Going back to schoolIt is that time of year as children leave behind their summer pleasures to return to school. The routines of getting up on time, putting things in order, doing homework, and keeping distractions to a minimum: these are the rhythms of fall for students of all ages. Parents have important roles to play at this time of year as lovers and cheerleaders of their children. Many of the feature stories in the news these days focus on children going back to school.

And so we pray this news:

Dear Creative Spirit,
As the children leave for school
I pray that they might
open their hearts and minds
to their teachers and their text books
and see learning not as a chore
but as an unending adventure.

Keep them from distractions
and help them to focus
their attention on what
is truly important.
Help them to see
homework as a
necessary exercise of mind
and not as a nightmare deadline.

May they discover in school
the special talents and skills
they have to spur them on
into a future of wide possibilities.

Help them to grow in knowledge
that is tempered by wisdom and humility.
May they not be afraid to ask questions
or to honor the great mysteries of life.

May they always be questers
following their inner voices.
Keep them from the idol of certainty
and the arrogance of pride
in intellectual achievement.
May they find friends
who are loyal and cherish them.
And may they always be kind
to all their classmates
in a spirit of love and respect
especially from those
who are very different from them.

Let them be justice seekers
and meaning makers who
are not afraid to stand up
for what they believe in
or to speak out for those
who are in need of hope.

Send your Spirit to watch over
them with peace and protection
that they might nourish and
nurture the best that is in them.

May they use this time in school
to prepare for the future when
they will take our place
in the circle of time
and make their special
contributions to the repair
and replenishment of the world.
So be it.

— Frederic A. Brussat

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