GPSAS Celebrates 100 Years of Service
The reunion was a sample of the joy to be experienced when Jesus returns. Following months of planning, Oregon's Grants Pass Seventh-day Adventist School (GPSAS) celebrated 100 years of service. The last weekend of April 2017 was a time of praise and thanksgiving. The weekend was about the blessing that is God's school. Former principals, teachers, and students traveled from all over the country to participate.
In September 1894, the Adventist church was the seventh church built in Grants Pass. The first Adventist school in Grants Pass occupied one room in the back half of that building. GPSAS officially opened in 1916 with 17 students. Cora Smith was the teacher, and the school served first- through eighth-grade children.
By 1935, the enrollment at the school was 40. The school relocated to a two-story building on Seventh Street. The school has been at its current location on Heidi Lane for 25 years. It currently serves about 70 students in kindergarten through 10th grade.
On Friday evening of the anniversary weekend, a vespers was held at the Grants Pass Church. George Knight, Adventist author and education advocate, was the featured speaker. “Education stands at the very center of where the future is going,” he told the group. Adventist education shapes our world and prepares us for Jesus’ return. Knight continued his inspiring thoughts the following day, with about 300 in attendance for Sabbath services.
A haystack dinner was served at GPSAS. This was a time of fellowship and joyful reunions. Former principals, teachers and volunteers were recognized during this time. Student-led campus tours were offered. The day concluded with a musical vespers at the church, followed by a light supper in the Better Living Center.
Also part of the weekend was a golf tournament, pancake breakfast and car wash. All money raised is to keep God’s school operational until Jesus returns. Ongoing fundraising projects include student scholarships and replacing the gym floor. Maintaining the ninth- and 10th-grade class is also a priority.
The centennial celebration wouldn’t have been possible without the help of many volunteers and God's blessing. The weekend was a success only because of His guidance and support. Please visit the school website, www.grantspassschool.com, to read more about the centennial celebration and to support the school.
Jennifer Burkes and Becky Kruger