Page 2 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 3 Carroll Catholic Eight Grade Graduates Back Row: Joe Dondanville, John Vanos, Adalyn Varner, Principal, David Welch Center Row: Mrs. Coyle, Homeroom Teacher, Reece Entwistle, Tate Aue Front Row: Charlie Helton, Ellia Prather Photo credit: Picture This Photography
Page 4 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Chester-East Lincoln Eighth Grade Graduates Karina Baker Wyatt Bauer Emmery Boward George Clark Owen Comstock Jeatan Conlin Cameron Crane Isabella Curry Zachary Eckhardt Paisley Fellers James Foley Dylan Gordon
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 5 Cooper Heiser Kaeli Jones Zachary Long Caleb Meacham Seraphim Ostrander Alyssa Roede Emmalynn Splitter Oliver White Kaeden Wilkerson Hailey Wilkins Madi Wurth
Page 6 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Hartsburg-Emden Junior High Graduates JozaLynn Rebecca Babbs Alexis Elizabeth Cannon Emma Marie Eeten Dayven Louis Fletcher Alicia Ann Grelck Cambelle Agnes Raeann Hopkins Cooper Dean McAfee Clayton Lee O’Donoghue Nolan Hunter Payne Braden Lane Schleder Alexis Lyn Wetherell Owen Mark Whitted
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 7 Lincoln Junior High School Graduates Kaden Adams Carson Anderson Paisley Baker Braiden Barrish Megan Barry Daniel Beck Shyann Beck Savannah Begolka Cameron Bell Carley Bomar Joseph Boughan Ashton Boyd
Page 8 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Tina Brackney Logan Brand Logan Brant Lawrence Burke Kaniela Carvalho Lexie Chambers Ava Cook Ava Cook James Cooper Marissa Davis Dasia Coppinger Isabella Dea Colin Crombie Meghan Devore Makayla Curry Kamri Dietz
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 9 Nicholas Dillon Faith Doolin Seth Durbin Skylee Dvorak Lillie Dyer Braxton Eilertson Riley Eilertson Aidan Evans Drake Evans Alayna Gannon Cynthia Flener Natalie Geary Christopher Fry Cayden Geriets Evan Galbreath Ayden Gesner-Parke
Page 10 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Ajah Gibson Marcus Giles Kimberly Gonzalez Jenay Hall Angie Harp Kyan Hassebrock Emma Haynes Kamdin Heinzel Daniel Hibbs Xavier Hill Kailynn Holton Laikynn Holton
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 11 Kaylynn Horney Annaleecia Hurley Miley Hurley Emma Hutchinson Kylie Jackson Leland Jackson Angeli Johnson Ella May Johnson-Neibuhr Allison Korte Regan Kutz Alexander Lacroix Sturgis Lancaster
Page 12 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Donyvan Lawson Heaven Lee Jazlynn Legendre Ryann Lile Violet Loeffler Liberty Long Dallin Maddox Ryne Manuel Chase March Tyler Meyers Leah Marten Logan Miller Luca Massena Trevore Miller Colin Merritt Faith Nelson
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 13 Kiera Newton Conner Nichols Jocelyn Perkins A’mya Pusey Anna Quisenberry Quentyn Quisenberry Hunter Ransdell Alexis Reed Arielle Rempe Kyra Schriber Sean Reynolds Matthew Sebastian Amaya Richmond Abygail Shaub Paycen Schaefer Adison Shehan
Page 14 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Sariyah Silas Kaiden Skaggs Macon Snelling Maya Spiroff Emily Stamm Brendan Steffens Lucille Stoltzenburg Brileigh Striplin Paige Striplin Michael Thompson Charlene Sullivan Bailey Tungate Elizabeth Tapper Kaylee Tyus Ruby Thomas Blake Valentine
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 15 Ashton Vancleve Deeanna Vincent Savanna Vinyard Adric Wampler Alena Warren Maya Webb Anthony White Christopher White Cole Wichmann Bella Wilham Izzak Winebrinner Jaxon Young No Photo Provided
Page 16 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Mount Pulaski Eighth Grade Graduates Peyton William Abner Marissa Jo Allspach Joseph Douglas Benhart Nathan James Berry Claire Ann Bobell Addison Glee Brown Jayde Eliott Carter Keoni Kyle Charron Hawken James Clampet Carter James Clark Kota Clay Peyton Cormick Combs Audrey Louise Cooper Claire Lauren Cyrulik Olivia Lilly Cyrulik Owen Timothy Cyrulik Liam Seamus Stern Doherty Jackson Ryder Hamilton Adalynn Ann Jackson Kian Ebin Jacobs Mackenzie Skye Johnston Austin James Kretzinger Jolene Mary Melinda Lawson Elise Danylle Jane Lawson Dean Stephen Martin Kaylee Lynn Michael Hayden Gene Morris Braden Alfred Olson Nelson Claire Palmquist Gracie Mae Phillips Owen Dean Pulliam Logan Blaine Roberts Lizzie Sue Roberts Carter Michael Robinson Kai Davis Selinger Johnny Skeen Kaelin Elise Nicole Stewart Ethan Dale Stoddard Raelynn Irene Turner Piper Kristine Tyson Aaron Andrew Volle Jessi Loraine Wade Zeke Richard Wakeman Karsyn Nicole Wilham Brennon Lee Wilkins Camden Robert Winkelmann Jeremiah Constant Woodford Caden Christopher Wyler
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 17 New Holland-Middletown Eighth Grade Graduates Payton Marie Bishop Emma Sue Grimsley Kindall Marie Helton Colby Lee Martin Colby Eli Merriman Orion Madon Monday Riley Eugene Sanford Kendal Denise Skelton-Doty Logan Daniel Smith Grace Isabelle Stapleton Dylan Martin Stevens Payton Jay Wahlsmith Issabella Marie Whitman
Page 18 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 NOLA ALDUS TREVOR ALEXANDER CARRIE ANDRIS ANTONIO ARIAS KALEB ASHWORTH DAMIEN BARGER LILLIAN BARGER ETHAN BARNES ASHLYN BERGES OWEN BERLIN KAIIDEN BIRDSELL JENA BOESDORFER MYRA BOOKS JAMES BOOLMAN JOHN BOOLMAN SIENNA BOWERS JACK BOYER SOPHIE BRADFORD TRYNITEE BRANHAM AMAYA BRIDGEFORTH MADYSON BRIDGEFORTH JAYDEN BROSMORE MORGAN BUATTE KOBIE BUNNER OLIVIA CASAGRANDE ROSETTA CATTERSON HANNAH CHURCH Olympia Middle School Eighth Grade Graduates CALLAN CLARK KHLOE CLOUD NICHOLAS COLCLASURE NATALIE COLLINS KAHLIYAH COOPER ABIGAIL DAVID JASON DAVIS BRENNA DOYLE CHASE DUNHAM CHARLOTTE DURHAM LEO DURHEIM AIDEN EGLI ELYSE EIMER HUNTER ELLER COHEN ELLIS EVELYN EMBERTON YOUSIF FADEL KENNADIE FINCHUM LOLA FINFROCK MACKENZIE FOLLICK ZACHARIA FRY BELLA GALANOS CLAYTON GRIEDER CAEL HALLEY MIA HARDESTY BRENDON HARDIMON ETHAN HECK GREYSON HEMPHILL MIKENNA HILL PAISLEE HOFFMAN PEYTON HOLT MOLLY HOOKS DYLAN HORNER KYRA HOUGH LAUREN HUTCHISON KALEB JACOBS CARTER KASHNER JOEL KATH AIDAN KENNON-VENT JOSHUA KESSINGER OWEN KIRBY AUSTIN KISNER BROOKLYN KOMNICK WILLIAM LALLY DYLAN LANGLEY KADEN LEWIS LEVI LITTLE JAMES LOLLAR ANNABELLE MAHONEY JACKSON MARTIN LAURYNN MAYBERRY JOAN MCCUEN JAKOB MIDDLETON BRODY MILLER
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 19 TRAYSON MILLER VEYDA MINER ETHAN MONT CARTER MORTIMER COLLIN NAGROCKI KELLAN NEAL BRADY OEHLER KRUZ OTTO JAZMYNE PAYNE RYAN PFAFF JARED PHARES JR CLAYTON PIPER GAGE PITCHER LUKE PRESTEGAARD MADELINE PREWETT HUNTER PRIMMER KAMRYN RADER OWEN RIOS NINA ROSS ZACHARY SAATHOFF KASEY SALVATOR HOLLIS SCHEETS KHLOE SCHEETS LELIA SHINN ANGELA SHIPTON AVA SIZEMORE GRACE SMALL JAYCIE STEEL KINLEY STEINKAMP ADDALYNN STEWART BRIANNAH STINE DECIMUS STRIBLING KYLIE STUBBS MARLEE TALBERT NOLAN THOENNES KAYDEN THOMAS CAMREN THOMPSON NATALIE VANETTEN RUTH VANETTEN BENJAMIN WAHLS MADELINE WALKER NICOLE WELCH KELLER WEST KAEL WESTFALL NOAH WHITESIDE SIERRA WHITECOTTON KADYN WILCOX RYDER WILSON WILLIAM WINTERS ASHLYN WITHAM WAYLON WOHLERS
Page 20 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 West Lincoln - Broadwell Eighth Grade Graduates Norah Block Aleaha Crane Cooper Koehler Hunter Clark Brett Hayes Malina Luckhart Talan Camp Gray Gilbert Jaydon Kusnerik
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 21 Carson McConnell Jaydon Miller Preston Short Keygan Metelko Logan Schaffenacker Dean Meinershagen Max Rohlfs Bryce Vlahovich
Page 22 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Zion Lutheran School Lincoln Eighth Grade Graduates Brooklyn Beal Mashell Fisher Kathryn Farnam Ellie McFadden Isabella Pollice
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 23 Zion Lutheran School Mount Pulaski Eighth Grade Graduates Juan Roberto Andrade Kelsey Nicole Beggs
Page 24 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 25 Hartsburg-Emden High School Class of 2023 Bryson Timothy Anderson Alexis Rosalind Becker Cassie Elizabeth Crabtree Prescott Hudson Davis Mason Bradley Farris Robert Caine Fletcher Dylan Ray Fowler Camden Michael Groth Coleton Michael Hopp Wyatt Ethan Leinenbach Faith Elizebeth Marcum James Arthur McCree Violet Summer Bloom Merz Abigail Elisabeth Montgomery Danielle Rose Phillips Faith Elizabeth Sanders Gage Michael Shawgo Rase Carson Sherwood Jr. William James Wisniewski William Harold Wright
Page 26 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Illini Central High School Class of 2023 Rylan Alley Thomas Atwood Madelyn Bell Rex Brooks Genevieve Bubert Clay Butler Carson Devore Katelyn Doyle Zachary Entwistle Mireya Francis Emily Garmon Bryton Groves
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 27 Belle Kelly Brendon Leggans Avery Lowers Mahlea Lusher Gracee Marshall Olivia Prichard Ava Ratliff Gabrielle Richardson Devan Halsted Ava Hines Nicholas Horn Kyleigh Keihn
Page 28 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Camrianne Ring Jillian Thurston Keegan Woods Caden Stanberry Ross Trabue Braden Strayder Peyton Woelfel Lilli Szawlosky Cora Wolford No Photo Provided: Hailee Abner James Byrd Kase Renken
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 29 Lincoln Community High School Class of 2023 Kayla Renee Aguilar Evelynn Renee Aiken Aidan James Alaniz Zachary Landon Ricky Barger Taylor Grace Bean* Rosalee Nicole Bell Peyton Layne Bennett Hunter William Bent* Ciara Nicole Berg Bailey Jolynn Billington Joel Bius Jacob Michael Bivin* Deja Rain Bomar Jasmine Diamond Bomar Ashton Dee Bottles Chloe Elizabeth Bottom Emma Grace Boyd* Hannah Elise Britt Isabella Joy Brown Isaiah Carl David Bucciarelli Jenna Nicole Carnes Raven Skye Carter Ryan Matthew Comstock Payton Joshua Cook-Hinton Brenna Richelle Corbett Brady Christian Crane Elijah Lee Crane Miranda Grace Cummings Grace Isabelle Curry* Louis Anthony Dalpoas* Joshua Levi Franklin Daugherty Caleb Paul Davis Isaac Kenneth Eugene Decker Ethan Jerald Dehner Marissa Ann Dobbels Kip Rose Dunham Kody Lane Durham Alexandria Laree Eads Deagan Adam Eads Jessie Anne Emberton* Caralyn Jane Farnam* Presleigh Dawn Fehrenbacher* Bailey Jaidyn Follis Jerod Jeffrey Wilham Fults II Isabella Marie Gasparini Gwendolyn Rylee Gill Gabriel Daniel Gilman Justin Wayne Goforth* Richard Joseph Harris Hannah Lillie Haworth Brenden John Heitzig Klarissa Ann Helton* Riley Bryant Helton Sebastian Miguel Hill Korynn Tracy Hoffman Jason Andrew Horchem Noah Isaac Johnson Payton Richard Johnson* Chloe Grace Johnston* Owen Thomas Joseph* Gracelyn Marie Keith* Layney K Kelly Miranda Elizabeth Kindred Cadge Michael Kingsley Malena Elise Kirgan* Madison Lynn Kirk Bella Joliene Koeppen Ashton Hayden Koontz Asher Robert Kurka Dayhlon Michael Kusnerik Amie Nichole Ladage Jacob Daniel Langley
Page 30 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Jaden Tyler Leadley Preston Scott Letterle Shelbi Lyn Lund* Zackery Luke Manley Maxwell Mary Martens Ellyn Grace Martinez Tristin Alfred Maxheimer Nevaeh Dawn McCree Connor Alan Meagher Peyton Marie Merreighn* Gabriel Issac Merriman Haley Jane Meyers Lukas Aleksander Morgan* Sierra May Morgan Norah Elizabeth Morris David Joseph Morrow II Rachel Marie Morrow* Hattie Isabel Mourning* Berlyn Lee Neese Braden Charles Neese* Camden Benjamin Chris Nelson Harvick Michael John O’Connell Ryan Edward Alexander O’Donoghue Kylee Paige Overton* Donovan Michael Parrish Archi Durgesh Patel Ethan Nathaniel Patheal Nathan Wayne Puls Noah Michael Rachall Evin Dale Radespiel Paige Nicole Raymond McKynzie Raeann Robinson Lydia Jule Roland* Adison Royal Rumler Andrew Michael Rutherford Cameron Joseph Rybolt Tyler Dean Sasse* Alexander Bryce Schmidt Wyatt James Schumm Savanna Lynn Shaffer* Kaitlyn Layne Shull Christopher Cameron Slack* Zachary Rafael Sparks Tyler Eugene Splitter Stephen Michael Starasta Triston Donald Lee Steen Claire Elise Steiner* Elizabeth Leanne Stewart Kate Lynn Stoltzenburg A. Jaymes Stone Niccolas Jon Sundeen Hayden Addison Blaze Thompson Riley Kay Tungate Emma Alisabeth Van Fossan* Owen Ryder Vaughn Debra Faith Vincent Elizabeth Jean Walters Darlene Stephanie Marie Cora Watkins Taylor Carly Webb Imagin Patience Werner Bloom White Annalynn Mae Williams* Stormy Cheyenne Willis Taylor Jean Winebrinner* Jory Jeannine Wingo* Jaron Lee Woods* McKenzie Lyn Worth* Aden James Wurth Nevaeh Ryne Young * National Honor Society
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 31 Lincoln Community High School is proud to announce the recipients of the Oliver C. and Roberta M. Hursh Memorial Scholarship Awards. Mr. and Mrs. Hursh did not have any children of their own, but education remained very important to them. They believed that society should encourage the real achievers among us. As has been done for the last twelve years, and will be for the next ten years, the valedictorian and the salutatorian of Lincoln Community High School will each receive 25% of the annual trust earned income. This year’s recipients will each receive $28,288.98. The 2023 Valedictorian is Caralyn Farnam. Caralyn is the daughter of Craig and Denise Farnam. Caralyn plans to attend Lake Land College in Mattoon, IL. The 2023 Salutatorian is Rachel Morrow. Rachel is the daughter of Gregory and Peggy Morrow. Rachel plans to attend Saint Louis University in St. Louis, MO. Lincoln Community High School Valedictorian & Salutatorian
Page 32 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Lincoln Community High School Foundation announces 2023 Scholarship recipients The Lincoln Community High School Foundation has been created to enrich lifelong learning programs and provide educational opportunities for LCHS students. The Foundation provides funds beyond the normal operating budget for community educational programs not available through tax revenues. The Foundation is a non-profit, independent organization governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, who are business and professional members of the community with a commitment to education. The Lincoln Community High School Foundation Board of Directors has reviewed this year’s applicants and has made their scholarship selections from the Senior Class of 2023. Winners are: The James E. Heinzel Scholarship (4 years at the ISU tuition rate) will be awarded to Ellyn Martinez. The Arthur and Luella Gimbel Scholarship ($5,000) will be awarded to Taylor Bean. The LeRoy Allison Memorial Scholarship ($3,000) will be awarded to Zackery Manley. The Jason Jones Memorial Scholarship ($2,000) will be awarded to Grace Curry. The Vincent Beggs Scholarship ($1,000) will be awarded to Hunter Bent, Emma Boyd, Jessie Emberton, Brenden Heitzig, Gracelyn Keith, Shelbi Lund, Rachel Morrow, Camden Nelson, Lydia Roland, Christopher Slack, Emma Van Fossan, and Jaron Woods. The Lincoln Community High School Foundation Scholarship ($1,000) will be awarded to Peyton Bennett, Jacob Bivin, Grace Curry, Caralyn Farnam, Payton Johnson, Malena Kirgan, Peyton Merreighn, Hattie Mourning, Kylee Overton, Savanna Shaffer, Stephen Starasta, Taylor Winebrinner, and McKenzie Worth. The Edna Dehner Memorial Scholarship ($500) will be awarded to Peyton Bennett, Hunter Bent, Jacob Bivin, Emma Boyd, Grace Curry, Jessie Emberton, Caralyn Farnam, Brenden Heitzig, Payton Johnson, Gracelyn Keith, Malena Kirgan, Shelbi Lund, Peyton Merreighn, Rachel Morrow, Hattie Mourning, Camden Nelson, Kylee Overton, Lydia Roland, Savanna Shaffer, Christopher Slack, Stephen Starast, Emma Van Fossan, Taylor Winebrinner, Jaron Woods, McKenzie Worth. The James B. Maxwell Educational Memorial Scholarship ($500) will be awarded to Malena Kirgan. If you are interested in making a taxdeductible contribution in order to provide enrichment opportunities for future students of Lincoln Community High School, please contact the superintendent’s office or visit us on our website at www.lchsrailers.org under LCHS Foundation. [Rachel Jording]
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 33 Local Student Adison R Rumler Receives National Honor Lincoln Community High School student recognized for superior academic achievement by The National Society of High School Scholars The National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) today announced student Adison R. Rumler from Lincoln, IL, has been selected to become a member of the esteemed organization. The Society recognizes top scholars who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, scholarship and community commitment. The anouncement was made by NSHSS Co-founder and President James. W. Lewis. “On behalf of NSHSS and our co-found Claes Nobel, a member of the family that established the Nobel Prizes, I am honored to recognize the hard work, passion and commitment that Adison has demonstrated to achieve this exceptonal level of academic excellence,” said Lewis. “Adison is now a member of a unique community of scholars -- a community that represents our very best hope for the future.” “We are proud to provide lifetime membership to young scholars to support their growth and development,” state Lewis. “We help students like Adison build on their academic success by connecting them with learning experiences and resources to help prepare them for college and meaningful careers.” NSHSS members automatically become lifetime members at the time of the initial membership. Each step along the way -- from high school to college to career -- NSHSS connects outstanding young scholars with the resources they need to develop their strengths and pursue their passions. www.nshss.org
Page 34 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Mount Pulaski High School Class of 2023 Walker Allen Jayda Allspach Austin Anderson Clay Aylesworth Andrew Bailey Kate Beckers Payton Butler Jessica Carter Evan Cooper Hailee Daigh Allison Delatorre Riley DeWitt
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 35 Jeromy Draper Anayah Duke Jackson Fricke Mikayla Harris Kaleb Hild Lillian Hild Alexis Johnson Oran Kuhlman Andrew Liesman Justin Maas Chase McCormick Ethan Payne
Page 36 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Rhett Pharis Je’Na Rentmeister Elizabeth Reynolds Josef Shehorn Mallory Shehorn Gavin Smith Keyleigh Stewart Alexis Wade Cora Lynn Wallace Makenna Wilham Peyton Wyss
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 37 Mount Pulaski High School Class of 2023 Involvement, Honors & Achievements Allen Walker: Basketball, Baseball, Track, Wrestling, National Honor Society, FFA Officer, Clay Target League, Day of Service, October Senior-of-the-Month, Logan County Farm Bureau Scholarship, FFA Alumni Scholarship, Caleb Coogan Memorial Scholarship, Deputy Scott Brown Memorial Scholarship Jayda Allspach: Golf, Cheerleading, Prom Committee, FFA Officer, Day of Service, Prom Court, Yearbook Staff, AllAcademic Tomahawk Conference, Longview Community Bank Scholarship, Spot of Sunshine Scholarship, Mt. Pulaski Hilltop Club Scholarship, Caleb Coogan Memorial Scholarship, Cabin Ridge Scholarship Austin Anderson: eSports, Day of Service Clay Aylesworth: Basketball, Baseball, FFA Officer, Student Council, Academic Challenge, National Honor Society, Day of Service, Science Olympiad, Prom Court, September Senior-of-the-Month, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Logan County Farm Bureau Scholarship, Iva Mae Blaum Scholarship, Spot of Sunshine Scholarship, Doris Cates Memorial Scholarship, Menard Electric Cooperative Scholarship, FFA Alumni Scholarship, Caleb Coogan Memorial Scholarship Andrew Bailey: Basketball, Baseball, FFA, Day of Service, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference Kate Beckers: FFA, Yearbook Staff, Volleyball, Prom Queen, Day of Service, FFA Alumni Scholarship, Caleb Coogan Memorial Scholarship Payton Butler: Cooperative Work Program, Day of Service Jessica Carter: Drama Club, FCCLA, Concert Band, Pep Band, Soccer, Scholastic Bowl, Prom Committee, Day of Service, Track, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference Evan Cooper: Basketball, Baseball, Academic Challenge Team, National Honor Society, FFA Officer, Day of Service, Science Olympiad, Prom Court, March Seniorof-the-Month, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Illinois State Scholar, Farm Credit Bureau Scholarship, Iva Mae Blaum Scholarship, Logan County Farm Bureau Scholarship, FCCLA Service Scholarship, United Producers, Inc. Scholarship, The John B. & Winnie Harmsen Behrends Endowment Scholarship, FFA Alumni Scholarship, Caleb Coogan Memorial Scholarship, Sydney Edwards Davis Scholar-Athlete Scholarship, Deputy Scott Brown Memorial Scholarship, The American Legion Department of Illinois Scholarship Hailee Daigh: Volleyball, Basketball, FFA, Yearbook Staff, Day of Service, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference Allison Delatorre: Day of Service
Page 38 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Riley DeWitt: Clay Target League, Day of Service Jeromy Draper: Scholastic Bowl, FFA, Day of Service Anayah Duke: Drama Club, Art Club, Day of Service, Liftoff Scholarship Jackson Fricke: Golf, Basketball, Baseball, National Honor Society, FFA Officer, Student Council, Class Officer, Purple Reign, Prom Court, Day of Service, November Seniorof-the-Month, Illinois Township Officials Scholarship, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Irma Maxheimer Dana Scholarship, Illinois Township Officials Scholarship, FFA Alumni Scholarship, Caleb Coogan Memorial Scholarship Mikayla Harris: Cheerleading, Cooperative Work Program, FCCLA State Officer, National Honor Society, FFA, Prom Committee, Day of Service, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference Kaleb Hild: Wrestling, FCCLA, LTEC, Soccer, Day of Service, Track, May Seniorof-the-Month, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference Lillian Hild: FCCLA, Yearbook Staff, Pep Band, National Honor Society, Soccer, Cheerleading, Day of Service, December Senior-of-the-Month, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Senior-of-the-Year Alexis Johnson: Drama Club,Concert Band, Pep Band, Soccer, Track, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Day of Service, Claus Tanner Memorial Scholarship Oran Kuhlman: Clay Target League, Cooperative Work Program, FFA, Basketball, Student Council, Day of Service Andrew Liesman: Clay Target League, FFA, Day of Service Justin Maas: Day of Service, Kim Knauer Memorial Scholarship Chase McCormick: Cooperative Work Program, FFA, Day of Service Ethan Payne: Soccer, Basketball, Baseball,Track, Academic Challenge Team, National Honor Society, Science Olympiad, Soccer, Student Council, Class Officer, January Senior-of-the-Month, Prom Court, Day of Service, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, DAR Good Citizen Award, Lion’s Club Tom Kennedy Memorial Scholarship, Shelter Insurance Scholarship Rhett Pharis: Clay Target League, FFA Officer Je’Na Rentmeister: Volleyball, Basketball, FFA, Day of Service Elizabeth Reynolds: Cooperative Work Program, Day of Service, Book Club Josef Shehorn: Cooperative Work Program, Day of Service Mallory Shehorn: Cheerleading, National Honor Society, FFA, Yearbook Staff, Prom Committee, Prom Court, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 39 Gavin Smith: Basketball, Baseball, Academic Challenge Team, FFA, Prom King, National Honor Society, Student Council, Class Officer, Day of Service, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Logan County Farm Bureau Scholarship Keyleigh Stewart: Cooperative Work Program, FFA, Volleyball, Softball, Day of Service Alexis Wade: Volleyball, Basketball, Track, Academic Challenge Team, National Honor Society, Student Council, Class Officer, Purple Reign, Day of Service, April Senior-of-theMonth, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Mt. Pulaski Hilltop Club Scholarship, Deputy Scott Brown Memorial Scholarship Cora Lynn Wallace: Golf, Drama Club, FCCLA, Track, Yearbook Staff, Prom Court, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Day of Service, Logan County Sheriff’s Association Scholarship Makenna Wilham: Track, Volleyball, Academic Challenge Team, Drama Club, National Honor Society, Science Olympiad, Concert Band, Pep Band, Student Council, Class Officer, Yearbook Staff, Prom Court, Day of Service, February Senior-of-theMonth, All-Academic Tomahawk Conference, Illinois State Scholar, Lester Werntz Scholarship, Zonta Club of Lincoln Melanie Schaler Memorial Nursing Scholarship Peyton Wyss: FCCLA, National Honor Society, Basketball, Volleyball, Science Olympiad, Purple Reign, Prom Committee, Day of Service, Mt. Pulaski Education Association Scholarship, Kim Knauer Memorial Scholarship
Page 40 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Olympia High School Class of 2023 ADRIANNA BAKER MADISON BALES MCKENZIE BANISTER CLAYTON BARNES ANNA BIEBER SKYLER BIGGS JACKSON BIRKEY KYLA BIRKY ERNEST BISSELL JOEL BOESDORFER ASHLEY BOOLMAN JOSH BOOTS TAYLOR BOUDEMAN ALEXIS BRAMMEIER JAMES BUCK CAMERON CAHILL LANA CANNON ANDREW CARROLL MICHAEL COLEY MYA COLEY MADELINE CONWAY BRADEN COOK CHRYSTAL CORNWELL JASE DANIELSON CHRISTIAN DAVID SAMUEL DAVIS EVAN DETERDING JACOB DONOVAN LEXY DOUGLAS GABRIELLE ELLESS JORDAN EMMERT ETHAN EVANS ANDRIA EWALT EMMA EWINS LYNDSEY FAIRBURN LOGAN FARQUHAR PAIGE FINCHUM ISABELLE FORREST TAYLOR FRYE ETHAN HALL BLAINE HALLEY TYLOR HEFT TARAH HILT DEMI HOFFMAN EDWIN HOHULIN ELLIOTT HOHULIN TAYLOR HORN TAYLOR HUFFINGTON SETH JENKINS XZAVIER KELL MADALYNNE KESSINGER MCKENNA LALLY DAWSON LAWRENCE CAMDYN LAWSON MIA LEININGER CHELSIE LEWIS JEREMIAH LITTLEFIELD ABIGAIL LITWILLER MAXX MAHLER GEORGE MARTIN HUNTER MARTIN CHUCK MATHEWS MACKENZIE MATTER EMILY MAYBERRY KEAGAN MCDANNALD WYATT MCGINNIS MAGGIE MCNALIS NICHOLAS MCTERNEN DELANEY MORROW CLAYTON MORTIMER CHLOE MORTON ELLISEN MURPHY KEEGAN NEFF BRODY NEUHAUS JAMES OLIVERO WYNONA OO BRIANNA OXLEY KEATON PEIFER AUBRY POST LUCAS B PRATT BRENDEN REBER CAYDEN ROBISON BROOKE ROGERS PAYTON RUESTMAN WESLEY RULE ELIJAH RUSH TRAVIS RUSH AVA RYAN JULIE SANDERS JUSTIN SHAFFER SUPITCHA SILTMAN REYGAN SITTON ELLA SLAUGHTER DELANEY SMITH ELIJAH SMITH ZACHARY SPAID SYDNEY SPENCER THOMAS SPENCER KAI TABOR KASSIDY TACKETT TAVIEN TALLEY JAZZMINE THOMPSON ERICA TIPSORD LILY JO TREW NICOLE VAN DYKE MICHAEL WELCH TYLER WESCOTT-DAVIS TRISTAN WILFONG GANNON WILLE GUNNAR ERIC WILSON EMMA YEAZLE
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 41 Logan County 4-H members earn state scholarships Sophia Schneider Haven Henry
Page 42 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 The career achievements of Illinois 4-H members were lauded at the Illinois 4-H Celebration of Excellence held April 1 at the Hilton Garden Inn in Champaign. Forty-five young adults were chosen as scholarship winners with each winner receiving a $1,000 scholarship from the Illinois 4-H Foundation. The scholarships are awarded to five Illinois 4-H members in each of nine focus categories and are based on merit and a demonstrated standard of 4-H excellence. Haven Henry and Sophia Schneider, both of Logan County, were selected as winners in the Creative and Performing Arts and Communications category, which recognizes youth who have focused their 4-H work on the arts and the art of communicating with others. “4-H has encouraged me to face my fears and has helped me grow in my character, integrity and leadership,” said Henry in her application. “All of these lessons, new understandings and passions about our amazing world will greatly affect how I live.” Scholarship support allows students to continue to follow their learning pathways for post-secondary education. Henry is currently enrolled at Heartland Community College with the goal of going into the field of Medical Assisting and Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Schneider plans to attend the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign at the Gies College of Business. The Illinois 4-H scholarship program is supported through private donors and the Illinois 4-H Foundation. “I personally look forward to the event every year,” says Illinois 4-H Foundation board member Jenny Webb of McLean County. “It is so energizing to see amazing youth in this room and what they are accomplishing.” “The Illinois 4-H Foundation works handin-hand with the statewide program, and our sole mission is to be able to provide private funding so that 4-H can do more,” says Webb. “We know that 4-H programming is leading the way nationally in a variety of ways, and we are so grateful for our donors’ support.” The ceremony program is available on the Illinois 4-H website. [Amy Zepp, 4-H Program Coordinator, Sangamon County]
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 43 Logan County Farm Bureau awards $22,000 in Agriculture Scholarships On Thursday, March 23, 2023, the Logan County Farm Bureau hosted its sixth annual Ag Scholarship Breakfast at the American Legion Post 263 in Lincoln. A high priority on the morning program was the awarding of agricultural scholarships to area students who are furthering their education in the agricultural field. This year, $22,000 was distributed across six scholarships. The breakdown of the scholarships and the name of the awardee are as follows: Walker Allen, Mt. Pulaski, $5,000 Clay Aylesworth, Mt. Pulaski, $5,000 Evan Cooper, Mt. Pulaski, $3,500 Abigail Montgomery, Hartsburg, $3,500 Blaine Halley, Atlanta, $2,500 Gavin Smith, Mt Pulaski, $2,500 Students were called to the front one at a time to receive their awards. Afterward, they gathered together for a group photo for local media.
Page 44 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Five Logan County Seniors have been selected as new scholarship recipients from the Iva Mae Blaum Trust. They are Clay Aylesworth, Bailey Jolynn Billington, Evan Lee Cooper, Shelbi Lund and Tyler Sasse. They will begin their nursing or agriculture studies in the fall. FIVE LOGAN COUNTY SENIORS SELECTED AS IVA MAE BLAUM SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS Clay Aylesworth is the son of Richard and Deborah Aylesworth of Mt. Pulaski. Clay will be attending Lincoln Land Community College studying Crop Science and Agronomy. Bailey Jolynn Billington is the daughter of Jeremy and Jackie Billington, of Lincoln. Bailey will be attending Heartland Community studying Agriculture Business. Evan Lee Cooper is the son of Scott and Tanya Cooper of Mt. Pulaski. Evan will be attending Illinois College studying Agribusiness Management.
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 45 Shelbi Lund is the daughter Lyndi Lund of Lincoln. Shelbi will be attending Heartland Community College studying Nursing. Tyler Sasse is the son of Allen and Heather Sasse of Beason. Tyler will be attending the University of Illinois in the fall and will be studying Agronomy. The scholarship, given in memory of Arthur B. Blaum and Iva Mae Blaum, is earmarked for Logan County students who are majoring in nursing or agriculture. It may be renewed up to eight undergraduate semesters, if the student completes at least 12 credit hours per semester and maintains a B cumulative grade point average and remains committed to his or her initial field of study. Iva Mae Blaum was a graduate of Deaconess Hospital of Lincoln and retired from Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital in 1985 after 46 years of service as a surgery supervisor and director of nursing. Her husband was a lifelong farmer in the New Holland area. Mrs. Blaum passed away in August 2015 and the first scholarship was presented in 2016. Since then, Kameron Aylesworth, Lukas Aylesworth, Cierra Crowell, Jacob Kirgan, Maggie Anderson, Molly Schempp, Madison Thomas, Madeline Cook, Ruthie Ruhland Cole Kindred have received scholarships for agriculture. Emma O’Donoghue, Grace Skelton, Lauren Turner, Claire Hill, Brooke Kitner, Brooke Montcalm, Ashley Schmidt, Madison Orebaugh, Maura Gowin, Zadie Laubenstein and Alaina Taylor have received scholarships for nursing. Per the terms of Mrs. Blaum’s will, the trust should continue to award scholarships until 2035.Heartland Bank and Trust Company is the trustee of the Iva Mae Blaum Trust.
Page 46 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Lincoln Community Theatre announces 2023 Scholarship Winners Lincoln Community Theatre has selected Zildjian Bolton and Emma Boyd to receive the group’s annual scholarship awards. Traditionally the scholarship has been awarded to Logan County high school graduates planning to attend or attending a college majoring in Theatre Arts. Last year the search was expanded to include college scholarships for other fine arts majors. Mr. Bolton is the son of Sheralyn and Brian Bolton. He plans to attend Olivet Nazarene University and major in general music. Miss Boyd is the daughter of Sarah and Brandon Boyd. As a student at Greenville University, she plans to pursue a degree in music education. Lincoln Community Theatre would like to congratulate both recipients. We are pleased they are planning on instilling a love of music and theatre to future generations. In 1972, Lincoln Community Theatre was formed for the promotion and presentation of live quality musical and dramatic works, to create opportunities for participants of all ages to develop talents in all aspects of theatre arts, and to build community involvement in promoting a lifelong appreciation of the arts. Our 2023 summer season includes Nunsense, a comical musical, June 22-25 and Honk!, an all ages musical, July 20-23. Regardless of experience, visit our website for volunteer opportunities, audition information, past production programs, and more! https://www. lincolncommunitytheatre.org/ Zildjian Bolton Emma Boyd
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 47 Faith Sanders 2023 Lincoln Woman’s Club Scholarship recipient GFWC Lincoln Woman's Club is happy to announce that Faith Sanders, a graduating senior from Hartsburg-Emden High School is the winner of the club's $1,000 Scholarship. This scholarship is offered to a graduating female Senior from either Lincoln Community High School, Mt. Pulaski High School, or Hartsburg-Emden High. Faith was chosen for this scholarship from a very talented pool of female applicants. Faith will be recognized and awarded this scholarship at Hartsburg-Emden High school graduation May 13, 2023. She plans to attend Heartland Community College pursuing a degree in accounting.
Page 48 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Kylee Overton, daughter of Michelle Brinkley and Chris Hanson, has been named “Student of the Year” at Lincolnland Technical Education Center (LTEC) for the 2023 school year and will receive a scholarship sponsored by the Rotary Club of Lincoln, IL. Kylee, a senior from Lincoln Community High School, completed the LTEC Nursing 101 Program where she was able to obtain medical skills training and be eligible to take the State of Illinois’s Licensure Exam for Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) while earning college credit through Heartland Community College. Kylee is high recommended by her instructor, Mrs. Christina Fink. According to Mrs. Fink, Kylee was a model student who was prepared, focused, determined and ready to engage in learning every day. During her clinicals, both patients and staff recognized Kylee for her professional demeanor and her willingness to go above and beyond. Mrs. Fink feels that Kylee will do outstanding things in college and without a doubt, succeed as a leader in the medical profession. While attending Lincoln Community High School and LTEC, Kylee has worked at Cracker Barrel for last four years. She also Lincolnland Technical Education Center “Student of the Year” for 2023 Kylee Overton participated in the LCHS Band, Library Club, and the National Honors Society. Kylee is also a member of LCHS Swim/Dive Team and has been its captain for two years. Most recently, Kylee has accepted a position as a Nurse Tech at Lincoln Memorial Hospital and will start her new position after she successfully completes of her state testing for CNA. Kylee’s future plan is to attend Southeast Missouri State University to major in Biology: Pre-Physician Assistant and receive her Bachelor of Science Degree. Kylee’s eventual goal is to become a Physician’s Assistant. As the LTEC “Student of the Year,” Kylee received a $1,000 scholarship from the Rotary Club of Lincoln, IL during Senior Night at the Lincoln Community High School’s Gymnasium on May 10th.
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 49 Lincolnland Technical Education Center “Ready for the Real World” Scholarship Recipient for 2023 Deagan Eads Deagan Eads, son of Keith & Brianna Eads, has been selected by Lincolnland Technical Education Center (LTEC) to be this year’s recipient of the “Ready for the Real World” Scholarship sponsored by the Rotary Club of Lincoln, IL. Deagan, a senior at Lincoln Community High School, has completed both LTEC curriculums in Automotive Technology and Advance Metal/Welding in the two years he has attended LTEC. Deagan has demonstrated high level of skill obtainment and a strong work ethic which will make him a true resource for any potential employer. According to Mr. Akers, his Advance Metals/Welding Instructor, Deagan is punctual, polite, and gets the job done. Deagan’s future plan is to attend MTI for their Welding Program and hope to eventually join the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers Union. Recipient of the “Ready for the Real World” Scholarship receives $1,000 award from Rotary Club of Lincoln, IL which will be presented to Deagan on May 10th at the LCHS Senior night at the LCHS Main Gymnasium in Lincoln, IL.
Page 50 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Two LCHS Seniors Selected as Lucille Flick Larson Scholarship Awardees Two Lincoln Community High School Seniors have been selected as scholarship recipients of the Lucille Flick Larson Scholarship Trust. They are Emma Grace Boyd and Gracelyn Keith. Mr. Arthur Larson established a scholarship trust in 1994 as a permanent memorial for his wife, Lucille Flick Larson. Mrs. Larson taught school for 38 years. She was a graduate of Lincoln Community High School, and she attended Lincoln College, Normal Teachers’ College, and the University of Michigan. Throughout her career she dedicated herself to excellence in education and provided a caring haven for her students. Heartland Bank and Trust Company is the trustee of the Lucille Flick Larson Scholarship Trust. Awardees receive at least $1,250 per semester for up to eight semesters of their undergraduate career if they maintain a “B” average. Only graduating seniors of Lincoln Community High School are eligible for selection. Emma Grace Boyd, the daughter of Brandon and Sarah Boyd, plans to attend Greenville University to major in Music Education.
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 51 Gracelyn Keith, the daughter of Ryan and Jennifer Keith, plans to attend Eastern Illinois University to major in English and Spanish Education. Past and current Lucille Flick Larson Scholarship recipients include: Carrie Schreiber, Ryan Struebing, Emmary Searby, Adam Schweitzer, Kim Ayars, Leslie Moehring, Amy Rohrer, Brittany Charette, Danielle Peifer, Miranda Stone, Katie Courtwright, Andrew Frost, Ashley Marten, Kenzi Huelskoetter, Corinne O’Donoghue, Rachel Hahn, Nicole Tripplett, Kara Gehlbach, Christine Schick, Kathryn O’Donoghue, Abigail Feldman, Rachael Jones, Dena Boyd, Katelyn Anderson, Shelbie Gleason, Shelby Kottemann, Matthew Barker, Corey Jones, Maggie Cusey, Ashley Erb, Tiffany Strickler, Kathryn Hoefs, Abagail Crowell, Kathryn Nobbe, Maggie Hanger, Alexis Davis, Faith Turley, Addison Yeazle, Alexis Erb, Caroline Ahrends, Drake Rutledge, Tori Schilling, Ryen Stoltzenburg and Sophia Yeazle. [Susan D. Sheley Wealth Management Specialist]
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CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 53 LCU graduates participate in 78th Annual Commencement service The 78th Annual Commencement for Lincoln Christian University was held in the Earl C. Hargrove Chapel at Open Arms Christian Fellowship Saturday, May 6, 2023, at 10 a.m. This year, with the reduction of students receiving their educations at the campus in Lincoln, the traditional format of graduation in the morning and seminary commencement in the afternoon was altered into a single ceremony for all graduates of the class of 2023. An organ prelude was performed by LCU alumna, Linda Storm. “Holy is He” was performed as the processional with Storm on the organ and Professor Emeritus of Worship Ministry Jeffrey Colleen on the piano. A congregational hymn, "Holy, Holy, Holy" was led by Dr. Darrin Akin, Adjunct Professor of Worship Ministry. The invocation was given by Larry Roberts, Associate professor Emeritus of Psychology. A warm welcome was given by President, Dr. Silas McCormick, who could not have appeared prouder of the 2023 graduates' hard work and accomplishments; after which he introduced the commencement speaker, Dr. John D. Castelein. Dr. Castelein was born in France, raised in Belgium, and became an American citizen in 1984. He attended Johnson Bible College (1966-68) before graduating from Lincoln Christian College (1970). He earned an MA and an MDiv in Theology from Lincoln Christian Seminary in 1977. He received a PhD in Theology in 1988 from the Divinity School of the University of Chicago. Continued --
Page 54 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Dr. Castelein taught undergraduate courses at LCU from 1977 until 1992. He taught theology in the seminary and the DMin programs from 1992 until 2014, when he retired. He had preaching ministries in Indiana, Illinois (Lincoln Christian Church 2001 to 2006) and his hometown of Genk, Belgium. However, raised in the secular culture of Belgium, challenged by his critical doctoral studies in religion, Dr. Castelein stepped away from the faith from 2010 until 2022. Then, by God's amazing Grace, he experienced a reconversion, which finally united his mind with his heart in loving God our Father and serving Jesus Christ, our Lord. Dr. Castelein’s testimony to the graduating class was not the typical commencement speech where one charges and encourages students to go change the world...although they understood that that is the great commission. His testimony was about having walked away from the faith on three separate occasions and God's grace pursuing him. Each time God was personal and intentional making himself known to Dr. Castelein, who could not deny the power of God's grace touching and profoundly changing his heart and mind. So, to the class of 2023 (and to the rest of us) the message is about becoming God's obedient servant. Choosing to serve with gratitude for the grace He freely gives us on this journey..."not I but Christ...not I but Christ". Following Dr. Castelein’s address, happy students filed across the stage receiving their diplomas and warm congratulations for the leadership of Lincoln Christian University. Afterward, the students celebrated with family and friends as many gathered inside and outside the chapel for family pictures as well as embraces from family, friends, and fellow students. [Karen Castelein]
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 55 YOUR OBEDIENT SERVANT Commencement 2023 Col 3:12-17 In 1966, I met Dr. Bell for the first time. Dr. R. M. Bell was the imposing president of Johnson Bible College, and I was a freshman, newly arrived from Belgium. The American immigration office required that I get his signature to validate my presence in the United States as a legitimate student at an American school. Without his signature, I could be deported! I stood before him in his spacious office. As he slowly signed his name, he paused briefly and looked at me intently and asked me: “Do you understand how important a name is?”Totally out of the blue! And then, as he handed me the important document I depended on to be able to stay, he said: “Receiving the name of Jesus Christ is the most important signature you’ll ever need.” I have never forgotten that penetrating question and that important challenge. This morning, as you graduate from this Christ-centered school, I want to ask you a simple, oft repeated question: “what is your name?” You know what I mean: “What is your signature of who you currently are and of who you plan to be?” Completing this milestone in your education is a great achievement! Congratulations. May you never forget the feeling of completion and satisfaction you have from a job well done! But I would like you also to remember this important question: has our Lord Jesus Christ also signed off on your diploma, on your character, and on your intended mission in life? Like many others in his day, President Abraham Lincoln ended many of his personal letters with this significant signature: “Your Obedient Servant, Abe.”Therefor the title of my testimony and challenge is this: “Your Obedient Servant.” I hope that your heart this morning gives that signature to our Lord Jesus Christ! As we reflect on the unique signatures each of us are choosing in our lives, I want you tell you why and how being “the obedient servant Continued --
Page 56 CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 of our Lord Jesus Christ” has become the signature of my life. In fact, here is the signature for all my emails that I created soon after the death in 2022 of my beloved wife, Marie: Committed to love everyone Because life here is so precious Because death here is so final Because Christ is Lord always I pray that my sharing the story behind my email signature will challenge you and inspire you so that you make being our Lord Jesus’ Christ’s obedient servant your signature that captures your name as well as the purpose of your life. Here is my story: Donald Castelein, my Belgian father, was converted by an American soldier he met in WWII. Having taken on the name of Christian, dad brought his family to Tennessee to study for the preaching ministry. My father graduated with highest honors from Johnson Bible College and in 1956 became the first Christian Church missionary to the Dutch (Flemish) speaking part of Belgium. He baptized me in 1957, as his first convert. Do you remember your baptism as well as I remember mine? John Donald Castelein had been baptized into the larger name of our Lord Jesus Christ as the Bible says. I had a “new name, written down in glory” as older Christians used to sing! However, and here is where some of you this morning can identify with me: as I slowly created my own way of signing my character, I experienced a profound intellectual, emotional, and spiritual contradiction that would affect me every day for the rest of my life. If you can identify with this inner warfare, how I pray my words may bring you hope and comfort! During my high school years in Belgium, on the one hand, there was my dad who preached weekly a conservative and devotionally inspiring sermon. But there was also my Protestant religion teacher in the Atheneum, the public school system, who weekly taught me a very liberal religion as part of a very secular, Post-Christian Belgian culture. To varying degrees, some of you if not all, our graduates that we are honoring this morning, are experiencing this same tension to which I am confessing. It is the tug of war between living in an increasingly secular culture and trying to serve in a biblical church. Whose obedient servant are you planning on being? My testimony is that even ten years of being a preacher in various churches, and thirty-seven years of studying the Bible, exploring religion, and teaching theology, did not make me immune to serious doubts and actual apostacy! I say this not with pride or arrogance but with deep shame and painful regret!! As you leave this campus, graduates, you will be walking through “the valley of the shadow of death”—moral, intellectual, and spiritual death! Follow close to your Shepherd, your Lord, and let his rod discipline you and his staff comfort you and you will be part of the spiritual awakening God is bringing to this great country! Continued --
CLASS OF 2023 LINCOLN DAILY NEWS.COM MAY / JUNE 2023 Page 57 If you are hearing me as a Christan who has never wavered in your commitment to our Lord’s name, then share my concern about your children, your grandchildren, and some of your friend no longer serving our Lord. At three different times in my life, I felt like my personal integrity compelled me to change the basic signature of my life. To be explicit about it, I, John Castelein, Christian Church preacher for a total of 10 year, I, LCU professor in theology for 37 years, at three separate times rejected our Lord Jesus Christ, whose name I had been baptized in and into according to the Bible. Listen, 2023 graduates of LCU, leaders of tomorrow’s churches and ministries, if Peter decided he had to deny even knowing the name of Jesus Christ our Lord three times, it can happen to you! I know this so painfully: it happened to me! I. The first time I rejected the name of Christian, I was age 14. I was a rebellious juvenile. I turned away from the faith inwardly and secretly, in my heart,while still having to attend dad’s church in Genk, Belgium. Do you remember if you rebelled against your parents, your church, your Lord? However, God used tragedy to reclaim me into His family and into His name! My father’s sudden death of a heart attack at age 44 resulted in me, as a 16-year-old,rededicating my life and entering Johnson Bible College myself in 1966. How old were you when you for the first time wrestled with whether your name, your signature, your identity was that of someone who truly is “an obedient servant of our Lord Jesus Christ”? II. My second denial of Christ’s name occurred when I was 66, now as a mature thinking person. In May of 2014, the year I retired from teaching at LCU, I finally succumbed to all my critical questions, which had been significantly increased by my PhD studies in religion. I once again, at least inwardly, left the faith. I even joined an anonymous online community of doubting clergy, both active and retired. And yet, I still continued to attend the church and my beloved Sunday School class here in Lincoln. And, during all these years of internal turmoil, I was extremely careful to honor my covenant with Lincoln Christian College, and later with LCU, not to undermine the faith of any of my undergraduate or graduate students! But then, once again, another very serious incident occurred. I needed double bypass heart surgery in December of 2014 because stents would no longer fix my problem. This emergency surgery resulted in me experiencing an enormous sense of gratitude to be alive. I desperately wanted to say “thank you” to Someone bigger than the doctors, the nurses, the therapists, or even Marie. Have you ever experienced a thankfulness so allencompassing that you know there only God is big enough for you to say “thank you” to? So, I firmly resolved to redouble my efforts at finding the living God, through daily devotions, earnest prayer, and regular worship and I did so--for seven months! Continued --