Hello folks! It’s been far too long since we have posted here!
It’s was quite a spring semester at Purdue with the Covid-19 pandemic. The students were basically sent home for online learning immediately after Spring Break. A wild couple of weeks for us all for the students and us! It did not completely stop our ministry as we continued to meet with students and have our meetings via Zoom! The Zoom service has become a verb these days of quarantine and physical distancing.
Thankfully none of our students knowing caught the virus, however some family members/friends have. We have a friend from our church who contracted Covid-19 on a plane traveling to Florida. He was in the hospital for 50 days or so and by God’s grace survived despite many close calls.
We are currently attending our WDA Staff Conference via Zoom. This has added the resource for our International Staff to participate from Brazil to Africa to the Philippines and points in between!
We are excited to share what is on the horizon for WDA on campus at Purdue and as the WDA overall ministry. God has been working in these difficult times worldwide. We trust Him in the midst of hardship and pain.
This semester was a really good one for Sharon and Everette and he wanted to give you a brief update. We finished the Purdue semester with a Senior Dinner honoring the four seniors who are graduating. The time of affirmation was quite powerful as the students who attended shared openly and there was a lot of humor. This was a good year for personal growth for our consistent leaders and we also saw two students make commitments to Christ at the end of the semester. Everette is ready for a break from the pace but will be ready to roll again in the fall.
On the international side, he made a very interesting trip to India March 10 – 18th. At first he was very challenged by the mass of humanity, the pollution, and the chaos in travel. However after a couple of days he was able to recover enough from the culture shock to have a very meaningful time encouraging some young pastors, and there is a possibility he will be returning next year.
A lot has also happened on the home front. On March 4th Myles Edward Albrecht, their first grandson (they have two granddaughters as well), was born to Susanne and Mark in Lake Stevens, WA. Sharon was able to be present and Everette looks forward to seeing him in July as he, Sharon, their oldest daughter Jessica make a trip West. His youngest son Michael is out of the Marines now and is job hunting in Southern California. Their youngest daughter Michelle, who married Luke last year, graduated from Nursing School and is starting her job search. Everette and Sharon love seeing Jessica weekly as she eats Sunday lunch with them. They have a lot of fun interacting with their adult children.
Mary had the joy of one Chinese student (who is now at Ohio State) become a believer on April 7th. She visited over Thanksgiving and the Lord continued to work in her heart. In March, she asked “How will I know when is the right time to say yes?” Mary knew she was seriously counting the cost so she said, “Don’t worry, you will know. The Holy Spirit will confirm in your heart that it’s time.” She called at 11pm, so excited, saying, “My hand went up first!”
Mary is also part of the World Welcome class at Covenant Church. Alison (left in picture) was only at Purdue for one semester but was so glad she found us through a lunch at the beginning of the semester.
Kayle from Taiwan was invited by another church member. Both of them are believers. Puting who Mary has met with for almost 3 years will be moving to Boston University with the entire Cheng research group. The Lord orchestrated a couple working with InterVarsity’s international ministry there to continue the in-town discipleship. God is Good!
This is Mary’s year to go to Kenya and Uganda and teach discipleship training in three locations. There will also be the first ever East Africa WDA staff conference in Nairobi with International staff from seven countries!
It’s amazing that the 2016-2017 academic year has come to a close here at Purdue!
We are thankful for how God has worked this year in many ways. It is exciting to see young men and women committed to following Christ in their pivotal college years. We have had so many opportunities to work with students and see them grow in all aspects of their lives. Several students from all different backgrounds have become Christ followers which is the most exciting for us!
We certainly will miss our graduating seniors as they move on to their new careers. Please pray for them as they step out into the ‘real world’ and the challenges that await them. In addition, that they find good fellowship with Christ followers wherever their career takes them. This is critical to their continued growth in their faith in Christ.
Over the next three days we will post year end summaries by Parks, Mary and Everette. We look forward to sharing a snapshot of how the Lord has used us in the past nine months.
It truly is an honor to serve the students at Purdue University since 1983!
We look forward to the Ratio Christi Symposium again this year! It is part of an annual event held at Purdue University led by multiple campus ministries and churches, drawing from colleges and communities in the surrounding region. The purpose is to discuss and debate probing questions about faith, reason, and life via panel discussions, lectures, and debates.
This year, the main topic will address the credibility of contemporary and biblical miracle claims. The keynote speaker will be New Testament scholar Dr. Craig Keener exploring the question, “Are Miracles Intellectually Credible?” Keener recently authored a two-volume book set, Miracles: The Credibility of the New Testament Accounts, and is the author of the Bible Background Commentary among other publications.
Keener will also give presentations on the notion of the Historical Jesus (exploring the evidence for our knowledge of Jesus) and racial reconciliation in light of current events.
If you are in the area, we encourage you to attend the Keynote on Friday February 3rd at 7:00 pm Eastern time. The keynote is also available via live stream on their website.
Is it really 2016? We cannot wait to see what the Lord has planned!
Purdue has yet again transitioned from a ghost town to a bustling, thriving, albeit chilly campus of students in the matter of a day or two. It dawned on us it has been few weeks since they were last here! When Star Wars came out! It’s OK to admit you have seen it more than once. Some of us have seen it three times.
It’s great to get going again!
There is much talk about the basketball teams this season so it should be fun to see how it plays out! Many of our students are in the “Paint Crew” student section at home basketball games making Mackey Arena a very loud feared place to play for opponents. Boiler Up!
We are already rolling forward this week with the first Alpha fellowship of the semester, and catching up with students.
Oh and we certainly need to catch you all up on some happenings from last semester! Sorry it wasn’t more consistent!
Since there is so much to share, we’ll break up the fall events we have not covered in an upcoming Digest post including:
The Purdue WDA staff went to Israel!
The Great Exchange outreach
Parks as Faculty Fellow for a floor at Tarkington Residence Hall
Great semester ending dinner with the students at the Wilson’s home.
It’s hard to believe it’s time for a new school year at Purdue! What happened to the summer break?
Campus is abuzz with students as classes began Monday August 24th on a beautiful day with mild temperatures. It’s so great to have them back! Time to Boiler Up!
We have upcoming events and Bible studies, etc that will be announced as well as ongoing schedules and communication throughout the semester. This website, Facebook and Twitter will be important information hubs for students.
Blog posts from staff, students and even an alum or two will be posted!
In the coming days Mary will report on her summer missions trip to Africa as will Everette on his Romania trip.
We are looking forward to what the Lord has in store for this school year! Stay tuned!