Pictured left to right: Billy Dan, Jennifer, Ancel (‘16), and Hope Carson

In 2002, Jennifer and Billy Dan Carson enrolled their son, Ancel, in Grace Community School’s junior kindergarten program. As members of Grace
Community Church, the Carson family chose Grace Community School because they sought congruency in their children’s home, school, and church education.

On looking back, Jennifer noted, “The whole first year that Ancel was in junior kindergarten I just cried because I was so thankful.” Their daughter, Hope, started junior kindergarten three years later. The Carsons have now been part of the Grace Family for 16 years; Ancel graduated from Grace in 2016 while Hope will graduate next spring 2019.

The Carson family has chosen to stay at Grace because of the “strong sense of community and Christ-centered, quality education.” They added, “We always gave Ancel and Hope a choice to try something different, but they never wanted to. They loved being at Grace.”

Both Ancel and Hope have experienced an amazing community at Grace Community School through participating in Drum Line, which provided them with the opportunity to serve on mission in Uganda. They have also learned how to love others who are different than them through volunteering with the Fearfully and Wonderfully Made program, a weekly drama and music camp hosted by Grace in partnership with Smith County ARC.

“We have loved the opportunity for our kids to love and serve others in the name of Jesus,” said Jennifer and Billy Dan.

During their time as Grace parents, the Carson family has developed a strong belief in the mission of Grace Community School; Jennifer paraphrased it as “to teach and train our children to navigate the world for Christ.” They are seeing the fruit of this mission in their children and other Grace students.

“We need godly young adults in our community, and this school grows these adults,” said Jennifer. They choose to support the initiatives and needs of Grace Community School by giving their time and investing their resources. For the past five years, Billy Dan has volunteered for the integral role of pulling the Drum Line trailer to out of town performances. In addition, Jennifer has led Praying Parents of Grace for the past four years and also serves as a current Grace School Board member.

“We see being generous with the resources God has given us as a part of His command to love Him and love our neighbors. It’s part of being a family – His family,” Jennifer said. Billy Dan added, “It’s been money well spent.”

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