Entering a new chapter

May. 17, 2014 @ 02:18 PM

The hallway leading to the cafetorium in Crossroads Christian School was filled with tributes to the senior Class of 2014.

The tables stationed along the wall contained a tangible collection of memories for each one of the 16 graduates.

Every collection was different, but there were similar threads among them — family portraits, sports trophies, first-place blue ribbons, athletic jerseys and even artwork.

For many students in the graduating class, Crossroads had been their home since the school opened in 2005.

In her salutatorian speech during Saturday’s graduation, Harli Sams said she was thankful to God for having the opportunity to attend Crossroads.

“We are all like a big family,” she said. “I’m sad to say goodbye to this chapter of our lives.”

Sams received the Presidential Merit Scholarship from Vance-Granville Community College.

The graduates revisited fond memories from school during the video montage that included baby pictures of each senior.

Faculty and administrators dabbed tears from their eyes as the class sang “Forever Reign.”

When it came time to sing the line, “My heart will sing no other name, Jesus,” senior Reid Sudheimer closed his eyes and raised his right hand in reverence.

Valedictorian Nicole Wille challenged her classmates to use their privilege to bring about positive change in the world.

“We can be a spark for change in society today,” said Wille, who received the Liberty University Valedictorian Scholarship.

Pastor P.J. Preston, assistant principal of Liberty Christian Academy in Virginia, gave the commencement address.

He is a graduate of Virginia Polytechnic and State University, where he was a four-year letterman and three-year starter for the football team. He also holds a master’s degree from Longwood University in educational leadership, and he is scheduled to graduate this summer from Liberty University with a master’s degree in Christian Ministry.

Preston said this was just the beginning for all 16 seniors.

“I believe for many of you, this is a launching pad not a landing strip,” he said.

He reminded the graduates to live, above all else, for the glory of God.

The Crossroads Class of 2014 responded in unison: “Amen.”

Contact the writer at smansur@hendersondispatch.com.