Connecting Columbia Union Seventh-day Adventists

Principal Leona Bange, teacher Jeanne Sinka and their students continue to experience answers to prayer about their school, Northern Ohio Adventist Academy.Photo by Eduardo Gonzalez

VIDEO: Northern Ohio Adventist Academy Teachers Share Miracles at Work

Prayer has played a key role in the journey of Ohio Conference’s Northern Ohio Adventist Academy (NOAA), says principal Leona Bange. From teacher Jeanne Sinka finding the North Sheffield Lake property before it was listed on the market, to the Home Depot staff volunteering to clean and repair the school’s playground and completing other projects for free, Bange says she has seen God “pour out the resources of heaven for these kids.” When she comes across any situation, “whether it seems small or insignificant, or whether it’s momentous like [Sinka] recently being diagnosed with stage 4 adrenal cancer, I can take all of that to God immediately, give it to Him and trust His answers,” Bange says. 

Her prayers join those of church members in the area, who fast and pray for the needs of the school, Bange says. The students have learned to pray as they have witnessed God’s miracle after miracle bless their school.

The students “pray every day for their teacher, Mrs. Sinka,” Bange says. “She may be sick on the weekends, but by Monday morning she is in here teaching school.”

It is the students, 31 in all, who remind Bange that “God has been doing miracles for us. This is just one more He can do for us,” she says.

Recently, the high schoolers prayed for new students, and God brought four. One came from Michigan, after learning about the school from a family member who attended one of the constituent Adventist churches in the Cleveland area. The girl’s mom couldn’t afford academy in Michigan. After visiting the school, the mother prayed that God would do a miracle if she wanted her daughter to attend NOAA, Bange says. The woman was able to sell her house and find rental housing in time for her daughter to begin school in August.

“It’s definitely been a faith-building experience
for the students, staff and for our supporting churches to see what God is doing and how He is leading,” Bange says.

In late August, board member Michael Wisecup informed Bange that his employer, Nanofilm, in Valley View, Ohio, was getting rid of equipment. The Nanofilm Lab Manager Travis Bennett visited the school and asked for dimensions of the room set aside for a ninth- and tenth-grade science lab. He designed the school’s lab based on equipment available from Nanofilm, some of it brand new, Bange says. It took two trips with a 26-foot U-Haul truck to deliver all of the glassware, cupboards, workstations, sinks, a hood vent and more. The equipment allowed NOAA to fulfill an accreditation requirement for its junior academy.

“This is how God has been taking care of us,” Bange says. 

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