Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Support the Circe Institute

I want to share with you a letter from my friends at the CiRCE Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to Christian, classical education and supporting teachers and parents in that task.

If you attended or viewed the sessions from their conference this year, A Contemplation of Nature (see Heather Shirley's notes), or have used the Lost Tools of Writing curricula, you've seen a glimpse of their mission.

I've worked a lot with them over the years, and I encourage you to read the letter, and consider being a part of the important work they have ahead in the new year.

Further Up & Further In with the CiRCE Institute…

Dear Friend of CiRCE,

Thank you! On behalf of the CiRCE board, we are exceedingly grateful for your financial partnership and know that without your past contributions we could not have faced the challenges of 2009. With 2010 fast approaching, we draw comfort from the continued support of those who believe in the work we are doing.

Like many not-for-profit organizations, the CiRCE Institute depends upon the generosity and kindness of individuals who believe, as we do, in the mission and vision of Classical Christian education. So, drawing from C.S. Lewis, the CiRCE Board asks that you join our journey “Further Up & Further In” by supporting CiRCE during these challenging time.

We’re asking people who believe in what CiRCE is doing and want to help us keep it going to make donations of any amount. All together, we’ve set the ambitious goal to raise a total of $50,000 in contributions by the end of the year. If you are in a position to donate even a little, please consider doing so. No contribution is too small or too large.

Here's why we are asking for contributions...

CiRCE is a not for profit research center (Center for Independent Research on Classical Education). From our research come consulting services and resources for classical educators. But the conference and the resources don't come anywhere close to covering our expenses.

The 2009 CiRCE Conference, although it received excellent reviews from all the participants, resulted in a loss of over $10,00. CiRCE, like many other organizations, has tightened its metaphorical belt and demonstrated sound fiscal responsibility, but your help is needed now more than ever before.

Raising $50,000 by December 31, 2009 will help us achieve these primary goals:

-Complete the Lost Tools of Writing II
-Fund the 2010 conference.
-Build towards the creation of a CiRCE Journal
-Provide for greater financial stability going forward.

We understand that this current economic climate makes for an untimely season in which to request financial help. However, CiRCE has consistently conducted an annual fundraiser during this time, and we are praying that your desire to “come further up and further in” with CiRCE will overcome any hesitation to give.

In return, we promise to continue teaching, training, and researching. We promise to keep on spreading the word. We promise to continue providing inspiration. We promise that, if you will stand by our side, we will continue to stand by yours. Together we'll take this mission, this vision, this calling, further up and further in!

As thanks for your generosity, we are offering downloadable materials for anyone who makes even the smallest donation. Whether you donate $1 or $100 or $1000 there is a gift waiting for you.

In return for your help, you will be able to download talks like Debbie Harris's popular talk Understanding and Instilling a Love of Beauty, and Andrew Pudewa's useful and inspiring, Teaching Boys and Other Kids Who Would Rather Be Playing In Forts. You can also download Ken Myers' talk on how to Re-educate Oneself As An Adult, or Laura Berquist's insightful talk about Assessing Student Performance. Also available soon will be articles in PDF format and book excerpts.

When a few Christians receive the education that defines our heritage, there is no telling what God will do. We can't make any promises about the renewal of civilization, avoiding the impending Dark Age, or anything like that.

But we do know that we are in the early stages of a very different sort of Dark Age - one in which information drowns out knowledge and wisdom is not worth fighting for. If Christian classical education lacks champions, the age offers little hope.

Please prayerfully consider how you can support this critical work. We look forward to working alongside you in the coming years as, together, we climb Further Up & Further In.


The CiRCE Board

P.S. While you’re at it, please let us know how we can improve. What should we do (or do better) to help you fulfill your goals as educators? In what ways can we help you cultivate wisdom and virtue in your students?

P.P.S. To make a donation, please visit www.circeinstitute.org/support.shtml. Or, you can send a check to the following address:

4190 Brownwood Lane
Concord, NC 28027

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