Global Lens Reflections on life, the universe, and everything

Literacy is powerful

United Methodist Pastor Leslie Dela Cruz, right, teaches basic literacy, including making vowel sounds, to Janet Tamtan, an Aetna indigenous woman in the Philippine village of Camachile, where the United Methodist Church has a pastoral presence among Aetnas who were displaced by the eruption of Mt Pinatubo.

United Methodist Pastor Leslie Dela Cruz, right, teaches basic literacy, including making vowel sounds, to Janet Tamtan, an Aeta indigenous woman in the Philippine village of Camachile, where the United Methodist Church has a pastoral presence among Aetnas who were displaced by the eruption of Mt Pinatubo. I love the effort she's putting into making the sound, and the poor student struggling with the difficulty of making a sound that her throat just doesn't want to make. Anyone who's learned another language as an adult has been there. But literacy is more than just making sounds and learning to dicipher written words, it's about understanding better the world around you and learning new ways to navigate your way through it. In a lot of places, the Filipino church gets it, and the commitment and courage of its clergy and laypeople is to be emulated.

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