Yesterday, I delivered my first Sunday platform address at NOVES entitled, “The Children Are Our Future”. I shared my ideas on how we can raise a generation of children that will make this world a better place and stand up for what they believe is right. I personally came to the Ethical Society to be inspired and educated on ways that I can live a more ethical life. To be reminded weekly of how to model the kind of behavior I want my children to exhibit in their own lives. I’m really honored to have the opportunity and the platform that comes along with being your DEE. The ability to plan classes, schedule activities, arrange acts of service and foster an environment where we can all grow in body and spirit. Where we learn to lift each other up. Where we stand up for others and the causes we believe in. Where we practice our Ethical Values in our every day lives.
I started by thanking our hardworking and patient teachers. Our teachers make certain that their lessons reinforce our beliefs and that the ideas they present keep our Ethical Core Values as their primary focus. And I thanked our awesome NOVES Sunday School Committee, who have kept the Sunday School going without a DEE for 6 months. They made sure the program was jam-packed with great activities, staffed by excellent teachers and organized administratively, to ensure that our kids received the best Sunday School experience possible.
Our Sunday school program puts exemplifying our Ethical Core Values at the forefront of our curriculum. Our classes this year have been focused on LIFE: where life begins, how life is created and what makes life is sustainable. Next year, our focus is going to be on WORLD RELIGIONS. How better to put into practice the values that we aspire to teach here at the Ethical Society than by studying the variety of philosophical opinions held around the globe and the myriad of belief systems that different world cultures practice in their daily lives. We endeavor to honor the diversity of cultural traditions and the commonality of the human condition. I further explained that our Children's Story Committee supports our Sunday School efforts by picking books that take the general message of that Sunday’s adult platform topic and putting it in a simpler format that the children can more easily relate to and understand. They also try to respect diversity and be cognizant of representing all races, religions, and a variety of protagonists in the stories they choose to present.
My own children are in the program and it’s very important to me that they observe me practicing what I preach about Ethical Culture's motto of “Deed Before Creed”. It is in this spirit that I am planning to add some new and different service projects to our repertoire next year. Our children are involved in at least one act of service every month and I have decided to focus on charities that directly affect our children's peers – other children in our community.
“We learn empathy through our service to one another because empathy is seeing with the eyes of another, listening with the ears of another and feeling with the heart of another.” Alfred Adler
In conclusion, I came to NOVES because I was looking to be a part of a community that stood for something greater than themselves, greater than a sense of winning, greater than fanaticism. A place where I could join like-minded individuals in work that betters our world. I am proud to put my energy into activities that aspire to make the world a better place for our future generations, for my children's generation. Because I truly believe that the children are our future. Because I truly believe that we are what we repeatedly do. We have the collective power to raise intelligent, empathetic, kind and fair future leaders, who will greet the world with open hearts and open minds and leave a legacy of ethical impact for future generations to come.
Several members approached me after my talk to volunteer their time and their talent to contribute to the the overall success of the Sunday School. I will be in touch and I will attempt to utilize everything you have offered! Thank you all for your continued support!
The Children Are Our Future, lets continue to pave the way for them to make a difference.