Thursday, 03 May 2018 21:27

Special Service Honors McCarty Move-In Date

It was like 1979 again on Monday, April 23, at Valley Lutheran High School. Students were sitting on the carpet for chapel, Pastor Gil McDonald was giving the message, and Jesus was still the reason for celebrating.

Students, staff and guests marked the 39th anniversary of the first day of school at Valley’s McCarty Road location, which was April 23, 1979, with a special chapel service.

McDonald is one of five pastors who have served Valley over the last 40 years. Four of the five men returned for the service. McDonald delivered the sermon, current pastor John Mueller was the liturgist, and Paul Hinz and Robert Smith were lectors. The readings were the same ones used for the service of dedication on Sept. 9, 1979.

McDonald’s message was the same as it was when he worked at the school from 1978 to 1992.  “The answer to every theological question is, was, and always will be, Jesus,” McDonald said. “The theme for the year is Genesis 12:1-3, but I’m telling you it’s all about Jesus.”  McDonald told the audience to make their lives extraordinary, the way Jesus would want.  “God put you here for one reason, and one reason only: to love and serve Him by loving and serving others He has placed around us,” he said. “Make disciples, baptize, teach, bring them into contact with Jesus. All of us have been blessed to be a blessing.”

McDonald shared memories from the early days of the school, noting the new building was a big change from the “bowling alleys” of Faith Lutheran Church on Bay and Deindorfer. The first chapel wasn’t in the gymnasium, as carpet still had to be laid. Instead, it was in the current Resource Center.  “We had a very old, beat up piano, and some red hymnals with the covers coming off,” he said. “But we were glad to be in a new home.”

But it’s not all about the physical structure, according to McDonald.  “Valley Lutheran High School is not a building,” he said. “Rather, it’s people who gather around Jesus and His Word, being equipped to be a blessing as long as they have life and breath within them.”

After the service Dr. John Brandt recognized this year's faithful volunteers, the 40th Anniversary Committee, and various faculty and staff anniversaries.

2017-18 Faithful Volunteers

• Gary and Norma Jean Koch have cooked for many Parent Organization events, as well as the football teams.
• Carol Laux (VL’94) served twice on Valley’s Board of Directors, serving one year as president. She has also been a part of Campus Life, as well as the Communications and Finance committees.
• Tracy Schugars has coordinated the teacher appreciation program, including the spring staff appreciation breakfast the last several years.
• Rachelle Schuman has been an assistant track coach and has coordinated the post prom party for more than a decade.

40th Anniversary Committee

• Sarah Cmeyla (VL’92)
• Luke Kaul (Senior)
• Sydney Princing (Senior)

Faculty & Staff Anniversaries

• Krista Flory (LCMS 40)
• Doug Guenther (LCMS 35)
• Bess Winter (LCMS 20, VLHS 20)
• Jennifer Blake (LCMS 15)
• Eric Smith (LCMS 15)
• Heath Vincent (LCMS 10, VLHS 10)
• Karla Stahlecker (LCMS 5, VLHS 5)
• Cris Urbytes (VLHS 5)
• Sondra Yantz (LCMS 5)
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Mailing Address: 
Valley Lutheran High School
3560 McCarty Road
Saginaw, MI 48603




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