FCA In Tuscarora

FCA+In+Tuscarora

By Emily Riley

When it comes to religion in the school system,  it is often thought that it isn’t allowed. While religion in school is “neither encouraged or discouraged by teachers” in Loudoun County Public schools, it can become quite the topic of interest among students on how they can publicly express it in the school system. Because we do all have the inalienable right of freedom of religion, technically we are allowed to practice what we preach without fault, but there are certain rules to follow. Loudoun County states that students are allowed to practice religious activities of their wishing as long as it isn’t taking place during teaching or other academic times of the day. This means that students are welcome to create clubs or in-school organizations to practice and raise awareness for their club as long as it doesn’t interfere with the academic classes throughout the day.

Fellowship of Christian Athletes, or FCA, is a relatively new club (formed just last year) by English teacher/varsity assistant football coach Brandon Wheelbarger and Economics teacher/head football coach Michael Burnett. What started off  as 5-10 people gathered in Wheelbarger’s room,has grown to over 50 people and now is held in the school auditorium every Friday morning at eight A.M… FCA is a place for people to hang out,listen to worship music, and talk with friends.

What makes FCA unique from other religious clubs is that they aren’t religiously exclusive. No matter your grade, age, or religion, the focus of FCA is unity and fellowship within the Tuscarora community.

“We want FCA to promote a positive presence. It allows for an opportunity for the students’ faith to grow, but also to unite. It is not just about being a Christian,” said Wheelbarger.

Lydia Kaspary, a senior and a leader of FCA, spoke on November 18th to FCA on unity. By being a student like everyone else and addressing everyone like a friend, Kaspary exuded the friendship and togetherness that FCA is trying to exhibit, whether they be a Christian or not.

“It’s good to challenge yourself to do things that are out of your comfort zone and I would recommend it to anyone! I want FCA to encourage people in their faith and impact their community!” said Kaspary.

As the only Christian club at Tuscarora, FCA hopes to keep growing and continuing to represent unity and fellowship.

“I  would just stress that we have an open door policy for any and everyone in the building. We want to make ourselves into better people. We want to make Tuscarora into a better school. We want to make Leesburg into a better town. Hopefully that is something that students and teachers can rally behind, and we can do that through FCA.” said Wheels.  

For more information about Loudoun County Public School’s policies on religion: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/boe/guidance/support/religious_activity.pdf