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Alum Derek Joyce Reflects on his Time at Cedars

Cedars teachers played an influential role in my faith journey. As a student, I remember the investment of time and spiritual encouragement people like Debbie Van Calsteren offered. I recall her challenging me to share what Jesus was teaching me as I led worship teams, calling out some of the potential I was struggling to see. After graduating, other teachers like Dave Brown did a great job in keeping me connected with the community. I enjoyed getting to be a mentor in his leadership class and joining them as a young adult leader on a mission trip to Mexico. The faithful witness of Cedars staff helped me to see Jesus and explore what plans he might have for me.

The decision to follow Jesus is never a forced one, and faith doesn’t fall into your lap, but I think Cedars provides opportunities that might not be available in other schools to pursue truth. It was a gift to be encouraged to take a Christian history course in Grade 11 as an elective, to be empowered to lead worship teams as a young and nervous teenager, and to have speakers come and share their experience and wisdom with us. I am grateful for my time there as a student and the opportunities I have had to continue to be involved in that community!

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