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New after-school program in Rockwall helps transform students into ‘Men and Ladies of Honor’

Photo courtesy of Men and Ladies of Honor.

Community presentation set for Nov. 15

ROCKWALL, TX (Nov. 2, 2022) – Honor changes everything. That’s the basis for the new after-school program known as Men and Ladies of Honor, presented by Honor Ministries.

“We have a goal to launch Men and Ladies of Honor groups in each 6th through 8th grade school in the Rockwall ISD this year,” said Weldon Davis, Regional Director for Rockwall/Heath Men of Honor and Ambassador to Honduras. “Our vision is to foster young men and ladies who are balanced in their souls and bold in their spirits, prepared to demonstrate to those around them a culture of courage, civility, kindness and compassion.”

Though new to Rockwall, Men and Ladies of Honor is a world-wide organization that launched nearly two decades ago, when founder and executive director Tony Rorie – then a principal at an at-risk school in Dallas – had concerns about four boys who were repeatedly in his office. He realized that what he had been doing wasn’t helping, and decided to mentor the boys in respect, honor and Christ-like manhood.

Rorie started with giving the boys simple directions, such has saying “Yes sir” and “Yes ma’am” and opening doors for their teachers.

“Over time, these young men saw their grades increase and earned the respect of their peers as honorable leaders in the school,” Davis said. “Not only had their lives been changed, but their example affected the entire student body to such a degree that the administration approached Mr. Rorie about what he was doing and asked could he replicate it in their other schools.  This was the beginning of Honor Ministries, and The Men and Ladies of Honor after-school program.”

Davis explained that Men and Ladies of Honor creates an atmosphere for change through weekly mentoring and training in principles of chivalry, honor, moral excellence, compassion, character, honesty and more – which reflect an honorable life. It is a two-year comprehensive mentoring and training program for all young people ages 11 – 17.

Weekly sessions include lessons on character qualities and call-and-response axioms which help remind students of who they are becoming. A few of the boy’s axioms are: “I’m a winner; I am Man of Honor!” and “I do the right thing….because it’s the right thing to do.”  For the girls: “I am a leader! I am a Lady of Honor.” And “My attitude….is my choice.”

“These qualities and attributes were also reflected in the life of Christ. The Gospel message of salvation is also introduced to the students,” Davis added. “Once they can memorize and recite their full axioms, they are given an Honor shirt and the privilege of attending a life-changing camp at Broken Bow, Oklahoma – a new facility constructed this year by Honor Ministries.  They also receive their first of three curriculum magazines which they complete on their own, with coaching from Leaders. These magazines are filled with short lessons on character traits, biographical examples of heroes found in the Bible and in history, puzzles and questions for them to answer about what they’ve learned. The second and third magazines are given to them after completion of each one.”

The young men and ladies also experience other rewards for their diligence, such as lapel pins for the boys and a charm bracelet and charms for the girls. These lapel pins and charms represent the five tenets they learn from the magazines:  Courage, Leadership, Character, Compassion and Diligence.

They not only learn about these tenets but carry out projects of their choosing to demonstrate them.  Their accomplishments are acknowledged and celebrated at the yearly Men and Ladies of Honor Gala.

Photo courtesy of Men and Ladies of Honor.

The Mesquite School District has embraced the Honors program for their students, with most eligible schools holding weekly meetings. Davis is hoping to build on their momentum here in Rockwall.

According to the Rockwall ISD, to form a student-led group, board policy requires a student application. It must be signed by a teacher or employee who monitors and acts as a campus sponsor. Student groups must have an employee monitor who must be a District employee and assigned to the student’s campus. The monitor shall attend and monitor each student group meeting, maintain order, and protect school property. The monitor is not a participating member of the group.

It is important to note the Honors program comes at no cost to the student or the school.

COMMUNITY MEETING

A community meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15 at the Rockwall County Library. All County Commissioners, Judges, City Mayors and Council members, the Superintendent and School Board, school principals and staff, churches, and parents are encouraged to attend to learn more about the program.

For more information, visit Honor Ministries | Dallas (honorchangeseverything.com) or contact Weldon Davis at weldon@themenofhonor.org, 972-741-6419.

By Dawn Redig, Blue Ribbon News, in collaboration with Men and Ladies of Honor.





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