King's Business - 1954-06

schools in the field of research and guidance. After a busy summer, Weiss and Narramore called a meeting of 25 consecrated believers from the field of education. They told of their plan to organize Christian teachers, school nurses, administrators, curriculum su­ pervisors, school psychologists, col­ lege professors, and all others who were responsible for the education and welfare of American youth. To say that the group was enthusiastic would be putting it mildly! Before the evening was over, this group, representing various denominations, had decided on its over-all objectives, had elected Narramore and Weiss as its co-directors, and had agreed upon its statement of belief. There was immediate agreement that member­ ship should be limited to those in their profession who had definitely accepted Christ as their personal Sav­ iour. Important among its decisions was that the organization would be positive in nature. As one college professor put it, “We are about 50 years late in getting started, and we have enough important projects to keep us busy for years to come with­ out getting sidetracked on jobs that are centered in fighting. “We have souls to win,” he said, “ a testimony to live, Christian teach­ ers to recruit, literature to publish and distribute, legislation to promote, school policy to make, and curricu­ lum to plan.” There was consensus of opinion that if they centered their efforts in positive action God would bless them beyond measure. The evening ended with a time of prayer and consecration. Those who attend­ ed felt that God had brought into existence an organization that would affect education throughout south­ ern California, and no doubt one that might serve as a pattern for 'similar groups throughout America. The following weeks were tough ones. Although a splendid program had been arranged for the first regu­ lar meeting of the fellowship, there was the big problem of learning

names and addresses of Christian teachers who should know about the organization. Interestingly enough, hardly any Christian teacher knew more than three or four other born- again educators. When Narramore phoned the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles to arrange for the room and refreshments, he was asked how many would be attending. “ I don’t know,” replied Narramore. “ This is our first meeting, however, I’ll make a wild guess and hope that we’ll have some­ where between 75 and 100.” The hotel representative was helpful. She told Narramore that she would ar­ range for the Educators’ Fellowship to have an “ adjustable” room. Came the night for the first meet­ ing and 130 crowded into the room at the Biltmore. Teachers, adminis­ trators and supervisors from all lev­ els of education attended. When Weiss and Narramore looked through the registration cards, they found that their organization represented 17 different denominations. One who attended, a prominent school nurse, said that it was one of the most spir­ itual meetings she had ever experi­ enced. When asked for volunteer testimonies during the meeting, a college instructor stated that it was the first time he had ever attended an educational meeting where he was in the majority! The group decided upon a number of objectives: Christian fellowship and inspiration, the organization of pray­ er groups, learning more effective ways of working with and counseling students, deepening the spiritual life of every educator in the organization, learning more effective ways of wit­ nessing to fellow educators, learning how to take positive stands on pub­ lic and national problems, and the recruitment of outstanding evangeli­ cal Christian teachers to the profes­ sion. Although the membership and mailing list of the Educators’ Fellow­ ship has increased from zero to near­ ly 400 within five months, Weiss states “We have only begun to get

the word around to the born-again teachers. There are many school dis­ tricts in the Los Angeles area that haven’t even heard about our organ­ ization.” When asked about Christian day schools, Narramore replied, “ Of course, we are very happy for such schools, however, our organization is intended primarily for public school teachers. The overwhelming major­ ity of children attend public schools, and if we as Christians are going to reach their minds and hearts, we must go where they are— to the public schools.” “We are not going as preachers,” Narramore added, “we are going as first-class educators. If we are living close to the Lord, He will give us all the opportunities we will ever need to witness for Him.” Scholarships for Outstanding stu­ dents who wish to enter the educa­ tional profession will be offered to students. The organization aims to recruit several hundred evangelical Christians for the teaching profession within the near future. Scholarships will also be awarded to those who wish to become school nurses, school psychologists, school psvchometrists, school administrators and supervisors, librarians and school business spe­ cialists. When asked if the organization had any plans for national expansion, its leaders replied, “We have no plans for a national organization, however, we are prepared to furnish literature and suggestions to any group of Chris­ tian teachers that desire it.” Probably one of the best expres­ sions of the value of the organization came from a classroom teacher when she said, “Now I know that I do not stand alone in my faith. I have new courage to witness for Christ. I am learning better ways of witness­ ing to fellow-teachers. But most of all I think of my profession very dif­ ferently than before— I now look at my class and realize that the nation’s future is in my charge, and I have the Christian responsibility of mould­ ing the minds of America.” END.

Fellowship leaders pictured above (left) are Irving Ahlquist, E. D. Fischer, Benjamin Weiss, Clyde M. Narramore, Leo Phear-

man, David Paynter. Right photo shows high school principal Benjamin Weiss and Clyde Narramore who are the co-directors.

JUNE 1954


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