At the beginning of each year, Stephanie Gates, Cascade Christian Academy’s (CCA) principal, chooses a verse from the Bible as a theme to set the tone for the new school year. This year’s verse is 1 Tim. 4:12: “Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith and your purity.”
To aid the students in learning the verse, Cheryl Gabel, CCA music teacher, set the words to music so during the week students of all grade levels can sing the theme verse. Once a week in his daily 8 a.m. intercom announcements, Greg Ringering, CCA PE teacher, asks the students to join him in reciting the verse in their classrooms.
1 Tim. 4:12 was given an even deeper meaning during CCA’s fall week of prayer in October. Guest speaker Craig Heinrich, director of Leoni Meadows Camp and Retreat Center in Northern California, based his daily chapel talks on the verse. Each day Heinrich told a story from his or a friend's personal life that honed in on each part of the verse. Between Heinrich’s stories and the elaborate science demonstrations (often with flames) by his assistant, Chris Pappas, the students were able to clearly understand what their mission is as Christians: to be good examples in all aspects of their lives.
Since week of prayer fell on the same week as Make a Difference Day, all CCA students were involved in various community service activities. The high school made their annual trip to nearby Camp Zanika to do general cleanup. The middle school students raked bark at a local park for the city of Wenatchee and did some cleaning at the Lighthouse Mission, a local ministry to help the homeless. Fifth-graders decorated Thanksgiving baskets for Serve Wenatchee Valley, while kindergarteners through fourth-graders delighted assisted living residents with their joyful singing.
In spite of the busy week and crazy schedule, CCA staff and students enjoyed the week during which the whole school could embrace the message of 1 Tim. 4:12.