|Sharon Thompson (Sports Day at Rising Star Outreach January 2014)|
Sharon Thompson, a Rising Star Outreach board member, sat around the table that day. She recalls how the name ‘Rising Star’ was chosen:
“A few days before the meeting I was talking to my son, John, who is an Egyptologist. John talked to me about some of the ways ancient religions perceived stars. When we were trying to come up with a name for our organization I told about my discussion with John and how what we were planning would change children’s lives. The children would become Rising Stars – bringing their own light into the world. They would be a symbol of a new beginning and of great hope. I knew that through their education they would dispel the darkness that is put upon them and their parents because of leprosy. The vote to name our organization ‘Rising Star’ was unanimous!” Here is a summary of what John told me:
“Due to the perceived movement of the night sky, stars and constellations and planets disappear below the horizon for a time and then reappear. The reappearance of certain stars or planets on the horizon just before the sun rises is called a helical rising, Ancient astronomers watched for such appearances to mark holy days or other special events. Stars such as Sirius, the brightest star in the sky, or planets like Venus, were particularly special to cultures in ancient Egypt and Israel. The helical rising of Sirius marked the New Year and the beginning of the Nile’s inundation. It symbolized new beginnings and hope. Venus was the ‘morning star’ in the Old and New Testament cultures, representing the Messiah, Jesus Christ.
What these stars and planets have in common is that their rising heralds the coming of the sun, the great light of the sky. Christians believe that the Second Coming of Christ will herald the great day of His kingdom on earth when light will dispel the darkness.”