I was recently interviewed by West Michigan Christian News. These interviews gave me a chance to share more about why the Potter’s House exists, and our motivation to continue being a place of inclusion, welcome and Christian love.
I never get tired of sharing with people how this school started. Here is one of the interviews where I talk about how I received my calling to serve the Potter’s House.
In 1990, Christina’s husband finished school, and they returned to Puerto Rico. Then, thirteen years later, the family moved back to the United States, settling back in Grand Rapids. They quickly renewed their friendship with the Tapanes family. When the Rodriguezes were looking for a Christ-centered school where they could enroll their children, it was only natural for Carla Tapanes to encourage them to check at the school where she was working and where her own children were attending: The Potter’s House.
Christina enrolled her oldest children at The Potter’s House that fall, in 8th, 10th, and 11th grades, and, when the time came, her younger two daughters began Kindergarten there. Today, those youngest daughters are in 3rd and 6th grades. The three oldest daughters have all graduated from The Potter’s House High School and are enrolled in college. Christina is enrolled in college, too. It had been a dream of hers to go back to school when her daughters were all in school full time. That’s why, when Rosalia Espindola, the elementary secretary, asked Christina if she would like to work at The Potter’s House, she knew she couldn’t work full time. When it appeared that she could share the middle school secretary position with another new staff member, she eagerly agreed. This fall, you will find her in the middle school office filling the chair that used to be filled by her friend Carla Tapanes.
As she gets to know The Potter’s House in this new role, Christina knows that she wants people to feel comfortable talking with her and good to be around her. She also knows that God will keep her going. Remember and Believe. This may be the theme for the school’s 30th anniversary, but it is a fitting theme for Christina as well. “When I look back, I remember where I came from—where God took me out of. And because of that, I can believe that he is faithful in whatever I’m in, whether it is a good moment or a tough one, and He will keep me going. I believe that to be true. That’s what His word says. He always keeps me going.”
Emily was one of only 150 teachers nationwide who were accepted to attend the Mickelson ExxonMobil Teachers Academy. She says that she appreciated spending the week learning from the highest quality instructors, all teachers themselves, and learning with teachers from schools around the country. All of them were focused solely on math and science. It was a week spent as active learners, doing hands-on experiments that reminded these teachers that learning is a lifelong process.