South Christian High School first opened in 1954 with just over 100 students enrolled. Now, we can proudly say we are welcoming our third generation of students to our school. We are proud of our students – past, present and future. We welcome you to connect with fellow South Christian Alumni through reunions, publications, and social media.
South Christian Alumni Information Request
South Christian High School first opened in 1954 with just over 100 students enrolled. Now, we can proudly say we are welcoming our third generation of students to our school. We are proud of our students – past, present, and future. We welcome you to connect with fellow South Christian Alumni through reunions, publications, and social media.
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Class of ‘17
Each change in my plans was a challenge, but God was and is always there along the way.
Life isn’t always what we plan, but it is always what God plans. My journey of shifting plans actually started when I visited Nigeria for the first time when I was twelve. One evening on that trip, I took a walk, and one of my new friends asked, “Why don’t you stay longer and teach at the school?” I laughed, because I was twelve years old, but a voice in my head said, “You will live here someday.”
It continued to be a dream of mine to move to Nigeria, but it stayed just that, a dream. It always felt just out of reach. I continued with my schooling and traveled back to Nigeria almost once a year. I struggled to pick a college and a major but finally decided on Elementary Education.
In my junior year of college, I learned that my university had a program for International Student Teaching. My dream started to emerge when I was given an option for a placement at an International Christian school in Nigeria called Hillcrest School. I thought to myself, “What a great opportunity God has placed in my life!” But, it wasn’t the plan. My university denied my application due to safety concerns in Nigeria. I appealed for months because I was sure that this was God’s plan for me. It wasn’t.
While I was student teaching my senior year of college, I decided to apply directly to Hillcrest School for a teaching position. They hired me as a teacher, with no grade specified at the time. This was God’s plan, my dream was alive again.
Two months later, my student teaching was cut short due to COVID-19 shut-downs. I watched as embassies closed down, flights were canceled, and international borders became more restricted. My plans seemed to be changing once again.
I had a virtual college graduation in May. I waited throughout the summer to put my plans in place. In August, I was faced with a new challenge when I was told that I would begin international virtual teaching.
In October, a single embassy opened in Atlanta, and I was able to apply for a Visa. Life moved quickly after that. I received my Visa in the mail on a Friday, and by Monday, I was on a flight to Nigeria.
Arriving in Nigeria brought new changes: new country, new culture, new job, and more. Our school transitioned from all online to a partially in-person teaching model. I have been teaching middle school Social Studies at Hillcrest School.
Each change in my plans was a challenge, but God was and is always there along the way. He places people and experiences in our lives that make overcoming the challenges possible. I could not have made it to where I am now without the preparation that came from my schooling and experiences. I also could not have made it without the people around me either: those who support me, my family, and especially my coworkers now. Life isn’t always what we plan, but it is always what God plans.
Class of ‘82
History has shown that bad things will happen and our response as Christians is to continue to hold fast to the truth that God’s purpose will prevail.
My first introduction to Covid-19 was on our cruise to the Virgin Islands in late February. We were scheduled to dock at St Lucia, but instead of arriving in port, the ship continued sailing. We later found out that a crew member had become sick and had been exposed to the Coronavirus before coming aboard. We had heard of Coronavirus and those quarantined to ships in other parts of the world, but this hit home really fast as the reality sunk in that we could be in that same situation. Later in the day, a med-boat and crew wearing full hazmat suits boarded our ship to get a test sample that later proved negative. We thought we had dodged a bullet, continued our vacation and returned home on March 2, 2020.
A week later, we all were requested to social distance due to Covid-19. On March 23, we were told we could no longer work, play, or engage with those outside our immediate household by executive order. Only those deemed essential could continue operating. Confidence was replaced by confusion and uncertainty. The day we had to lay off our employees at Everett’s Landscape Management, Inc. was a tough one. Listening to my brother tell 100+ families and individuals that we no longer had the means to provide work for them was one of the hardest days of my life. I remember coming home and just falling into Todd’s arms and crying. The order meant we couldn’t hold our new grandson and five other grandchildren! The struggles since that day are repeat stories of every business owner and grandparent out there. Our hearts hurt for those affected, for families suffering loss, financial struggles with those fighting for unemployment, watching dreams of businesses slip away and not being able to see those we love!
Then the blessings began to show themselves. People were speaking out about God’s presence in their lives, how families were spending time together and enjoying it, how people were helping those in need and supporting those who were on the front lines exposing themselves to danger each and every day. While the media fed us fear, God’s word continued to give us hope. History has shown that bad things will happen and our response as Christians is to continue to hold fast to the truth that God’s purpose will prevail.
We were able to open our business back up on April 24. Customers flooded in that very afternoon! Every single employee was excited and supportive of coming back to work. Since then, they have continued to work six days a week to get us back on track. We are so proud to be partnering with such great people!
We did not social distance after a while with our family and grandkids. We zoomed and texted, called and distanced for a period, but then we kind of determined our tribe and decided that we all need each other more than we need distancing for our health and wellbeing. There is an emotional strength that we found in love of God and family that outweighs any virus that can threaten our physical health.
As things have opened up, there are families that were once busy every night of the week, second guessing if that’s the life they want to go back to. They’ve cut the cord and see how important just being with family is. Family has always been a huge part of our lives. This has been underscored through the shutdown as our greatest blessing.
Class of ‘88
Great memories of friends and teachers and sports and shenanigans. Our class (’88) was a unique one.
So I’ll be turning 50 in the spring. These large signposts in our lives lend themselves naturally to taking stock of one’s life, both looking in the rearview mirror, as well as looking forward to what the future could potentially hold. I am also writing this essay on a Saturday afternoon immediately following the funeral of John Verstraete, who many will remember as their math teacher at South. John was a man with his own beautiful story that forces you to stop, reflect, and take stock of where your life stands. His passing naturally reminds me of my own father’s passing, where the two of them were a kindred spirit reflecting Christ’s love for his people.
So as I look back to my childhood attending BCCS, I have fond memories of many teachers including Judy Henson’s lessons in questioning the status quo. I’ll also never forget taking the leap to ask my crush to skate with me, only to have my heart broken after the first lap together with her words of ‘oh, there’s Eddy. See you later.’ That one still hurts a little.
Then came South Christian starting in the 10th grade. Great memories of friends and teachers and sports and shenanigans. Our class (’88) was a unique one. If you look at old yearbook photos, you will see all of us acting refreshingly dorky with TMNT dress up day and other wonderfully ridiculous activities. I still have close relationships with several SCHS grads, but I also have deep fondness for all the folks I went to school with and I still mourn the loss of several of those friends who heard Christ’s call home.
I clearly remember Mr. Pasma teaching a lesson in ‘rotational moment of inertia’ by having a student sit on a bar stool with a spinning seat. He would give them a spin with their legs outstretched and then ask them to pull their legs in. We all watched in amazement as the student flew off the chair and crashed to the floor. (Not sure that demonstration is allowed anymore.) Turns out knowledge of physics can be important in life.
As far as sports, our class had the best basketball team South has ever had. This point is not up for discussion.
As for shenanigans, maybe those stories are better left untold (although I do still get the occasional question about how the cucumber cheer came to be).
Like many, I graduated from South and went on to college, got a job, got married, and had a lot of kids. There have also been great stories of living in China for 3 years, having exchange students live with us for years, and recently having an Eritrean refugee join our family.
Through it all, I can honestly say that our God is good. And I’m honestly looking forward to what God has in store for the next half of my life and the future of yours. Godspeed to everyone.