Do I take literacy for granted? Yes, most of them time I do. Last year in 'Could you cope without reading?' I wrote about the estimated 799 million adults in today's world who are illiterate, most of them women. I am truly blessed to be able to read.

Today, in this series of things to be grateful for during Lent, I'm taking some moments to be thankful for literacy. I'm grateful that not only can I read and write but that I love doing both. I'm sitting at my desk surrounded by books. I can access books easily online, even on my phone. I can enjoy or learn from or disagree with what others have written. I have many different ways of using the skill of handwriting or word processing.

Yes, today I am thankful for literacy and for countless people who made/make that possible - my parents, teachers, the inventors of printing, paper, internet, booksellers, writers, long-lost ancestors who first wrote messages in the sand or carved them in stone. 

Mary Ann Shaffer in her novel 'The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society' has one of her characters express something I love about reading - sheer enjoyment:
“That's what I love about reading: one tiny thing will interest you in a book, and that tiny thing will lead you to another book, and another bit there will lead you onto a third book. It's geometrically progressive - all with no end in sight, and for no other reason than sheer enjoyment.” 


  1. I couldn't agree more, Nancy. the literacy we take so much for granted is as an enormous privilege. I just can't imagine life without books and reading.

    1. It is a privilege and certainly a joy, but for many it's a real struggle. I have a relative who is losing her sight and finding it so hard not to be able to read any more. Thank God for audio books!


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