News Archives: School of Christian Studies

HPU faculty members present at Baptist World Alliance gathering

Dr. Melody MaxwellBROWNWOOD – August 1, 2016 – Howard Payne University’s Dr. Melody Maxwell, assistant professor of Christian studies, and Dr. Derek Hatch, associate professor of Christian studies, presented papers at the annual gathering of the Baptist World Alliance in early July. This year’s gathering, which hosted more than 300 Baptist leaders from dozens of countries, was held in Vancouver, British Columbia.

The Baptist World Alliance is a fellowship of Baptist conventions and unions from around the world. According to the organization’s website, www.bwanet.org, the alliance exists to nurture the passion for mission and evangelism; promote worship, fellowship and unity; respond to people in need; defend human rights and justice; and advance relevant theological reflection.

Dr. Maxwell is a member of the BWA’s Commission on Mission, which includes missiologists, missionaries and church leaders from around the world.

“At this commission’s meeting I presented a paper titled ‘Baptists and the Modern Missionary Movement,’ in which I traced the history, strategies and legacy of nineteenth century Baptist missionaries,” she said. “It was an honor to present and learn at this global gathering.”

Dr. Derek HatchDr. Hatch is a member of the Commission on Doctrine and Christian Unity which involves ministers and scholars in reflection on theological relationships within the Baptist family and between Baptists and other Christian communions. The group was tasked with examining the relationship between Baptists and the saints.

“My paper concerned the possibilities for Baptists to celebrate the lives of the saints in their worship and practice,” he said.
Dr. Donnie Auvenshine, professor of Christian studies and dean of HPU’s School of Christian Studies, said opportunities for faculty members to participate in conversations with Baptists from around the world is beneficial to students.

“Participating in such global conversations not only broadens the minds of our faculty members, but those of their students as well,” he said. “I am pleased with the initiative shown by Drs. Hatch and Maxwell and look forward to seeing them reap the positive results in their classrooms.”

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HPU hosts BGCT’s Super Summer camp for Christian students

Super Summer studentsBROWNWOOD – July 1, 2016 – Howard Payne University recently hosted the Baptist General Convention of Texas’ Super Summer camp, a weeklong leadership event for Christian students. Hundreds of youth from Baptist churches all across Texas participated in the camp, as well as many HPU alumni, students, faculty and staff members.

Super Summer is designed for Christian students who exhibit leadership attributes and desire to learn more about how to maximize their effectiveness in sharing the gospel and living a godly lifestyle. Each year’s camp theme is emphasized through all aspects of the camp. This year’s theme revolved around 1 Corinthians 11:1, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”

Debbie Childs, HPU’s director of university events, said that she always looks forward to Super Summer each year.

“It reminds me of how grateful we are as a university to have students and leaders on our campus who follow Christ and then step up to be leaders these teens can follow as well,” Childs said. “It’s about relationships and I love that.”

This is the BGCT’s 43rd year to present Super Summer camps. The organization held seven sessions of Super Summer this summer, with the fifth session hosted at HPU. The other Super Summer camps are held at five other Texas Baptist universities throughout the summer.

“HPU has an amazing honor and privilege to host a week of Super Summer,” said Dr. Gary Gramling ’81, professor of Christian studies and director of HPU’s Christian studies graduate programs. “This means that we have the opportunity as a university to be a part of what God is doing in the lives of these students. It’s a joy to get to walk around campus and talk with students who are hearing God speak to them through His word and beginning to own their faith.”

blue school studentsCampers are divided into schools, designated by colors, based on the grade they recently completed in school, from seventh grade up to recently graduated high school seniors. Within these color schools, the students spend time in a very disciplined schedule of teaching sessions, worship sessions, small-group discussions and quiet time for personal reflection. They also get to have fun during recreation time, playing games that help emphasize the year’s theme with a focus on sportsmanship and teamwork rather than athletic ability.

“It is amazing to see these young Christian leaders at Super Summer continue to grow in their faith while having a great time and making lifelong friends,” said Kathy James, HPU’s special events coordinator. “I love having them on our HPU campus each summer.”

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Cutlines: Super Summer campers cheer during recreation time on the HPU campus.

Campers in Super Summer’s Blue School have fun on the HPU campus.

Six HPU students honored for servant leadership

Servant Leadership Awards 2016BROWNWOOD – May 3, 2016 – Six Howard Payne University students were recently honored for acts of servant leadership on campus and in the community. The awards were presented during HPU’s annual Servant Leadership Program.

“We are pleased to be able to honor students who have distinguished themselves through service to others,” said Dr. Donnie Auvenshine, professor of Christian studies and dean of HPU’s School of Christian Studies. “Servant leaders do not serve others in order to be recognized, of course, but we are happy to honor those students who have honored HPU and Christ through their acts of service.”

Xavier McFalls, senior exercise and sport science major from Amarillo, and Kelsan Wolverton, senior cross-cultural studies major from Lampasas, were presented the Nat Tracy Servant Leader Award. HPU Servant Leadership Awards were presented to juniors Jaclyn Bonner, communication major from Lytle; Joshua Dykes, youth ministry and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major from Mount Pleasant; TaShana Hooker, music instrumental major from Carrollton; and Dillon Hughes, youth ministry major from Plano.

The Nat Tracy Servant Leader Award was established in 1998 to honor the life of the late Dr. Nat Tracy, a member of HPU’s Bible faculty from 1950-1975.

Xavier McFalls has participated in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes all four years at HPU and as a leader within the organization for two years. He has also participated in the Baptist Student Ministry through which he led the athlete discipleship ministry. He additionally served as captain of HPU’s football team and as chaplain within HPU’s Student Government Association among other leadership roles on campus.

Kelsan Wolverton has also participated in numerous roles and activities on campus including serving with Jacket Ambassadors, the Student Activities Committee, the Student Planning Committee and the BSM. She additionally served as historian and president of HPU’s Ministerial Alliance and as chaplain and president of the Alpha Psi Omega organization. She has been a student worker for the Office of University Services throughout her HPU career.

Established in 2007 by the Moore Foundation and Barney II Foundation, the HPU Servant Leadership Award recognizes student excellence in the areas of leadership and service. A $1,000 scholarship is provided to each recipient of the award, and each student designates $250 of the scholarship award to be given to his or her chosen charity.

Jaclyn Bonner serves as a resident assistant in HPU’s Veda Hodge Hall, as president of Gamma Beta Phi, as a columnist for the Yellow Jacket student newspaper and as the HPU representative on the executive committee of the Christian Association of Student Leaders. Additionally, she is active with the Student Government Association, Model United Nations and numerous other organizations.

Joshua Dykes serves as a resident assistant in HPU’s Jennings Hall and is a member of the Student Government Association, Mock Trial, the BSM and several other on-campus organizations. He additionally began a men’s Bible study in his residence hall and assisted with founding HPU’s Spanish Club so that students could be enabled to spread the Gospel to Spanish-speaking people.

TaShana Hooker serves as a student worker for HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts and as a three-year member of the Yellow Jacket Band through which she was named head drum major. She is the vice president of HPU’s chapter of the Tau Beta Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority and has served on mission trips through the BSM.

Dillon Hughes has participated each semester at HPU with the BSM and the Ministerial Alliance. He has additionally served in the student ministry at Brownwood’s Coggin Baptist Church and Southside Baptist Church and has gone on mission trips with the BSM and Texas Baptists’ Go Now Missions.

Nominations for both the Nat Tracy Servant Leader Award and the HPU Servant Leadership Award are solicited each spring from HPU staff, faculty and students.

“This year, 18 different members of the faculty, staff or student body nominated 12 different students for the awards,” said Dr. Auvenshine. “This is the largest number of people making nominations and the largest number of nominees we have had in several years. We felt that all 12 of the nominees were deserving of recognition. I’m thankful to serve at a university that values servant-leadership qualities among its students.”

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Cutline: Six HPU students were recently recognized for their servant-leader qualities. Left to right: Kelsan Wolverton, TaShana Hooker, Xavier McFalls, Dillon Hughes, Jaclyn Bonner and Joshua Dykes.

HPU Youth Ministry Workshop helps prepare students for lives of service

Dr Jackson at ChapelBROWNWOOD – April 12, 2016 – Youth ministry students at Howard Payne University recently participated in the university’s 46th annual Youth Ministry Workshop, an event designed to strengthen their leadership skills and help prepare them for lives of ministry. The students participated in 15 sessions throughout the event, hearing from veteran ministers from the area, throughout Texas and beyond. The workshop began in 1970 under the leadership of Dr. A.J. Turner, who was then assistant professor of religious education.

The students additionally participated in two worship services and completed a short observation paper on their experiences at the workshop.

Dr. Gary Gramling, professor of Christian studies and director of HPU’s Christian studies graduate programs, described the impact of the workshop on students.

“I think the great value of the workshop is the fact that we bring veteran youth ministers each year so that students can hear firsthand about various aspects of student ministry from people who are currently serving,” he said. “Leadership is something that can be taught to a certain degree, but much of it is caught from seeing and interacting with people who are wonderful leaders and excellent role models.”

YM Workshop ParticipantsIn addition to Dr. Gramling, speakers for the event included: Ricky Cavitt, youth minister at Coggin Avenue Baptist Church, Brownwood; Brad Echols, youth minister at First Baptist Church, Midland; Chuck Gartman, adjunct instructor of Christian studies at HPU and president of Go To Youth Ministry Inc., Cleburne; Jeff Howard, youth minister at First Baptist Church, Plano; Chris Hurt, student pastor at First Baptist Church, Frisco; Dr. Allen Jackson, pastor at Dunwoody Baptist Church, Atlanta, Ga.; Randy Johnson, youth minister emeritus at First Baptist Church, Richardson; Daniel Morrow, student minister at Field Street Baptist Church, Cleburne; Candy Smith, HPU Board of Trustees member, retired minister of education at First Baptist Church, Richardson, and chaplain for Marketplace Ministries; Steve Stege, executive pastor at First Baptist Church, Frisco; Jimmy Storrie, executive director of Life Recovered, Denton; and Dr. Rusty Wheelington, associate professor of Christian studies at HPU.

For more information about the programs in HPU’s School of Christian Studies, call (325) 649-8403 or visit www.hputx.edu/christianstudies.

Applications are still being accepted for the fall 2016 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options including the Heart of Texas Scholarship, which awards $60,000 to students from Brown County and surrounding counties. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at (325) 649-8020 or by e-mail at enroll@hputx.edu.

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Photo cutlines: In addition to speaking to ministry students as part of HPU’s recent Youth Ministry Workshop, Dr. Allen Jackson addressed the student body at Chapel.

In conjunction with the Youth Ministry Workshop, participants enjoyed an evening at the home of Dr. Gary Gramling, professor of Christian studies and director of HPU’s Christian studies graduate programs. Pictured, from left, are Dr. Gramling, Lubbock Roe, Joseph Flanigan, Ben Fountain, Cris Begay, Nate Rhodes, Andrew Overmiller, Anthony McCarson, Scott Turner, Chuck Gartman and Shawna Rains.

HPU students named 2016 Young Maston Scholars by Logsdon Seminary

Robert Martinez

Robert Martinez

Information for this press release was provided by Hardin-Simmons University.

BROWNWOOD – March 23, 2016 – Howard Payne University students Robert Martinez, junior from Copperas Cove, and Kelsan Wolverton, senior from De Soto, were among 15 Texas Baptist students recently honored as 2016 Young Maston Scholars by Hardin-Simmons University’s Logsdon Seminary. The awards were announced during the 16th annual T.B. Maston Lectures in Christian Ethics held on the HSU campus.

Each year Texas Baptist-partnering university officials nominate two students from their university to become Young Maston Scholars, an award recognizing outstanding undergraduate students for their interest in, engagement with and integration of Christian ethics. Nominations for the award are based upon a student’s demonstrated faithfulness to the ethical example of Christ; a commitment to Christian ethics lived out in theological inquiry and academic excellence; an established reputation among peers for ethical Christian leadership; and an articulated clarity in an occupational expression of ministry, though it is not required to be in a congregational setting.

Kelsan Wolverton

Kelsan Wolverton

Dr. Donnie Auvenshine, professor of Christian studies and dean of HPU’s School of Christian Studies, nominated Martinez and Wolverton for the award.

“Bobby Martinez and Kelsan Wolverton are excellent examples of the good students in HPU’s School of Christian Studies,” said Dr. Auvenshine. “We’re proud of their accomplishments and the way they represent HPU.”

For more information about Howard Payne University’s School of Christian Studies, visit www.hputx.edu/christianstudies or call (325) 649-8403. More information about Hardin-Simmons University may be found at www.hsutx.edu.

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Photos courtesy Hardin-Simmons University.

HPU honors four students in Christian ethics and theology

Currie-Strickland Honorees 2016BROWNWOOD – February 29, 2016 – Four Howard Payne University students were honored as Currie-Strickland Scholars in Christian Ethics and Theology at the university’s ninth annual Currie-Strickland Distinguished Lectures in Christian Ethics event earlier this month. Those honored include Shaefer Church, senior Bible major from Farmington, New Mexico; Cheney Cover, junior cross-cultural studies major from Troup; J.T. Hurt, a 2015 HPU alumnus and current graduate student from Brownwood; and Tom Kyle, junior cross-cultural studies major from Salado. Dr. Donnie Auvenshine, professor of Christian studies and dean of the School of Christian Studies, presented the awards.

“At these lectures, we honor these good students,” said Dr. Auvenshine. “But, the reality is that they honor the Lord and us every day as they faithfully serve and study with us.”

Each year, the honorees are selected based on an evaluation of achievement in their classes and on the ways that they have excelled in their thinking in the fields of Christian ethics and theology. This year, each student received a certificate and three books: “Do Justice, Love Mercy” by Phil Strickland; “Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road?” by Brian McLaren; and “A New Religious America” by Diana Eck.

“Our faculty are privileged to teach many fine students at HPU, but these four have excelled above and beyond what is required,” said Dr. Derek Hatch, assistant professor of Christian studies. “We are all very proud of them and happy to honor them.”

The four students plan to pursue ministry-related goals after graduation. Church hopes to go to seminary and then overseas to be a missionary. Cover wants to minister to refugees in an urban environment. Hurt is currently a student in the Master of Arts in Youth Ministry program at HPU and plans to pursue youth ministry. Kyle plans to attend the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics in Dallas to study translation and linguistics. He also wants to work overseas with Wycliffe Bible Translators.

For more information, contact HPU’s School of Christian Studies at (325) 649-8403 or visit www.hputx.edu.

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Photo cutline: Dr. Donnie Auvenshine (left), professor and dean of HPU’s School of Christian Studies, is pictured with Currie-Strickland Scholars Shaefer Church, Tom Kyle, Cheney Cover and J.T. Hurt.

HPU to host speaker Dr. Robert Sellers for ninth annual Currie-Strickland lectures

Sellers Formal Press Shot for webBROWNWOOD – January 25, 2016 – Howard Payne University will host its ninth annual Currie-Strickland Distinguished Lectures in Christian Ethics next month with guest speaker Dr. Robert P. Sellers, professor of theology and Connally Chair of Missions at Logsdon Seminary in Abilene. The lectures are Thursday and Friday, February 11 and 12, in the Richard and Wanda Jackson Conference Room of HPU’s Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center. The lectures are free to the public and the community is welcome and encouraged to attend.

Thursday’s lecture, which begins at 7:00 p.m., is titled “Love your [Non-Christian] Neighbor as Yourself: Religious Pluralism and the Second Great Commandment.” The second lecture, to be held Friday morning at 10:00 a.m., is titled “Do Not Oppress the Foreigner or the Poor: Religious Pluralism and the Care for the Alien and Stranger.”

Dr. Sellers received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and psychology from Mississippi College as well as a Master of Divinity degree in New Testament and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in theological ethics from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He has done postgraduate work at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand, and at Andover-Newton Theological School in Boston, Massachusetts.

For almost 25 years, Dr. Sellers and his wife, Janie, served as missionary student workers and theological educators in Java, Indonesia. Before returning to the United States, he taught ethics at the Indonesia Baptist Theological Seminary and the Asia Baptist Graduate Theological Seminary. From 1996 to 1998, he was visiting professor at Truett Seminary and in Baylor University’s religion department before beginning his tenure at Logsdon.

Dr. Sellers is a member of the Board of Trustees and the chair for the Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions. He serves on the Interfaith Relations Commission of the Baptist World Alliance and is a Baptist member of a joint Baptist-Muslim Task Force that has coordinated two National Baptist-Muslim Dialogues. He is currently serving his second five-year term representing the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship on the Interfaith Relations and Collaboration Table of the National Council of Churches. Locally, he is the Protestant representative on the board of the Abilene Interfaith Council.

Janie Sellers serves as an officer on the Board of Trustees for the Baptist University of the Americas in San Antonio as well as on the Board of Consultants for the Texas Baptist Christian Life Commission. The Sellers’ children, Tyler and Marnie, were both born in Indonesia and both currently work for Texas Baptist universities.

The Currie-Strickland lecture series is made possible through the generosity of Dr. and Mrs. Gary Elliston and was established to honor the life of Dr. David R. Currie, retired executive director of Texas Baptists Committed, and the memory of Phil Strickland, who dedicated nearly 40 years of ministry to the Baptist General Convention of Texas’ Christian Life Commission.

Admission is free but reservations are requested. For reservations or more information, please contact Howard Payne University’s School of Christian Studies by e-mail at currie-strickland@hputx.edu or by phone at (325) 649-8403.

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Photo cutline: HPU will host speaker Dr. Robert Sellers during its ninth annual Currie-Strickland Distinguished Lectures in Christian Ethics.

HPU to host lectures on global religious freedom

BROWNWOOD – November 16, 2015 – Howard Payne University will host lectures by Dr. Elijah Brown, executive vice president of the 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative, this Tuesday and Wednesday. The events are free and open to the public.

The 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative is a Christian organization that champions global religious freedom. The group’s mission, according to its website, is to “empower a global movement to advance religious freedom as a universal right through advocacy, capacity building and technology.”

Dr. Brown’s first discussion, “Africa and the New Testament Church,” will be held Tuesday, November 17, at 7 p.m. in the Richard and Wanda Jackson Conference Room of HPU’s Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center. He will lead a discussion on the many fascinating African connections to the New Testament and the early church.

The next morning, Dr. Brown will serve as the guest speaker for the university’s Chapel service, delivering his second lecture, “Global Religious Freedom.” He will discuss the current state of religious freedom and religious persecution around the world. Chapel begins at 10 a.m. in the university’s Mims Auditorium.

“We look forward to learning more about Dr. Brown’s global perspectives on religious freedom,” said Dr. Melody Maxwell, assistant professor of Christian studies. “You will not want to miss these opportunities to learn from and interact with him.”

HPU group experiences God’s work in South Africa

HPU group in South Africa for webBROWNWOOD – September 18, 2015 – Five Howard Payne University students and two faculty members that traveled to South Africa during the summer were reminded that God is at work – in huge ways – around the world.

Led by Dr. Melody Maxwell and Dr. Derek Hatch, both assistant professors of Christian studies, the students spent two weeks touring the country, volunteering with Christian organizations and worshipping with more than 2,500 Baptists from around the globe at the 21st Baptist World Congress. They joined more than 60 other individuals from Baptist churches across the United States in serving through the South Africa Ministry Network.

The trip is a component of Dr. Maxwell’s International Missions Practicum, a capstone course for cross-cultural studies majors. The students spent the semester before they left learning about short-term missions and the history, culture and people of South Africa.

“One of the most exciting aspects of the trip was seeing things that we had learned about in class,” said Rachel Ellington, senior from Garland, mentioning sites such as the Apartheid Museum and Lesedi Cultural Village. “The world is a much bigger place than I thought. God is much more creative and the church is much more diverse than I ever dreamed.”

The group spent the first week working with the Refilwe Community Project near an informal settlement north of Johannesburg. Refilwe is a multivalent Christian organization that focuses on child care, community care and skills development.

Dr. Maxwell said the HPU group got to experience a bit of many of the ministries Refilwe has to offer such as farming, child care, kids clubs and more.

“It was a really incredible opportunity for us all to see how God was at work and how we could participate in God’s work,” she said.

The next several days were spent participating in the Baptist World Congress. The host of the event, the Baptist World Alliance, is a fellowship of Baptist believers comprised of 42 million members from 121 countries and territories.

“Experiencing the Congress really expands your boundaries and understanding of the global church,” said Dr. Maxwell.

Scripture was read or presented in approximately 25 different languages during the worship services.

“The Congress’ location on the African continent promised to bring a great deal of diversity to its attendance,” said Dr. Hatch. “I think it really made good on that promise.”

The students were required to seek out people from other cultures to learn about life and Christianity around the world.

“Getting to share life and experiences with people from all over the world was such a remarkable and eye-opening experience for me,” said Mikayla Warren, senior from Salado. “The trip was full of a lifetime of stories and memories and friendships.”

Among the things they learned from leaders of the South Africa Ministry Network was to embrace a “pilgrim’s posture.”

“People go on pilgrimages to seek the presence of God in other places,” said Dr. Hatch. “We weren’t going to bring Christ to South Africa but to encounter Christ in South Africa. He was already working there.”

The Congress served as a good reminder of Christ’s actions around the world.

“It’s really powerful to worship with brothers and sisters in Christ, saying the Lord’s Prayer in your own language and hearing everyone in the room do the same,” said Dr. Maxwell. “It’s fascinating to watch the room explode with dancing and singing and music from different cultures. It’s a privilege for us to be able to travel with, learn from and serve alongside the global Christian community.”

Lance Rhodes, senior from Corsicana, said the trip reminded him of his calling and passion for missions.

“This course rekindled the previously forgotten passion in my heart to go among the nations and proclaim the glory and the grace of Christ,” he said.

Additional students on the trip included Cristalyn Fitzgerald, senior from Burleson, and Paul Warren, May 2015 graduate from Salado.

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Photo cutline: While in South Africa, HPU students and faculty met up with HPU alumni Dr. Chris and Mrs. Cindy Liebrum who were also attending the Baptist World Congress. Left to right: Cindy Liebrum, Cristalyn Fitzgerald, Paul Warren, Lance Rhodes, Mikayla Warren, Dr. Derek Hatch, Rachel Ellington, Dr. Melody Maxwell and Dr. Chris Liebrum.

HPU hosts BGCT’s Super Summer camp for Texas youth

super summer 2015 for webBROWNWOOD – July 21, 2015 – Howard Payne University recently hosted the Baptist General Convention of Texas’ Super Summer camp, a weeklong event designed to foster leadership skills in young Christians. In addition to hundreds of Texas youth, approximately 65 HPU alumni, students, faculty and staff members participated in the camp.

Youth ministers from churches across the state – 18 of them HPU alumni or graduate students – brought students to the camp. Additional Super Summer camps are hosted by other Texas Baptist universities throughout the summer.

At least nine of the young people who attended HPU’s Super Summer will start classes at the university in the fall.

Camp youth are divided into schools, designated by colors, based on their ages. This year, HPU was one of only two universities to also include a Purple School, which provides preparation for students who feel called to vocational Christian ministry. Dr. Rusty Wheelington, associate professor of Christian studies at HPU, served as dean of the Purple School.

“Spending a week with some of the best youth ministers and students across the state is always encouraging and a blessing,” said Dr. Wheelington. “This year we even had one student from Haiti. Super Summer is a week of intense teaching and training to help students become more effective leaders, disciples and sharers of the Gospel in their schools, communities and homes.”

According to Dr. Gary Gramling ’81, professor of Christian studies and director of HPU’s Christian studies graduate programs, other students also recognized God calling them to ministry throughout the week.

“I met two students who were not a part of Purple School who sensed during the week that God is calling them to vocational Christian ministry,” he said. “What a privilege for HPU to host such a week where God is at work in the hearts of so many students. I can’t imagine anything that would bring greater joy to the hearts of those who founded our university than to know the campus is being used for such events.”

Chuck Gartman ’72, adjunct instructor in HPU’s School of Christian Studies and minister of education/leadership development at Field Street Baptist Church in Cleburne, served as dean of Super Summer’s Leadership Forum at HPU.

“Howard Payne’s Leadership Forum at Super Summer continues to be a breath of fresh air for me personally as I facilitate this process,” he said. “Leaders have the opportunity to hear from some of our state’s best youth leaders and are also able to express concerns or sources of praise in their own settings. I’m privileged to be a part of this great opportunity for youth leaders around our state.”

Natalie Stary ’03, HPU admission counselor, coordinated HPU’s camp this year.

“Super Summer has had a huge impact on Baptist students for more than 40 years,” she said. “Super Summer at HPU will always be special to me because I attended as a student 19 years ago.”

It was during that time, Stary said, she felt called to ministry and to become a student at HPU.

“I feel very honored to get to now serve in a leadership role with the planning and implementation of Super Summer at Howard Payne,” she said. “The Lord continues to use Super Summer and HPU to train up future generations of Texas Baptists for His service locally and around the world.”

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Photo cutline: Super Summer campers gather near HPU’s Old Main Tower.