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Congratulations Graduates!

Bryneth Fuller and Tom Scrutton, both long-time members of St James’, graduated from Mission San Jose High School in June.

Bryneth joined approximately thirty high school students from throughout Fremont taking classes through the Ohlone Connections program, allowing her to finish the high school requirements while concurrently taking college courses.  Bryneth’s favorite times during school included a 2-1/2 week to trip Nicaragua, and playing water polo (earning the team MVP award).  Bryneth plans to take a gap year and will spend it in India teaching children.  Once she returns, she will attend community college, and one day join the Peace Corps.

Tom spent his spare time running; he was a member of the cross-country team and the track team all four years.  He ran the long distance races, and captained both teams his senior year. Tom will attend Humboldt State University this fall, studying kinesiology.  Continuing his enjoyment of athletics, Tom plans to teach PE and coach at the high school level.

We had the privilege of watching them grow up at St James’.  Both served as acolytes many years, and they shared their special memories of church.  Bryneth has been a member since birth, and thinks of St James’ as a constant in her life – it has always been here.  She remembers learning the parables in Sunday school, and she enjoyed the stories former rector Bob Honeychurch shared in his sermons.  Las Posadas is her favorite event, enjoying the journey through the cold that finishes with coming inside for hot food and a celebration with friends.

Tom has been at St James’ almost ten years, participating in many different ways.  In addition to being an acolyte, Tom served as a Eucharistic Minister this year.  He participates in Sunday school, first as a student and now a teacher, has volunteered at VBS each year, is in the Youth Group, and is a member of the Road Crew.  Tom said St James’ is a place he learned to be comfortable speaking in front of others, gaining confidence in himself.  He mentioned Las Posadas and the Easter Vigil skits, and said he progressed from participating first as a tree, to a donkey, to Joseph, and then to God.   That is growing up!  The opportunities he has had at St James’ will help him throughout life.

Also graduating this year was Tori McJunkin who has been coming to St. James’ since 2011 with her mother Monique Manjarrez. She graduated from American High School where she was involved in the music program including Symphonic Band, Marching Band, Winter Percussion, Winter Drum Major and Band Leadership. Her long time hobby has been dancing including solo ballet performances. In the fall she will start at Chapman University in Orange, CA majoring in Film Production where she has been offered substantial scholarships. Tori says she has always admired the welcoming community of St James’, and will be keeping those ideals with her through the rest of her life.

Congratulations Bryneth, Tom and Tori! We wish you well moving on to the next stages of your lives.  Know that you always have a home here at St James’, and we look forward to hearing more about your adventures.

~ Laura Winter