Christians In Public Education (CIPE) held its second annual Seminole County Honor the Grads event on Thursday, April 26, 2018 at Community United Methodist Church in Casselberry, FL. These honored graduates were chosen by their peers because they lived their Christ-like walk through their high school years. Seminole County’s event was modeled after St. Johns County where they have a 21-year tradition of honoring their seniors. Students at each high school were asked to nominate and select seniors who have boldly walked out their Christian faith over the course of their high school careers. The groups represented Fellowship of Christian Athletes and student created weekly Bible study group entitled Refuge along with Mission Interact, Micro-Church, Action Church and the Seminole High School Gospel Choir. The following schools were represented:
Hagerty High School
Jared Sparrell Savannah Hobbs Matthew Robert Whittemore
Lake Brantley High School
Olivia Miller Will Pikalow
Lake Howell High School
Reyniel Torres Lumaris Santiago Herrera
Lake Mary High School
Allie Mateus Reggie Beverly Dylan Rivera
Lyman High School
Bailey McDonald Kaley Ann Taylor
Oviedo High School
Trey Cox Caroline Folsom
Seminole High School
Mariah Van Horn Amy Sheffield
Seminole High School Gospel Choir
Adonis Hooks Alauna Mobley
Winter Springs High School
Hannah McInturf Madison Tinder
This prestigious award may be the most important award these students could ever receive. Each one graciously thanked CIPE, their parents and the many support systems of people that brought them to this point. They shared stories of being in Christian families and being in the faith since their youth, but a common thread for each was their ebb and flow of following God and how God always provides people in your life that are there to pour into you. Several students shared a time when attending a church or youth week long retreat or camp was a turning point for them. They described how God told them He would always be there for them. Each senior has impacted and shared with others their love of Jesus and mentored other students as God has directed them on their unique journey.
Some of their future plans include: Florida State University, Seminole State College, Santa Fe College, University of Florida, University of North Florida and the University of Central Florida. Their majors will include: Criminal Justice, Law, Business and Business Administration, Architecture, Marketing, Health Science, and Elementary Education.
Several of the honorees shared a favorite scripture which included:
2 Corinthians 12:9
2 Corinthians 15:17
All honorees stressed the importance of a relationship with Jesus rather than simply doing the religious “things” they were taught. They all shared the importance of sharing a genuine faith with others and always being a strong example of the love of Christ.
All honorees received a medallion for graduation, a certificate and a $100 scholarship for their future plans. Congratulations to each honored graduate and their families.
Seminole County Public Schools and Christians In Public Education are proud to have these fine seniors representing their high schools. And we are proud to know that the future is so bright as we look ahead!
Ms. Rebekah Richey opened the program with a warm welcome and prayer. Ms. Nan Parker, one of CIPE’s founders, shared that each of these award-winning seniors is acting as a missionary within our schools. Each has answered the call of God in Isaiah 6:8 where the Lord asks “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” Each senior has answered “Here I am. Send me!” Each senior is asking to help expand his/her territory like Jabez in 1 Chronicles 4:10 where Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request. Each senior is pouring into others and discipling other students in their schools.
A special thank you to Mr. Greg Larson, our Seminole County FCA representative. He has obviously made a significant impact on these young ladies and gentlemen as they shared in their remarks. Mr. Larson challenged the graduates to remember to never let your calling outgrow your character and to never let your calling outgrow your community. He referenced Psalm 78:72 where “David shepherded them with integrity of heart” and how important integrity is in our lives today. It can be challenging but God provides the gift of life.
Greg helped make it possible for Mrs. Gracia Miller, founding member of CIPE, to reach all the student groups in our high schools. She spent several hours as she visited each school early in the morning, during lunch, or after school to work with the students as they selected their representatives. What dedication!
We had the joy of being led in praise and worship by Molly Hicks and Scott Kinkead from the Central Florida Community Arts Choir. They shared two beautiful hymns with the group and got everyone up and singing along. The music was amazing! Thank you to Molly and Scott.
Thank you also to Community United Methodist Church for use of the beautiful facility and especially Mrs. Mary Ann Morris for coordinating all of the technical pierces. Thank you to Mrs. Karen Seddon from Christian Educators Association International for guiding us as we hosted our HTG event.
Thank you to Mrs. Karen Hernandez, FCA Huddle Coach from Hagerty HS and Mrs. Angela-Mia Kilmer, FCA Huddle Coach from Oviedo HS for praying for the graduates and Miss Carissa Curran, current teacher and CIPE team member for the beautiful Benediction. Thank you to the CIPE leadership team for working hard to make this event happen. And thank you to God for this event and these Christ-loving seniors!