Many of us have had people over for worship to bring in the Sabbath. However, have you ever had worship and communion at your house with 300 of your friends? Troy Patzer, Upper Columbia Academy principal, welcomed the entire student body, staff, family, and community members to his front yard. It was a spiritual beginning to the school year.
The setting was perfect as the sun set over the wheat fields, where a cross had been erected on a nearby hill. Sid Hardy, history and Bible teacher, talked about communion and what it means to partake in the ceremony. When it came time for the foot washing UCA staff, as well as student leaders spread out across the lawn to wash feet and pray with students. It was not just another communion for many, but a chance for a fresh start and a recommitment in their relationship with Christ.
Sandwiched in between the communion services was a message from Keith Carter based on UCA’s spiritual theme this year, Soul Survivor. Carter talked about how we are survivors of the last days when the devil is trying his hardest to bring us down. Through every little crack in our defenses, the devil sneaks through. He is obsessed with making us lose everything.
The spiritual emphasis concluded with a tradition UCA started three years ago in giving each new student a Bible. “While we are proud of our great academics, music, and gymnastics as well as our other programs, nothing is more important than the spiritual atmosphere at UCA,” says Patzer. “That is why we want to start the year off with this spiritual focus and pray that it carries us through the year.”