Archive for Western Michigan Christian School

WARRIOR “Well Done” Award Fall 2019

Awards and Acknowledgements in the WMC Community

Kelly Wierenga

WMC Faculty member Kelly Wierenga received her Masters in Marine and Coastal Processes from Nova Southeastern University in May 2019.  With this knowledge, this fall she taught Oceanography 101 at WMC as an elective course for high schoolers. Congrats Ms. Wierenga! 
Ms. Wierenga is one of the science teachers at WMC.  She grew up near Philadelphia, PA, but loves living along the lakeshore! She earned a B.S. in Integrated Science Education at Calvin College and has been teaching since 2011.  “While I enjoy all areas of science I particularly love marine biology. The world we live in is a fascinating place and I take pleasure in guiding students as we journey deeper into understanding and learning about it together,” explains Ms. Wierenga.  It comes as no surprise that her favorite scripture is: “Mightier than the waves of the sea is His love for you.”  -Psalms 93:4 and “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” -Hebrews 6:19.

Kelly Wierenga received her Masters in Marine and Coastal Processes from Nova Southeastern University in May 2019. 
WMC faculty member Haley Langejans was the recipient of a $250 Teacher mini-grant from the Youth Advisory Council of the Community Foundation for Muskegon County.

WMC faculty member Haley Langejans was the recipient of a $250 Teacher mini-grant from the Youth Advisory Council of the Community Foundation for Muskegon County.  She will use it toward her Warrior Women lunch group. Congrats Ms. Langejans! 

Warrior Women is a lunchtime based female group that started at Western Michigan Christian in 2018-19. The group is still new and evolving, but its main purpose is to provide a supportive environment for female students to be able to form relationships and bond over shared experiences.

Lunch group meets at least twice a month and anyone is welcome to join. Warrior Women’s time together includes discussions on set topics, based on Christian faith, that are chosen by the girls as important. Time together is seen as confidential, as some topics are more private, and is an opportunity when they all get to show each other what it means to be a Christian woman in today’s world.

“This group of young women has been so open about sharing and discussing sometimes difficult topics; but in doing so, it has become so apparent to us all just how alike we are. This avenue for support is so crucial for these young women, especially during a time in life when it is easy to feel alone,” shares Langejans.

New this year: Warrior Women small group activities will benefit the school i.e. creating positive message boards, decorating lockers for holidays, making cookies to share.

WMC Benefit: WMC strives to be more than just a school, but a place where students feel safe, heard and loved. Warrior Women is a direct representation of this goal. It is an outlet for our young women to be able to grow together, teach each other, and express themselves in a positive, faith-based space.

Ms. Langejans is an Educational Support Services (ESS) Accommodations Coordinator at WMC for both MS and HS students. She is a 2010 graduate of our Western Michigan Christian, and from here went on to earn a degree in Communications from Grand Valley State University. “I was blessed to be home for the last year and a half of my daughter’s life, joyfully watching her grow, but now feel so happy to be starting a career back in the Christian school atmosphere! It is such a gift to be able to work in an environment where my faith can be expressed openly in all aspects,” explains Ms. Langejans.

Her favorite verse is found in Psalms 119:50, “My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life.” 

We’re grateful for the stellar staff at WMC!

Do you want to nominate a WMC staff member, volunteer, alumnus, supporter or student for the WARRIOR “Well Done” Awards? We welcome nominations via email.

The DIBS! and B2 Retail Fundraising Update for Oct/Nov 2019

DIBS! On Resale

  • Total sales in Oct/Nov 2019 were $37,724, of which a $20,324 donation went to West Michigan Christian Schools!
  • Shop DIBS! for everything Christmas including decor, dishes, mugs, knick-knacks, candles, silk floral arrangements, “ugly” or lovely Christmas sweaters, stockings, great ideas for stocking stuffers, and more.
  • Help Wanted for Dec 21 and 28th and January 4th. Get DOUBLE the service HOURS for these dates! First come first served so EMAIL DIBS TODAY
  • CASH for Your CLASS: Congratulations to Summer Lile (pictured below) who won December’s CASH for your Class from DIBS! On Resale along with and FCS’s Carolina Heredia! 

DIBS! On Resale is located at 1279 East Apple Avenue in Muskegon Michigan.

Click here to learn more about DIBS! On Resale, WMCS’s very own re-sale store, and our partnership!

B2 Outlet Store Muskegon

  • Total funds raised for WMCS from October + November sales were $9,828.42!
  • B2 Muskegon was the second-highest 4-day grand opening in the history of B2!
  • Holiday Specials: Melissa and Doug Toys 25% off until the end of the month
  • B2 is doing a $1,000 shopping spree and a $100 gift card to one winner
    • To enter simply stop in our Muskegon store and fill out an entry form! How would YOU spend that money?
  • B2 Blessings! B2 Outlet Stores is blessing people in every community!
Watch to see how B2 gives back…Santa BELIEVES! Praise God! 🙂
  • WMCS School Tally: As of December 1st, this is the school tally for total sales. WMC is in the lead! GO, WARRIORS! Help us win the $250 gift card at the end of the school year by telling the B2 cashier you support “WMC” when you check out!
  1. WMC – $2801.19
  2. Muskegon – $1985.13
  3. Grand Haven – $1690.99
  4. New Era – $1314.45
  5. Fremont – $787.08

Keep shopping! 😄 Every time you shop at the Muskegon store you are helping your community. Spread the word to your friends too!

B2’s mission is about restoring hope, inspiring vision and empowering change both locally and internationally! Every dollar spent is giving back with every purchase made.

Join B2 in giving back to West Michigan Christian Schools and global missions, simply by shopping there!

B2 Muskegon is located at 1638 Apple Avenue in Muskegon, Michigan 49442.

Click here to learn more about the partnership between West Michigan Christian Schools and B2!

Western Michigan Christian High School and Middle School is a member of West Michigan Christian Schools (WMCS), a collaborative system of five schools throughout the Lakeshore region of Western Michigan, that work under a “Better Together” philosophy, offering a top-quality PK-12 Christian Education experience and a full scope of academic and extracurricular programs. Please click here to contact WMCS.

Christ-Centered Spiritual Development at WMC

Fall/Winter 2019 Wrap Up

ABC: Authentic Biblical Community

The spiritual development theme for the 2019-2020 year is ABC, Authentic Biblical Community. What that means for the students attending WMC is putting others over self. This can be applicable in the classroom by helping others when they miss a class or writing an encouraging note to lift up one’s spirits, and sharing prayer requests and prayers.

It’s the idea that no man is an island and you never have to walk alone. It’s a shared responsibility to live for Christ and demonstrate love for others since He first loved us. We see this in chapels, Project Grace, Warrior Weekend, theatrical performances, the lunchroom, and anywhere in between. It’s simply living out our calling to be united by the Spirit of Christ by being the body of Christ.

Western Michigan Christian High School and Middle School students convene at chapel on day one of school for the 2019-2020 school year. Principal Samuel Greer delivers a sermon-like call to these students to encourage them to “Rise Up” to being an “Authentic Biblical Community.” This word, from Pastor Greer, was followed by two days of community service where students served a host of local nonprofit organizations giving of themselves and forgoing their own “personal joys” to put others first.

First Days of School: August 26-27, 2019

The first-day back-to-school at WMC looks quite different from most middle and high schools. Our students show up in scruffy clothes ready to get to work! Days of service have long been part of the WMC culture.

From left, Juniors Aurora Iversen and Katelyn Morris painting.

This year our juniors and seniors worked with Community Encompass and AmeriCorps. One hundred-thirty high school students rode in chartered busses to Muskegon to work on sprucing up some group homes and another group cleared a parking lot of weeds and junk. The goal of performing these acts of service was to display Christian principles and attributes, portraying our call to an “act of faith.” 

From left, Juniors Olivia Hendrie, Alisha Leffring and Taylor Folkema lend a hand with some yard work.

The Bible says, “Faith without works is dead” (James 2:20). Our school lives out a mission to show that we as Christians need to serve others, as well as serving God. 


WMC Juniors Tyler Gould and Caleb Kozal help with yard work.

Back on campus, middle schoolers, in a demonstrative effort to help build an understanding of authentic biblical community, worked together in small groups. 

Separated by grade, they went ahead and created coloring books for children who are categorized as ESL (meaning English is their second language) in the foster system with Bethany Christian Services. Some made “grocery bags” for families, which consisted of basic living necessities such as hygiene kits, and soaps, etc. The students worked very diligently to ensure the job got done. 

7th grader Paydon Jackson writing a positive message to be sent to foster children.

Freshman and sophomores stayed on campus working on various services projects that blessed organizations. There were multiple assembly stations that included making DIY cat toys for the Noah Project (WMC loves God’s creatures too), making DIY laundry soap for MOCAP, packing lunches for the Kids Food Basket, creating care packages for folks in assisted living at Christian Haven Home, and even some “home improvement” projects around the WMC campus for Mr. Hain.

On day two all middle and high school students enjoyed some team-building activities led by Camp Roger out on the soccer field.  This was an opportunity for students to work together, communicate, problem-solve in groups in order to complete a variety of challenging activities.

From left, Kevin Jackson and Daniel Mott prepare care packages for MOCAP.
From left, Kim Nguyen, Taylor Pham and Madison Brinkert plank-walking.

This day of service and team building ended with the very intentional reading of Acts 2: 42-47 and discussion about what Authentic Biblical Community looked like in the New Testament and what it would look like at WMC today.

42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

ACTS 2:42-47
Senior Dagen Bayes prepares for the parachute drop.
From left, Claudia Kingma, Sawyer Arkema, Carson VanHekken and Jaden Binnendyk discuss their parachute drop.
from left, Kaylynn Pearce, David Clausing and Kendal Young discuss in small groups.
From left, Thien Bui, Jocelyn Kruithoff and Anh Lan Nguyen work on puzzle.

Project Grace: December 2-16, 2019

Project Grace started many years ago by Principal Pastor Greer as a way for WMC to bless and support local families during the time of Christmas.  This effort includes a variety of opportunities for students to raise funds. In fact, everyone gets very creative! You’ll hear and see this all over town as they work together for this worthy cause. Student classes (everyone’s 2nd hour) compete against each other and the winning group gets the blessing of being able to hand-deliver the gifts.

Parents and the WMC community have the opportunity to join in on this giving spirit at the Project Grace Boys Varsity Basketball Game on Monday, December 16 where donations are encouraged!

“We are passionate about this work. It’s not only important to us as students through Project Grace but these are real people in the community where we live. It’s truly the best use of time and energy and I am proud to be a part of it,” explains Senior Chloe Mitchell. 

Complete Project Grace coverage will be featured in the next Prayer Warrior newsletter.

You’re Invited to a WMC Chapel!

On Tuesday, December 10 we have Alan Seaborn as a speaker at our High School Chapel.  Alan works at Winning at Home in Zeeland. All WMC parents are invited to attend this chapel. 

WMC’s Academic Excellence Fall Round-Up

Fall 2010 Wrap Up

It’s a lot. So many students, grades, subjects, classes, days, hours…you get the gist. So we decided to stop by a few classrooms each trimester to give you a little peek at what goes on academically at WMC.

But first, did you know that WMC is at the top in the area in standardized test scores? That’s a fact! For the past three years, we have had the best reported SAT composite score in Muskegon County. Our students go on to the best colleges and universities, including the University of Michigan, Penn State, other Big Ten schools, Calvin University, Hope College, and many more. Although SAT composite scores for private schools are not released, the Western Michigan Christian High School SAT composite for 2019 is 1129 and is the 31st best-reported score in the state. Click here for a searchable database of all public schools in Michigan.

Did you know that WMC is at the top in the area in standardized test scores? That’s a fact!

Dr. Kristy Taylor, WMC Director of Curriculum and Instruction, is very pleased with this year’s score, “We are so excited for our staff and students who work hard day in and day out. In the last five years, we have really been focusing on curriculum development through our late starts and through our K-12 alignment in the WMCS collaborative, and the progress we’ve made is now showing in our test scores. A huge thank you goes out to our teachers who work tirelessly to ensure that each and every student in our building is being educated with excellence.

In the last five years, we have really been focusing on curriculum development through our late starts and through our K-12 alignment in the WMCS collaborative, and the progress we’ve made is now showing in our test scores.

STEM

This year some WMC high school and middle school students took an Introduction to STEM course taught by Mark Hill. They were introduced to what STEM is as well as certain engineering careers. 

STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering, and mathematics — in an interdisciplinary and applied approach.

STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — in an interdisciplinary and applied approach.

After researching student-selected careers, students had the opportunity to apply and work with different engineering concepts. Students developed and built Rube Goldberg devices, designed, engineered and built usable furniture out of cardboard and glue, and built and coded autonomous cars that could run through an obstacle course. The reason for a course such as this is for students to begin to understand the design process and search out possible careers in STEM-related fields and local trades. Students understood, in a course such as this, that “failure” leads to opportunities for success and that many questions we have lead to multiple answers.

One of the Rube Goldberg devices that students designed and built.


“At Orchard View Middle School, I previously taught automation and robotics to 7th graders and design and modeling to 8th graders through PLTW (Project Lead the Way),” shared Mr. Hill. 

Students using Python software to program Dexter robots to travel autonomously through a simple maze.

If you would like to get involved with the STEM program at WMC feel free to email Mr. Hill.

SCIENCE FAIR

This fall, Kelly Wierenga’s “Physical Science A” students chose a scientific question to research and test. These projects related to real-world issues such as water pollution, energy efficiency, and human health. Student presentations were judged by members of the community including WMC parents as well as representatives from libraries, Blandford Nature Center, and the MI Department of Environmental Quality. 

Two projects tied for 1st place including Staci Krieger’s “Doodling…Distracting or Not Distracting?” and “Goldfish and Water Pollution” by Emily Matz, Michaela Faith, and Meralee Detar.

WMC students voted for their favorite and the project “Water Quality Experiment” by Sophie Hendrie and Isabel Post won the Popular Vote award.

One of Ms. Wierenga’s students created this video montage of all the Science Fair submissions.

CIVICS & CURRENT EVENTS

Every class David Miedema teaches, at some point, will include a student debate. It’s a two-pronged approach; students get to evaluate important issues from multiple perspectives and consider various angles before drawing conclusions. They also benefit from practicing some public speaking and active listening.

In today’s political climate, there can be a lot of hostility and animosity on certain issues. Instead, in Mr. Miedema’s class, students practice speaking and listening with grace, respect, and love while still seeking to boldly live out God’s truth.

“Kids love these debates because they center on controversial issues ranging from immigration, sexuality, and gun rights to more local concerns like school chapel and service hours. It involves a lot of emotion and allows students to share ideas and ask questions about issues that actually matter to them in a controlled, respectful setting,” explains Mr. Miedema. 

WMC Award-Winning Arts Program

FALL 2019 Wrap-Up for WMC’s Arts Program

For current updates/photos/videos on the WMC Music Department, FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK.

MSU Choral Leadership Day

CAPTION: (back row) Silas Jeltema, Daniel Plaisier, David Clausing, (front row) Alyssa Eekhoff, Esther Hartley, Trinity Nelson, and Jamel Williams

On September 24, seven members of the WMC Chamber Choir headed to East Lansing to participate in MSU’s Choral Leadership Workshop.  Only a select number of schools were invited to join in this event, and it was truly an assembly of the best high school singers in the state. Our students worked with MSU’s vocal music professors to learn seven full-length pieces of music, which they then presented in concert at the conclusion of the day.  They also got to hear a special performance by MSU’s top choir, along with several graduate-level vocal soloists. The following students represented WMC: (back row) Silas Jeltema, Daniel Plaisier, David Clausing, (front row) Alyssa Eekhoff, Esther Hartley, Trinity Nelson, and Jamel Williams.


Fall Choral Workshop Concert

On Monday, November 11, WMC’s Vocal Music Department hosted a Choral Workshop Day for the 7th and 8th-grade choir students from FCS, GHC, and WMC.  Mrs. Becksvoort worked with the middle school students in a pre-concert clinic, reinforcing fundamentals of tone quality, projection, blend, and stage presence.  The middle school students were treated to a pizza dinner, courtesy of the Warrior Music Boosters! Following dinner, all the 7th through 12th-grade students gathered in the Orchard View Community Auditorium for a concert featuring the WMC Women’s Choir, Men’s Choir, and Chamber Choir, and wrapping up with three selections by the Mass (7-12) Choir.  

CAPTION: Mrs. B snaps a selfie with Chamber Choir students while preparing for the Fall Choral Workshop Concert.

It was awesome to sing the mass pieces that are so reflective of our faith…Especially with a wide age range declaring the story of the gospel, it makes it that much more powerful – Senior Sophie Hawke

“It was awesome to sing the mass pieces that are so reflective of our faith,” remarked Sophie Hawke, a senior member of the WMC Chamber Choir. “Especially with a wide age range declaring the story of the gospel, it makes it that much more powerful.”

“The sound of 160 students singing ‘Jesus Saves’ at the end of the concert was enough to bring resounding applause from the audience,” shared Choral Director, Kathryn Becksvoort. Glory! 🎶 

CAPTION: Mrs. B gets a selfie with the middle school students from GHC, WMC, and FCS during the clinic portion of the Fall Choral Workshop Day.

Regional Honors Choir

The Michigan State Vocal Music Association (MSVMA) coordinates an honors choir program each year.  There is a rigorous application and audition process in the early fall, and nine members of the WMC Vocal Music Department accepted that challenge.  While fewer than half of all applicants are accepted into the Regional Honors Choir, all nine WMC applicants were successful! These students will participate in an intense day of rehearsal and performance at Allendale High School on December 7, where they will audition for the State Honors Choir.  These nine students include David Clausing, Daniel Plaisier, Luke Moorhead, Jamel Williams, Belen Francis, Carlee Castle, Emma Visker, Esther Hartley, and Ashley Erdman. Congratulations to these fine singers! 


CAPTION: WMC Chamber Choir members accepted into the MSVMA Regional Honors Choir:
(Left to right. Back Row) David Clausing, Daniel Plaisier, Luke Moorhead, Jamel Williams, (Left to right. Front Row) Belen Francis, Carlee Castle, Emma Visker, Esther Hartley, and Ashley Erdman

Musical Theater Solo & Ensemble

On Saturday, November 23, the WMCHS Vocal Music Department participated in Musical Theater Solo & Ensemble, held in Hudsonville. 

Ashton Leffring and Jonathan Clausing perform a duet.

All ensembles and soloists from WMC received Division 1 ratings!

WMC Jazz Choir

Participants included the newly-formed WMC Jazz Choir (pictured above), Jessica Eenigenburg, Cate Garretson, Jonathan Clausing, Ashton Leffring, Emily Matz, Michaela Faith, Sydney Wagenmaker, Belen Francis, Emma Visker, and Ashley Erdman.


WMC Jazz Band Hosts an Instrument Petting Zoo

On November 15th the WMC Jazz Band performed at the Spring Lake District Library. The musicians treated everyone to some classic and recent Disney songs from Frozen, Monsters Inc., Toy Story, The Incredibles, and more! After the performance, kids enjoyed the Instrument Petting Zoo where they may try all kinds of different instruments.

Nick DeBone, WMC Band Director, who aims to introduce young children to the love of music early, hosted the event with the help of his talented WMC Jazz Band student musicians! “It’s rare that kids get to touch, feel and try out instruments, so this event allows for this fun experience.”

The event was FREE and open to the public and the Grand Haven Tribune reported on the event! Due to its success, Mr. DeBone will be hosting more like it in the future! 

Noah Francis works with a student at Spring Lake Library.
Sam Sipe introduces the xylophone to young students.
A’Nyah Greer explains the fine points of the saxophone.

Warrior Pep Band

For the first time in a decade, the Warrior Pep band marched in a parade formation onto the soccer field to pep tunes. This event took place on the Warrior Soccer Field during Warrior Weekend. 

Fall Play: Get Smart

The theatre program of Western Michigan Christian High School exists as a vehicle for practicing the values of self-discipline, hard work, goal setting, character strength, honesty, teamwork, and respect.  We intend to honor God in all that we do.

This year the fall play was Get Smart starring David Clausing (pictured right) as the highly intellectual yet bumbling spy!

from left to right  Margaret Antekeier 9th, David Clausing 12th, Jacelyn liter 10th, Ashly Erdman 11th, Trinity Nelson 12th.
(Left to right) Kaylynn Pearce 12th, Ella Buursman 12th, Belen Francis 10th, Jonathan Clausing 9th, Trinity Nelson 12th, Luke Hanes 12th, David Clausing 12th, Ashley Erdman, Benjamin Ferrier 10th, Michaiah Clarke 12th, Zoey Vanderstelt 10th, Jonathan Willams 9th, Ella Buursama, 12th Claire Doty, Jacelyn Liter 10th.

Jingle Bell Parade

The WMC Marching Band, led by Nick DeBone (pictured below with Kyle Kempster), participated in the Grand Haven “Jingle Bell Parade” this year on December 7, 2019.  Attendees sang along with these Warriors as they rung in the Christmas season!

WMC Marching Band at WMCS Feeder Schools

This year, the WMC Marching Band will visit the feeder schools. Dec 9-13th will be sending instrumental and vocal ensembles to share Christmas joy and promote the Collage. The WMC Music Boosters are offering FREE Christmas Collage tickets to all feeder school 8th graders.  This winter they march through the hallways decking the halls at GHC and MCS on Dec 11th. 

Christmas Collage 2019

You’re Invited!  Dec 17, 2019

We’re hard at work preparing for our 37th annual WMC Christmas Collage. 

What is the WMC Christmas Collage?

It’s an ensemble of our choirs (men’s, women’s and chamber) as well as our bands (jazz and concert) that come together for an evening of entertainment in the historic Frauenthal Theater in downtown Muskegon.

You don’t have to have students performing to come and enjoy! We welcome everyone and cordially invite you to come to celebrate the birth of Jesus while we all make a beautiful noise unto the Lord! 

You can buy your Christmas Collage tickets early in the WMC school office or at the door. Seating is first come first served.

The WMC Music Boosters are offering FREE Collage tickets to all feeder school 8th graders. Click here to learn more.

For current updates/photos/videos on the WMC Music Department, FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK.

5 Ways to Honor God with Your Christmas Giving

Do You Know How You Are Giving This Year? Don’t be Hasty…Planning is KEY!

The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty. —Proverbs 21:5 (ESV)

For many people, Christmas is the most financially stressful time of the year.

Gifts for friends and family, end-of-year charity campaigns, the cost of holiday traditions like special meals, decorations and Christmas cards—it can add up to a financial mess that follows you well into the new year.

You may find yourself wondering … is it really worth it? Is this how God meant for us to celebrate the birth of His Son—by spending until there’s nothing left?

While the Bible doesn’t specifically address holiday spending, it has plenty to say about being faithful with our finances. Here are five Biblical ideas to help you honor God with your budget this Christmas.

1. Have a budget.

Proverbs 21:5 says planning leads to abundance, but those who are “hasty” will come to poverty. Heading to the mall for Christmas shopping without a firm budget is a recipe for debt—something the Bible strongly warns against. Before you begin shopping, make a list of everyone who’s getting a gift and set a limit for each of those gifts. Then stick to it, and refuse to spend money you don’t have. If that means hiding your credit card for the season and only using cash, do it. Do whatever it takes to keep your Christmas spending from following you into next year.

2. Give to Christ first.

When Jesus was born, wise men came to offer gifts to the newborn baby, the Savior of the world. Today, we can’t literally give a gift to Jesus, but we can give to causes that are close to His heart. Jesus said, “as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me” (Matthew 25:40). When you make your gift list, don’t forget to give to Christ first. What can you do for “the least of these” this Christmas?

3. Keep things in perspective.

Are you stressed out about checking off your children’s or grandchildren’s lengthy Christmas lists? Wondering how you can afford to have the kind of holiday season you want? It might be time for a healthy dose of perspective.

Living in America around Christmastime can numb us to the realities outside our world of abundance and excess. Don’t lose sight of how fortunate we are. Most of the people in the world live off less than $10 a day. You can bet they aren’t stressing over Christmas lists; they’re likely focused on where their next meal will come from. In the United States, millions of people live below the poverty line. Many children have a less-than-joyful Christmas because their parents are absent, in jail or can’t afford presents. These are a few things to keep in mind when holiday stress creeps into your heart.

4. Check your motives.

“Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.” —Jesus (Matthew 6:1, ESV)

When Jesus taught about giving, He made it clear that motives matter. We should always be aware of our reasons for giving, but Christmas is a great time for a heart check in this area. Whether you’re giving gifts to family and friends or donating to a church or charity, ask yourself why you’re giving. Is it out of obligation? Pride? Keeping up with the Joneses? If your motives are less than pure, ask God to help you give for the right reasons; then ask Him to show you how to give in a way that honors Him.

5. Be an evangelistic giver.

How can you adjust your Christmas list to use it for God’s glory? This doesn’t necessarily mean giving everyone a Bible or a Christian book. What it means is finding ways to leverage your giving for God’s Kingdom.

Where should you start? Think about people in your life who don’t know Jesus or who may have wandered away from God. Then think about how you can build relationships with them over the holidays. Something as simple and inexpensive as a batch of cookies can be evangelistic if it gives you a chance to spend a few minutes with that neighbor you wave to over the fence but don’t know very well.

Whatever you decide to do, make an effort to give gifts that point people to Jesus Christ, the greatest gift this world has ever seen.

To give to Western Michigan Christian School CLICK HERE or email Scott Liggett.

SOURCE: https://billygraham.org/story/5-ways-to-honor-god-with-your-christmas-giving/

WMC’s International Thanksgiving

Flavors from Around the World

On Saturday, November 23, 2019, the WMC International Student Program (ISP) gathered at the home of one of our host families, Russ and Cindy Gabel, to celebrate the American Thanksgiving holiday.

The WMC ISP twist was the international flavor added to the event.

There were over 50 guests at the event with 5 American students and the rest host families, international student

Each student was asked to bring a food item from their country. There were Patatas Bravas, pasta, and Spanish Chorizo sausage and cheese, and a Spanish omelet from Spain, an egg roll, kimchi egg and candy from Korea, and spring rolls from Vietnam. These were all side dishes to the main course of turkey, ham, stuffing and mashed potatoes provided by the Gabel family. Students and host families totaled more than 50 giving thanks for our school, food, culture, each other, and the blessings we have. The group was joined by Man Ho, a WMC grad and current Calvin College student, pursuing a nursing degree and some friends.

Man Ho (a former WMC international student from Vietnam) graduated from WMC in 2019 and is a current Calvin student. All alums that continue education locally are invited back every year!

This year WMC has 28 students from China, Korea, South Africa, Spain, and Vietnam. Each month the ISP has a cultural activity that has so far included a camping trip and a Fall Festival. Students will celebrate Christmas later this month and there is a spring break trip planned to go to Washington D.C.

Kyle Kempster, Director of International Student Program, and Mar Rabes (Junior) and Carla Ibanez-Costa (Freshman) both from Spain.

Each student lives with an American host family that includes a monthly stipend to help cover transportation and food expenses. This is a great opportunity for families to share faith and culture as well as learning a new culture and developing long-lasting relationships.

Thanksgiving Bonfire:
(left to right) Gene Zhou (12th), Benjamin Sandoval 11th, Owen Varnardo (10th, WMC host family), Pablo Crespo Ballester (10th), Hugo Allende Campillo (10th), Marco Allende Campillo (11th), Hector Sanchez Alcon (10th).

CLICK HERE for more information on WMC’s International Student Program.

Interested in hosting an international student? Please contact Kyle Kempster.

Good Times! Positive and Uplifting News of the WMC Community

Warrior Celebrations, Additions, and Unions

Shout praises to the LORD! Our God is kind, and it is right and good to sing praises to him. Psalms 147:1

Birth Announcements

Sam (WMC grad 2011) and Elyse (Ray WMC grad 2012) Vos celebrated the birth of their baby boy, Jackson James Vos June 29, 2019.
Elliot (WMC grad 2010) and LaRissa (Byma WMC grad 2011) Vanderlaan celebrated the birth of their baby girl Anneke Grace Vanderlaan on Oct 12, 2019.
Nathan and Bailey (Mines, WMC grad 2014) Kolkema celebrate the birth of their baby girl Makena Rose on September 19, 2019.
Sue Dozeman (WMC front office “mom”) and her husband Mike welcomed a new grandson Carson James Fogelman into the world on December 1st, 2019.

Engagement Announcements

Shelby Lile (WMC grad 2016) and Kevin Mannes celebrated their engagement on November 6, 2019. Their wedding date is set for July 31, 2020.

Benjamin Landheer (WMC grad 2010) and Mallory Yonally celbrated their engagement November 9.
Elizabeth “Betsi” Brook (WMC grad 2014) and Ryan Farris celebrated their engagement. 
Logan Waller (WMC grad 2015) and Brandi Balzer celebrated their engagement on July 20, 2019.
Riley Arkema (WMC grad 2015) and Olivia Couch celebrated their engagement on June 12, 2019
Devin Eekhoff (WMC grad 2015) and Hannah Veldman celebrated their engagement on October 13, 2019.

Marriage Announcements

Alec Breit (WMC grad in 2013) and Gracie Snuffer (WMC grad in 2017) celebrated their wedding on August 16, 2019.
Lydia Goorman (WMC grad in 2013) and Jordan Moya celebrated their wedding on June 29, 2019.
Sam Goorman (WMC grad in 2016) and Allison Bergklint (WMC grad 2016) celebrated their wedding on July 27, 2019.
Mark Boersma (WMC grad 2013) and Anna Stafford celebrated their wedding on July 19, 2019.

Please share your good news with us – email scottliggett@wmchs.net 

Remembering Our WMC Warriors

“My body and mind may fail, but God is my strength and my portion forever.”  -Psalms 73:26

This section is dedicated to members of the Warrior Nation who have passed on to eternal glory. 

Mrs. Donna E. Stevens

Mrs. Donna E. Stevens, age 91, passed into the loving arms of Jesus on Saturday, September 28, 2019, in Muskegon. Donna was born September 2, 1928, to James and Katherine (Fischer) Siplon in Muskegon, and was a lifelong resident. Donna grew up at Immanuel Christian Reformed Church in Muskegon, and she and her husband, Rich, were longtime members of First Reformed Church. She was currently a member of Calvin Christian Reformed Church of Norton Shores. On November 22, 1950, Donna married Richard J. Stevens, and he preceded her in death on April 11, 2011. Survivors include 4 children: Terrance J. (Beth) Stevens, Joni L. (Dan) Wagenmaker, Mark J. (Cindy) Stevens, Kathy A. (Rick) Wilkie; 14 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren, and one on the way; her in-laws: Les and Marva Stevens. Donna was also preceded in death by a granddaughter, and by a special uncle, Herman Fischer. Donna loved the Lord and enjoyed Bible studies, singing in the choir, picnics at Lake Michigan, walking in the mall with Rich, spending time with her family, baking, and knitting.

Brian D. Vredevoogd, age 57, passed away unexpectedly Saturday evening, October 26, 2019. Born in Zeeland to Clarence and Johanna Vredevoogd, Brian devoted his life to impacting the lives of middle schoolers. For 36 years he taught Bible and History at Muskegon Christian School and Western Michigan Christian High School and Middle School. He was a founding member and elder of Celebration Community Church. Brian loved to travel, dote on his grandkids, read voraciously, and extend hikes to fit in one more waterfall. He was married to his best friend for 37 years. CLICK HERE to read a “Tribute to a Dear Friend, Mentor, and Colleague.

Mr. William Malda

Mr. William Malda, age 96, went to be with his Heavenly Father, Saturday morning, November 9, 2019, at The Poppen Residence. Bill was born December 19, 1922, in Rothbury, MI; and has resided in the Muskegon area since 1948. Bill was a U.S. Army – World War II veteran; and was a Purple Heart recipient for wounds received at St. Lo, France. He served from January 1, 1943, through December 8, 1945. Upon his discharge, Bill became a masonry contractor with his brother Ben, from 1947 – 1987. On October 20, 1948, he married the former Cornelia “Connie” Rop; and she preceded him in death on March 1, 2010. Bill was a former member of First Christian Reformed Church; and now of Grace Christian Reformed Church.

Ottolena Van Andel (DeHorn) died on September 21, 2019, at her home after a long confinement. Ottolena was born in Muskegon on January 26, 1919, to Arie and Marie (VanBrulgel) DeHorn, and married John VanAndel in 1946. She and John owned and ran the VanAndel Hardware on Terrace Street in Muskegon, until his death in 1967. She then worked as an inventory clerk at Hardware Distributors, Inc. until retiring in 1997. She was a life-long member of the Christian Reformed Church, attending East Muskegon CRC until it closed, then attending Allen Avenue CRC. Ottolena liked working with her hands, doing ceramics, needlecraft, china painting, and making quilt tops. But most of all, Ottolena enjoyed spending time with her family-watching the grandkids and great-grandkids after school, attending sporting and musical events, and cooking Sunday dinners.

Pearl Vanderlaan

Pearl Vanderlaan

Reformed Church, and was a dedicated supporter of Muskegon Christian School and Western Michigan Christian High School/Middle School. With her quiet spirit, she served the Lord in many very special ways. Pearl was a dedicated wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. On May 4, 1950, she married Arnold J. Vanderlaan, and he preceded her in death on January 8, 2018. She was dearly loved and will be greatly missed by her entire family.

If you have information of any other WMC alumni, staff, supporters, or friend who has passed, please email scottliggett@wmchs.net .


WMC Offers High School and Middle School Spanish Immersion Program

Warrior Spanish Immersion

Western Michigan Christian High School and Middle School is the only academic institution in the area with a Spanish Immersion program. WMC supports continuing SI students that complete K-6 or K-8 Spanish immersion education at any of our WMCS feeder programs. Offered in both middle school and high school, WMC offers Language Arts and Bible classes taught only in Spanish as an extension, or “maintenance,” to continuing immersion studies.

Growing Spanish Immersion Program

The 2019-2020 school year started with a total group of six 9th graders and eighteen 7th and 8th graders. Due to the WMCS feeder schools and their growing K-6th and K-8th grade SI programs, WMC’s Spanish Immersion program is projected to grow exponentially every year as these young SI students come up through the WMCS system.

An exciting byproduct of SI is that these students are not only learning a second language, they are also being introduced to a new culture. At WMC, Mrs. Victoria Esteva, aka “Senora,” has teaching experience from Santo Domingo and Punta Cana both in the Dominican Republic. Her classroom consists of fluent Spanish speakers demonstrating the prowess of mastering a second language.

WMC’s Dean of Instruction, Dr. Kristy Taylor shared, “I wish I could have had this experience as a student! It is so remarkable to sit in this class and hear everyone (teachers and students) speaking Spanish so naturally and learning in this environment. The accents are awesome!” 

Senora Esteva’s 9th grade Bible students discuss the Scriptures.

The Future Is Bright for College-Bound SI Students

The dept of instruction is actively engaging with institutions of higher learning to carve a pathway for post-HS development as it relates to Spanish Immersion. This fall, WMC’s Administrator Pastor Samuel Greer and WMC Dean of Instruction, Dr. Taylor met with a couple of colleges to partner with when it comes to Spanish Immersion.

Stay tuned for details in 2020!

CLICK HERE to learn more about the K-12 Spanish Immersion Program at West Michigan Christian Schools.

CLICK HERE for more information about continuing SI at WMC MS or HS.

Western Michigan Christian (WMC) High School and Middle School (7-12th) is located at 455 East Ellis Rd. Muskegon, including 360 students from 5 countries, 30 cities, and 75 churches. WMC is a member of West Michigan Christian Schools (WMCS), a collaborative system of five schools throughout the Lakeshore region, including Fremont Christian (PK-8), Grand Haven Christian (PK-8), Muskegon Christian (PK-6) and New Era Christian (PK-8). The WMCS system works under a “Better Together” philosophy, offering a top-quality PK-12 Christian Education experience and a full scope of academic and extracurricular programs.