This week has been a momentous occasion for David and Maria Warren of Midland, who have seen three of their children begin new chapters in their lives.

Twins Brendan and Kirsten Warren graduated from Calvary Baptist Academy on Friday, while Grayson graduated from kindergarten on Thursday.

“It’s quite unique and special for us,” Maria said. ” We are pleased. We think it’s a cool thing older kids and Grayson can share together.

The Warrens also have another son, Carson, who just completed his first year at Calvary.

Calvary Baptist Academy held two rounds of graduation ceremonies this week. Three kindergarten classes had their graduation ceremony on Thursday before the seniors had an honors and graduation ceremony on Friday.

The twins graduated in a class of 19 seniors. Both Brendan and Kirsten graduated with honors from the Honors Society and wore lanyards in recognition of their high grade point averages. Kirsten had an extra rope of honor for donating blood and volunteering with Versiti blood drives over the years.

The twins received additional accolades on Friday. Kirsten received Outstanding Band Member, Outstanding Orchestra Member and Outstanding Drama Member awards. The school staff also nominated her for the Principal’s Award for her school spirit, leadership qualities, and godly character.

Brendan received the Presidential Academic Award, which recognizes his 90 percentile on the SAT and “A” average. He also won the Outstanding Christian Character Award.

Looking back on their school journeys, Brendan and Kirsten have especially enjoyed building relationships with classmates and teachers for over a decade.

“Half our class has been together since kindergarten,” Brendan said. “We’ve been together, grown and made memories.”

“Because we have such a small school, we can have better relationships with our teachers and are closer to them,” Kirsten said. “They have been good mentors and advisers.”

Brendan and Kirsten were constantly surrounded by their family in high school. Their father, who is also the pastor of discipleship training at Calvary Baptist Church, teaches Bible, debate, psychology, logic, and high school drama and is the high school principal. Their mother teaches English at the secondary level.

Although Maria missed having Brendan and Kirsten in her class this year, she enjoyed watching them grow and learn over the years. For her, the experience was a blessing.

“It’s fun to see them in their element and interact with their friends,” Maria said. “To be honest, I was nervous about having my own kids in my class, but it was super easy and I loved it.”

Being a principal and teacher at his children’s school presented challenges and rewards for David. Overall, he sees the opportunity as a privilege to be with his children and have easy access to their activities.

“About the time they started school, I started as the high school principal,” David said. “I graduated from Calvary Baptist Academy in 1992 and it’s cool to see them graduating from the same school.”

“He knows everything. Combine that with having your sister in your class, you can’t get away with much,” Brendan noted.

Meanwhile, the Warrens’ youngest son, Grayson, graduated among three kindergarten classes Thursday, starring in a play “The Little Red Hen” before receiving his diploma. He is looking forward to starting the first year, because it will mean playing on “the tower”, a part of the outdoor playground for elementary school students.

“I can go to the gym more days,” said Grayson, adding that he will miss playing with Brendan and Kirsten.

Grayson hopes to be a kindergarten teacher when he grows up.

Brendan and Kirsten plan to attend Bob Jones University, a private Christian liberal arts school in South Carolina; Brendan will major in Accounting and Kirsten will study English Education with a minor in Drama. They look forward to forming new relationships with others and regaining their independence.

Kirsten encourages future classes to invest in other people and mentor younger students.

After seeing how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected previous senior classes as well as his own high school experience, Brendan hopes incoming seniors will make the most of their senior year of school and take nothing for granted.

Being the children of a principal, Brendan and Kirsten were asked to participate in several school activities. Brendan has been involved in theatre, choir, orchestra, band, football and basketball; was part of the robotics team and was class president. Kirsten has participated in theatre, band, orchestra, choir, college choir, honor society, volleyball and basketball.

“Even if it’s not really your thing, participate as much as you can. (Otherwise) you’ll get there last week and you’ll achieve everything you could have done yet,” Brendan said. “Just meet new people and make memories while you can.”

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