October greetings from Jeanne!

October 6, 2017

Dear Central Christian Community,

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!  I give thanks for this school that brings together a span of ages.  A few weeks ago, a longtime faculty member commented that since the elementary students joined the building a number of years ago, the entire school seemed to become a gentler place.  This morning before school, I noticed that a group of second and third graders had joined a classroom of kindergarten and first graders for their early morning activities.  The younger students acted as hosts and I saw small groups of children gathered on the carpet, all quietly and actively engaged in learning activities as their classmates continued to arrive.  

Earlier this week, Christina Lowe planned a Middle School and High School chapel to be a joyful and enthusiastic kick-off for our 48th annual Community Service Day.  However, that same Monday morning, we had the terrible news of the mass shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada, which came just a few days after hearing of the devastation at our sister school in Puerto Rico, the earlier hurricanes in Texas and Florida, and the awareness of suffering in other parts of the world.  Also in chapel that morning, Zach Kooker planned to make an announcement about the important athletic events happening this week.  Jill Detweiler-Breckbill asked me to pray and help us bring all of these conflicting emotions together.    

Romans 12:9-21 came to my mind:  “Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; … Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. … Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all… if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap burning coals on their heads.  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

Central Christian School exists in the midst of real life where joy and sadness happen simultaneously.  Our school’s service in our community gives our students the opportunity to respond to all the things that are not right in this world.  Through service, we follow the example of Jesus and we disrupt patterns of violence and loss by overcoming evil with good.  I hope you can help us in responding to the bad things in our world as your sponsor students to see themselves as a part of God’s plan through Community Service Day. 

Last month, I asked you to pray for the seniors and their sponsors on their service trip to Pittsburgh.  Last week, I had the opportunity to sit with six of these seniors to hear some of their reflections on sharing God’s love and learning through service.  I will share them here:

“This was a good way to interact with people who are different from us.”

“It was really meaningful.  I wanted to go back and stay.”

“I wish we could have known him (the homeowner) better.”

“I learned that if you are a part of a community, you grow to love everyone.”

“Poverty doesn’t make people bad or unfriendly.”

“Now I will try not to pre-judge people and always think that it might not be their fault that they are where they are.”

 

Thank you for being a part of the Central Christian School community.  Thank you for continuing to pray:

  • That busy students can find balance in their lives as they work to do their best in their classes, music, athletics, drama, friendships, and church involvements. 
  • For elementary students who are learning to transform conflicts through using the “Peace Mat”.
  • For Bruce Kooker as he travels to China, Vietnam, Korea and Japan to connect with international alumni, parents and families seeking school options for their children. 
  • For the Board of Trustees and the new members of the Christian Schools, Inc. Corporation as they discern future plans.  We give thanks for their many hours of volunteer service. 

 

Regards, 

Jeanne