1 Corinthians 12:12-14 (ESV)
“For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves[a] or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit. For the body does not consist of one member but of many.”
Ephesians 4:1-6 (ESV)
“I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”
These verses are foundational to our personal and corporate Christian witness to the world, and they spur us forward as a Christian school: Our mission and vision statements are wrapped in them; they are part of the very DNA of who we are and why we do what we do. These commandments also give us a lens for why we have a Kingdom Unity Initiative.
Our Why – Reason for Kingdom Unity
To promote unity throughout the LCA community by ensuring that Christian students and families from all backgrounds feel welcomed, affirmed, valued, and equipped to succeed at LCA.
We are all uniquely made by our Creator with different interests, talents, gifts, ethnicities, and cultures, but each of us is equally valuable to God and equally valued within the LCA community.
How LCA Defines Diversity
While we recognize that the differences God has created in each person are important to a better understanding of Him (in whose image we are made), differences are not the ultimate goal. Unity that recognizes and affirms our God-ordained differences is the goal. Diversity is one aspect of God’s creation, but what God desires from us is unity. Our purpose is to value our God-given differences and maximize them for God’s glory. Legacy Christian Academy, therefore, defines diversity in the following terms that honor God and are supported by Scripture:
- Gender: God made them male and female; Genesis 1:26-27; Matthew 19:4
- Race: Sociological construct that groups together people with similar and distinct characteristics; Revelation 7:9
- Age: Life begins at conception and age is the number of years lived
- Ability: God has given each person talents, gifts, and skills to uniquely equip the body of Christ
- Culture: Customs, traditions, and societal expectations of a group of people; Revelation 7:9
- Economic Status: As Christians, we are stewards of God’s resources including all material wealth and possessions; Mark 12:41-44
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is the Kingdom Unity Initiative?
The Kingdom Unity Initiative is a schoolwide focus on promoting LCA as a community that welcomes and honors Christian families from all backgrounds. It is an action plan that addresses Key Initiative 1.1 in the school’s strategic plan, which was adopted in 2017.
Why does Kingdom Unity matter to my child(ren)?
One of LCA’s core values is imago Dei, which is a Latin term meaning “in the image of God.” Legacy believes and teaches that all humans bear the image of God, reflect his glory, and are worthy of respect and dignity. We hope that all Legacy students will discover that their primary identity is found in Christ. All other identities are secondary to their status as adopted sons and daughters of the God of the universe. By preparing our students with this foundation of security through their primary identity in Jesus Christ, they will be equipped to allow the light of Christ to shine wherever their path leads them. Through this initiative, we also hope that our students will be better prepared to share God’s truth and the hope of the gospel with people from every nation, tribe, and language (Revelation 7:9).
Why was this initiative established? Is it a reaction to the strife and division we see all across the country?
This initiative was established four years ago as we engaged in strategic thinking about how our school community could better reflect the diversity within God’s Kingdom. Genesis 1:27 tells us that we are all made in God’s image and as such, we felt a need to better understand and serve our already diverse community. Furthermore, everything we do is inspired by the spirit of God and empowered by living out the word of God, so we are never influenced by the world. We are in the world but not of the world; thus, this initiative was established for, inspired by, and built on honoring God.
Is this initiative intended as a political statement?
No. Legacy will never become a political organization, nor will we teach ideas and philosophies that are contrary to scripture and our biblical worldview. LCA’s mission and core values will always guide our work and provide a framework for developing curricula and programs. As we continue to prepare “Daniels” to be “in the world but not of the world,” it is even more important that we train students in foundational truth so that they will be effective disciple-makers in whatever realm God calls them into after they leave LCA. Politics, secular organizations, and the society at large will not determine our work. Our goal is for all students to “grow in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man” (Luke 2:52), just as Jesus did. We strive to equip students to engage the world and identify “vain and hollow philosophies,” “taking their thoughts captive for Christ.” Our answer lies in the gospel of Jesus Christ and not in worldly ways. This is what the word of God mandates.
What does the school want to accomplish through this initiative and how will you measure success?
Ultimately, the Kingdom Unity initiative will help us accomplish LCA’s mission, which is to “develop strong leaders with biblical convictions who are equipped to succeed in college and beyond.” Strong leaders must be prepared to address complex issues and tackle life’s hardest questions. Strong leaders with biblical convictions will be “salt and light” in their spheres of influence. Strong leaders will be prepared to navigate an increasingly multiethnic and multicultural world that is connected by a global economy. Strong leaders will be witnesses to a lost world that is desperate for the hope only the gospel can provide. When Christian families of all backgrounds seek a Legacy education, when all students and their families feel welcomed and affirmed in our community, and when our graduates are making a difference on their college campuses and in the workplace, we will know we have succeeded.
Kingdom Advisory Group
Dr. Kenneth Chapman
Jenny Brady is nationally and internationally recognized as a leader in this work and has helped many other schools develop and implement similar initiatives. With 17 years of experience as a director of diversity in Christian schools, she is not new to this work and has, in fact, had a direct hand in shaping how schools like LCA can best achieve Kingdom Unity. Jenny teaches with and serves on the advisory board of the Baylor Center for School Leadership, and is a valued contributor to CESA (Council on Educational Standards and Accountability). Jenny brings not only a personal understanding of the unique differences among people made in God’s image from growing up in Honduras, but also many years of professional experience in helping lead Christian schools in this area.