Gooden School: Almost rained out on the International Day of Peace...

Every year, the Gooden School, Sierra Madre, CA holds a special Peace Day event that includes CHALK4PEACE as part of the program. They have held a chalk event every year since 2007. It was pouring rain when I arrived on September 21, just before 8 am; so Dr. Ryan made the call that we would all meet in the Episcopal Church of the Ascension across the street from the school to sing songs and talk about what Peace means. CHALK4PEACE would happen sometime soon on a sunnier day... (It is quite rare for it to rain at all in L.A. in September...)

We sang some inspiring hymns; and I was asked to speak on how to make peace central to one's life. I spoke about having patience with someone one doesn't agree with; and the notion at the core of CHALK4PEACE- We are Pro-Peace, not anti-war. We always want to focus on the positive side of things. It's not about guns...it's about Love... and giving peace its chance. The Gooden philosophy teaches Peace at every turn; and it shows in the thoughtfulness and intellect of the students, who are often far beyond their years. As we finished our convocation, it stopped raining!

IMG_2586.JPG

As we left the chapel, we posed for the Peacemaker photo: Father Francisco, Dr. Ryan and I, when we heard shrieks of delight from around the corner. When it comes to art and peace, first- second- and third- graders will not be denied! They grabbed the chalk and had the sidewalks around the chapel covered with symbols of colorful peace in less than fifteen minutes!  Most young folks start out in life being kind, creative, enthusiastic and determined. As adults, we owe it to them to encourage all the goodness that is possible in a being, and to keep encouraging it. I saw true greatness in children today. They were just having fun! I think they taught me more than I taught them. Can't wait for next year!

IMG_5262.JPG
IMG_5265.JPG