Our granddaughter Katyana has always been

She loves to entertain, and she throws herself
into singing, dancing and acting without
hesitation.  She does the same thing when
she climbs and hangs all over the swing set in
our backyard.  And it’s the spirit she brought
to soccer, golf, tennis and other sports.

She was brave when she worked with full-
sized horses to earn a patch for
horsemanship in Brownies.

Courage is a Christian virtue.  The Bible
repeatedly urges us to "be not afraid," "be of
good courage" and "be confident."

I've come increasingly to believe that the
opposite of faith is not unbelief, but fear.  
Fear indicates a lack of trust in God.

Katyana can be brave, because she trusts
God (she prayed for me when I was sick and
sees my health as an answer to her prayers) and
the love of her family and her own good instincts.
She's a lot braver than I was at her age--even
braver than her mother.  We both appreciate her
courage and confidance.  

Bravery has always been a virtue for boys, but
I'm glad to see a recognition that girls need to
be brave as well.

Brave girls have minds of their own.  They don't
just "go along to get along."  They have heroes
they admire.  Katyana's hero right now is the
Neil DeGrasse Tyson, director of
Hayden Planetarian and host of Cosmos.   

When I was young, I didn't even know any
scientists and would never have considered one
a hero.

I am proud of my brave granddaughter, and glad
that she lives in an age when girls can be and do
anything--and know it.
May 2014
Billie Silvey
The Virtue
Katyana (clockwise from above) walking a large horse, in The
Metropolitan Educational Theater Network  South Bay production
Big River, and hanging from our swing set.