Howard Graham
Howard Graham

Howard Graham

Howard Graham is the Chaplain at PDS and is the Executive Director of the Building Boys, Making Men program. He is married to Kimberley and they have a girl and three boys. He can be reached at hgraham@pdsmemphis.org

Building Boys, Making Men is a PDS-created program designed to give boys a godly vision and definition of manhood. We believe that boys should be intentionally taught about authentic manhood and have a biblical framework for making wise and edifying choices during their teenage years and beyond. The definition of manhood we teach our boys:

A real man glorifies God by seeking an adventurous life of purpose and passion as he protects and serves others.

Friday, January 18, 2019

Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that - Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King did not only say these words — he lived these words. He lived a life of purpose, sacrifice, and example, shining the light and love of Jesus into some very dark places. He believed all men and women are created by God and in the image of God, and he believed that standing up for the oppressed was worth dying for. Dr. King was one of America’s greatest Pacesetters. His example is still worth following today. This is why our country, our city, and our school celebrate his life with a national holiday. This Martin Luther King Jr. Day, here are three ways we can honor the life of Dr. King:

Starting January 29th, take one hour a month to learn how to be a better dad.

Throughout this spring semester, PDS will be hosting Strategic Dad sessions on the last Tuesday of each month. All you need to do is pick between the 6:45 breakfast session or the 11:45 lunch session, and we’ll provide the teaching and the food.

Friday, January 04, 2019

What It Means to be a Pacesetter

Happy New Year! The new year is a time when many of us think about setting new goals. And many of our goals — expressions of the kinds of people we want to be — are shaped by the people around us whose examples we want to follow.

Fittingly, the virtue for January is the Pacesetter — the one who sets an example for others by following the example of Christ.

Are you ready for Christmas? If you are like most of us, the answer is something like, “No way! There is way too much to do.”

Building Boys, Making Men wants to help you and your family prepare your hearts for Christmas. There is nothing about Christmas more important than understanding the gift of Jesus in new and deeper ways. To help you understand and enjoy this gift, we have designed a daily advent devotional for families to do together. (For tips on family devotional time, check out our recent blog.)

Helping Your Son Live Out the November Virtue of the Month

Welcome to November! Our virtue of the month is the Servant Leader. Not sure what that means or how to help your son live that out? Keep reading for an adapted excerpt from our new book 7 Virtues of Godly Manhood:

In the past two articles we learned how to draw near to God and how to lead family devotions. In this article, I hope you will see the ultimate way for you and your family to know and respond to God’s love is through worship. Worship is not just something for us to do at church. Worshipping God is the most important thing you will do both now and for eternity.

A few days ago, we talked about how to draw near to God. As we get to know God better, we gain real wisdom, and that transforms how we raise our kids, love our spouses, do our work, and everything else. It’s an essential first step—but don’t stop there!

God also calls us to help our families seek God. Today’s post will focus on one way to help our families seek God—by leading a simple family devotion time. This is important because it helps us know who God is and shows us that his Word is so relevant to everyday life.

 

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”
Psalm 119:105

What is the very best thing you can do for your family?

Draw near to God and help your family do the same.

At PDS, we are partnering with you to help your sons grow in wisdom, stature, and favor with God and man—like Jesus did (Luke 2:52). But what does that look like? The Bible tells us, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight” (Proverbs 9:10).

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Wisdom, Stature, and Favor

How do you want your children to grow?

And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man. Luke 2:52

Is it too bold for us to want our kids to grow the same way Jesus did? To grow up and be like Jesus?

What if our children were so confident in how they are loved by God that they could not help sharing that love with their friends?

That is exactly what God calls us to do, to raise them to be just like Jesus. When Jesus walked on earth, He was completely God. He was also completely a man and had to grow as a man.

So what does it mean to grow in wisdom, stature, and favor? Let’s look at their everyday definitions and at how God defines these three critical areas of development.

ONLY AT PDS

Building Boys, Making Men:
Our Character Education Program

At PDS, we believe that boys should be intentionally taught about authentic manhood and have a biblical framework for making wise and edifying choices during their teenage years and beyond.

That’s why we have spent over twenty years developing Building Boys, Making Men — a character education program that teaches every boy at PDS what it really means to be a man.

 

The Definition of Manhood We Teach Boys:
The Definition of Manhood We Teach Boys:

A real man glorifies God by seeking an adventuresome life of purpose and passion as he protects and serves others.

A real man glorifies God by seeking an adventuresome life of purpose and passion as he protects and serves others.

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Building Boys, Makning Men

PDS wants to partner with you as you raise your son into this kind of man. And because we know boys learn best in small groups through big conversations and hands-on projects, every 5th and 6th grader has a male mentor and meets regularly with a mentor group.


 

The Seven Virtues of Manhood

Leave no man behind. Godly men are willing to stick with their friends through thick and thin.

Develop a God-sized vision. True heroes are not always successful in the way the world defines success.

I am third. A servant leader recognizes that his relationship with Christ is first and his relationship with others is second.

Set the example. A Pacesetter makes a difference. Stands up for others. Treats others with respect.

Give up control. Faithful Followers live in God's story, following Christ, studying the Bible.

Called to duty. Real men have a code of principles that they are going to live by, no matter what.

Don't sit around. Bold Adventurers follow where God leads and are obedient to His plans.

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Leave no man behind. Godly men are willing to stick with their friends through thick and thin.

Develop a God-sized vision. True heroes are not always successful in the way the world defines success.

I am third. A servant leader recognizes that his relationship with Christ is first and his relationship with others is second.

Set the example. A Pacesetter makes a difference. Stands up for others. Treats others with respect.

Don't sit around. Bold Adventurers follow where God leads and are obedient to His plans.

Called to duty. Real men have a code of principles that they are going to live by, no matter what.

Give up control. Faithful Followers live in God's story, following Christ, studying the Bible.

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VIRTUE OF THE MONTH
The Pacesetter

Set the Example.

A pacesetter:
● Sets the example for others by living biblically
● Makes a difference in his community by using his God-given gifts and talents to serve others
● Treats others with respect and equality
● Cares deeply about the poor
● Doesn’t overlook the mistreatment of others
● Builds communities in which everyone is respected, loved and treated fairly
● Stands up for those being bullied

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The journey from boy to man is a big adventure—and an important one. That’s why PDS published The 7 Virtues of Manhood and Flight Plan. These two books are designed to show our 5th- and 6th-grade boys what it means to be a godly man and how to live that out in the choices they make today and throughout their teenage years.

The Seven Virtues of Manhood
Flight Plan
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Strategic Parenting Blog

Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Fri, Jan 1 in Strategic Parenting Blog

How to Talk to Your Children About Sex

Tue, Jan 1 in Strategic Parenting Blog

What It Means to be a Pacesetter

Fri, Jan 1 in Strategic Parenting Blog

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What Is Building Boys, Making Men

Building Boys, Making Men is a program that gives boys a compelling vision for godly manhood—helping them understand the gospel deeply, live it faithfully, and share it boldy. We teach every PDS boy what it means to be a godly man—beginning when boys enter PDS as two-year-olds and becoming more intensive as boys approach their teens and prepare to graduate from PDS. Here’s what looks like in practice:

  • Chapel two times each week
  • Teaching on the 7 virtues of manhood for all grades, focusing on one virtue each month
  • Mentor groups for 5th-grade boys (that meet twice a month) and 6th-grade boys (that meet weekly), led by men from the PDS community — coaches, teachers, and staff
  • The 7 Virtues of Manhood, a book that walks our 5th-grade students through the virtues and helps them apply the virtues to their own lives
  • Flight Plan, a book that gives our 6th-grade students a vision for authentic manhood and prepares them to make wise choices as they enter their teens
    • Flight Plan is also supplemented by exclusive online resources at flightplan.org
  • Monthly two-hour seminars to walk 5th and 6th grade students through manhood and life issues
  • A buddy program, through which 4th to 6th grade boys are paired with Pre-K to Sr-K boys, spending time with them, loving on them, and learning to serve others
  • A father-son trip for 6th-grade boys and their dads
  • A father-son retreat for 6th-grade boys and their dads—this is the culmination of the BBMM program, a final send-off before boys graduate from PDS and move into their teens and on toward their next school.

At PDS, we know that parents play a unique and essential role in shaping their sons’ character. We want to partner with parents, but never replace them. Here are some key resources and events we provide for parents:

  • Friday Chapels
  • Leader Guides for Flight Plan and 7 Virtues with discussion questions and activity ideas
  • Flight Plan website for a dad or mom to go through with their son
  • Small group content for dads
  • Training for how to utilize these resources
  • The father-son trip and father-son retreat for 6th-grade boys
  • PDS’s Strategic Parenting blog, where PDS staff, teachers, and others in the PDS community share relevant life and faith issues to support parents

 

Questions or Feedback?

Have questions or suggestions for our Building Boys, Making Men team?

Contact Us

VIRTUE OF THE MONTH
The Pacesetter

Set the Example.

A pacesetter:
● Sets the example for others by living biblically
● Makes a difference in his community by using his God-given gifts and talents to serve others
● Treats others with respect and equality
● Cares deeply about the poor
● Doesn’t overlook the mistreatment of others
● Builds communities in which everyone is respected, loved and treated fairly
● Stands up for those being bullied

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Developing Your
Why
As a Dad

What is your vision, purpose, and reason for leading your family? Learn about developing your "why" as a dad at this Strategic Dads University event.

Tuesday, January 29 - 2 offerings: Breakfast or Lunch Available

Tuesday, January 29 - 2 offerings: Breakfast or Lunch Available

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