The New College Lectures on childhood explored the early years, 'good enough' parenting, and child abuse. Professor Kim Oates displayed a medical head getting blood from a Christian heart--a great model of pastoral care from an academic context. In closing the lectures, Trevor Cairney (New College Master and a professor of education himself) alerted us to what seems to me to be a very Christian ethic for parents as we worry away at childraising:
Each of us must come to care about everyone else's children. We must recognize that the welfare of our children is intimately linked to the welfare of all other people's children. After all, when one of our children needs life-saving surgery, someone else's child will perform it. If one of our children is harmed by violence, someone else's child will be responsible for the violent act. The good life for our own children can be secured only if a good life is also secured for all other people's children .
Professor Lilian Katz (Director of the ERIC Clearinghouse for Early Childhood Education and Professor of Early Childhood Education at the University of Illinois)
Love thy neighbour's children...
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