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6th Commissioning ArtworkOn June 7th, Bridge Academy Principal, Mrs. Tracy Cox, spoke to rising 6th graders, families, and friends in a commissioning ceremony. Similar to the commissioning of a newly built ship, the ceremony served as a way to acknowledge students' readiness to move forward into the Collegiate Academy with a sense of purpose.

Two recent graduates from the GCA Class of 2017 spoke to students during the commissioning ceremony. Morgan Ragsdale encouraged rising 6th graders to keep a larger perspective as they begin their Collegiate years. Sharing from his own experiences, Morgan went on to say successes and failures over the next few years will be empty without Jesus being the main focus of life; that with Jesus, those successes and failures will be worthwhile because they are part of a larger purpose. Alternatively, Morgan pointed out, without Jesus at the center of life, there will be emptiness even with great success.

Fellow Class of 2017 graduate Bailey Riddick likened students’ progression to the Collegiate Academy as an adventure and wisely reminded students that all adventurers need to be equipped! Bailey laid out a three-and-a-bonus step plan to help students succeed! Step One: Let God be first in your life and your foundation in everything you do; Lean on God in all you do and He will direct your steps. Step Two: Find leaders and teachers who will guide you and strengthen you both academically and spiritually. Bailey added, students will have no problem finding teachers in the Collegiate Academy waiting to help build them up and prepare them for the adventures ahead! Step Three: Be yourself and be a friend; Never let others dictate who you are or what you should be to “fit in.” Bailey’s bonus tip: Be a risk taker; try something new and step out in faith!

Principal Cox shared the class verse, Philippians 2:3, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves" and challenged students to remember we live in a selfish world but our Savior modeled humility in giving up his status and power as a deity and becoming man to serve each and every one of us! Principal Cox encouraged students to enter their next educational phase with this in mind and strive to imitate the humility of Christ in being selfless and caring toward one another.

Each student was presented with a plaque featuring original artwork created by art teacher Mrs. Cheryl Leader, inspired by the class verse. The ceremony concluded with students being joined by their families for a special prayer over the class.

Congratulations to the class of 2023! We are excited to watch you continue your walk with God at GCA!

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