Page 1

SPRING 2015 2012

THE MAGAZINE OF GORDON COLLEGE

STILLPOINT

A Place for Invention 14 Mark Sargent: On the “Living Ground” of Gordon College 17

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF GORDON COLLEGE The “School of Christ”— 125 Years Later

Also in Also This in Issue This Issue 28 Beyond 6 JudNarnia: Carlberg TheRemembered Staying Power of 22C.An S. Examined Lewis 30 Faith Good Friday 31 TheFaith Wittenberg 31 A Book Window Is Born


CONTENTS SPRING 2015 2012

THE MAGAZINE OF GORDON COLLEGE

STILLPOINT

A Place for Invention 14 Mark Sargent: On the “Living Ground” of Gordon College 17

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF GORDON COLLEGE The “School of Christ”— 125 Years Later

Also in Also This in Issue This Issue 28 Beyond 6 JudNarnia: Carlberg TheRemembered Staying Power of 22C.An S. Examined Lewis 30 Faith Good Friday 31 TheFaith Wittenberg 31 A Book Window Is Born

SPRING 2015

THE MAGAZINE OF GORDON COLLEGE

STILLPOINT

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF GORDON COLLEGE The “School of Christ”— 125 Years Later

Also in Also This in Issue This Issue 28 Beyond 6 JudNarnia: Carlberg TheRemembered Staying Power of 22C.An S. Examined Lewis 30 Faith Good Friday 31 TheFaith Wittenberg 31 A Book Window Is Born

SPRING 2015

THE MAGAZINE OF GORDON COLLEGE

STILLPOINT

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF GORDON COLLEGE The “School of Christ”— 125 Years Later

10 Also in Also This in Issue This Issue 28 Beyond 6 JudNarnia: Carlberg TheRemembered Staying Power of 22C.An S. Examined Lewis 30 Faith Good Friday 31 TheFaith Wittenberg 31 A Book Window Is Born

10 A DAY IN THE LIFE OF GORDON COLLEGE The photoessay that begins on page 10 traces a typical day in the life of Gordon College. On three different covers photographed in the Ken Olsen Science Center (you will receive one of them), six students re-enact their interests. Red banner Chemistry major and researcher HanByul Chang ’15 grew up in Moscow; this year she’s a Gordon Presidential Fellow in the Office of the Vice President for Student Life. David Popa ’15, an art major from New York City, specializes in street art using spray paint. He has participated in Gordon’s W.I.L.D. semester, which is focused on outdoor education and leadership; he’s also on the track team.

Navy banner Stevie Schweighardt ’15, a communication arts major from San Diego, has made six films at Gordon. In 2013 she studied in India and Salzburg; this year she is a Presidential Fellow in the Office of the Vice President for Strategic Marketing and Communications. Dan Fauber Jr. ’16, from Danbury, Texas, is on the Men’s Swimming team and continues to break records. He majors in physics.

Aqua banner Sandev Handy ’16, a design major from Sri Lanka, has worked with the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership and with ELEVATE, Gordon’s summer leadership lab for high school students. Bailey Grinnell ’15 is a biology/Spanish double major from Massachusetts who has studied abroad and is a strong player on the Women’s Lacrosse team.


“Conversations with Dr. Carlberg were so profound and formative that they continue to guide my life today.”

20

6

22

31

34

ARTICLES

ALUMNI

IN EACH ISSUE

Well Met 20 Friends by Kevin Belmonte ’90

27 A Man of Peace

Front with 2 Up President Lindsay

The kindred legacies of A. J. Gordon and D. L. Moody.

Examined Faith 22 An by Wendy Murray Rudy and Shirley Nelson of the Class of ’48—a 67-year creative partnership.

Wideness 24 The of the Church

by Hilary (Sherratt) Yancey ’12 The “Great Tradition” is a lens for seeing ourselves, and God.

Presence of the Past 25 The by Christy Urbano ’16 The past is present in the words we use every day.

A tribute to Kenneth Pike ’33.

Godspell, 29 Remembering and Becky Donaldson ’84

30

“Piking” at Gordon Three notable Pike alumni: Ginny Sohn ’84, Marc Pitman ’95 and Jorge Rodriguez ’14.

Wittenberg Window, 31 The and the Day It Was Stolen Jim Marks ’95 on pre-digital campus life.

32 Remembering Mr. D

Meadow Rue Lincoln Merrill ’94 recalls Harry Durning.

34 Going the Distance

Dana Bates ’95 on what it takes.

The 20/20 Project: A Vision for Gordon’s Future

3 Inspiration

Roger Green, Terry Fullam, Bill Buehler and Marv Wilson

4 Gordon Life 5 SPORKS

Notes from a youngish alum

6 On the Grapevine

• Remembering Jud Carlberg • Student, Faculty and Staff News

26 Class Notes Alumni news


STARTERS

FEATURE

ALUMNI

UP FRONT with President Lindsay

The 20/20 Project: A Vision “Pull quote goes for Gordon’s Future here. Num veleseq

uismodignim zzriuscil doluptat. Cum nos duis nulput digna con volenim ent augait wis nit aut aliqui blan.”

Photo Mark Spooner ’14

“Our vision is unabashedly bold: We aim to be the liberal arts college of choice worldwide for developing thoughtful Christian leaders.” We are nearing the finish line of our yearlong commemoration of Gordon’s 125th anniversary. We are celebrating our identity as a community fully committed to Jesus Christ, one crafting novel approaches to advancing his work in the world. Our focus on heroes and heroines of our history became especially poignant upon the passing in November of our seventh president, Jud Carlberg. We are so grateful to Jud for his faithful leadership of this place that he and Jan loved to call home. We also have remembered where we are. Geographically that means Greater Boston, a world-class nexus of research, technology, the arts, and innovation of all kinds. Gordon faculty and students benefit from access to this vibrant metropolis. Our alumni are—and increasingly will be—making contributions in Boston and in other key places around the world. But where is not just about map coordinates. We also occupy a position

2 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015

in the landscape of higher education— a unique, countercultural position. This year made it clear what a challenge it is to maintain our position as a faith-based college in the cosmopolitan Northeast. It made it clear, too, that our identity as a distinctively Christian community of learners needs to be staked on what we’re for, not what we’re against. Reflecting on where we’ve been leads naturally to questions about where we are going. What will Gordon College look like in five years? Our new Strategic Plan, “The 20/20 Project,” provides a blueprint for the future that is both practical and aspirational. The plan is the fruit of intensive research, numerous conversations, and careful review, the collective effort of many during the College’s 125th anniversary year. It outlines initiatives Gordon will pursue from 2015 through 2020 to achieve its mission, in the context of this era’s particular challenges and opportunities in higher

president@gordon.edu

education. I invite you to read highlights of the plan at www.gordon.edu/2020project Our vision is unabashedly bold: We aim to be the liberal arts college of choice worldwide for developing thoughtful Christian leaders. You will hear more from me in the coming months about the 20/20 Project, but let me leave you for now with the most important thing to know about the process: it was birthed in an extended time of prayer. Proverbs 16:3 became our theme verse for the strategic-planning process: “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” It has been our prayer—and yours as well, I hope—that at the end of this dreaming and planning process we will be even closer to being the institution that the Lord wants Gordon College to be.

www.gordon.edu/presidentspage

twitter.com/GordonPres


IN EACH ISSUE

INSPIRATION

VOLUME 30 NUMBER 2

“At the still point of the turning world.” T. S. Eliot, from “Burnt Norton,” Four Quartets

EDITORIAL

CREATIVE

Patricia C. Hanlon Editor

Tim Ferguson Sauder Creative Director

Ann Sierks Smith Copyeditor and Staff Writer

Rebecca Powell Jon Misarski ’07 Abby Ytzen-Handel ’10 Publication Design

Heather Korpi Cyndi McMahon Staff Writers John Buckley ’15 Marina Lavender ’15 Daniel Simonds ’18 Student Staff Writers

ALUMNI NEWS Peter Bayreuther ’07 Heather Varela ’08 Alumni and Parent Relations Office

Mark Spooner ’14 Photographer

ADMINISTRATION D. Michael Lindsay President Rick Sweeney ’85 Vice President for Marketing and Strategic Communications

ADDRESS CHANGES Development Office gordoncollege@gordon.edu

OTHER CORRESPONDENCE Editor, STILLPOINT | Gordon College 255 Grapevine Road, Wenham MA 01984 stillpoint@gordon.edu

PRINTING

A Bridge Between the Colleges Pictures tell stories. This picture taken at Homecoming in 1990 speaks not only of the four men in the picture, but also of the history of the United College of Gordon and Barrington. At one time these four colleagues were the Biblical Studies Department at Barrington College. On the left is Roger Green, who began teaching at Barrington in 1970. His office mate, Terry Fullam, is next to him. Terry was a 1955 Gordon College graduate and a charismatic Episcopal priest; he went to be with the Lord last spring. Next is Bill Buehler, who began teaching at Barrington College in 1964, having just returned from the University of Basel in Switzerland, where he was the last American to complete a doctoral degree under Karl Barth. Bill passed away in the spring of 2010. Standing next to Bill is Marv Wilson, who began teaching at Barrington College in 1963. Bill and Marv shared the office next to Roger and Terry, and an adjoining door between the offices was kept open at all times. Those were days of wonderful camaraderie, but they were not to last. Terry Fullam followed a calling into the parish ministry. For the other three, Gordon College called. The first to head north was Marv, in 1971. Bill followed in 1981, and Roger came up when Barrington and Gordon merged in 1985. The great fellowship of the three and their spouses was renewed with that merger. Marv and Roger are still serving the United College of Gordon and Barrington; Roger for 42 years so far, and Marv for 52 years. Their offices are not quite as close as they were back in the Barrington days: Roger’s home base is on the third floor of Frost Hall, and Marv occupies a cozy spot halfway between Frost’s second and third floors (new students sometimes get lost trying to find it). But even with a staircase separating their offices now, the ties between the two longtime professors remain as strong as ever.

Flagship Press | North Andover, Massachusetts

Opinions expressed in STILLPOINT are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Gordon College administration, or of all members of the alumni community. The College reserves the right to edit for clarity, conciseness and appropriateness. Gordon College is an equal opportunity institution and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, sex, or national or ethnic origin. Reproduction of STILLPOINT articles is permitted, but please attribute to STILLPOINT: The Magazine of Gordon College, and include author’s name, if applicable.

www.gordon.edu/stillpoint

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 3


STARTERS

FEATURE

ALUMNI

GORDON LIFE: Ways to stay in touch The most up-to-date information about the College is now found online. Read faculty and student stories, sit in on Chapel and Convocation, and join the open dialogue that has always been an important aspect of Gordon’s identity. (Postings on social-media sites do not necessarily reflect the College’s institutional positions and beliefs.)

The Bell, the Gordon College blog STORIES.GORDON.EDU

Gordon’s YouTube channel WWW.YOUTUBE.COM/USER/GORDONCOLLEGE

Gordon College—A Dynamic Vision

Featured Playlists

When students pick up mail or visit Gillies Lounge in Lane Student Center, they now see a new mural that Gordon students created in an introductory painting class. Read about it in The Bell (where you can also link to Notes Along the Way blog posts from 2008 to 2014).

Dr. Rosalind Picard, founder and director of the Affective Computing Research Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab: “On Machines, Humans and Our Common Future.” This and many other lectures are available for your viewing on Gordon’s YouTube channel.

www.stories.gordon.edu

Watch the video: www.youtube.com/user/GordonCollege

Gordon College Instagram WWW.INSTAGRAM.COM/GORDONCOLLEGE

Gordon College website WWW.GORDON.EDU

Welcome back to “Spring” semester! • #gordonmoments

Take a Virtual Tour of Campus

Reminisce, connect with old friends, and post photos and comments of your own. Model the longtime Gordon ethos of respectful dialogue and just plain fun! We especially enjoy photos of your Gordon moments.

“Walk” around campus and see what’s changed and what’s stayed the same. You can explore a location in more detail by clicking on the 360, Photos, or Video icons. Access the “Virtual Visit” from the home page, or with the URL below.

www.instagram.com/GordonCollege

www.gordon.edu/#virtualtour

4 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015


IN EACH ISSUE

Story Bryan Parys ’04 Illustration Jon Misarski ’07

INSTALLATION 20: A COMMUTIST MANIFESTO On the commuter train into Boston, I religiously sit in the quiet car, employing odd tricks to ensure a two-seater to myself, such as putting my bag next to me and pretending to rifle through it. It is the kind of semi-deplorable trait that non-New Englanders cite as evidence for the common misconception that northeastern types are cold and unfriendly. So let me clear the coastal air here and say that silence is not always an unwillingness to listen to a stranger; sometimes it expresses a desire to take in all the strange surroundings. Meeting people where they’re at, in other words, requires acute attention to that at. No matter what I’m reading during the morning commute— student papers, say, or the novel Infinite Jest, heavy with Boston locales—on each trip I reflexively look out the window

THE SUBWAY IS AN INTERMEDIARY BETWEEN STREET RAGE AND COMMUTER RAIL ZEN. at the same points, usually where land meets water. Out the windows looking east, serpentine tributaries carve smoothly into the marsh and smokestacks give way to harbors in a way that worries me; we’ve been an industrial people so long, such sights appear serene. Through the window on the other side: urban decay brightened by bold swaths of graffiti, names like ICH and DROID. Faded logos of long-gone companies now merge in a seamless chain with sprayed art, and for miles the landscape is a run-on sentence: NOW LEASING GLOBAL FUGUE MAPLE HALT EVERGREEN CUTZ#ERAX. The places that run on either side of the tracks have become living galleries, curated by so many graffiti artists and businesses because there is a cross-section of regional econo-culture that passes through every day. In some weather the window becomes a mirror: You see yourself ghost-like and seated, a reminder that you are a part of all the decay, the renewal, the slice of sun through cloud-cover bouncing off a skyscraper like a tower of Babel fighting for light. What does it mean to pass so many lives so fast on a daily basis? Which houses today will be the ones to break their routines, and how many people’s routines involve daily fantasies about breaking routines? On a recent commute back to the North Shore, my train was stuck at Chelsea, the first stop. A frazzled blonde woman was ushered down the aisle into the quiet car where I was sitting, and brought into the bathroom. Soon after the conductor

explained that the woman was having a panic attack. A nurse and then an EMT, both off-duty, stood and offered their services in an urgent but unassuming way. After they calmed the woman and helped her to a seat on the train, an old man yelled, “This is the worst train ride ever!” No one rose to rebuke him; no one rose to concur. He yelled more loudly, “I DON’T HAVE TO BE QUIET!” Still we sat there, not giving in to his ploys to roil and disrupt, and he moved to the side, finally, it seemed to me, hearing the message quiet and clear. As I walk from my Back Bay office to the subway, I am amazed at how different the city’s car culture is from the train. Boylston Street is a wild, metallic tangle of honks and screeches, of Doppler Effect sirens and pedestrian fists pounding on car hoods. In cities, there is a myth that cars create a kind of hermetic, armored extension of self, not so much about protection but a false sense of individualism. Most of the time, getting cut off is less about reckless driving than about reacting when a stranger has taken away a driver’s lead. The subway is an intermediary between street rage and commuter rail zen. The sardine-can experience of a Green Line trolley tends to yield a sense of together-in-the-mess. During a recent unprompted conversation, a stranger regaled me with tales of his love for the train, and how it taught him to coexist in such a diverse place. “As you get older, y’know, as you grow, you realize that’s all anybody is: people,” he said. “There’s nothing weird or specific about it.” As we pulled into North Station, I opened my mouth to ask his name, to seal this exchange in some meaningful way. But as the squeal of an arriving Orange Line train sounded, he bolted up and started running, saying only, “Oh shoot— that’s my train.”

Bryan Parys is an editor and writer at Berklee College of Music and teaches writing at Gordon College. “It’s too bad you couldn’t just write ‘together-in-the-mess’ as just ‘togethermess,’” said his wife, Natalie. Well, why not! This is the 20th Sporks, so why not go nuts and introduce a hashtag: #Togethermess. bryan.parys@gordon.edu

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 5


STARTERS

NEWS

FEATURES

ARTICLES

ALUMNI

NEWS: ON THE GRAPEVINE

STUDENT, FACULTY AND STAFF NEWS

Photo Danny Ebersole ’11

“We have been blessed by Jud and Jan’s faithful, steadfast and gracious leadership and ministry.” ­­—Barry Loy, vice president for student life emeritus

R. Judson Carlberg, Seventh President of Gordon College: 1940–2014 R. Judson Carlberg, who served Gordon College for 35 years, including nearly 20 years as its president, died November 20, 2014, after a battle with cancer. He was 74. Born in 1940 in the mill town of Fall River, Massachusetts, he was the son of a Baptist pastor, and named for the missionary Adoniram Judson. With an undergraduate degree from Wheaton College (Illinois), a divinity degree from Denver Seminary and a Ph.D. from Michigan State University, he joined Gordon in 1976 as dean of faculty. From 1990 to 1992 he was senior vice president for development, and in 1992 he became Gordon’s seventh president. An expansive view of Christian vocation, keen intellect, sharp wit and an unpretentious personal style were hallmarks of his leadership. “Jud Carlberg 6 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015

was a giant in the field of Christian higher education,” said Gordon President Michael Lindsay, who succeeded Carlberg in 2011. “He also had a formidable influence within the wider academy.” His substantial legacy at Gordon includes transformative growth of its physical campus, coupled with equally transformative growth in faculty appointments, programs and cultural engagement; he shepherded development of programs in global education, visual arts, and other disciplines. His leadership helped shape an expansive vision of Christian vocation in a pluralistic, rapidly changing world. Buildings completed during his vice-presidency and presidency include the Bennett Athletic and Recreation Center, Barrington Center for the Arts, Phillips Music Center,

Ken Olsen Science Center, and A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel, where his memorial service was held (see page 7). Dr. Carlberg saw no division between Christian faith and rigorous scientific inquiry, as his close involvement in the BioLogos Foundation testifies. “This godly, thoughtful, visionary man served ably as Chairman of the Board, helping in countless ways to share the good news that science and faith are wonderfully complementary ways of understanding God’s creation,” said Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Carlberg also held leadership roles on the boards of Denver Seminary, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, the American Association of Presidents of Independent Colleges


ON THE GRAPEVINE

From the Memorial Service

Photo Mark Spooner ’14

“Follow Jesus! Follow Jesus! That was Jud’s touchstone.” —Dr. Francis Collins (pictured above) Director, National Institutes of Health, and founder of the BioLogos Foundation “Conversations with Dr. Carlberg were so profound and formative that they continue to guide my life today. Jud taught me—he taught us—that God’s power and plans are

and Universities, and the Council of Independent Colleges. “There was an undercurrent of safety in his razor-focused questions and perfectly placed pearls of wisdom,” Denver Seminary President Mark Young said. “I trusted him to do what was right and noble and above reproach.” It’s an assessment emphatically shared by those who knew him as husband, father and grandfather. “He was unimpressed with himself (credentials, titles, roles, accolades) but impressed by us, his family. We flourished under him,” said his wife, Janice Dawn (Jensen) Carlberg. “His ability to listen—he was always interruptible—made him a wonderful dad, husband and grandfather. He coached his kids in sports and supported their varied interests. Through his love, example and support, Jud encouraged me to be more than I’d dared without him.” Dr. Carlberg was a lay leader for many years of Grace Chapel in Lexington, Massachusetts, and in recent years often worshiped at Christ Church (Episcopal) in Hamilton, Massachusetts. “I held Jud in great esteem while a student and after,” said Jennifer Paglierani ’66. “But in recent

years, at Christ Church, I have seen Jud in an even more important role—that of a grandfather. It warmed my heart to see this great man carrying his little granddaughter Kate through the sanctuary in his arms.” His 60 birthday present from his family was a fishing boat; he enjoyed fishing out of Gloucester Harbor with friends, and trips up the Annisquam River to the back of Crane Beach. On frequent trips on behalf of the College the Carlbergs enjoyed exploring the environs of Gordon’s overseas programs. They cherished cruises with friends including a Prairie Home Companion cruise to Scandinavia with their favorite storyteller, Garrison Keillor. In all these settings Dr. Carlberg found a reason to quote, with winsome commitment, the mission statement of the college he and Jan loved to call home. th

In addition to his wife of 51 years, Dr. Carlberg is survived by their daughter, Heather Carlberg, her husband, Matthew Willis, and their children; their son, Chad (a 1995 Gordon graduate), his wife, Kristina Harter, and their two daughters; a brother, Carey Carlberg; a brother-in-law, Jim Abts; and nieces and nephews. 

bigger than our weakness, and that in the end, giving our all to follow Jesus and not look back is more than worth it.” —Rev. Becky Manseau Barnett ’01 Pastor “He valued the liberty in the liberal arts, and a Christian vision that relinquished its fear of artistic expression and scientific inquiry. He did value that fragile ideal of freedom within a framework of faith.” —Dr. Mark Sargent Former Gordon College provost “My dad loved learning—learning through listening, through travel, through experience. He loved this place, Gordon College, and the people who bring life to it.” —Dr. Heather Carlberg Psychiatrist “Jud was at home in the Scriptures. They gave him courage and hope.” —Dr. Marvin Wilson Gordon College professor “His instinct for leadership, paired with a genuine interest in others . . . gave him a capacity to evolve. By the time of his death, my father had become perhaps the most open-minded, self-led person that I have ever known.” —Chad Carlberg Advertising creative director 

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 7


STARTERS

NEWS

FEATURES

ARTICLES

ALUMNI

Remembering Steve MacLeod

Sojourners’ Snapshots: Global Education Photo Contest Each year Gordon’s Global Education Office sponsors a photo contest for students in its many study-abroad programs. The 2014 theme was “Sojourning: Parables from a Life.” View all the entries and the photographers’ reflections at http://gcgeophotocontest.blogspot.com

Stephen C. MacLeod, College Counsel and Dean of College Planning, passed away January 31. Steve began his career with the College in 1979 as Dean of Students at Barrington College, and in 1985 became the Dean of College Planning at Gordon after the Barrington-Gordon merger. Steve earned a Ph.D. in higher education administration from Michigan State University, and a J.D. from Suffolk University Law School. His expertise in both fields has been vital to the growth and advancement of Gordon College. He was also a devoted mentor and friend. “Steve was a guardian angel,” said Ted Hildebrandt, professor of biblical studies. “Once I found myself in a threatening and difficult legal situation, without the resources to defend myself. Steve swept in and prepared my defense before the civil officials. Sorting through all the technical requirements and knowledgeably applying his legal mind, he advised me on exactly what I should be aware of and how to articulate it in the most compelling manner. My defense followed Steve’s sagacious advice and was successful. Steve had my back in that situation.” In recognition of Steve’s multifaceted contributions to the life of the College, this year’s F. L. Chapell Award will be awarded to him posthumously at Homecoming. The award is named for the first lead teacher and dean of the Boston Missionary Training School. “Steve’s leadership and service shaped Gordon College in ways that extended far beyond any single institutional role,” said President Michael Lindsay.  8 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015

1

2

1

3

First place Rachel Reed ’15 “Hound and Christ” | Toledo, Spain

“Toledo is a city in central Spain, a city built on a rock alongside the Tajo River, a city influenced by the Muslim, Jewish and Christian inhabitants over the course of thousands of years. Walking along the long, narrow, cobblestone streets of this medieval gothic city, one finds many sword shops, the occasional tourist shop and grand cathedrals. I spotted this old hound relaxing by a sword shop. How perfect—the dog seeking upward, the Christ image behind; separate worlds and separate times connected by gaze.” 2

Second place McKenzie Watson ’15 “Outside the Tate” | London, England

“I walked out of the Tate Modern in London, and encountered street performers making giant bubbles streaming all the way down the sidewalk beside the Thames. Children began to gather, squealing, trying to capture the bubbles. I realized that museums, while they can contain beauty, do not have a monopoly on beauty or its meaning. Beauty is in life together, strangers convening to appreciate spontaneity and wonder.” 3

Third place Nathaniel Youndt ’15 “Not My Home” | Florence, Italy

“I was sitting on the steps of the church of San Miniato in Florence, watching the sun set over the city of the Italian Renaissance, when one of the Benedictine monks came out of the church to enjoy the sight as well. I was reminded that I am not just a sojourner in Italy, but also a sojourner on earth. We are not fully at home on this earth, but we immerse ourselves in daily life to honor our context, wherever we are.” 


ON THE GRAPEVINE

Soccer Star Caleb Cole Receives National Accolades

Faculty Books

by Daniel Simonds ’18

Marv Wilson (biblical studies) has coauthored the first of a three-volume Dictionary of Daily Life in Biblical and Post-Biblical Antiquity (Hendrickson, 2014). Three Gordon alumni (Dr. John DeFelice ’91, Dr. John Kutsko ’86 and Andrew Pottorf ’11) assisted with this “A-to-Da” volume, which has entries about such widelyranging topics as birds, boats, and barbers in ancient cultures in the Old and New Testament context.

Photo Carl Kraines ’18

The Commonwealth Coast Conference 2014 Men’s Soccer Offensive Player of the Year is Caleb Cole ’17—who scored a league-leading 14 goals this fall for Gordon Men’s Soccer, the highest-scoring team in the conference this fall and runners-up to the CCC championship title. His incredibly successful fall season also led to being named to the Eastern College Athletic Conference All-New England First Team and the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-American Second Team. It was a rewarding season, on and off the field. “Soccer is your religion if you’re a Division I soccer player. But here, your pursuit of God is nourished,” says Cole, a philosophy major from Coatesville, Pennsylvania. “The people are the difference. It’s a really special place. From a playing standpoint, I don’t know if there’s another team that has the friendships our team has.” At Gordon, Cole says, members of the Men’s Soccer team—consistently present in the NSCAA regional top 10 rankings—focus on being one another’s “brother’s keeper.” That is the team identity. “We try to recruit top-notch players that will inspire teammates. I’m really blessed by the other guys on the team,” Cole says. “That’s the goal: create relationships that last. It’s not just about soccer.” Cole has experienced much success as an offensive player ever since starting at Gordon. During his first year, he led the Scots in assists with nine. As a sophomore, he assumed the role of finisher and has lived up to that title, finding the back of the net on 30 percent of his shots and contributing to the Scots’ 50 goals over the season. But it’s more than goals and victories for this top-level forward, who spent his high school summers working at Gordon’s youth soccer camps. “I chose Gordon because I fell in love with the campus and believe that there is a high level of education and overall Christian atmosphere,” Cole says. “I can’t imagine a better place to spend four years of my life.” Halfway through his time on the Brigham Athletic Complex turf, it’s clear that Cole has already left his mark—on and off the field. 

In 2014 Dr. Wilson also published Exploring Our Hebraic Heritage: A Christian Theology of Roots and Renewal (Eerdmans), a sequel to his 1989 Our Father Abraham. In Exploring Our Hebraic Heritage he calls for the church to restore, renew and protect its foundations by understanding its origins in Judaism. Bryan Auday (psychology) coedited the 7th edition of the five-volume Salem Health Magill’s Medical Guide (Salem Press, 2014). The guide for medical professionals has some 1,200 articles plus sidebars about recent developments in medicine. Moisés Park (Spanish) has published an analysis of cultural narratives about the legacy of the years of military dictatorship in Chile, Figuraciones del deseo y coyunturas generacionales en literatura y cine postdictatorial (Peter Lang, 2014) (Desire and Generational Conflicts in Chilean Narratives and Cinema). 

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 9


STARTERS

FEATURE

ALUMNI

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF GORDON COLLEGE

10 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015


A DAY IN THE LIFE

The “School of Christ”— 125 Years Later “Following Jesus is a radical call to give everything to Jesus; it is a call to be ‘all in,’’’ says the Reverend Tom Haugen, Gordon’s chaplain, explaining the spring semester’s Chapel theme. “All in” is at the core of Gordon’s identity—its sine qua non every bit as much today in 2015 as it was in 1889, when 16 students attended the first classes in rented rooms behind the Bowdoin Square Tabernacle. Call it staying focused. Call it keeping the main thing the main thing. Call it a school of Christ. Gordon’s first instructor, Dr. F. L. Chapell, described the new school as a “gathering of earnest souls to get what preparation they can for whatever work the Lord may induct them into.” And 125 years (or 45,776 days) later, Gordon students still arrive on campus each year looking earnestly to the future. Mollie Enright ’15 is pursuing research to advance safer agricultural procedures. Dami Junaid ’14 is improving public health education in Nigeria. Schuyler Anderson ’14’s skateboard company, Salem Board Co., has become a job-creation program for inner-city youth in Nashville, Tennessee. At Gordon dreams like these are informed, tested and tried. Students emerge not just dreaming, but equipped. Call it holy boldness. Call it a focus on the common good. Call it a liberal arts education that works. Gordon’s accomplished faculty—then and now—live a paradoxical life. On the one hand, they are diligent scholars who make significant contributions, many of them out on the leading edges

of their respective fields. Physicist David Lee works on Big Cluster computing. Mindy Eichhorn of Gordon’s Education Department will revisit India this summer to continue her research on math disabilities. Andrew Logemann (English) is exploring the “digital humanities.” Musician Jamie Hillman dovetails music with social justice as he brings the Men’s Choir into Greater Boston prisons. These productive scholars also invest sacrificially in building up their students. Call it casting your bread upon the waters. Call it understanding where one’s treasure is. Call it faithful leadership. The photojournal that follows traces a typical day in the life of the Gordon College of the present. We’d like you to believe it all happened in one day, but these are scenes from several snowy weeks this winter. You may notice things that have changed since you graduated—but we hope that, much more, you recognize what has stayed the same. Call it a school of Christ for the 21st century. We have prefaced each part of the day with a brief prayer for the ongoing life of the College. These prayers are “collects” (accent on the first syllable) from the Book of Common Prayer. The word reflects the function of these prayers—to gather the people together for worship. At Gordon, our work—our teaching and learning, our going forth and serving—has always been an essential way we worship. May it always be so at Gordon College, to the greater glory of God.

Feature Photos Mark Spooner ’14 SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 11


STARTERS

FEATURE

ALUMNI

9 a.m.

MORNING Almighty God, our heavenly Father, you declare your glory and show forth your handiwork in the heavens and in the earth: Deliver us in our various occupations from the service of self alone, that we may do the work you give us to do in truth and beauty and for the common good; for the sake of him who came among us as one who serves, your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. “For Vocation in Daily Work,” Book of Common Prayer

10 a.m. 8:30 a.m.

8:30 a.m.

9 a.m.

10 a.m.

Brainstorming over coffee at Bistro 255 (Gordon’s newest eatery), John Buckley ’15, Jacob Padilla ’17 and Drew Morgan ’15 plan the new late-night show Exit 17 Live—live music, sketches, an in-house band, and as John puts it, “a killer host.”

In Tavilla Hall, Moriah O’Neill ’15 reviews an assignment before class. In her senior practicum this spring at Beverly Hospital, she “shadows” social workers. At home, her apartment-mates Monica Wong ’15, Sophie Grace Nicles ’15 and Jordan Clare ’15 have voted her “best cook.”

“At Gordon College there are no nonsacred majors,” said Dr. Marvin Wilson, pictured here in his Prophetic Literature class. The course studies Old Testament prophecy and New Testament revelation, placing these writings in context with contemporary literature.

12 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015


A DAY IN THE LIFE

10:40 a.m.

11:15 a.m.

11:30 a.m.

10:40 a.m.

11:15 a.m.

11:30 a.m.

As the Worship Band finishes, Chaplain Tom Haugen steps to the mic to introduce the Rev. Ken Shigematsu, keynote speaker for Gordon’s fourth annual DEEP FAITH week. Shigematsu is the senior pastor of Tenth Church in Vancouver, B.C., and the author of God in My Everything.

Graduate education student Amber Travers works on “u” with a beginning reader during a community education clinic held in nearby Lynn. Her practicum provides hands-on experience using the Orton-Gillingham phonics-based system to teach the basics of word formation.

Ruth Melkonian-Hoover, associate professor of political science, talks over internship possibilities with Hope Zigterman ’15. Hope aspires to work for an NGO or nonprofit and to fight injustices on behalf of people who cannot advocate for themselves.

Photo Melissa Zaldivar

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 13


STARTERS

FEATURE

ALUMNI

AFTERNOON Almighty God, the fountain of all wisdom: Enlighten by your Holy Spirit those who teach and those who learn, that, rejoicing in the knowledge of your truth, they may worship you and serve you from generation to generation. “For Education,” Book of Common Prayer

1:20 p.m.

12:30 p.m.

12:30 p.m.

1:20 p.m.

3 p.m.

Rachel Karner ’16 estimates that this oversized replica of a human skull (for her Clay Sculpture class) took her approximately 100 hours to finish. Here she is checking the final proportions before slicing it open to hollow it out. Her majors are art and secondary education.

Kristen Gandek ’15 and Sandev Handy ’16 leave class together in Ken Olsen Science Center. Both served as peer mentors for Gordon’s ELEVATE program—an annual week-long leadership institute for outstanding high school juniors and seniors—in the summer of 2014.

Nate Hausman ’11, Nathan Landis ’15 and Hannah Fisher ’16 enjoy a run in the woods before dusk. Nate directs La Vida’s Adirondack Program, and the three have worked together on various outdoor education offerings at Gordon, including the fall W.I.L.D. semester.

14 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015


A DAY IN THE LIFE

3:40 p.m.

3 p.m.

4 p.m.

4:25 p.m.

3:40 p.m.

4 p.m.

4:25 p.m.

Emily Williams ’18 (left) and Emily Clark ’18 cross the quad together often; they both live in Evans Hall. Sharing a major, too­—­education­—is a bonus for these good friends who met at Orientation. Emily W. is on the swim team; Emily C. tutors kids in Lynn, and hopes to be an RA next year.

Music students and department chair Dr. Sarita Kwok (in foreground) applaud a student’s performance in Phillips Recital Hall during Musicianship class, a weekly master-class in which students develop their performance skills in a supportive peer environment.

In his Electrical and Magnetic Fields lab (taught by Dr. Dale Pleticha, left), Christian Wagner measures the force of repulsion between two charged objects. A junior in Gordon’s 3-2 engineering program, he’ll complete his degree with two years at an engineering school.

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 15


STARTERS

FEATURE

ALUMNI

5:30 p.m.

EVENING Almighty God, bless Gordon College, that it may be a lively center for sound learning, new discovery, and the pursuit of wisdom; and grant that those who teach and those who learn may find you to be the source of all truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord. “For Schools and Colleges,” Book of Common Prayer

9:20 p.m. 8 p.m.

5:30 p.m.

6:15 p.m.

7 p.m.

Physics major Dan Fauber ’16 (in foreground) and international affairs major India Boland ’17 (background) at evening swim team practice. Boland has set nine new school records in under two seasons at Gordon—five of them since Christmas 2014.

In recently renovated Gillies Lounge, Jasmine O’Bryant ’17, Lourdes Rojo ’16, Kelly Lasater ’17 and Joy Kim ’15 place their dinner orders for wings and curly fries. Gillies now offers different menu options than the main servery upstairs.

Sam Mason ’15 introduces SPARK, a TEDstyle forum showcasing faculty research. “There is no better way to look like a dork than to be in the woods with a voice recorder saying ‘hop, hop, flight, hop, fall, flight,’” said Greg Keller (biology), one of three presenters at the first session. Photo Gianna Scavo ’16

16 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015


A DAY IN THE LIFE

7 p.m.

6:15 p.m.

9:40 p.m.

8 p.m.

9:20 p.m.

9:40 p.m.

Since 2011 Scot Radio has livestreamed an intriguing brew of music, commentary and news, and just for fun, “GC Nerd HQ” and “Buckley & Hevenor—just a cliché sports show.” At the mic is computer science major—and Scot Radio technology director—Emerson Veenstra ’15.

In the wake of snowstorms Juno and Linus, 400 students packed Gregory Auditorium for the debut of Exit 17 Live, Gordon’s very own late-night variety show, performed on stage. Andrew Farley ’15 interviewed Executive Vice President Dan Tymann.

Lauren Norris ’15, an economics major and physics minor, has worked in Chester’s Place for the past three years. Her favorite drink is a triple-shot chocolate-English toffee latte; she also highly recommends you order a warmed Nutella croissant when you stop by.

Photo Gianna Scavo ’16

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 17


STARTERS

FEATURE

ALUMNI

10 p.m.

NIGHT O Lord, support us all the day long, until the shadows lengthen, and the evening comes, and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over, and our work is done. Then in your mercy, grant us a safe lodging, and a holy rest, and peace at the last. “At Night,” Book of Common Prayer

10 p.m. Though Lily Greenberg ’16 cites her favorite study spots as “anywhere with windows,” on this night she found herself in Jenks Library’s stacks, well below ground level. Lily is an English language and literature major from Franklin, Tennessee.

10:30 p.m. Stars whirl above the A. J. Gordon Memorial Chapel steeple (in a time exposure). The steeple has been a landmark on Grapevine Road since 1992. It moonlights—as it were—as a cell tower.

MIDNIGHT Lane Student Center is a nighttime social hub, a spot for heart-to-heart talks, studying in a booth on the “dark side” of Lane (Easton; “sunny side” is the Chapel Dining Room visible through windows here), or grabbing a late-night snack. The studentrun coffee shop, Chester’s Place, is open until 2 a.m.

Mark Spooner ’14 is the Gordon College staff photographer. As a student at Gordon, he double-majored in psychology and communication arts. In addition to his work for the College, Mark has his own photography business. When he’s not working he enjoys backpacking, woodworking and eating great food. mark.spooner@gordon.edu www.markspoonerphoto.com

18 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015

12 midnight


A DAY IN THE LIFE

10:30 p.m.


STARTERS

NEWS

FEATURES

ARTICLES

ALUMNI

Friends Well Met A. J. Gordon and D. L. Moody’s friendship led to kindred legacies.

Some riches lie in unexpected places. Some are moments from older days, stories we might never think to find.

(a Christian conference center) meant to him. It was something Franklin would never forget.

advisor” to his father. Gordon, Will wrote, gave “assistance at the Northfield Conferences . . . of inestimable value.”

One hundred and one years ago, the Rev. James Franklin discovered this. While touring Asia for a missionary society, he boarded a train in Japan. His attempts to speak Japanese were halting, and he was much relieved when a young man offered help in fluent English.

Researching A. J. Gordon’s friendship with the famous evangelist D. L. Moody, I never thought to find a story like this: showing so clearly how Gordon and Moody’s work traveled the world. But there it was, in a 1914 issue of The Missionary Review.

Will Moody’s writings explain why D. L. Moody “relied much” on Gordon. For constantly, he showed a “readiness to do any service, to take any place, to stand in any gap.”

This was a welcome surprise, but there was more to come. Franklin said he was from Boston, and saw a sudden light in the young man’s eyes. “I studied science at Boston University,” he said, smiling. Then, he asked quickly: “Do you know the Rev. A. J. Gordon? Have you ever visited Northfield? I heard Dr. Gordon there, and D. L. Moody, and Henry Drummond.” For some moments, the young man spoke of them, and everything Northfield

20 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015

A Mosaic Comes to Light

This story hearkens to a remarkable friendship, and the kindred legacies that A. J. Gordon and D. L. Moody left us. And the more I delved into old letters, books, and articles, more pieces of a compelling mosaic came to light. Gordon and Moody worked together often, and constantly relied on each other. I found much more than I ever thought to find. D. L. Moody’s eldest son Will saw first hand that A. J. Gordon was a “confidential

One summer, Gordon had “the whole charge” of the Northfield Conference while Moody was overseas. Moody said after: “I cannot thank you enough for your great help at Northfield. All the letters I have got from there speak in the highest terms of your generalship. I know of no one who could have taken your place. It will now answer the question, ‘What is going to become of the work when I am gone?’ ” This was Moody’s declaration that Gordon should take leadership of the famous Northfield Summer Conferences, in the event of Moody’s death. I’d no idea his


ARTICLES

Story Kevin Belmonte ’90

respect for Gordon, and his trust, ran so deep. Remembering Round Top

Nor did I know how closely associated Gordon’s name was with the most hallowed place in Northfield: the high hill called “Round Top.” For many years, hundreds of students—from places like Harvard, Yale, and Brown—knew Round Top well. A. J. Gordon spoke often there. “Round Top,” wrote J. Wilbur Chapman, “has ever been a place of blessing. . . . Each evening, when the conferences are in session, as the day is dying out of the sky . . . students gather to talk of the things concerning the Kingdom. . . . The old haystack at Williamstown figures no more conspicuously in the history of missions than Round Top figures in the lives of a countless number of Christians throughout the whole world.” Chapman continued: “A. J. Gordon, of sainted memory, delivered some of his most telling addresses” from the crest of Round Top, which overlooks the beautiful Pioneer Valley—further on to mountains that edge the horizon. One evening, said Chapman, Dr. Gordon “spoke of the Lord’s return, and just as he finished, he stood for a moment with his kindly face all aglow with the power of his theme, and said: ‘I wish He might come now,’ as we looked towards the west.” Partnership Cut Short

D. L. Moody remembered this too, after Gordon’s death in 1895. As biographer Lyle W. Dorsett has written, Moody “was markedly saddened by the unexpected death of his dear friend A. J. Gordon, who was only fifty-eight.” Moody was traveling in Texas, and couldn’t return to Boston for the funeral. The two friends had shared so much. “Both men,” Dorsett writes, “were

passionate about reaching the lost, especially the poor and those broken by alcohol, drugs and other abuses. Both preachers burned with a desire to educate young people.” Both cared deeply about foreign missions. After Gordon’s death, Moody wrote of him to A. T. Pierson: “Dear man, he has got home & left a bright light behind him.” Then Moody remembered Gordon’s talks on Round Top—when sunset fringed the mountains. He told Pierson: “We will have a memorial service this summer, in the same place where he spoke on the Resurrection.”

A Key Location This plaque marks the spot of D. L. Moody’s conversion: Court Street in downtown Boston. Nearby are Park Street Church, Boston Common, Old South Meetinghouse, Tremont Temple Baptist Church and the site of the Clarendon Street Church, which Kevin Belmonte is the author of three biographies of prominent Christians;

A. J. Gordon pastored from 1870 until his death in 1895.

the most recent is D. L. Moody—A Life (2014, Moody Publishers). His William Wilberforce: A Hero for Humanity (2002, NavPress) received the John Pollock Award for Christian Biography. He followed Defiant Joy: The Remarkable Life & Impact of G. K. Chesterton (2011, Thomas Nelson) with a volume of excerpts from Chesterton’s writing, A Year with G. K. Chesterton: 365 Days of Wisdom, Wit and Wonder (2012, Thomas Nelson). He is also the author of Miraculous: A Fascinating History of Signs, Wonders and Miracles (2012, Thomas Nelson). Kevin blogs at the Huffington Post, and was the lead historical and script consultant for the film

Moody Bible Institute Established in 1886 in Chicago (where it continues to operate today), in its early years Moody Bible Institute shared a common purpose with

Amazing Grace. He holds master’s

A. J. Gordon’s fledgling Boston

degrees in church history and in

Missionary Training Institute: to equip

American and New England studies.

for Christian service “gap men [and

He and his wife, Kelly, live in Maine

women]” who were too poor, too old,

with their young son.

or too lacking in schooling to go to

kbelmont@maine.rr.com

traditional colleges.

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 21


STARTERS

NEWS

FEATURES

ARTICLES

ALUMNI

An Examined Faith With four books and a documentary film to their credit, a Barrington couple (Class of 1948) have published a novel together.

Photo Reprinted with permission of the Daily Hampshire Gazette. All rights reserved.​

Rudy and Shirley Nelson have been telling stories of spiritual struggle for decades, in books and films that have earned literary acclaim in mainstream as well as evangelical publishing. They have produced solo and joint projects over the 67 years since their graduation from Providence Bible Institute, which later became Barrington College. Both taught at Barrington from 1957 to 1967: Rudy built and chaired the English Department, and Shirley taught creative writing and freshman composition. Their most recent collaboration, the 2014 novel The Risk of Returning (Wipf and Stock), explores what happens when a 40-year-old former missionary kid returns to Guatemala in 1987, hoping to solve the mystery of his father’s disappearance. Rudy, inspired by his first visit to Central America, began the book alone. While

22 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015

teaching English at the University at Albany, he completed a draft. But he felt unsatisfied, and invited Shirley into the process. “My intention was not to change the story, which in my eyes had tremendous worth,” she says. “I figured I would just fiddle around with it a little— maybe change the point of view, and see what happened, then hand it back. But he didn’t want it back. So I adopted it, though in my mind it remained fully his as much as mine.” An early project for Rudy was his stint on the production staff of the 1958 horror classic The Blob, in which Steve McQueen made his acting debut. Before joining the faculty at Barrington, the Nelsons worked for Valley Forge Films in Pennsylvania and lived where the movie was being shot. “Our memories of that summer have been playful,” Rudy says. “If our kids felt the

need to boost their status among peers in the ’hood, they would let it be known that their father worked on The Blob and their mother bawled out Steve McQueen for waking up children with his motorcycle between the takes of night-time scenes.” More sober theological reflections are evident in Rudy’s 1987 “intellectual biography,” The Making and Unmaking of an Evangelical Mind: The Case of Edward Carnell (Cambridge University Press). Carnell was a major figure in the mid20th century “New Evangelicalism” with which Rudy’s own life resonates. Carnell’s life trajectory began in the context of evangelical convention, as the son of a Midwestern fundamentalist pastor. He studied at Wheaton College and Westminster Theological Seminary. But in time, Carnell moved into a different intellectual sphere, getting


ARTICLES

Story Wendy Murray

“Perhaps it’s fair to suggest that lurking beneath the surface of our writing is a conviction that the unexamined faith is not worth believing.” —Rudy Nelson ’48B a Th.D. from Harvard and a Ph.D. from Boston University in successive years. (He taught for a time at Gordon while in graduate school in Boston.) Carnell was ultimately hired by the fledgling Fuller Theological Seminary, where he enjoyed a successful career as a teacher and scholar, and eventually became Fuller’s president. Rudy found that writing about Carnell’s move away from fundamentalism gave expression to his own faith struggles. “Writing The Making and Unmaking of an Evangelical Mind liberated me from the tyranny of theological concerns and opened a wider sense of what Christian faith means and makes possible.” He likens his faith journey to psychologist Ernest Schachtel’s statement that “to be human is to be forever on the road between embeddedness and emergence from embeddedness.” Part of growing up, says Rudy, is to emerge from embeddedness. “I’ve found it to be a life-long process.” Shirley’s faith journey found its own literary expression, but from an altogether different starting point. Her parents grew up at the beginning of the 20th century as members of an apocalyptic religious community in southern Maine called Shiloh, run by the evangelist Frank Weston Sandford. They defected (independently), perceiving the cult to be a manifestation of “controlling religious extremism.” While Shirley never lived in the cult, her childhood was colored by its impact on her parents’ lives and sensibilities. “From the earliest time I can remember, Shiloh was talked about in our house both with anger and humor, and also with affection for many of the other defectors, whose names I heard

repeatedly.” Shirley’s father lived out his days trying to write about the experience, and self-published his writing at the age of 89, six months before he passed away. The Last Year of the War (Harper and Row, 1978), Shirley’s first book, is a novel about a young woman’s dark night of the soul at a fictionalized Moody Bible Institute in 1944–45. According to the Virginia Quarterly Review, “Though the topic [fundamentalism] has always fascinated American writers, such recent novels as Joyce Carol Oates’ Son of the Morning and Shirley Nelson’s The Last Year of the War give it a serious rather than a merely satirical place in American religious life.” Last Year contains some oblique references to a Shiloh-like place, themes that Shirley developed more fully a decade later in her nonfiction book about Shiloh: Fair Clear and Terrible: The Story of Shiloh, Maine (British American Publishing, 1989). Notre Dame historian Mark Noll was among the reviewers who praised it; he deemed the book “as compelling a narrative as it is instructive in faith.” In recent decades the Nelsons have turned their attention to Central America. In 2003 they completed a full-length documentary on the church’s role in war and peace in Guatemala, a project funded in large part by the U.S. Institute of Peace. In the novel they published last year, The Risk of Returning, they explore those political and moral concerns. Clearly, the Nelsons have summoned various literary frameworks for exploring the problems of living out a faith in today’s ever-changing world. Fiction, they agree, is the trickiest genre. While they believe fiction in its various forms can be a

powerful vehicle for carrying the weight of religious faith, they know it can be easily cheapened by shallow romanticism, burdened with theological lingo, or climaxed by a pro forma conversion. They long ago rejected the notion of a “Christian novel” or any “Christian” form of art. They prefer what the poet Christian Wyman has said in his book Ambition and Survival: Becoming a Poet: “Indeed, life shatters all abstractions . . . including words such as faith or belief.” The Nelsons continue to develop projects and are part of the Chrysostom Society of Writers, which is dedicated to work that is “distinguished by honesty about the human condition, not mere religiosity.” In addition to their writing, they enjoy the presence of their three children, and their grandchildren, all of whom live within a 100-mile radius of Shirley and Rudy’s home in Massachusetts.

Wendy Murray, whose work has appeared in periodicals including TIME, The Christian Century and Books & Culture, is the author of 10 nonfiction books and a novel. She is a former Gordon College writer-in-residence. Find her blog Poets & Lunatics at patheos.com. murrwen@gmail.com

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 23


STARTERS

NEWS

FEATURES

ARTICLES

ALUMNI

The Wideness of the Church . . . Story Hilary (Sherratt) Yancey ’12

of faith, answers and new questions await us; do we bother to knock?

I fell in love with Jacques Maritain in the spring of 2011, around the time that the lilacs outside my window at home usually bloom. I was head over heels for his Integral Humanism, for the argument I could hear in my head between him and another favorite of mine, Reinhold Niebuhr. That May, in that stretch of weeks when everything flowers and the Gordon campus is too beautiful to have class inside, I discovered that Maritain and Niebuhr knew each other—that they had even been in conversation in the years when they both lived and wrote in the United States. The spring before that, it was Flannery O’Connor matched up with Benedict of Nursia. Another semester, it was Rob Bell talking to John Calvin. Martin Luther, Bernard Lonergan, Teresa of Avila, Saint Patrick and the Irish monks who illuminated manuscripts: every year, as the winter settles onto bare branches around Coy Pond and then finally remembers itself towards spring, I have been falling in love with the wideness of the Church.

24 STILLPOINT | SPRING 2015

Being a part of the vibrant life of Gordon revealed to me in each encounter with what we called “the Tradition”—what Flannery O’Connor described as “a vast horde of souls tumbling towards heaven”—the abiding necessity of that Tradition. I hold fast to this: the liberal arts are good for their own sake. Learning stories, histories, questions, dramas, the rise and fall of empires and mathematical models of the universe and the poetry of Linda Pastan—all this is good, because it is natural and essential for humans to learn. The danger of that easy and beautiful belief is that it ignores the purpose behind learning, which is to be image-bearers. The Church is home to us; how many of us forget to walk around and actually get to know our home, the place from which we are sent out, and to which we return again and again, seeking God, seeking ourselves? Do we assume that what we need to understand will be piped in to us from heaven through our church, or a Bible study, or a specific academic discipline? In a room in the great house

Gordon helped me learn and relearn that to love the Church at all is to treasure its wideness. To love the Church is to ask constantly: Who are these souls tumbling towards heaven, and what can they teach me about this work we do in the world? The monks who illuminated manuscripts teach us about the goodness of preserving culture. Jacques Maritain helps me remember that good philosophy can get things done—like writing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Flannery O’Connor changes what I think about the work of grace in the soul; that work is happening in me, so I should try to understand it. “The Tradition,” with all its mystery, griefs and struggles, teaches me how to see myself, and—infinitely more importantly—how to seek God. Pictured above (L-R): top row, Jacques Maritain, Flannery O’Connor, Bernard Lonergan; below, Reinhold Niebuhr, Benedict of Nursia, Teresa of Avila.

Hilary (Sherratt) Yancey ’12 is pursuing a Ph.D. in philosophy at Baylor University, focusing on bioethics and the philosophy of the human person. At Gordon she participated in the Jerusalem and Athens Forum, and as a Pike Scholar she designed her own major in religion, ethics and politics. She blogs at thewildlove.wordpress.com


ARTICLES

. . . and the Presence of the Past Story Christy Urbano ’16

Each year STILLPOINT and the Jerusalem and Athens Forum sponsor an essay contest. The tenth cohort of JAF participants tackled the theme of “The Presence of the Past.” Christy Urbano ’16 wrote the winning essay. Amaylah Israel ’16 and Maria Constantine ’14 received honorable mention. Read all three essays at www.gordon.edu/jafessay. In Which an English Major Pretends to Understand History (abridged)

My high school English teacher taught us a dictionary game. Open to a random page and pick a word. Colloquium. Now follow the roots. Cum loqui. Literally “to speak with” in the Latin. Loquor, loqui, locutum. Circumlocution. Circum loqui. “To speak around.” We liked eponyms also. They preserve a little more than the skeletons of dead languages; they hold people, too. Sandwich, named for the Earl of Sandwich who greatly enjoyed the food, is a common example. Rubik’s Cube is named for its inventor Erno Rubik, a sculptor and professor of architecture who was not trying to make a puzzle but a mechanism that could withstand the independently

moving pieces. It only became a puzzle when he attempted to sort those moving pieces back out. The element mercury and the adjective mercurial both derive from the Roman god Mercury, who was constantly in movement as the patron god of messages, travelers, and trickery. Duwamish Chief Seattle, for whom the capital of Washington is named, advocated for ecological responsibility and native Americans’ land rights. Draco, from whose name we derive the adjective draconian, was a magistrate of 7th century Athens who liberally applied the death penalty in his legal code. Whole lives get tangled up in these short concatenations of letters. And if individual words can contain lives, nursery rhymes can contain whole historical movements. “Humpty Dumpty”

was really a cannon used in the English Civil War. Colloquially, “Pop Goes the Weasel” translates to “pawn the winter coat,” and the full poem lists the variety of basic necessities—from food to a ball of thread and a needle—for which the narrator must pawn his coat. “Baa Baa Black Sheep” is an account of taxation under King Edward I. Printed with its original ending, the narrator’s “three bags full” of wool go “One for the Master,” the king, “One for the Dame,” the church, “And none for the little boy / Who cries down the lane,” to support the farmer’s family. “Oranges and lemons / Say the bells of St. Clemens, / You owe me five farthings / Say the bells of St. Martins” likely describes the churches along the route of condemned men to their executions. The past is present, whether we like to remember it or not. I see it embedded in the words we speak: dead languages trapped between letters, people within eponyms, and tragedies beneath children’s poems. For me, these stories are gifts, but they are also reminders that we, too, will be inevitably and inexorably present in the languages and lives of the future, for better or worse.

Christy Urbano, an English major, is studying this year in Gordon’s program in Oxford, England. She is from Coastesville, Pennsylvania. christy.urbano@gordon.edu

SPRING 2015 | STILLPOINT 25


255 Grapevine Road, Wenham MA 01984-1899 www.gordon.edu

CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED

GORDON COLLEGE

ANNUNCIATION

PARTNERS

oil, acrylic and gold leaf on panel, 10 x 5 x 2 inches © 2006

One makes a difference— many make an impact

Tanja Butler painter and printmaker

“We feel proud that, inan intersection a smallof time way, we Annunciation depicts and eternity in the moment of decision offered Mary by the archangel have helped some Gabriel. Mary, by accepting God’s invitation, opens the door to God’s redemption, the door shut since theachieve Fall. young folks The bottom panel depicts the biblical narrative within time their goals.”

and human history while the upper panel refers to the activity in eternity, symbolized the goldMacIntosh’s background.son When Bobby and Linda Mary’s conception has been likened in medieval and ago enrolled at Gordon a few years Byzantine theology to the image of the burning Just they felt blessed to know ofbush. its high as Mary contained God in her physical body, a miracle academic and moral standards. Several similar to the bush not consumed by mates the divine the of Andy’s dorm wereflame, unsure Japanese paper lamp behind Mary holds light within fragile, they’d be able to stay at Gordon, due to combustible material. their families’ financial situations. Bob

and Linda learned of this and responded by joining the Partners program to help Artist bio text goes here some students complete their studies. www.website-here.com | www.website-here.com “Perhaps when they go on to careers that fulfill their passions,” Bob says, “they, too, will be in a position to help some students who are struggling with their finances.” Visit gordon.edu/partners to make your gift online. To arrange a recurring gift, call 978.867.4234.

www.gordon.edu/partners

STILLPOINT Spring 2015  
STILLPOINT Spring 2015  

Full issue