I received a lovely note the other day thanking me for an article Cheryl Lowe—not I—had written. With two people in one publishing house named Cheryl, things can become confusing.
Let there be no mistake: I was but a quiet mother of toddler twins in Missouri when Cheryl Lowe founded Memoria Press in 1998. Two years later, when she founded Highlands Latin School, I was still scrambling to grasp where my own teacher training had been correct, and where it had not. But Mrs. Lowe was already moving to resuscitate an understanding of the educational needs that are common to man, and she was meeting those needs with determined, elegant excellence.
More than a decade later, after reading her articles, teaching from her ecclesiastical Latin books, and enjoying her study guides for the Famous Men series, I began to realize that I owed her my gratitude. She was one of the few voices that seemed able to unite classical and sacred studies with wisdom and clarity. I especially appreciated Mrs. Lowe’s answer to the question, “Why should Christians study the Greeks and Romans?”
Rereading the Apology of Socrates has made me realize why the Gospel is called the Good News, and how good it was to the Greeks, as well as the Jews. The Jews couldn’t live up to the Law, and the Greeks couldn’t live up to Socrates.
Scripture shows us our true human condition in a way the Greeks did not and could not—our relationship to God, that we are sinners, a fallen race in need of redemption, that sin separates us from God, that God loves us and offers us grace and salvation, a free gift!
In 2011 I wrote Mrs. Lowe a letter of thanks, telling her that the fruit of her efforts had been revealed in my own children. When she embraced my idea for a guidebook to help bring her mission of a classical education to children with learning differences, behavioral difficulties, and other challenges, she gave life to my book Simply Classical: A Beautiful Education for Any Child.
I met her for the first time in 2012. By 2014, together we had begun to create Simply Classical teaching resources for children with autism, Down syndrome, and specific learning disabilities. My desire is to remain true to her vision.
In a classical education we place high standards before our children. We must ensure that these same children receive the merciful news that they are loved, forgiven, and redeemed in Christ Jesus. As Mrs. Lowe reminded us:
This is the good news that has been revealed in Scripture and the person of Jesus Christ, and nowhere else. Where the Greeks went wrong, Scripture sets us right.
I remain grateful for Mrs. Lowe and for her right ordering of teaching within a classical education. Let us continue in her footsteps for the sake of all children in our care.