The Greyfriars Archer

Sagittae Formosae et Praeacutae



2701 Rice Road    Matthews, NC  28105    704.315.5774




Volume 2 No. 6                                                        August 13, 2010



Upcoming Dates:

Fall Orientation

Aug. 16,

9:00 a.m. – Noon.


School Picnic

Aug. 21,

4:00 - 7:00 p.m.


First Day of Class

Aug. 23.



Aug. 23, 7:00 p.m.


Labor Day

Sept. 6—no school.






GCA Leadership



John McGowan, M.Div.



Cliff Blair, M.Div.

Jeff Cleveland, M.D.

Beth Harvey, B.A.

Lori Lawing, B.A.

John McGowan, M.Div.

Gabriela Ritterspach, M.A.

Lee Shelnutt, M.A., M.Div.

Darol Timberlake, M.S.

Nathan Trice, M.Div.

Barbara Van Patter, M.E.


Board of Directors

Nathan Trice, President

Shawn Brandt, Secretary

Thomas Willingham, Treasurer





2nd Convocation


Greyfriars Classical Academy


Monday, August 23, 2010

7:00 PM


Matthews Orthodox Presbyterian Church

2701 Rice Road


Convocation will be a time for the entire school community, and all who share our vision for Christ’s Kingdom, to gather for celebration and dedication as we begin our second academic year.  Refreshments to follow.


The Public is Warmly Invited!



  From last year’s convocation:






School Verses


Psalm 127:4

Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth.


Micah 6:8

He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?






GCA Motto


Sagittae Formosae et Praeacutae


Arrows, Beautifully-Formed & Sharpened






School Anthem


Psalm 24 (C)

“The Earth and the Riches”






Our Fathers


“You parents can provide no better gift for your children than an education in the liberal arts.  House and home burn down, but an education is easy to carry along.


– Martin Luther






True Christian education is not a negative thing; it is not a matter of isolating the student from the full scope of knowledge. Isolating the student from large sections of human knowledge is not the basis of a Christian education. Rather it is giving him or her the framework or total truth, rooted in the Creator's existence and in the Bible's teaching, so that in each step of the formal learning process the student will understand what is true and what is false and why it is true or false. It is not isolating students from human knowledge. It is teaching them in a framework of the total Biblical teaching, beginning with the tremendous central thing, that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. It is teaching in this framework, so that on their own level, as they are introduced to all of human knowledge, they are not introduced in the midst of a vacuum, but they are taught each step along the way why what they are hearing is either true or false. That is true education…. The student, then, if he is taught this way, is an educated person, who will have the tools to keep learning and enjoy learning throughout all of life. Is life dull? How can it be dull? No, a true education, a Christian education, is more than the negative, though that is there. It is giving the tools in the opening the doors to all human knowledge, in the Christian framework so they will know what is truth and what is untruth, so they can keep learning as long as they live, and they can enjoy, they can really enjoy, the whole wrestling through field after field of knowledge. That is what an educated person is.


 – Francis A. Schaeffer




Website Update


We have made some changes to the Greyfriars website (, including an overall new look, the introduction of a Google calendar, and the ability to make donations online (through PayPal).  Check it out!



Enrollment for 2010-2011


Students registered as of August 12: 

9th Grade:   7 students, with up to 3 possible additions.   

10th Grade: 11 students with 1 possible addition.

This represents a total of 17 different families and 12 different local churches.



Greyfriars Now Using Google Apps Services


As an educational institution, Greyfriars receives free access to the premium version of Google Apps.  This set of online services allows Greyfriars’ faculty, parents, students and others to communicate and collaborate more readily.  For example, faculty can now post the dates of exams and major assignments to a shared Greyfriars Calendar.  Then, other faculty members, parents, and students can view this calendar online to plan accordingly.

     A Greyfriars username and password are required to use these services.  Contact John McGowan ( for more information.



Featured New GCA Faculty Member



Mrs. Lori J. Lawing, B.A. Aesthetics

• B.A., Speech Communications - University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC

• Seasoned homeschooler


Mrs. Lawing graduated from Chapel Hill with a degree in public speaking. She competed in oral performance of literature on UNC’s traveling speech team.  Lori is married to Morrie Lawing, pastor of Christ Church, ARP in Denver, NC, and together they have educated their five children (ages 7 to 15) at home from the beginning.  For the past seven years she has taught Shakespeare to groups of up to 30 children (ages 3-15) and has written eight condensed scripts of Shakespeare’s plays for her classes’ annual productions.  Mrs. Lawing has a passion for teaching, especially the beauty of aesthetics.



Feature Article


Why Classical “Christian” Education?


by David John Seel, M.Div., Ph.D.


Ever since the church father Tertullian pondered in the second century, “What does Jerusalem have to do with Athens?,” Christians have wrestled with the relationship between Jewish and Greek thought.  Some have sought to strip Christian theology from any vestige of Greek thought by advocating a return to the “pure moral categories” of the Old Testament or to an alleged “primitive Christianity.”


Others accept that over the centuries the gospel has been preached and theology developed in Greek categories of thought. It was the Greeks, even more than the Jews, who were open to Christ’s saving message. Some have gone so far as to say that the biblical reference in Hebrews to Christ’s coming in the “fullness of times” refers inevitably to that unique period of history where Greek culture was protected by Roman law and armies— pax Romana. One’s approach bears directly on the question of how one should educate a child in the “paideia of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4).


We are committed to a Christ-centered and classical curriculum. Why the “classical”? Doesn’t “classical” conflict with the “Christ-centered”? These are important questions to ask. We believe that the Jewish and Greek cultures serve as foundational categories for both Christian and Western thought. Obviously, classical study requires discernment. It took the early church two hundred years to overcome the pagan heresy of gnosticism. Nor were early Christians accepting of homosexuality and infanticide, which were commonly practiced in classical society. Yet the church and theology owes a debt to Greek thought. C.S. Lewis observed, “To lose what I owe to Plato and Aristotle would be like the amputation of a limb. Hardly any lawful price would seem to me too high for what I have gained by being made to learn Latin and Greek.”


Boston College philosopher Peter Kreeft provides some helpful insights into this question. He writes, “The Jews gave us conscience; the Greeks, reason. The Jews gave us the laws of morality, of what ought to be; the Greeks gave us the laws of thought and of being, of what is.” The Greeks discovered the nature of truth and goodness, the Jews were discovered by the God who was Truth and Goodness. “Hebraism and Hellenism meet—Hebraism in its Christianized form, Hellenism in its Romanized form…. The meeting and blending of these two great rivers, the biblical (Judaeo-Christian) and the classical (Greco-Roman) produced the Middle Ages.”


Our modern world has its beginnings in this medieval synthesis— what historians rightly refer to as “The Age of Faith.” But modernity is a cut flower. As the roots of faith were abandoned, the flower of Western civilization withered. Today, we have “modern” Christians and “postmodern” Christians. But we have too few Christians who think in pre-modern categories. Recovering these categories is the educational burden of Christ-centered classical schools. Our goal is to equip apprentices of Jesus with a pre-modern mind capable of engaging our postmodern world.


Intellectually and spiritually, Western society has crossed a Great Divide. C.S. Lewis places this divide sometime immediately following the age of Jane Austen and Walter Scott. When we watch Emma Thompson in the film adaptation of Jane Austin’s novel, Sense and Sensibility, we realize that we have stepped into another world with a very different ethos. He writes, “Whereas all history was for our ancestors divided into two periods, the pre-Christian and the Christian, and two only, for us it falls into three—the pre-Christian, the Christian, and what may reasonably be called the post-Christian.”


Lewis then makes the most astonishing claim. Pay close attention— for it establishes the rationale for our educational approach.

“Christians and Pagans had much more in common with each other than either has with a post-Christian. The gap between those who worship different gods is not so wide as that between those who worship and those who do not…. A post-Christian man is not a Pagan; you might as well think that a married woman recovers her virginity by divorce. The post-Christian is cut off from the Christian past and therefore doubly from the Pagan past.”


In short, an exposure to the classical mind serves as an antidote to the modern mind and thereby makes possible the growth of a biblical mind. Moderns ask no questions. The Greeks raised the right questions that are answered by the gospel. “The One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you,” Paul told the Athenians. What does Athens have to do with Jerusalem? Everything. One brings the questions. The other brings the answers. The post-Christian has neither questions nor answers. Quod erat demonstrandum: the importance of classical Christian education for our time.


Reprinted with permission from CLASSIS,

The Journal of the Association of Classical Christian Schools,

May 2007, Volume XIV, Number 3



Can You Make a Difference?



Yes, You Can Make a Difference!  Here’s How:


Qualified students have applied to Greyfriars and we want them to enroll, but for various reasons, these families are unable to afford the full tuition.  Here’s what one parent says:


“I am a single mom barely hanging on financially so we can continue to home school.  I work odd hours (nights and weekends and holidays—the hours no one else wants) so that I can … teach [my children] myself and provide for them an education that is honoring to HIM and equips them well for what is ahead in their lives.”  “I am so encouraged that if [we] can attend Greyfriars Academy then I might be able to simplify my life by finding employment during normal business hours….”


The mission of Greyfriars includes providing an education for Christian families that is financially affordable.  Our unique university model (without full-time faculty or a physical plant to maintain) means that our tuition is well within the reach of most families—but not all.


Please consider making a generous donation to Greyfriars that will help us say “Yes” to these students.








Here’s another way to make a difference:  The next time you are checking out at Harris Teeter, simply tell your cashier that you want Greyfriars’ account number linked to your VIC card.

You need to do this again each year after August 1.

Our school account number is 8280.


That’s all you need to do— it’s that easy! 2% of your store-brand purchases are deposited into our GCA account, as part of Harris Teeter’s “Together in Education” program.  Thanks for supporting GCA!









HT Together in Education



Founders’ Campaign Watch


Over our first four years, start-up costs will exceed tuition receipts due to our vision for affordable tuition.  A summary of our progress against our four-year Founders’ Campaign is shown below.  As we prepare to start our second academic year, please consider a gift to help give us a boost!




Please remember that all gifts to Greyfriars Classical Academy qualify as tax-deductible contributions under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.



Donations may be mailed to:


Greyfriars Classical Academy

1460 Longleaf Court, Matthews, NC 28104



Or, click below to donate securely online:


GIVE TO GCA (click here)



You can also visit out website at, and click on the “Give to GCA” button.








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2701 Rice Road    Matthews, NC 28105    704.315.5774


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