To the parents, teachers, families, and everyone else here in rejoice and celebration of the graduating students of St. John's. It is my honor to share with all of you a moment of reflection, and a vision for the future of the Class of 2012.
When I first stepped through the doors of St. John's, I was a shy, fragile, and luckily an impressionable little girl. Mrs. Spike took me in under her wing and began to build me up as the person I am today. I don't know where I would be if she, or any of the other teachers I've had, hadn't reached out to me.
To this very day, my classmates and I have been surrounded in a Christ-centered education, nourished in God's word, and encouraged to share our talents with the people around us, no matter how ridiculous that talent may be. Due to St. John's welcoming nature, we all are able to be ourselves, and shine our light wherever we go. Even as we move on to high school, we must still maintain our undivided trust in Jesus.
What will be most memorable from my experience at St. John's is the extraordinary education I received. We covered hundreds of topics, conducted bunches of experiments, and watched tons of movies; but what we can all agree on is that the best times were when we would all get the teachers to pull away from our studies for "just a few minutes". We must have spent hours goofing off instead of learning the many aspects of Algebra 2. Most of all, if there's anything we pull away from what we learned this year; it is, "Be the Broccoli".
If anything, the people at St. John's have always been able to lend a helping hand. Whenever one of us needed a PB&J sandwich for lunch, Mrs. Fasshauer would gladly oblige. If one of us got hurt at recess, Mrs. Wheeler would be ready for us with a Band-Aid in one hand and an ice pack in the other. If any of us got sick in class, Mrs. Pesole would have your Mom of the phone for you in 10 seconds flat. If you were in need of a good dose of discipline, Mr. Markworth was always there for the job. Although not all of these things were good experiences, they all have set the standards for how we should be.
Once we walk out these doors, it is a new beginning. We are no longer middle school students. We are high schoolers. With this change, we must all become more responsible and must represent who we are, and where we come from. We must all let it be known that we are God's children and behave accordingly. We will be representing St. John's as a school and church, and what our former school stands for. Most importantly, we must stay strong in our faith despite judgment, temptation, and persecution from others.
Although St. John's has brought us all together as a class, it is allowing us to leave as a family. Many of my classmates and I have been here for most of our lives. Some of us can barely believe that our time here as students is over. I myself even wish we had a few more weeks together. On behalf of the entire Class of 2012, I will close by saying that as we leave here today, no longer 8th graders, but high school freshmen; that this is not goodbye.