The Mentorship Program - Mentoring Mentors

At Forgotten Lighthouse, we believe that teaching is an art, and educators are to be formed, not trained like cogs in a machine. As such, the purpose of the Mentorship Program is to strengthen local face-to-face educational communities by supporting the formation of educators, both homeschooling parents and teachers, in the art of teaching. The Mentorship Program is designed for educators who seek to instruct students or mentor other educators and seeks to draw deeply from the well of the Orthodox Christian tradition. Further, the Mentorship Program assumes modeling, imitation, and meaningful conversation as the basis of forming mature educators. Thus, becoming an effective educator requires participation and doing, not merely being talked at about what to do and is as much an ascetical labor as an intellectual pursuit.

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Fall Seminar Schedule

Fall Seminar I:  Building the Foundations of Christian Paideia

THIS SEMINAR IS FULL. If you are interested in being the first to know about upcoming seminars, please email us at Thank you!

Seminar Description:

Dates and Time:  8/29, 9/5, 9/12, and 9/19 (8:00 pm - 9:30 pm CDT)



Christian paideia centers around who we, how we teach, and

what we teach within the context of the sacramental, ascetical, and liturgical life of the Church. Despite the lies of modern, progressive education, every moment of a child’s life is formative, and as such, educational, with the heartbeat of Christian Paideia rooted in the family within the life of the Church. In this seminar, we will be building the foundations of Christian Paideia rooted in the vision of the Church Fathers from the ground up. Important Church Fathers such as St. John Chrysostom and St. Gregory the Theologian up to contemporary Church Fathers such as St. Porphyrios and St. Paisios the Athonite will be studied in this seminar.


Fall Seminar II:  What Does It Mean to be Human? 

THIS SEMINAR IS FULL. If you are interested in being the first to know about upcoming seminars, please email us at Thank you!

Seminar Description:

Dates and Times:  10/17, 10/24, 10/31, 11/6, and 11/14 (8:00 pm - 9:30 pm CDT)

There is no doubt that our culture is at a flash point related to the question of what

it means to be a human, and by extension, what it means to be male and female. Are humans merely material, biological realities? Are they rational animals? Is the body good? Are humans really just social constructions? Is gender fluid? These and many more questions are presented to our children through our culture every day, and most of the public Christian responses are woefully inadequate. Yet, for Christians, every human question is ultimately a Christological question that is connected directly to the person of Christ, and every deviation from the truth of our humanity is tied to a rejection of the person of Jesus Christ. As such, it is vital that we have a clear, positive vision for our children deeply rooted in the teachings of the Patristic tradition which is so rich in its teaching on humanity. Nevertheless, understanding not only the positive vision but also the negative vision within a culture of change is of great importance for our children and so this seminar will also consider the departure of the West from the Patristic tradition as witnessed to through the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, Feminism, and into Post-modernity through the reading of important historical texts.

    (Icon by Vladimir Grygorenko.)

    Reviews by Previous Participants:

    "... Dr. Tarpley’s approach has potential to end the longstanding Western modern captivity of Orthodox education and empower truly Christian education to flourish for the benefit of individual souls, the Church, and society."

    "Dr. Tarpley has a message for modern Christian education that everyone needs to hear! He was able to clarify the hunch that many Christian educators have today: There is a big problem with modern education and it is not compatible with a Christian worldview. Dr. Tarpley aptly clarifies and defines this suspicion, giving educators a clear alternative."


    "Machine Education vs. Christian Paideia:  Two Visions of Education"

    Seminar Description: 

    Christian educators, for too long, have compromised with modern, progressive education or what we call Machine education. Some of these compromises are obvious and some are not so obvious, having become deeply embedded in the practice of Christian educators in America. The result is nothing less than the formation of our children to become Machine-like rather than Christ-like. This seminar will model both a traditional pedagogical approach to Christian paideia and, at the same time, cultivate an understanding of just how deep the divide is between Machine education and Christian paideia. We hope you will join us in addressing perhaps the most ignored, yet most important issue among Christian educators today.



    "The Martyrdom of St. Polycarp"

    Seminar Description: This important Patristic text from the 2nd century provides an account of the martyrdom of St. Polycarp, who was the disciple of St. John the Theologian and one of the great Apostolic Fathers. This text is a wonderful introduction to reading the Church Fathers and learning about the early Christian Church in the Roman Empire. From a pedagogical perspective, participants will begin to think deeply about the foundational building blocks of textual reading as well as how to study history from a Christian perspective. The text is short, but contains numerous important questions to be explored and pedagogy nurtured.

    "How STEM Came to Dominate the Landscape of Education, and Why We Should Care?

    Mini-Seminar Description: The educational landscape today is dominated by the presence of STEM education. As Christian educators, we ought to think deeply about this revolutionary change that has occurred in education over the last century and what its implications are for Christian educators. Join Dr. Mark Tarpley as he presents how the implications of the rise of STEM education for Christian educators runs much deeper than we may first think.


    "The Way We Approach the Study of History Impacts All Areas of Study Since All Areas of Study are Historical"

    Mini-Seminar Description: With the discipline of history, or more commonly referred to today as social studies, neatly packaged within a department structure of the modern school, we too often fail to recognize that, in fact, all disciplines of study are historical in character, and as such, involve the study of history. This fact has important implications for not only the discipline of history, but all studies, which means Christian educators should carefully consider or reconsider how we approach the study of history. Join Dr. Mark Tarpley as he discusses this important and too often overlooked question in education today.


    1.  What is a seminar?

    The seminars present to educators (parents and teachers) an opportunity to participate in a normative approach to education within the Orthodox Christian tradition in contrast to a progressive model dominant in education today.  For educators, the best way to learn to teach is through modeling and imitation, so participation in the seminars is not only educational in terms of gaining understanding of content, but also formative as an educator.  

    2. Who can attend?

    Educators (homeschool parents, classroom teachers of any grade level, and administrators).

    3.  Can multiple people attend an instructional Zoom session on a computer screen under one registration?

    Registration assumes one participant per registration. As such, we ask that only one person per registration attend on a computer screen during the instructional Zoom session. If a second person would like to participate, we ask that that person register for the seminar separately.

    4. Are their group discounts for schools or co-ops?

     If you are a school or co-op looking to register more than three attendees, please email us at regarding a group discount.

    5.  What is the purpose of the mentorship program?  

    At Forgotten Lighthouse, we believe that local, face-to-face communities represent the ideal educational environment.  Our hope is to inspire educators within a live-online collaborative learning environment in order to strengthen local educational communities.  Our goal, however, is not to replace local communities but to strengthen them in order to establish autonomy and independence from machine based learning.