This July Dr. Troy Backhuus and Dr. Linda Vermooten of the Grace counseling program had the pleasure of leading a team of students on a cross-cultural trip to South Africa —a last minute change from the original trip to Chennai, India! Though the team was left with only three days to adjust to the new plans, it soon became apparent that this was the trip God had ordained all along.
During the first week in Muizenberg, the team debriefed YWAM staff and counseled church members in the area, and helped lead a children’s Bible camp with a church in one of the poorer neighborhoods. The second two weeks were spent across the country in Durban, with Open Door Crisis Centre. ODCC works a great deal with individuals who are experiencing domestic violence or who have been trafficked. Most of the women on the Grace team were lodged at a safe house, and were able to do some counseling with the women sheltered there, as well. The team was also blessed to be able to distribute toothbrushes and food parcels in some of the urban and rural communities in the surrounding area, as well as share their testimonies. They also taught several times on basic lay counseling skills, understanding and processing emotion, stress and conflict management, domestic violence and abuse, and a number of other topics. It was an incredible experience that the students and faculty will not soon forget!
Grace University students, alumni and community volunteers have been spending their winter break preparing for a great production of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor® Dreamcoat”. More than 70 actors, singers, musicians and crew members will be performing this Broadway-style production.
This show is directed and produced by the father daughter team of Mackenzie Dehmer, director of the Theater Department, and Dr. Greg Zielke, chair of the music department and conductor and Artistic Director for the Omaha Symphonic Chorus. The choreographer is Amy Wesely. This is their seventh production together and the first since the inauguration of the Grace University Theater Program.
“The story of Joseph and his coat may be well known but I imagine that people have never seen the show done this way. This is the first time we have approached a show conceptually and really made it our own. I say this every year but this really is our most exciting and ambitious production yet,” said Dehmer.
Shows are Jan. 22-24 and 29-31. The performances are in the Suckau Chapel, 840 Pine St. in Omaha. Doors open 30 minutes before the show starts. Reserved tickets are $15 and general admission tickets are $10. For more information or to purchase and reserve tickets, visit www.graceu.edu/joseph. General admission tickets can be purchased at the door. Plenty of free parking is available in the university lots.
The event is sponsored by Northwestern Mutual.
Grace University, located in Omaha, Neb., is a regionally accredited, private Christian university with more than 40 diverse undergraduate, graduate and adult degree completion programs including education, business, psychology, music, nursing and Christian ministries. The university’s mission is to develop servant leaders for the home, the church and the world through excellence in biblically integrated education.
The Grace University Orality class was invited to be the entertainment for Byron Bible Camp’s fund raiser in Huron, S.D. Seventeen students and volunteers made the 300-mile trip to support the ministry and share the Gospel. The students presented key Bible narratives with different creative orality strategies they learned during the fall semester.
Grace University students give more than 24,000 of community service each year. The students gave their time to serve and this was not part of a class assignment or an extra credit project.
“I talked with the group about the importance of sacrificial serving and doing something without the mindset of entitlement,” said Dr. Tara Rye, dean of women and course instructor. “I am proud of them. The entire class rearranged work schedules and homework to make this trip a reality.” The study of orality is a purposeful way of learning to transmit the Bible through a relational and social way so the stories can spread rapidly as an effective tool for evangelism and discipleship.
“The Bible is God’s word to us and it is 75% story. I am studying orality so that I can learn the stories of the Bible well in order to share them with others in the hopes of leading nonbelievers to Christ, as well as encouraging believers,” said Lauren Witteveen, junior Intercultural Studies major from Washington state. “The majority of people prefer to hear a story over a lecture, so I want to share the Gospel in a way that connects with people by telling Bible stories.”
More than 500 students, friends, alumni, faculty and staff enjoyed the 2015 Festival of Christmas Scholarship Concert, which helped raise funds for student scholarships. The beautiful annual event was held at the Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha.
The evening began with a dinner in the beautiful Storz Fountain Court, enjoyed by 80 people, and was followed by prayer for the University. The concert featuring the Grace University Chorale, Chamber Singers, Concert Band and instrumental ensembles was in the Witherspoon Concert Hall. Attendees also enjoyed music from special guests, the Omaha Christian Academy Choir, Omaha Academy Choir and the Papillion Area Concert Band Brass Ensemble.
Donations received at the concert were matched by the TRIPLE Match Challenge. A special thanks goes to the event sponsors who gave in support of student scholarships:
• Grace University Alumni
• J.P. Cooke Company
• Nebraska Arts Council
• Nebraska Cultural Endowment
Plan now to attend this great concert next year!
The Perspectives in Faith scholarship fundraising dinner brought in more than $95,000 for Grace University students Oct. 29 during the event at the Tip Top Ballroom.
The evening featured Dove Award winning Christian singer and songwriter Bryan Duncan. Honorees of the evening were Bill and Lucille Sapp, who received the Heritage Award for their commitment to Grace University and Christian higher education. Prior to the event, special guests met for a reception and had the opportunity to meet Bryan Duncan.
Tom and Monica Morrison served as event co-chairmen. Curt and Linda Hofer facilitated the donor participation. John Knicely, anchor WOWT, was the MC for the evening.
Grace University, located in Omaha, Neb., is a regionally accredited, private Christian university with more than 40 diverse areas of study for undergraduate, graduate and adult degree completion students including education, business, psychology, music, nursing and Christian ministries. The university’s mission is to develop servant leaders for the home, the church and the world through excellence in biblically integrated education.