Wednesday was the first day of school at Calvary Christian High School and as the new year begins I have never felt better about the direction of this vital ministry. Enrollment is up…way up. 194 students have started the year and several more have been touring and interviewing this week. Donella Woodbury, our new admissions counselor, set a prayer goal of 200, and who knows we may just hit it!
Just a couple of months ago the new school budget was set at a projected number of 170 students. Some were concerned we wouldn’t hit that and urged for greater caution. We hit it and now we’re more than 14% above those expectations.
That is made all the more remarkable when you consider that nearly every Christian school in our area is facing declining enrollment, and even public schools are facing declining numbers. Yet, against the current and in defiance of the trends our school is now growing again.
But there is so much more to celebrate. It isn’t just the numbers who have enrolled; it is the spiritual environment that has been revived. There is a positive spirit, a great group of kids who are growing in their faith and others who are asking the right questions. Our school is aligned with our church as never before. There is no demarcation where one part of our student ministry begins and another ends. It is part of our overall strategy to reach and disciple the next generation.
One of our teachers started school yesterday by making the simple request, “Describe your faith journey?” Here are some of the answers that our students wrote,
“I'm not really sure exactly where I am in my faith."
"I'm not sure."
"I go to God when I need help. I feel like that is the best option. I want to feel more connected to my religion."
"My walk with God is actually not going so well. I am having trouble reading the Bible everyday. I am also having a good relationship with my parents."
"Right now I am still searching for God. I have tried to accept Him many times but I haven't experienced any changes in my life. I am hoping that this school will bring me closer to Him."
"I hope that Calvary teaches me about Christianity."
"I would have to say my faith journey would be good and strong. I have always known Christ and have always tried to keep a strong faith even though my family and I are going through some very hard times."
"Right now my faith is somewhat strong. I still have many questions that may never be answered by God. Hopefully in the future those questions will be answered, at least most of them. I can't wait to learn what's in store for me to experience in the future. I love God, and I love to learn about Him. That's where I am right now according to faith."
The teacher, Hazmin Flynt, wrote,
“...Every one of my students filled one of these out so I could go on and on but I won't. These students are soo open and honest about where they are in their faith. Many professed Christ as their Savior, but there were also many like the ones above. It just makes it clear that above all this year--above the academics, above the fine arts--these kids are dying for Jesus! May they find life in Him this year...”
Did you every have an algebra teacher ask that question? Did you ever have an algebra teacher or any teach in High School care like that, or point you to Jesus with authentic, contagious passion? Calvary does. Real questions. Answers that matter. It’s why we’re here. It’s why Calvary Christian High School remains, and will be one of the most strategic ministries of our church.