Education Sunday to focus on "Prizes that Last"

Almost every sphere of human activity nowadays has its awardsceremony. It is good to celebrate achievement, but often therecognition won in this way is only fleeting. The theme ofEducation Sunday this year focuses on St Paul's encouragement toChristians "to strive for prizes that will last forever".

Graham Russell, Education Secretary of the Methodist Church andChair of the Ecumenical Steering Group responsible for preparingthis year's material says : "Sometimes education seems like asporting event. There are new targets to aim for, new rules tounderstand and new trophies to claim. Education is not just aboutbeing the best : it has wider purposes which need to be valued fortheir own sake Ð the development of individual potential and thepursuit of knowledge and truth. Education is about becomingspiritually, physically and mentally fit, developing healthyattitudes to others and to ourselves. Christian teachers andstudents know, as St Paul does, that we should put our efforts intowinning the ultimate prize Ð to be with God for ever".

For well over a hundred years there has been an annual recognitionin England and Wales of Education Sunday as a "special" Sunday, anational day of prayer and celebration for everyone in the world ofeducation. The resources that have been prepared for those planningworship for this occasion have been sent to many congregations andschools. They are also available on many church and ecumenicalwebsites. The aim of Education Sunday is to encourage congregationsto think prayerfully about the world of education in all itsaspects and the countless people who are involved with it.