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Caps off to CCA Class of 2018

Chilton Christian Academy launched its Class of 2018 into the world with a graduation ceremony at Victory Baptist Church on May 18.

Family and friends filled the church pews to recognize the nine graduating seniors, each with honors, for jobs well done and futures brimming with possibilities.

“Each and every one of us have potential beyond imagination,” Samantha Higgins told her classmates during her salutatorian address. “We will each leave our unique mark on the world and achieve greatness — from a pediatrician to a fire fighter, a journalist to an investigator, a deaf communicator to a psychologist, a college basketball player to a man skilled in all he is going to accomplish at Alabama Power.”

The CCA graduation ceremony featured several unique traditions to the school, including Gideon representatives’ presentations of New Testament Bibles to each candidate for graduation and the candidates’ presentations of roses to their mothers.

Pastor Rick Nelson of Gardendale Baptist Tabernacle challenged the graduating class to “leave the past, live in the present, look to the future, love God, and success will be yours.”

As a special, passing-of-the-torch contribution to the Class of 2019, Valedictorian Kiki Shaw presented rising senior Jenna Lyon with a Bob Jones University Benaiah Medallion, inspired by the Old Testament account of Kind David’s faithful companion Benaiah in 2 Samuel 23. The medallion serves as a symbol to the Class of 2019 to be spurred forward in loyalty to Christian standards of integrity, love and leadership.

When the much-anticipated moment arrived, Pastor Donald Jones of Victory Baptist Church presented the Class of 2018 with their high school diplomas.

“It’s a great big step in a real small journey that’s set before you, but I trust that you all will do exceptionally well,” he said. “You’ve got the heart. Yeah, you’ve got stubbornness, but [also] the dedication and the spirit to do what needs to be done.”

After ceremonially switching their tassels to their left side, the graduates of the Class of 2018 recessed to “God of Our Fathers” by Daniel C. Roberts.

“I encourage each and every one of you to follow your dreams no matter how small you or other people think you are,” Shaw had told her classmates. “You have a purpose in life, and you will find it. God will show you where you belong. Always depend on God and put him first, and you will be OK.”