Mary McDowell, principal and grades 3-5 grades teacher at Springfield Junior Academy, received the Commissioned Ministry of Teaching Credential at the Springfield Church on Sabbath, May 12.

She was surrounded by family, church elders, fellow teachers and children of the Springfield Church as Pastor Philip Sizemore offered a prayer of dedication.

The Commissioned Ministry of Teaching Credential is the highest recognition given to a church school teacher by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. It is awarded to teachers with at least six years of experience in and commitment to the Seventh-day Adventist education system, with demonstrated proficiency in assigned responsibilities.

Mary has served her country as a member of the United States Air Force, played women’s soccer and returned to college as an adult learner with a small child. After graduating from Southern Adventist University, Mary’s goal was to serve the Seventh-day Adventist Church that she joined as an adult in 1982. Since 2003, Mary has served the church in various positions.