Graduation ’20 – ’21 Highlights
On May 21st, 2021, FCS held our forty-third commencement ceremony celebrating the graduating senior class.
I would like to extend appreciation to the teachers and administrators who have made Florence Christian a place where us students can receive a quality education while also learning from a biblical worldview, and even more than teaching, the relationships that you have formed with us and inspired us to pursue our dreams.
View Bryson Little’s Welcome Speech
“Good evening Pastor Monroe, Mr. Berry, deacons, faculty and administration, parents, and family. On behalf of the Class of 2021, I welcome you to tonight’s commencement ceremony. I know all of my classmates are very grateful for your presence as we close one chapter of our lives and begin another. Tonight is a culmination not only of many years of hard work by students, but also of many years of sacrifice by parents. We could not have gotten this far without you, and we say thank you. Additionally, on behalf of the class, I would like to extend appreciation to the teachers and administrators who have made Florence Christian a place where us students can receive a quality education while also learning from a biblical worldview, and even more than teaching, the relationships that you have formed with us and inspired us to pursue our dreams. We cannot thank you enough. Our class has endured more hardship than most graduating classes. Since the end of our junior year, we have endured the effects and challenges of learning during the pandemic. It hasn’t always been easy and there have been several bumps along the road, but we made it! We’re here, and all of you- my classmates- should feel very proud of your accomplishment and everything you have had to overcome. For everyone in the audience tonight, hopefully this ceremony serves as a glimmer of hope and normalcy and as the light at the end of a long, dark tunnel. This moment has been a long time coming, and to my classmates- now is your time to shine! Thank you all again and remember that ultimately none of this would be possible without the help of our Almighty God.”
Graduate and Valedictorian of the class of 2021 Grace Owens spoke of her wonderful experiences at Florence Christian and reminded her classmates who deserves the glory for their future accomplishments.
View Grace Owen’s Valedictorian Speech
“Good evening Pastor Monroe, Mr. Berry, faculty and staff, family and friends, and last but certainly not least, the Florence Christian School Class of 2021. Words cannot describe how honored I am to have the opportunity to speak to you on this special night. I would like to begin by expressing great gratitude to the many individuals who have played key roles in the success of tonight’s graduates. First and foremost, tonight we thank our Savior Jesus Christ above all. We thank Him for guiding our steps and directing our path, for the ability to achieve great things, and for giving our lives meaning and purpose. Thank you, Pastor Monroe and Mr. Berry for your steadfast commitment to an academic institution that is focused not only on the educational enrichment, but also the spiritual growth of its students. Thank you for your leadership during these trying times and for the opportunities you have presented our class after such a difficult, uncertain year.
To our Florence Christian School teachers, we are ever so grateful for the impact you have had upon our lives. The teachers of Florence Christian School possess a passion for educating, a tremendous love for Christ, and a heart for their students. For example, I think of Mrs. Bohler, whose funny, sincere spirit made high school English class one of our favorite memories, and we cannot thank her enough for the amount of college recommendation letters she managed to write! I also think of Mrs. Miles who was a phenomenal Spanish teacher and always kept her students smiling; or Mrs. Stone who listened to and remembered each of our prayer requests while constantly encouraging and supporting us. We will also never forget the many words of wisdom and life lessons which Mr. Miles offered us on a daily basis. These are only a few examples of the Christlike role models at Florence Christian School. Teachers, you have helped pave our road to success. Please know just how much we love and appreciate each of you.
To our family members, you are our rock, our biggest cheerleaders, our inspiration, and our heroes. We love you and are thankful for all you have done to ensure we walk across this stage tonight. We understand the sacrifices you have made in allowing us the opportunity to receive a Christian education. I would like to say thank you to my dad for always being my number one fan and for constantly reminding me to “eat the elephant one bite at a time” if I ever became overwhelmed. Thank you, Mom, for being my prayer warrior and my constant support system. Also, thank you to my little sister and best friend, Caroline, for always making me laugh and cheering me on.
Finally, to the Class of 2021, congratulations on this exceptional accomplishment and your outstanding hard work. This is a bitter-sweet moment, as we close this chapter of our lives and go our separate ways. I am beyond grateful to have experienced this journey with such special classmates. Before we embark on a new journey, I would like to take a moment to share some of the most valuable lessons high school has taught me. First, high school has taught me that success is not always defined by recognition or status, but rather by personal growth and the tireless effort which it demands. Success is not how far you go, but how far you have come. Also, you must understand encountering obstacles and failures is inevitable as you pursue your hopes and dreams. Winston Churchill wisely once said “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” Second, high school has taught me that God’s plan for our lives is perfect, and the Lord’s will is always worth pursuing. If ever you encounter a closed door, understand that this may be a blessing as well as an opportunity. An unknown author once wrote, “When God gives you a new beginning, it starts with an ending. Be thankful for the closed doors. They often guide us to the right one.” Lastly, high school has taught me that Christ should be glorified through each of my accomplishments. One of my favorite lyrics is the last line of Kari Jobe’s song “The Cause of Christ” which reads, “I pray it’s said about my life that I lived more to build your name than mine.” Class of 2021, I challenge you to make this your daily prayer and ensure that the world can see you are set apart because you are working to build a name far greater than your own. Allow your hard work and achievements to be a light for others to see Christ in you. When you succeed in your future endeavors, as I am confident you will, stay humble and remember who deserves the glory for your accomplishments. Always remember Matthew 5:16 which reads, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” In conclusion, I encourage you to utilize the lessons and values you have learned at Florence Christian School to achieve great things and make a profound impact on this world. Congratulations Class of 2021! Thank you!”