I am thankful for….


This Thanksgiving, I have a lot to be thankful for.  I have been blessed with the opportunity to get an education at Brown University, and I am able to go home for the holidays.  After being away from home for three months, I realized most how thankful I am for my family and how each member has played a part in making me who I am today.

I am so thankful for my Father in heaven. Ephesians 1:3 says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.”  Words cannot describe how thankful I am for my mother.  She has made countless sacrifices to raise my sisters and me according to God’s Word. Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”  She is definitely what I miss most being away at college.

I am extremely thankful for my family at Calvary. College presents all sorts of challenges that Calvary has prepared me to face fearlessly. College schoolwork is very rigorous, but I was not unprepared. Being on a liberal campus is also a spiritual challenge, but Calvary has equipped me with the armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-18). I have gotten plugged in with a local church and am involved in one of Brown’s Christian ministries on campus. I am so glad and thankful for Calvary Day School and Calvary Baptist Temple.

    When I reflect back on my days at Calvary, I realize the faculty and staff are what make it so special. My peers at college have obviously been prepared academically.  However, I have learned through getting to know them that they were not a part of the same kind of close-knit, supportive, loving, family environment that I experienced at Calvary.

Only at Calvary do pre-K teachers lead their students in the prayer of salvation.

Only at Calvary do teachers come to their second graders’ baseball games and watch their taekwondo matches.

Only at Calvary are there teachers that have spent their lifetimes, as students and then as teachers.

Only at Calvary do kindergarten teachers give former students crafts they made over ten years ago.

Only at Calvary is the loudest super fan at SPAL games, the Lower School Principal.

Only at Calvary are middle school science classes opened with prayer and devotion.

Only at Calvary will a senior football player hug his fifth grade football coach after every game.

Only at Calvary do teachers instruct generations of families.

Only at Calvary do teachers text you during Super Bowls to further foster your contempt for Tom Brady.

Only at Calvary do former teachers return to support their students at concerts and games.

Only at Calvary do teachers stay on campus until midnight to help clean up a leak.

Only at Calvary do teachers buy you bandages during their lunch break because you got new cleats.

Only at Calvary can you email your English teacher at midnight and get a prompt reply.

Only at Calvary do you have an administration that allows the seniors to roll the campus for fun.

Only at Calvary is there a cafeteria staff that knows you by name and can brighten your day.

Only at Calvary is there a maintenance staff who is involved way beyond their job description, leading small groups, coaching teams, and holding leadership positions in the church.

Only at Calvary is there a youth pastor that volunteers as the football team’s chaplain at every practice and game.

Only at Calvary is there a librarian that asks readers what books she can purchase for the library.

Only at Calvary are there teachers who spend their Saturday nights chaperoning messy games in the parking lot or refereeing intense games of capture the flag.

Only at Calvary do teachers send you your favorite snacks while you’re at college.

Only at Calvary do teachers make you promise that you will behave in college, or you will have to answer to them.

Only at Calvary do teachers call you to check and see how your freshman year is going.

Only at Calvary is there a staff that comes together to create the most powerful week of the year in Spiritual Emphasis Week for their students.

Only at Calvary is there a faculty that holds hands around the seniors at their last chapel and prays over their future.

Only at Calvary is there a vision of educating the whole student- spiritually, academically, socially, and physically (Luke 2:52).

So this Thanksgiving, I am thankful for my Father in heaven, my mother, and my Calvary family.  Although my status has changed from student to alumni, the love and support has remained strong.  I am confident that I will be successful at Brown University because of the foundation that my family has afforded me. I will always love and appreciate my Calvary family.  Once a Cavalier, always a Cavalier.  Happy Thanksgiving.

Jonathan Coates

Calvary Day School ‘16

Brown University ‘20



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