November 25, 2019
Covenant Christian High School
Volume 2: Issue 3
CHRISTIANITY FOR CLOUT
Article by Joann Ncube (‘21) & Erin Wright (‘20)
Lately, there has been a lot of speculation about how people are using a religion, like Christianity, for clout. Clout means being famous and having influence. People use “clout” as a way to describe someone that has a lot of fame. Recently, the word “clout” has been used to describe people rising to fame for certain things like original content on TikTok or religious content. Some students here at Covenant think that people have been using Christianity for clout. Religion, specifically Christianity, is becoming more popular to the public. Junior Adrian Terry said that “Christianity is becoming big because of technology and also because of the new generation of kids. They aren’t scared to share or voice their opinions.” Although it is most definitely not our place to judge, Senior Kara Whitney responds, “It’s not wrong for people to be proclaiming a religion, just make sure you believe it to be true for yourself and don’t claim [that religion] because your friends or your families are— claim if it’s something that you truly believe.” You never know the pure intent of what someone believes; only God knows a person’s true intent on whether or not someone posts about Christianity for the sake of spreading the gospel, or just using them to get followers. “The Lord isn’t a way to get money, it’s a way to get saved,” Terry voiced. Since October 25th, there have been mixed reactions to Kanye’s new album titled Jesus Is King. While he previously said he was planning on releasing a gospel album, it still came as a surprise to the church and America as a whole. There have been complicated responses to both the musicality of the album and his public proclamation of faith. For some, it’s the coolest thing since sliced bread. “I’m a big fan, 100%, I’m so proud of him,” said Senior Callie VanCuren. For others, they’re feeling much more reserved. “It’s okay, it’s obviously not the same rap he used to have, but I think it’s powerful that he made a Christian album because he’s made other albums where he cusses and stuff and it shows how he’s changed and turned his life over to Jesus, apparently,” said Senior Jack Hensley. If you haven’t heard of the album, I suggest that you check it out. You should listen to the album before you judge anything about Kanye or his new music. Some people say the album is trash, but they are happy that he produced a Christian work. Kanye’s public proclamation to the Chistian faith
Photo by Kane Seabolt (‘22) is kind of startling to some young people. Junior Germaine Dupervil agrees with this last statement. Germaine explained, “I don’t think that Kanye has produced his album out of pure intent, because I think that it takes a long time and deliberation to become a Christian. Kanye has said some bad things in the past, and now all of the sudden he just flipped the book out of nowhere. No. No. I think for someone to come back from that, I would have to see some serious growth spiritually and physically.” Senior Carinne Niemeyer and junior Gianna Catano agreed with the students that I interviewed— that it isn’t our place to judge Kanye and his intentions. The connotation of distrust regarding his conversion has been ever present. “If he has come to faith, then that is a beautiful thing— but at the same time, I would prefer to approach it with healthy skepticism knowing Kanye’s past of his condition with being bipolar that tends to be very intense moments and then waxing and waning,” said Mr. Fightmaster. “That doesn’t mean his faith isn’t authentic, I’m not one to judge that. But, I would remain very skeptical towards it. The full acceptance of him is fine, but I will not do that.” While healthy skepticism may be called for, there have been questions raised about whether it is our place to judge
C H R I S T M A S
Article by Hana Anderson (‘21)
For most people, Christmas is one of the most favored holidays. Individuals count down the days to the pinch of the cold air, the smell of the pines, the look of the pristine snow, the feeling of being near the fire, and the joy that Christmas brings. Even in stores across the nation, Christmas decor has been put up just days after Halloween. Everyone looks forward to celebrating this glorified season, but is celebrating a month ahead too early? November holds the holiday of Thanksgiving— a time for family to come together and pig out, eating a bunch of food until they have a stomachache. It is also a time where people give thanks for all the blessings in their lives. Thanksgiving is a holiday that dates all the way back to the early 1600s. It is celebrated due to the fact that it is a symbol of America’s founding that people want to remember. With this being said, should this holiday be looked
the authenticity of his conversion. Callie VanCuren said, “I feel like the Church especially is so hesitant about the album and his conversion because of his past, but we should be the ones that are the most welcoming and supportive. There are some people who are still weary and questioning how we should respond.” This skepticism from the Church was foreseen by Kanye himself. In his song “Hands On” on his most recent album, he says, “What have you been hearin’ from the Christians? They’ll be the first one to judge me.” While he has been met with skepticism, he has also been met with support. Senior Nate Sloan said, “I’ve seen a very good response because a lot of Christians have been listening to it and enjoying it. I bet Fight is freaking out about it. It’s definitely a good thing that he’s being authentic and pointing to God.” There has been a mixed reaction not only to his conversion, but to the musical quality of the album. “It’s trying to be a rap album and a worship album and it’s failing miserably at both. There are a lot of people outside of the faith who view the album as absolutely horrible, like for me, I’ve listened through the whole thing and will probably never listen to it again,” said Mr. Fightmaster.
N O V E M B E R
over and just be seen as a roadblock until Christmas? When I asked the question of “Do you celebrate Christmas in November?” I got different perspectives. Most feel that it is acceptable to listen to Christmas music, but you should not start watching Christmas movies and putting up your decorations until after Thanksgiving. As Mrs. Stanley puts it, “More Christmas music only makes things better.” Also, Senior Carinne Niemeyer mentioned that she was even listening to Christmas music as I spoke to her. For other people, celebrating Christmas as soon as possible is something that they look forward to doing. As I observed people’s Instagrams, I could already see that people created countdowns till Christmas.
Even Sophomores Ani Chaney and Brookyln Stewart wore Christmas sweaters the day after Halloween to join in on the festivities early. But for some people, they say that Thanksgiving is one of their favorite holidays and do not want to overlook it because they view as a time for family and good food. Profe Aguinaga stated, “In Mexico, we do not have Thanksgiving. Everything starts a little before Thanksgiving— all the shops starts putting out things, but we do not have this mark that says, ‘okay, now it’s time for Christmas.’” That’s why he enjoys Thanksgiving, because he sees it as a landmark for when the holiday should start to be celebrated.
November 25, 2019
Volume 2: Issue 3
SURVIVORS OF BLACK FRIDAY Article by Marco Aguirre (‘21)
On the night of Thanksgiving, most families like to feast, be thankful for families and friends, and cherish life and everything that gives them hope. But other families prefer to spend the night preparing for the bloodbath known as Black Friday. On that night, hundreds of hungry customers camp outside of stores, waiting for the doors to open and get the best prices and cheapest quality products of the year! Most of these families have shopped and fought for such products, but only a few have been lucky enough to tell their stories. In fact, one of these survivors has volunteered to tell us his story. Senior Nate Feola-Smith claims that he has been Black Friday shopping for all of high school. I asked Nate a question that perhaps lies at the heart of Black Friday itself: “What kinds of discounts and products at stores catch your attention?” Nate shared, “Well, like if its a higher quality item like a TV or something like that or a console, typically like things that are 85% off or 75% off.” He would show up “usually about like as
early as I can get, so like a place that opens up at 6 o’clock, I would show up at 3 in the morning”— so early that he’s had to camp outside for the past four years. Nate claims that he has fought people before. “Tons of stories to go on for fighting people. It’s gotten pretty rough. I remember one time, last year, me and my buddy went shopping and people are climbing onto shelves and there was security out. People got arrested and they were walking out. And this guy jacks something out of his arm after we’re paid for and everything, and there are cops waiting across the parking lot and runs into him.” He plans to go again this year. “It’s just like a tradition by now.” He advises to “wear multiple layers— “people will try to attack you.” Furthermore, he suggests, “definitely go with multiple people.” Nate Feola-Smith and survivors such as him seem to know their way around this war in the store. And if you’re going this year, good luck on not getting killed or, worse, banned or arrested.
Photo by Elaina Essig (‘20)
MOVIE REVIEW: SHREK (LONG AWA I T E D ) Article by Amelia Bostick (‘20)
In the classic fairy tales, ogres are monsters and Prince Charming is the hero. The girl always chooses him and her family always supports her no matter what. But in the brilliant blockbuster Shrek, the social norms are twisted, and what seems to be the obvious outcome becomes further from the truth. We open on a storybook. Not too different from your classic Disney tale, but wait: it gets better. While you’re riding along on the wave of “Once upon a time…” you are interrupted by an unexpected voice— the voice of Shrek. On the pot. He is on the pot! The relatability of this opening scene is so overwhelming, many viewers will pause right then and there just to catch their breath. Viewers will ask themselves “Where has this strange green ogre been all my life?” while they are eager to continue on this new adventure that at first seemed certain, but is now shrouded in mystery and wonder. You may also be ask-
ing yourself this same question. So buckle up my friend, for the ride of your life, because we’re about to uncover the secrets of the swamp. 1) Friendship comes in all sorts. We’ve all heard that opposites attract, but in Shrek this idea comes to life. Donkey and Shrek could not be more different. With Shrek’s ogre-like, rough-around-the-edges attitude, and Donkey’s carefree nonchalance that shows in every clip he clops, the two seem like an unexpected pair. How do they overcome these differences and become the best of friends? Donkey looked past Shrek’s rugged demeanor and into what truly mattered: his heart… and his earwax. He was not intimidated by the rumors he had heard about ogres. Rather, he was intrigued, and this only made him more
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
Photo & quote by Elaina Essig (‘20)
“Let the records show that it was snowing in November.”
excited to make a new friend. When we do this with others, there is a whole new world opened to us. 2) Good things come with time. This is one of the most prominent messages in the film. Like described with Shrek and Donkey’s camaraderie, time brings along the most shrekstraordinary relationships. Take Shrek and Fiona for example. Fiona was hoping for a real prince who would save her from her lonely tower and give her the life she always dreamed of. But she wished this for twenty-three years and who rescued her? Shrek. Her new best friend. They were wary of each other at first, but as time passed them by, something deeper arose. The prince that Fiona had longed for at first, was replaced by something even better: her ogre prince. If the prince had come right when Fiona was locked in the tower, she would have never met Shrek and the whole outcome would be different. Sometimes, it takes a little patience and time to experience the most shrektacular things in life. 3) Let your “Freak Flag” fly. The biggest message of all is to be yourself. All of the previous messages would not have been able to happen if Shrek had not been himself. Shrek was himself, strange bodily functions and all, and he met Donkey. Shrek was himself, and he met Fiona. Shrek was himself and he became the most popular ogre in all of Duloc. And though being yourself may be difficult, with inspiration like this and having such a strong role model like Shrek, it is possible to ogre-come the stress and anxiety that comes with opening yourself up. This is why Shrek is the best movie of all time. This is not an ogre-reaction. From the stellar soundtrack, the angelic animation, and the mesmerizing magic that sprinkles its way through every scene, Shrek is the instant classic that will be a family favorite for centuries to come. It has earned its place in history. It is legendary.
S T U D E N T S H O U T- O U T Student Publications reached out to the teachers, asking them to send us paragraph about a student that they apreciate- one who they think deserves more recognition. Here’s what one had to say: “Sara Wright might seem to fly under the radar because of her willingness to let others take the spotlight instead of herself. She doesn’t draw attention to what she is doing but she fully participates in school life and supports those around her in an easy, relaxed manner. This is not to say that Sara has not had to deal with hard and challenging circumstances. It is because of those hard things that I wanted to give Sara a Shout-out. Her challenges seemed only to have helped to strengthen her already positive attitude and deepen her faith.
Photo courtesy ofTwelve Stones Photography
“If you slow down enough to hear from Sara, you quickly notice that she is very talented and she is wise. I like to say she is wise beyond her years. Recently, I asked a few students who I might ask to lead in a special service I was planning. The resounding answer was Sara Wright. I’m glad to know Sara, and if you haven’t had a chance to share a moment or two with her, I suggest you introduce yourself to her before she sets off for college. You’ll find her accepting and welcoming. She’s just that way.”
The Veritas is a newspaper published by Covenant's Student Publications class.