of the student, so as to keep learning on target for the student’s stage of development.
For the past three years, I have had the pleasure of witnessing all of the teachers in our Nursery School as they exhibit the above characteristics. However, Nancy Dempsey has earned the respect of students, parents, colleagues and church family for over 19 years as she has served the St. Mark’s Nursery School. Nancy considers her vocation as ministry. She considers it her responsibility to teach with authority and respect. She loves helping young minds to develop beyond basic educational and fine motor skills, but to help children understand moral reasoning and respect for others, the environment, and especially themselves.
At the end of May we celebrate Nancy’s time with the Nursery School as she moves into a new phase of her life – retirement. While she and Bob love to travel, they especially love spending time with their family. Retirement will give them opportunities to do both at their leisure. But have no fear, Nancy isn’t done yet! She plans to continue volunteering for church ministries that will bring her joy and peace in Christ.
I know that by the time you receive this newsletter we will have passed the celebration for Nancy’s retirement. But please take a moment to thank Nancy for her years of dedicated and faithful service to our church and the Nursery School. She is a true disciple of Christ who yearns for the Truth of the Gospel to be central in her life.
In Christ’s peace!