We continue our detailed look at the Portrait of a Graduate by revisiting the commentary printed in the RS Handbook. This week, we look at the first sentence in the Portrait.
A Geneva graduate is a disciple of Jesus Christ, exhibiting excellence, passion, and integrity as he leads for Christ's cause in the world.
You should note that our portrait begins by identifying a Geneva graduate as a disciple of Jesus Christ. This priority and wording are intentional. The word used most in the New Testament to identify believers is "disciples;" "Christians" isn't even in the top three (1. disciples 2. elect 3. saints). Discipleship is not an optional extra for followers of Christ; it is a description of following Christ. As such, we hope our graduates are disciplined followers (disciples) of Christ and that what we do here encourages this high calling.
After identifying a Geneva graduate as a disciple of Jesus Christ, there is a further call not only to follow Christ as a disciple, but to lead for Christ in the world. Of course, Christian leadership begins with servant-hood, so the goal of creating leaders is actually a goal to create servants not slaves of the world, but those who are willing to put others first in representing Christ to the world. With that in mind, it is easy to see why excellence, passion, and integrity are necessary for a Geneva graduate. None of this, however, is merely taught and learned by rote. These things are primarily learned from the example that administrators, teachers, and parents provide in daily interaction with the students and each other. Indeed, all play a part every day in molding graduates who exemplify this first sentence. When we place others in the Geneva community before ourselves and serve one another, we are on our way to producing what we expect our students to be.