Today the Presby-geek and the Edu-geek in me merged in a beautiful celebration of public schools. We celebrated John Calvin's 500th birthday in church (this involved very scary Calvin masks handed out to little children- I may have nightmares that I'm being chased down the church hallways by three-foot old men with long beards and holes where they eyes should be). My pastor shared the impact John Calvin had, not just on Reformed Theology, but on education in general. Calvin had a desire for everyone to be able to read the Bible for themselves, but hit a wall with his effort because only the wealthy elite could read. So, he began the first public schools in Geneva, Switzerland in order to teach everyone, not just the upper class, to read.
Beautiful, isn't it? Reading for the masses! Educating the public! Regardless of his religious intentions, I always love a story that involves making reading accessible to everyone.