Kinchen to BCF grads: ‘Be of good cheer’

BCF May 2022 graduates from Florida

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Pictured Above: Front Row:  Kerrie Laine Edwards, Marilyn Ann-Marie Royston, Alexis Winsor, Aubree Jo Lindow, Lesa Michelle Knight, Amy O’Neal, Elizabeth Robyn Simmons Mary I. Klien, Jacqueline Vanscooter Second Row: Robin Jumper, academic dean, Taylor Donaldson (Marshal), Isis Noel Masterpalo, Corrine Johanna Krug, David Timothy Harris, Grady Gomillion, Isaac Tullis, Samuel J. Bodo, Jonathan D. Treadway, Paul David Baugher, Riley Higgins, Allison She’a Young, Savannah Marie Gallo, Violet Knight (Marshal) Third Row: Henry L McGill, Jacob Malichi Perry

GRACEVILLE– The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) held its spring commencement ceremony for 29 graduates May 20 at its Graceville campus.

In his commencement message Thomas A. Kinchen, president of The Baptist College of Florida, challenged the graduates, “Be of good cheer.

“When you’re wondering where am I? Where am I going? What do I do now? Be of good cheer no matter what’s next.”

Kinchen, who has announced his plans to retire Dec. 31, 2022, reminded graduates that the Lord didn’t bring them this far to leave them but to use, bless and walk beside them.

“God gives us strength for today and hope for tomorrow,” stated Kinchen.

“(That is) a promise from God’s Word when we remain faithful and submit to His will.”

The BCF spring 2022 graduating class endured numerous obstacles to reach their graduation day, including Hurricane Michael and the COVID-19 pandemic. During Hurricane Michael many students remained on campus and lived without electricity and cell phone signals, working with Disaster Relief to help clean up Graceville. The pandemic required students to complete classes online for a semester and follow safety protocols when returning to campus.

During the commencement, Brian Taylor, pastor of Damascus Baptist Church in Graceville, presented an opening invocation. Bill Davis, BCF music and worship division chair, led in hymns sung by those assembled, including “Crown Him with Many Crowns” and “Tell Me the Story of Jesus.”

Isis Masterpalo, a BCF senior, and Riley Higgins, the fourth son of Charles and Kim Higgins to graduate from BCF, presented the anthem, “The Lord’s Prayer,” prior to degrees being conferred by Kinchen and Robin Jumper, BCF academic dean.

Among the degrees conferred, Chantel Oney, BCF business leadership professor, was recognized for earning her doctorate in business management.

Naethan Hendrix, adjunct professor and senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Graceville, offered the closing benediction and a charge and challenge to graduates, reminding them of the Lord’s sacrifice. BCF’s instrumental ensemble, led by Professor Ron Branning, played the recessional, “Sine Nomine” as the graduates exited the building with a brief moment of “When the Saints Go Marching in.”

Grady Gomillion
DeFuniak Springs

David Timothy Harris
Lake City
B.A., MU**


Henry L. McGill


Kerrie Laine Edwards
B.A., ES

Amy O’Neal
Plant City
B.A., EE


Mary I. Klein
B.A., BS


Riley Higgins


Elizabeth Robyn Simmons


Marilyn Ann-Marie Royston


Aubree Jo Lindow


Isis Noel Masterpalo
Winter Garden
B.A., MU


Isaac Tullis


Samuel J. Bodo
St. Augustine


Paul David Baugher


Savannah Marie Gallo
B.A., ES


Jacqueline Vanscooter
Panama City



Degree Key:
Associate of Divinity: A. Div.
Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies: B.A., BS
Bachelor of Arts in Business Leadership: B.A., BUS
Bachelor of Arts in Christian Studies: B.A., CS
Bachelor of Arts in Education Studies: B.A., ES
Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education: B.A., EE
Bachelor of Arts in Leadership & Christian Education: B.A., LACE
Bachelor of Arts in History & Social Studies B.A., HI & SS
Bachelor of Arts in Ministry: B.A., MIN
Bachelor of Arts in Ministry Studies: B.A., MS
Bachelor of Arts in Missions: B.A., MI
Bachelor of Arts in Music: B.A., MU
Bachelor of Arts in Psychology: B.A., PSY
Bachelor in Music Education: B.M.E
Bachelor in Music and Worship Leadership B.A., MWL
Master of Arts in Music and Worship Leadership: M.A., MWL
Master of Arts in Counseling: M.A., CO

*Cum Laude
**Magna Cum Laude
***Summa Cum Laude

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