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  • Faculty Spotlight: Prof. Amanda Benckhuysen November 21, 2014 This year we are excited to welcome to Calvin Seminary 3 new professors: Amanda Benckhuysen, Danjuma Gibson, and Sarah Schreiber.   To help you get to know them, we’d like to spotlight each in a different edition of the Kerux. Our first new faculty spotlight is with Amanda Benckhuysen. What brought you to Calvin Seminary? The Donuts !! More seriously, while I loved and benefited from my time at Dubuque University, as an ordained CRC pastor, serving in the seminary of my denomination was very appealing to me and felt like a homecoming. I think this is an important time in the CRC, and I am excited to be fully involved in it. Where are you from? I grew up in the suburbs around Toronto and have since lived in Ann Arbor, where I was involved in campus ministry.  Working in campus ministry whetted my appetite for a deeper engagement with the life of the mind and more particularly, a deeper understanding of the Christian Scriptures and their contemporary relevance.  I chose to attend the University of Toronto because of the number of faculty there who were schooled in (and students of) Brevard Childs, an influential Old Testament scholar who reclaimed a tradition of reading the Bible theologically as Christian Scripture.  My most recent home was Dubuque, Iowa, where I was a professor of Old Testament. What are you/will you be teaching?  I’m currently teaching the residential sections of Hebrew 1.  Next semester I’ll be teaching the residential sections of Hebrew 2 as well as Psalms and Wisdom Literature for the distance program.  Next year, quite likely Old Testament Prophetic Literature.  So a variety of Old Testament studies courses. What is your educational history and research interests? I completed a BA in English Literature and Political Science at Queens University, an M.Div. at Calvin Seminary, ...
  • Student Senate Update 2014 November 21, 2014 Greetings from Student Senate! I would normally start off an article like this with a quip about ‘How busy the year has been’ or ‘My hasn’t time flown’, but that would likely fall on deaf ears; life is always busy. I digress. This article is supposed to be an update on Student Senate activity. With that said, there are a few things that I think would be helpful for everyone within the community to know about!. Primarily, we have been asking ourselves the question: Why does Senate matter? While the answers have not come overnight there is a greater degree of clarity that is developing in the minds of senators. Currently, we are wrestling with our commitments to both the academic and social aspects of the CTS community. With regards to the social aspects we have landed on the quality of hospitality. Do we as a seminary foster an environment of hospitality?   Do we as students perpetuate that environment? While more information will be available on this at a later date we are actively developing a strategy for weaving hospitality into the fabric of our culture. (Trust me on this one, things are in the works!) In addition, we have been examining existing facets of social life such as The Kerux, clubs, Food Pantry, and various ‘tent-pole’ activities such as Christmas Around the World, and the Medenblik Stick. With respect to the academic component of CTS we have begun preliminary discussions surrounding student workload. In some of my conversations with fellow students this is an area of considerable concern given a pull that is felt in virtually every direction. We ask ourselves as students the question: How can we survive? What if the question changed and became: How can we thrive? (A cheesy rhyme, I know. However, you get the point!) Part of ...
  • The Renewal Lab October 28, 2013 During this past reading break, from Wednesday to Saturday, representatives from several churches gathered at CTS to take part in the church Renewal Lab. The Renewal Lab was also available for seminary students to either take as a class or to audit. Churches involved in the lab sent representatives for ten key areas of church ministry, including worship, youth, prayer, and discipleship. The teaching team at the lab consisted of Scott Vander Ploeg, Carl Bosma, Larry Doornbos, Keith Doornbos, and Kevin Adams. The main theme of this lab was “Tell”, and the focus was the centrality of telling the gospel in our congregations. We reflected together about how to make the gospel central to church life, how we ourselves can tell the gospel story, and how important it is to have gospel-centered sermons. Kevin Adams, who is a church planter, pastor, and author working in Granite Springs, CA, spent Friday teaching and encouraging us. His evening message, he exhorted us to “not be afraid” as we share the gospel, appealing to Jesus’ calling of his first disciples in Luke 5. The Renewal Lab proved to be a productive and encouraging conference that gave congregation leaders and members a chance to both be inspired by God’s work and to think strategically about how to improve and expand their ministry in their own churches and communities. The next lab, with a focus on “Form”, will take place in January. By: Daniel J. DeVries
  • Safety and Security at Englewood/Batchawana October 28, 2013 Safety and Security at Englewood/ Batchawana On Tuesday, October 8th, Batchawana and Englewood Housing residents met in the Seminary Auditorium for a Safety and Security Meeting.  In attendance at the meeting were Calvin College’s Director of Campus Safety, Bill Corner, and Grand Rapids Police Officer, Joshua Mollen. The Residents had the opportunity to share their experiences with these crimes and hear suggestions of how to respond in the future.  Officer Joshua Mollen encouraged residents to call 9-1-1 when there is evidence of a crime.  Some crimes that the residents experienced include: attempted break-ins, items stolen from vehicles, loud partying, and assault.   Here is one family’s experience: “One day, a young girl, 12 years old, came close to my daughter, with much interest, kindness and friendliness, saying, could I play with you? My daughter liked her too. We thought it would be a good opportunity for my daughter to have a friend. We allowed her to enter our house to play with our daughter. They played “Hide and Seek” in our room, which my daughter got very excited. We never thought what bad intention would be in such a pretty girl, until my wife sensed that she seemed to be very interested in the possessions we have. After counseling with the pastor in the Chinese Church and a social worker who visited us regularly during that time, we did not allow the girl to come into our house anymore.”  ~~WeiQing Lin Mikhael Lindra, with the support of Student Senate, Dean of Students Office, and Campus Safety, is now working on setting up a Neighborhood Watch for the Englewood/ Batchawana Housing. By: Juliana Bosma
  • 2013 Seminary Picnic October 2, 2013 On Wednesday, September 11, the CTS community gathered for its annual picnic. Despite the light rain shower early on, it ended up being a wonderful evening. Students, staff, and faculty gathered for food and fellowship. There were also two inflatable play areas and cotton candy for children. As the phrase goes, “A good time was had by all!”  ~Daniel DeVries    
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