Grounded in Piety, Governed by Theology
As a community of faith and learning, The Geneva School seeks to support the church and the family in their calling to train children “in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). Though most Christian schools share this goal, we believe we are distinct in that our commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ is central to our entire curriculum. This commitment means, first of all, that we profess clearly and without qualification the apostolic faith as it is revealed authoritatively in the Holy Scriptures, summarized in the creeds and councils of the undivided church, and restored by the Reformation. Though we do not require that every student profess faith in Christ, all members of the board, faculty and staff are required to demonstrate their faith both by affirmation of our Statement of Faith and by their active membership in a local church.
Our Christian commitment, however, is not bound merely to the affirmation of certain propositions in a statement of faith. Rather, it is embodied in the life of the community birthed by our common faith. We often express this by saying that our education is “grounded in piety and governed by theology.” The Scriptures reveal the Lord who is to be feared as God and loved as Father; it teaches us to honor our fathers and mothers, and calls upon us humbly to love and serve our neighbors. The ancients called this fear and love of God and of neighbor piety, and it is only from this posture of piety that one can rightly know God, the world, and the self. The role of piety at The Geneva School is evident in our corporate chapel worship, discipleship groups, and service projects; it is evident in our competitive athletics. But, uniquely, it is also evident in our very curriculum: in our emphasis upon the study of history, our appreciation of tradition, and our willingness to seek truth wherever it may be found. Our community and our curriculum are thus grounded in Christian piety.
We are similarly governed by theology. The Scriptures reveal that the dignity we bear as images of our Creator includes our bodies as well as our souls. Hence the education we offer must have in view the good of the body as well as the soul. On theological principle, the arts and athletics are essential aspects of our curriculum. We understand that if we have trained the mind but not the body and the imagination, we have failed to educate the whole person made in God’s image. There is, however, a unique way in which theology governs even the most intellectual aspects of the curriculum: just as the Holy Scriptures govern all of our knowledge, so theology, the “queen of the sciences,” governs the whole curriculum. It does this by providing a rational framework for studying the natural sciences and by providing a coherent narrative for the study of history and literature.