At Oak Hill Academy, we incorporate hands-on learning as much as possible, whether it’s inside or outside the classroom. Recently, Reverend Turnmire’s Christian Ethics class had the opportunity to practice what they’ve learned in the classroom: “virtue ethics.”
This past semester, students have been studying virtue ethics, which are character traits that help us to live better lives. We can live virtuous, ethical lives when we instill age-tested virtues and character traits into our habits.
Last week, the focus was the trait of empathy. Students practiced empathy in class by expressing what they thought was the most misunderstood aspect about them, and what questions would be helpful to ask to help people understand. Rev. Turnmire used himself as an example, then went around the room to encourage all students to participate in a good, helpful, and empathetic manner.
Rev. Turnmire further introduced a project to the class to show how empathy can include action that responds to a specific need a person has. He had previously worked with a neighbor in the nearby Whitetop area on a couple of repairs for her home and knew she was in need of a ramp.
“She was concerned about the cost,” Rev. Turnmire said. “And I described how Young’s Chapel pays for these projects out of our mission fund, which is 20% of all offerings, set aside for these types of needs specifically in our local community.”
Together with Mr. Butt, Rev. Turnmire took a group of his students to build the ramp together, thereby benefitting the local resident and providing a hands-on opportunity for service.
After completing the project, the group ate at Railroad Market & Café in Whitetop, and Young’s Chapel Baptist Church treated.
Rev. Turnmire shared the importance of showing the students how the church practices empathy in real, tangible ways, and that prayers are avenues and invitations to take action for the well-being of people.