Thought for the Week, July 9 2021

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Campbeltown Grammar School took a knock recently, being almost at the bottom of national academic league tables.

League tables also apply to sport and they can bring elation to some and despondency to others. Education is, however, more complex than winning a match.

Physicist Albert Einstein, who didn’t speak until he was four and didn’t read until he was seven, was expelled from school for being impatient and unruly.

Naturalist Charles Darwin was considered by all his masters and his father as being an ordinary boy, rather below the common standard of intellect.

Neither would have shown up well in league tables, yet they excelled in life.

In selecting the people he wanted to be his closest associates, Jesus chose manual workers. Manual workers are important; people to take away our rubbish, people skilled in plumbing to repair leaks and unblock drains, lorry drivers to ferry goods to our doors, the list goes on.

In Luke’s gospel, Jesus tells a story about a man who was attacked by robbers who beat him and left him half-dead.

A priest passed him by, likewise a Levite, both failing to help the man in distress.

Both men were well-versed in the fine details of Jewish Law. They were well educated.

Only a generous-minded Samaritan came to the rescue. He helped the man from his plight and saw to it that he would be well cared for.

That, Jesus said, should be our pattern for life – being alert to the suffering of others and doing what we can to help.

Like our town, Campbeltown Grammar School has a fine record in responding to charitable concerns.

That places it high up any league table that really matters.

David O McEwan, St Kiaran’s Scottish Episcopal Church, Campbeltown.