Tuesday, October 22, 2019

The 2019 BBQ and Auction Praise Report

Dear CCS Families and Friends,

The CCS 2019 Chicken BBQ & Auction has come and gone. God gave us a great weekend!  What made the weekend great?  Here are some of the amazing things that happened this past weekend:
  1.  CCS students packed 10,000 Chicken-Flavored Vegetable and Rice Soup meals for the Twin Valley Food Pantry.  Meals of Hope supplied the ingredients, and our students supplied the manpower to pack these meals for the Food Pantry . . . Praise God!  The senior class planned, prayed, and ran the food packing event to include organizing a worship chapel for the entire school, middle/high school discussion groups, and middle/high school service groups.
  2. CCS sold 2,220 chicken dinners!  Beginning at 11:30 am the CCS kitchen was hopping, packing meals for businesses and families in our community.  Families could pick up their chicken dinners through our drive-up service or come into the gymnasium to sit and eat or take their chicken home. 
  3. CCS welcomed 150 bidders to our auction on Saturday.  While we had 150 bidders, we had many more people present on campus enjoying our Cougar Café, Craft Store, Live Auction, Food Area, and Kidz Zone.  A few highlights from the Auction:

·        Every year we have a “Special Project” that we present to our auction friends; these projects can be immediate and/or long-term needs the school has.  This year we shared an immediate need (our middle school steps) and a long-term need (building our Endowment Fund).  PRAISE God we raised $1,000 to fix the steps and added $5,585 to our Endowment Fund!!
·       We auctioned off personalized parking spaces for 4 seniors and 2 VIP parking spaces for patrons for after school-events . . . we raised $1,400 on these items!!
·       Our class baskets stole the show again. J  Our parent volunteers put baskets together that focused on Philly Sports, Camping, Snow Days, Parent Breaks, Gift Cards, Grillin' and Chillin', and more.  Parents, grandparents, and alumni had bidding wars that brought laughter, cheers, and blessings to our school.

THANK YOU for praying for our BBQ & Auction.  

The PRELIMINARY projection is that we are close to making budget.  We are anticipating falling short of our $44,500 budget by only about $4,000.

Please keep praying for 3 things in particular:
  1. We need only $800 to meet our goal of $3,000 for our Food Packing Event.
  2. We need to sell the beautiful 8’ X 12’ shed that was donated to CCS.  The bid at the auction fell through.  If you would like to purchase an awesome shed for your home, contact the office now.
  3. Pray for our online auction that runs until October 31.  You will find some great items on our online auction.  Visit our online auction by clicking the following link:  https://www.biddingforgood.com/ConestogaChristian
If anyone has any questions, email me at ken.parris@conestogachristian.net.

Have a blessed day.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

October is Here, and so is CCS's Five Year Strategic Plan

I cannot believe we are already in the month of October.  Twenty-five school days have passed, only one hundred fifty-five to go. 😃  The month of October is an exciting month here at Conestoga Christian School for a number of reasons, one of which being that October is when we host our annual Chicken BBQ & Auction.  Last year at the BBQ we sold over 2,000 lunches and dinners - praise God!  This year we are praying for similar BBQ sales, maybe even numbers near 2,400 . . . only God knows.  Very soon we will begin sharing all the wonderful items we have had donated for the auction.  There will be something for everyone.  Please join me as I pray for the BBQ & Auction.  Pray that this event will bring families together and will financially support the ministry of Conestoga Christian School.

In addition to the Chicken BBQ & Auction, this month Conestoga Christian School is unveiling its new Strategic Plan.  The Board of Trustees convenes a committee every five years to pray about and ask the question, "Where is Conestoga Christian School heading over the next five years?"  The question has been asked, prayed over, and answered.  Please use the following link to read through Conestoga Christian School's Strategic Plan for 2020-2025.


If anyone has any questions concerning Conestoga's Strategic Plan, the Chairman of our Board of Trustees, Linford Weaver, or I would love to sit down with you and discuss them.  Please email me at ken.parris@conestogachristian.net if you would like to talk.

In Him,

Kenneth T. Parris
Head of School

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

45th Annual BBQ & Auction Done

God poured out His blessings on our school once again this past week as we celebrated our 45th Annual Chicken BBQ & Country Auction.  We sold 2,350 chicken dinners on Friday . . . yes, 2,350!  Unfortunately, we had to turn about 40 walk-ins away, but what a blessing to see so many in our community rally around our lunch and dinner tables.  

It will take a little time to finalize our numbers from the Auction, but preliminary numbers show that we are only about $3,000 under our $44,500 goal . . . praise God!!  A few highlights from the Auction:
  • Class baskets did very well; the Eagles basket (with signed Carsen Wentz helmet) went for $1,600, and the hunting basket (complete with grinder) went for $1,000.
  • We raised enough money to completely pay off our new school bus.
  • The Dune Buggy sold for $600 and was won by yours truly . . . my son is very excited, and I drove it from the school to my house in Morgantown . . . awesome!!
  • Cougar Grounds (our new Coffee House and craft area) was possibly the biggest success.  Mr. Greenly (Alumni Relations) established Cougar Grounds as the meeting place for alumni and gave away 24 alumni shirts.  Cougar Grounds was packed with people all day long.  Everyone who visited our newest room was amazed in the transformation of our Science Room into a Coffee House.
I would like to thank our Auction Committee that was headed up by Heather Schreier and Deborah Kurtz for all their hard work, our Auctioneer Tracy Jones for once again blessing us with his team, and the CCS community for your prayers and support.  I have said it many times, Conestoga Christian School is here for the benefit of our families and the glory of God – the 45th Annual BBQ & Auction is a shining example of that truth.

Finally, to close out our praises, Friday morning of the BBQ our students set out to pack 10,000 mac and cheese meals for the Twin Valley Food Pantry as we partnered with Meals of Hope.  Through the generous donations of CCS families and some area churches, we were able to raise just over $3,000 to pay for all the meals.  Through the direction of CCS student leaders (middle school and high school soccer/volleyball captains), the entire student body met our goal of packing 10,000 meals!  Praise God.

I cannot wait to see what else God will do with us and through us.  I hope to see you around campus.

In Him, 

Kenneth T. Parris
Head of School

Monday, September 24, 2018


I walked over to the middle school today to see how everyone was doing.  To my surprise I saw a new chicken house surrounded by a very nice white fence.  The chicken house was sitting on the trailer on which it was delivered, and the chickens were resting comfortably on the ground under the trailer and in the house.  Last week I met with Paul Mast, the owner of the farm just south of our school, to discuss survey plans that were conducted as we look to purchase four acres from him.  Hershey Surveying prepared plans to subdivide Paul’s farm and give us four acres near our soccer field.  Paul looked at the plans and said, “Looks good to me.”  What do a new chicken house and new land have in common?  They are both GIFTS from the Lord.

Conestoga Christian School is blessed to have families and businesses that partner with us for our students’ benefit and His glory.  I share that the chicken house and land are GIFTS because our Board of Trustees, administration, staff, and families truly believe that everything we have is because of the graciousness of God.  God is the one who places the need for Christian education on the hearts and minds of our families; God is the one who calls our staff into Christian education; and God is the one who directs foundations, businesses, alumni, families, and grandparents to give sacrificially to the ministry of CCS.  Appropriately we have named our Capital Campaign a GIFT – Growing In Faith Together.

The Growing In Faith Together campaign was launched on January 27, 2018. If you are a new family at CCS and you do not know Why we launched a capital campaign, What we are planning to build, or How you can support the capital campaign, visit our website and find the answers to each of those questions. The goal of our campaign is to construct a new building that will contain a new gymnasium/trades center and then expand our existing gymnasium to create a new fine arts center. The total cost of the expansion and renovation is $6.7M. To date, through pledges and prayerful considerations, we are approaching $1M. Phase one of the building plan is the construction of the new building -- aproximately $4.5M; in less than one year we are approaching $1M . . . praise God!!

Please set up a time to meet with me or email me if you have any questions about our Growing In Faith Together campaign. I love talking about what God is doing at CCS. To keep up to date with what is happening on campus, go to our website or follow us on social media, and remember, whether you donate a chicken house, land, $1M to our capital campaign, or prayer . . . you are an encouragement to us!!

Monday, September 10, 2018

2 Weeks and Going Strong

AccuWeather records that the temperature in Morgantown is currently 59 degrees and the conditions are “cloudy.”  Can I tell you I just love days like today?  I know most everyone who reads this is questioning my sanity; I understand completely – now you see one of my few flaws. J
I love cloudy, overcast days, and I love having students back at CCS.  We have completed the first two weeks of school, and we are off to a great start.  You may ask, what makes the start of this year so great?  Good question; my answer: the community that God is allowing us to have here at CCS. 

Let me share what I have already experienced in just two short weeks:
  • Staff members coming to campus embracing the new faculty and families God has brought to our campus.  I have been a part of and seen staff members praying for one another, their students, and parents as we embark on another new year.
  •  A student body that has increased to 322 where new students are feeling loved and included.
  • An 8th grade class that wants to honor God by coming together and setting a class goal.  
    • Michelle (my wife) and I had the blessing of chaperoning the 8th grade for an overnight adventure at Raystown Lake.  The 8th grade class has welcomed in eight new students since January of this year, three this August alone.  On our retreat all the students talked and played as if each one had been at CCS since kindergarten.  It was at Raystown Lake that the 8th grade class decided to set a class goal that they could all work on together to bring glory and honor to God.
  • An all-school chapel where over 300 students worshiped together in song that was led by one of our student worship teams.
  • Board, administration, and staff members collaborating on goals that we would like to see accomplished in this school year.
How exciting is that!!

I hope every person has been able to visit our website.  On our website we have awesome pictures of our students and wonderful information to keep every family informed as to what is happing on campus.  For example, information about the annual BBQ/Auction is found under the “Events” tab on our website.  In addition to our website, parents can read our weekly COUGAR UPDATE and check us out on FACEBOOK or INSTAGRAM to stay informed.  Yes, we do have a CCS Facebook and Instagram page.  You can follow us on either to see the best of each week.

Lastly, let me share two new things that will be happening very soon:
  1. PTF Family Social.  Please plan on joining the CCS family community on Monday, September 17, in the gym and in our library for a family social.  Monday, September 17, kicks off our Scholastic Book Fair, and Monday night we are opening the Book Fair for our parents.  The school will be open from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m., just long enough for everyone to check out the Book Fair and play in the gym.  Yes, your children can come and play in the gym . . . it is open play night. J  At 7:00 p.m. our PTF (Parent Teacher Fellowship) will give a brief overview of what the PTF does – I promise, it will be brief.
  2.  Service Project . . . Food Packing Event.  You already know that our chicken BBQ is scheduled for Friday, October 19, but what you do not know is that we are going to partner with Feed America and the Twin Valley Food Pantry to pack 10,000 meals.  An informational flier will be posted soon.  This will be my 1st food-packing event since I have been at CCS.  I cannot wait to see if we can meet the goal of packing 10,000 meals – of course, we have to raise the money to do that.
You can see why I love CCS!  Talk to you soon!!

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Campus Happenings

May is a crazy yet wonderful month at Conestoga Christian School; actually, the craziness began at the end of April.  What do I mean by crazy yet wonderful?  I say that May is crazy because of all the activities that are happening on campus.  To give you an idea of what goes in May, let me list our activities:

  • Achievement testing for elementary and middle school students
  • TSA State Competition
  • Founders Dinner at Shady Maple with Auntie Anne Beiler
  • Community Helpers Day in elementary
  • Baseball, Lacrosse, and Track Competitions
  • Piano and Voice Recital
  • Senior Presentations
  • Race for Education
  • PSAT and AP Testing
  • Open House
  • Jr/Sr Banquet
  • Spring Musical
  • Athletic Banquet
  • Evening of Science and The Arts
  • Graduation

This list does not even mention field trips, pep rallies, National Day of Prayer Chapel, lip dub project, and a lip sync battle . . . anybody exhausted just reading through this list?  I am!!  With that said, May is wonderful!  Our school has the opportunity to watch our students grow, flourish, and praise God through various activities.  Should we limit the activities because we get tired?  By all means no! 

This morning, during staff devotions, Mr. Everhart shared Psalm 90 with those present.  Psalm 90:14 places the above activities into perspective: “Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.”  Does the business of life exhaust you just like it does me?  If you answered yes, I hope the encouragement of Psalm 90:14 restores you like it did me.  When we seek satisfaction in God, we have peace which we will never find it in a well run program or activity.  The best athletic team, musical performance, successful test, or activity will never satisfy your soul like God can.  Philippians 4:4-7 reminds us to rejoice in all circumstances, leave our requests at the Throne of our Lord, and the peace of God will guard our hearts and minds in Christ.

If you have not been on campus in the month of May, I hope you join us soon.  If you cannot join us, please pray for our staff, students, and families as we all navigate these last few weeks of the school year.

In Him,

Kenneth T. Parris
Head of School

Friday, January 26, 2018

Preparing for Rain

Do you remember the 2006 Sherwood Pictures film Facing the Giants?  There is one scene in the movie where Mr. Bridges comes into Coach Taylor’s office and reads Revelations 3:8, “I know your works.  See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied my name” (NKJV).  Mr. Bridges then tells Coach Taylor that the Lord is not done with him yet at their school.  Mr. Bridges reminds the coach that until the Lord moves him out of the school that he is supposed to stay and bloom right where he is planted.

Coach Taylor ponders the encouragement of Mr. Bridges for a moment and then shares with Mr. Bridges that he doesn’t feel God working at the school.  Mr. Bridges shares this profound thought:

“Two farmers desperately needed rain, both farmers prayed for rain but only one went out and prepared his fields to receive it.”

Mr. Bridges then asks the coach, “Which farmer do you believe trusted God to bring the rain?”  The coach answers, “The one who prepared his field?”  Mr. Bridges agrees.  Then Mr. Bridges asks the most important question to the coach . . . “Which one are you?”  Just before walking away Mr. Bridges concludes, “God will bring the rain when He is ready; you need to prepare your field to receive it.”

I share this exchange from Facing the Giants because Conestoga Christian School is preparing our field to receive God’s rain.  I am not referring to the grassy ground outside our buildings; no, the field I am referring to is the building campaign on which Conestoga Christian School is embarking.  The Board of Trustees has been praying for rain in the form of student and program growth for many years, and as a school we have seen God shower us with His blessings.  In the last three years Conestoga Christian School has increased its class offerings significantly and in the past two years has seen a student enrollment increase of 83.  In 2016 our school had an enrollment of 219 and recently we enrolled number 302!  Is it raining at Conestoga Christian School?  We believe it is, and we believe the rain has just started.

In order to effectively reach more students and meet their academic needs, Conestoga Christian School is embarking on a Capital Campaign entitled Growing in Faith Together.  We have been praying for growth and now is the time to better prepare for it.  I have attached information about our Growing in Faith Together campaign.  If the Lord is leading you to partner with us in some fashion, please do not hesitate to reach out to me by phone (610-286-0353 x406) or email
(ken.parris@conestogachristian.net).  Maybe God has been preparing you to help us reach more students in our area.  Conestoga Christian School is blooming right where God has planted us.