Mr Clive Chan, Headmaster

Mr Chan has extensive experience in teaching English to people of all ages and abilities. He returned to Hong Kong after spending years studying and working in Australia. He has taught English in different secondary schools and Business English at a university in Hong Kong.

Everyone comes naked from their mother’s womb, and as everyone comes, so they depart. They take nothing from their toil that they can carry in their hands.

~ The Holy Bible Ecclesiastes 5:15 

“Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom; in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth without knowing whose it will finally be.”

~ The Holy Bible Psalm 39:6

Dear parents,

Happy New Year!  May you and your family have the most peaceful and rewarding year ahead! Most importantly, may your love for each other abound so that your joy overflows!

I spent the last two weeks of 2019 in Egypt where I visited a number of ancient monuments like the pyramids, Sphinx and various temples dedicated to different gods, which were built with amazing architectural designs, precise astrological calculations, and outstanding craftsmanship.  None of them failed to wow me and other members of our group, and they have indeed left an indelible impression on my mind.

However, after the initial excitement, I started to feel sorry for the kings and nobles whose tombs had been looted by treasure raiders long before they were officially excavated by archaeologists.    Some of their mummified bodies are now on display in various museums, a portion of the jewelry and artefacts beheld by numerous visitors every day, and their places of rest trampled by excited noisy tourists busy talking and taking pictures with the magnificent paintings on the wall.

Most of these 5000-year-old monuments were built with reverence to the ‘gods’ and hopes of the deceased to be granted ‘godship’ or a second life.  Apparently, like all who died rich and powerful, they couldn’t take anything with them and they have remained dead.  Their tombs are now empty, while the luxurious items buried with them are now in the hands of various collectors.  Most ironically, they can’t even enjoy any ‘rest’ as their catacombs are filled with inquisitive guests from all over the world every day.

Indeed, the quest for eternal life and union with God hasn’t been limited to the royalty and the rich, but some people have taken a completely different route.  Our group got the rare opportunity to visit a couple of monasteries dedicated to some early hermits.  Instead of accumulating wealth and surrounding themselves with vanities even after death, the hermits of the early centuries like St. Paul from Alexandria (228-343 AD) chose to live alone with God in a mountain cave near the Red Sea for almost 90 years.  Over the centuries, his story has enlightened many men and women who have chosen to follow his footsteps and live a life of poverty and solitude so that they can get closer to God.  Amazingly, their traditions have been well preserved amidst political and social upheavals of the country over the years, and I could feel unsurpassed serenity and peace while I was there.

Few of us would be able to follow the paths of the hermits, but I was greatly enlightened by their wisdom when I travelled with our group to the desert and spent the evening gazing at the infinite number of stars in darkness.  It was absolutely ‘the moment’ of my whole trip when I could feel my humble existence in this vast universe.  Mighty kings and leaders deemed ‘omnipotent’ by the masses have come and gone, and the shrines they built for themselves have been battered and dwindled.  However powerful they were, they were mortal human beings who could never escape death and the vanities they amassed for themselves would surely decay.

As we venture into a new decade, I hope you will be enlightened too, so that you can focus on building a lasting legacy for your child and family rather than ‘monuments’ that will rot and vanish in the end.

Yours sincerely,

Clive Chan