Atlantic Christian School class of 2019
Atlantic Christian School held its 26th commencement exercises on Wednesday, June 5 in the school’s gymnasium in Egg Harbor Township.
The 28 graduates, in alphabetical order, are:
Lindsey Joy Ash
Spencer Robert Breunig
Elijah Nathaniel Chapman
Rachel Marie Colasuonno
Rachel Joy Cooney
Rudolf Andreas Dalinger
Rebekah Rose Darragh
Solomon Luke Griffith
Renyun “Roy” Hou
Theodore Alexander Housel
Zengzheng “Constantine” Jiang
Cole Tanner Johnson
Suhyun “Danny” Lee
Dongyong “Vivien” Lei
Emily Elisabeth Loeb
Ryan Francis Lomangino
Francis Wilson Mensah
Joshua Aaron Mizrahi
Jacob Paul O’Brien
Ayolola Janet Obehi Oguntuase
Mackenzie Joy Reilly
Rose Melanie Shaw
Imohimi Olugbenga Aiososa Unuigbe
Maya Noel Wahl
Caraline Ellen Winkel
Jia Wei “Julia” Wong
Yaoming “Erik” Yang
Atlantic Christian School 2019 salutatorian speech
To start, I would like to thank my parents for supporting me throughout my life. I would also like to thank all the teachers here at ACS, for providing a great example for what a life of faith should look like. I have learned so much from all of you and I am thankful for it. Everything that I have learned here at ACS during my 15-year enrollment will be with me no matter where I go. There are certain lessons, however, I would like to share with you today. If someone were to ask me what the most impactful of these lessons was, I would tell them that trusting God through all hardships helped me the most. During my freshman and sophomore years in high school, I was aimless. I had no idea what I wanted to do after I graduated and had no passion for anything. I thought I would maybe go to college for something academic, since I had good grades. But the more I thought of that option, the more I dreaded graduating from high school. In all honesty, I was really scared to move on with my life and I wished to stay in high school forever, as crazy as that sounds. However, God, in His goodness, had a plan for my life. He reignited my passion and love for art and opened doors for me to follow that path. He helped me finish my portfolio for college application, even though the time constraints were very tight and the work was difficult. It was only when I trusted in Him that I was able to meet the deadlines and able to pursue an undergraduate study in animation at Savannah College of Art and Design this fall.
Deuteronomy 31:8 says, “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Attending ACS helped me realize the true meaning of this verse. I do not have to fear anything that comes my way because God is always by my side wherever I go. Most of my classmates and I have been here since at least kindergarten and have experienced all that a Christian education at ACS has had to offer. It may have been a drag at times, and I am sure some of us may have wished to transfer somewhere else at one point or another. Despite this, I am still thankful for this education, for the teachers, and for this school. Without them, I would not be as confident as I am in my faith and as well equipped to go into the world.
I now would like to ask one thing of my classmates as we move on to another chapter in our lives. I ask that we would all keep true to the values of Christ and our faith that we have learned over all these years. While we may not be physically present at ACS, we can still remember the lessons and teachings we have learned and use them to help us in any situation. Each of us has spent different periods of time at ACS -- some long, some short -- but no matter the amount of time, each of us has learned something or was impacted by someone. Never forget what was learned at this school. Though the use may not be clear now, these lessons can be used as tools in the future. I hope we can look back on the memories we have made here in fondness and celebration, like our various proms, our senior trip, or anything involving a student named Imo. Thank you for all the great years at ACS and may you be blessed wherever God has you end up in life.
Atlantic Christian School 2019 valedictorian speech
Good evening parents, family members, friends, teachers, staff, and the Class of 2019.
Relationships are at the foundation of our lives. They are what drive most of our decisions and choices. Jesus Christ always asks his disciples to follow him-- not merely “accept him,” not merely “believe in him,” not merely “worship him,” but to follow him. In order to be a Christ follower, you must be a relationship builder. Tonight, as we are about to graduate, I would like to challenge us to consider the relationships in our lives. You see, relationships are at the heart of life. Jesus himself was the ultimate relationship builder, as He knew that we could not save ourselves from our sin. So, He made a way by dying on the cross for that sin, and in doing that, he opened the door for sinners to have a relationship with Him. Furthermore, Jesus sought people out while here on earth. He was intentional in his relationship building, and sat with those who no one else deemed worthy. He reached out to the weak and healed the sick. And, Jesus built friendships with his disciples.
As we consider our high school experience, one must ask if we have followed Jesus’ example in building relationships. He made developing true and honest relationships with people His priority. In seeking to model our lives after Christ, I urge us all to realize that our strongest testimony to the power of Jesus in our lives will be the ability to serve and build relationships with others.
A relationship is often more quickly destroyed than built. Building a relationship means stepping out of your box and exposing your feelings. Just speaking words of kindness or reiterating a Bible verse is useless if you are not truly living it out in everyday life. Only by mutual sharing will others feel our love and a genuineness about our intentions will be conveyed to them. Anything else is just lip service and meaningless.
So tonight, I would like to thank those in my life who have demonstrated to me what it means to be a relationship builder. Tonight, I want to honor you…because you have made a difference in my life, and in the lives of many students here at ACS. I would first like to thank Miss Stonelake and Mr. Genter. Both of you take interest in your students’ lives, which sets you apart as teachers and as mentors. You have both continually encouraged me, and I would like to thank you for that. Next, I would like to thank Mr. Bohs, the world’s greatest substitute teacher, for advising and guiding me through many things over these past four years. Thank you for always lending me a listening ear. Mr. Bohs, I highly value our friendship. Lastly, I would like to thank the teacher who has impacted me the most over the course of these four years, and that is Mrs. Spiker. Mrs. Spiker, you have shown me the perfect example of the type of teacher that I want to become. You have classroom management skills like no other, and you are able to balance the relationship between teacher and friend impeccably. You unfailingly give of your time to teach and build bonds with your students and you have changed my life forever. Thank you for everything you have done for me, I hope to become a teacher just like you.
I would also like to thank my family, as well as the Lomangino family for always being there for me and encouraging me in everything I do. My closest relationships are with the people in these two families. I would like to tell my brother, Jack, my sister, Kate, and of course… Ryan, that you are my best friends and that I love you. All three of you are my favorite people to be with. Ryan, there is no one quite like you and I am so thankful that God gave you to me. I also want to specifically thank my Mom and Dad, for supporting me in every aspect of my life. Dad, thank you for demonstrating to me patience, and for teaching me how to implement that in my daily life. You are a fun, loving, and gentle father. You give of yourself always, and you have been an example to me of exactly what a father and a husband should be like. You will always hold a special place in my heart, I love you. Mom, thank you for always giving me the best advice and for always leading me down the right path. You motivate me, never give up on me, and love me unconditionally. How lucky am I that I get to call my Mom one of my best friends and my biggest fan. Thank you… I love you. Lastly, I would like to thank my Grammy and Poppy, for always encouraging and praying for me and my future. Thank you for being a part of my life.
As we consider the future, we know that the Lord is completely in control. He desires to use each of us, with our gifts and talents, in unique ways. Often graduation speeches will end with thoughts about leadership. However, tonight, I want to end with the idea of being a follower, a follower of Jesus, the ultimate relationship builder, who asks that we give our lives and our futures to Him.
Congratulations Class of 2019!