Supporting Christian education in Suffolk

Published 7:56 pm Monday, January 28, 2013

After attending a Christian school for 13 years and having a great experience, I strongly support Christian education.

While it’s not for everybody, strong Christian schools are an important alternative to the public educational system, alongside non-religious private schools and the home school option. But sometimes, Christian schools can suffer from a lack of broad community and financial support, which can cause other festering problems and ultimately lead to closure.

With this background in mind, I was excited to hear about the event I attended at First Baptist Church on Wednesday. Its namesake school was holding an event to thank the church for its 25 years of support as it charted new territory in its life.

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The school is undergoing a major reorganization. Rather than being governed by a committee from one church, it now has a school board with members from four churches — Southside Baptist Church, Westminster Reformed Presbyterian Church and Open Door Church, in addition to First Baptist.

The involvement of all four churches will mean they are all available to help support the school in a variety of capacities — financial help, volunteers’ time, available facilities and resources, prayer and many more. Wider community investment will help the school grow and flourish, rather than just survive or, worse, close.

Love for the school was obvious at the church dinner, where a number of students and parents mingled with members from all four churches. Current and former students shared how their lives would not be the same without the school. A group of students sang and signed “Thank You for Giving to the Lord.”

The changes have implications that reach further than just the school, though. This new adventure is the latest in a series of projects that indicate more cooperation among the faith community in Suffolk. Others, such as the Impact Suffolk and the Coalition Against Poverty in Suffolk, also are helping Christians come together for the good of the community.

I am looking forward to seeing how the school is able to grow as a result of this partnership.