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Editor’s Note

Desiderius Erasmus was a Dutch humanist and scholar who lived in the late 15th and early 16th century. In 1509 he wrote a satirical piece called In Praise of Folly. Although he made a better satirist than a theologian, in this work he rightfully exposed and ridiculed the excesses of the Roman Catholic Church.

In the editorial, I have attempted to set forth wisdom as the proper course for God’s children as opposed to folly, which leads to pain, trouble, and destruction.

Beacon Lights is written for young people. However, let the words of Augustine be a word of warning to the older reader as well. In Peter Brown’s biography of Augustine, we read of Augustine relaying a story of a “man of 84, who had lived a life of continence under religious observance with a pious wife for 25 years, [who] has gone and bought himself a music-girl for his pleasure …” This caused Augustine to write, “Who is not aghast at the sudden crevasses that might open in the life of a dedicated man?” “For no one is known to another so intimately as he is known to himself, and yet no one is so well known even to himself that he can be sure as to his conduct on the morrow.”[1] The devil, that “roaring lion,” has his eyes trained on the old as well as the young.

In this issue is the first installment of the three-part interview with Mrs. Vivian Hunter. This will be the last interview published in Beacon Lights. Although we bid farewell to the oral history interviews, we thank our former editor, Mr. Mark Hoeksema, for conducting them.

[1] I owe a debt of gratitude to Prof. Russ Dykstra of the Protestant Reformed Seminary for bringing this book to my attention a few years ago. It is one of the finest biographies I have read and I highly recommend it to the Beacon Lights reader as well.