Timothy and Donna Brownlee first became familiar with Maranatha as members of Full Faith Church. “We looked into the possibility of Christian education, and we believed God would provide the money,” says mother Donna Brownlee. Timothy and Donna have enrolled all four of their children at Maranatha: three have graduated, and their youngest is in sixth grade at MCA. Donna shares how MCA has impacted the entire family.
“To me, if you have the Word of God at the center of all you do, you’re going to have success, guidance and fellowship,” Donna says. “That’s what I want in a school for my children, and my husband feels the same way. So many influences that help your children grow in the Word are the Godly influences at Maranatha.”
Maranatha’s excellent academics, paired with its focus on college preparation, laid a strong foundation for the Brownlee daughters. Alexis, Courtney and Brooke all went on to study at competitive universities. Courtney completed her undergraduate degree at Kansas State University, and was accepted to eight different law schools. She accepted a generous scholarship and is now in the law program at the University of Kansas. Brooke is a freshman at Kansas State University, where she was awarded a scholarship as well.
“It’s easy to see the Maranatha teachers’ commitment to knowing how each child learns,” Donna reflects. “There’s a different educational path for each child, and our teachers make the effort to know how to reach them, instruct them, discipline them and guide them according to the Word of God.”
MCA’s commitment to shepherding children well extends beyond the classroom. “Our children have had outstanding coaches,” Donna says. “They encouraged them to do their best, to think of others and to not let competition be all about yourself, but for the good of the team. MCA athletics teaches lots of valuable skills that I believe you can carry forward throughout your life. It’s really about learning to glorify Christ.”
Courtney participated in cross country and ran long distance while at MCA, and Brooke ran track. Maranatha afforded Brooke the opportunity to compete in state-wide meets from freshman year on. Nicholas, who is in sixth grade at MCA, has yet to choose a sport. “But MCA continues to give him those options, and I’m excited for that,” Donna says. “That’s so fun to me — students can try something new, be welcomed into it and be given the opportunity.”
God has used Maranatha in the family’s life in ways large and small. Donna remembers a time when her son missed the bus to an after-school practice. When a teacher realized what had happened, she took Nicholas to the field house herself. “The details do matter, and that was just so above the call of duty. I was so grateful. This is real Christian community.”
Timothy’s company, Timothy R. Brownlee, PC, has also made a commitment to Maranatha as a generous Corporate Partner. “We are fiercely loyal to the school, and my husband has been touched to be recognized.”
The Brownlee family feels the impact of authentic Christian community daily. But perhaps the most profound expression of the Maranatha family took place years ago, when their daughter Alexis died unexpectedly while on a missions trip in college. With the powerful faith foundation laid at Maranatha, the family celebrates Alexis’s life with joy. “We know that she knew Jesus well,” Donna says. “We have every assurance that when the Lord invited her to Heaven, she said, ‘I’m coming.’”
Alexis’s celebration service was held at Maranatha, with 750 people in attendance. “The Maranatha family really came around us at that time,” Donna says. “It was a worship service that really glorified God and we felt truly supported. Maranatha came around our family to celebrate what God had done in Alexis’s life. We have a thankfulness for her life. It really stood out as a testimony to Christian community.”