ONE worship builds community
Sep25

ONE worship builds community

Students prayed and sang side by side together at the ONE interdenominational worship gathering in Walton Chapel on Wednesday, Sept. 25. It was an opportunity for a plethora of different churches from around the Bell County area to come together, which they do twice a semester. The evening started off with songs of worship led by the Temple Bible Church band.  Then the crowd was welcomed by two college pastors from local churches: Evan Duncan, the teaching and communications pastor at First Baptist Temple Church, and Shannon Soard, the college pastor at Temple Bible Church. Duncan’s message to the students in attendance of the event was that there is no exchange for faith or community provided by the church. His message was based out of the book of Acts 2:41-47. Duncan said that while we like to substitute some things in life, there is no substitute for our faith. “There is no substitute for the local church,” Duncan said. He encouraged the students to maintain their faith and to find a church to get involved with and plugged into. “It is not what you get out of it, but what you can bring to it,” Duncan said. He encouraged students to break their boundaries in order to find a church home. “Church community crosses boundaries,” Duncan said. ONE concluded with everyone reading the Nicene Creed, led by Shannon Soard. The atmosphere was reverent, engaged and worshipful. “It was a good experience to let go of my anxiety and give it to the Lord,” said Rynda Maddox, a freshman nursing major. “It was amazing to see so many college students worshipping together,” Liles said. “I thought it was an event that every freshman needed to hear…it was all about UMHB community…and was encouraging [students] to break boundaries,” senior physical therapy major Ellie Phelps said. For more information, contact Daniel McAfee, director of the Baptist Student Ministry, at...

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Sylvia White, lifelong learner, receives doctorate in 2019
Sep20

Sylvia White, lifelong learner, receives doctorate in 2019

Dr. Sylvia White is no ordinary UMHB graduate. At 76 years old, she is the oldest member of the Spring 2019 graduating class. On May 11, White, who teaches Exploring the Fine Arts class at UMHB, earned her Ed.D. in Educational Administration. She was one of 17 students who received a doctoral degree in the ceremony, which drew the largest audience for any commencement in the school’s history. White is no stranger to the world of education. In 1967, she earned a master’s degree from Baylor University. She worked as an elementary music teacher in her hometown of League City for 24 years. In 2009, she moved to Belton in order to be closer to her children. She began teaching piano lessons at the UMHB Conservatory, and soon afterward started teaching the Exploring the Fine Arts class. White describes herself as “a lifelong learner” which made the decision to go back to school a natural one. “I’ve always loved learning new things,” she said. One of her favorite parts of earning her doctorate was completing her dissertation. At UMHB, doctoral students complete an imbedded dissertation, meaning that they work on it during the entirety of their studies instead of just completing it in their final year. “All the classes in the Ed.D. program are geared to writing a piece of the dissertation in each class,” she said. “By the end of the three years, I had it completed.” When she chose a topic for her dissertation, White knew that she wanted to focus on veterans, who she says have a special place in her heart. “In teaching Exploring the Fine Arts, I had several student veterans, and they just touched my heart,” she said. “My first veteran asked if he could sit at the back of the room and keep the windows open. I thought, ‘there must be a way to help student veterans.’” Her desire to help these students was a major motivation for her to earn her doctoral degree. She knew that by having an Ed.D. in education, she would be better equipped to help these students in the future. Dr. Randy Hendricks, who is the director of UMHB’s Doctor of Education Program, is proud of White’s accomplishments. “Dr. White was an exceptional student in the UMHB doctoral program and provides an inspiring example of what a Christian educator should be,” Hendricks said. Senior social work major Nathan Gammage, who is White’s grandson, is incredibly proud of her accomplishments. “She works so hard and does a lot to give back to the community,” he said. “I am so proud of her.” White is not sure what God...

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The Peanut Butter Falcon – Movie Review
Sep20

The Peanut Butter Falcon – Movie Review

It’s September, which means that we’ve finally reached my favorite season of the year. Oscar Season. The Peanut Butter Falcon is a perfect start to the art house and indie film segment of the film cycle. The film stars Zak (Zack Gottsagen), who plays a man with Down Syndrome. His character Zak runs from a state nursing home to have his hero, The Saltwater Redneck (Thomas Hayden Church), train him to become a professional wrestler. While running from his nursing home caretaker (Dakota Johnson), Zak meets a fisherman on the run named Tyler (Shia LeBeouf) and so begins a fantastical Mark Twain style film in the deep south. On the surface, one could argue that The Peanut Butter Falcon is typical Oscar bait. The film has great acting, a great script, a diverse cast and is beautifully shot. These are all typical for Oscar films, but Falcon stands out because of its authenticity and boldness as well as because of the particular message that it carries. For instance, actor Zak Gottsagen actually has Down Syndrome like his character. This makes The Peanut Butter Falcon groundbreaking and exciting, especially because Gottsagen’s performance is so great. Hollywood films are often criticized for their portrayal of people with special needs and for not casting actors in the films who actually have those needs.  Recently, The Upside comes to mind. In that film, Actor Bryan Cranston gave an earnest performance of a man with Cerebral Palsy. However, Cranston doesn’t have Cerebral Palsy, there are actors who actually have Cerebral Palsy who should have been given a chance.  Another film, Rain Man, featured Dustin Hoffman giving a beautiful portrayal of a man with Autism, but he also did not have the condition of the character he played. Gottsagen isn’t the only standout of the film. LeBeouf plays his best role yet. LeBeouf has had quite a series of missteps lately in his acting career, but Falcon shows off his acting in an exciting way.  LeBeouf and Gottsagen have chemistry that is off the charts, and their friendship is what drives the film. LeBeouf gives an astounding performance as he displays the many layers of his character, Tyler. He is a rough person, but also loves Zak so realistically and beautifully throughout the film. There’s a scene where Zak tells Tyler that he isn’t a hero because he is “a Down Syndrome person.” Tyler responds beautifully with a question: “What’s that got to do with your heart?” The Peanut Butter Falcon’s message is clear and impactful. The film isn’t afraid to go to places that aren’t often shown on screen. Zak is consistently belittled by...

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UMHB destroys Albright in season opener
Sep14

UMHB destroys Albright in season opener

Fireworks exploded in the dark night’s sky at the conclusion of the football program’s season opener here at Crusader Stadium. The Crusaders celebrated their 56 – 15 win over Albright, after they made it clear that was their intent in the second half.  This was the second time that UMHB played Albright in football and it was the second consecutive win against them, with last year’s game being an astonishing 91-7 slaughter. While the differences in the score between these two games shows the effects of losing several key players to graduation, it was clear that many players stepped up to the challenge. Quarterback Ryan Redding, defensive tackle Joey Longoria, wide receiver Michael Stimpson, and running back Tye Hill are just a small handful of examples of Crusaders that stood up to the challenge of leadership within the team. The game started off with the Lions winning the coin toss and deciding to receive the ball first. After the Lion’s first several charges against the Crusader defensive line, the Lions punted on 4th down, where the Crusaders called fair catch at their own 46 yard-line.  CRU quarterback Ryan Redding led a mixed ground and air assault that was spearheaded by both wide receivers Michael Stimpson and Ernest Musue. The drive concluded with Stimpson dealing the first blow to the Lions with his first touchdown of the season. The ball changed hands many times after this with neither defense stepping down. However, this changed when Albright’s quarterback Jimmy Lahay threw a bullet of a pass that was intercepted by defensive back Drake Johnson, who then ran the ball all the way to the Lion’s 23rd-yard line. From there Redding took matters into his own hands and scrambled right and through a hole that was opened up by the offensive linemen for the second Crusader touchdown of the game. After a second successful point after touchdown by kicker Anthony Avila, the score was 14-0, Crusaders. After receiving possession of the ball from the kickoff, Jimmy Lahay lead his offensive team back onto the field to try and chip away at the deficit. After he completed successful passes, including a first down pass to wide receiver Zack Miller that was literally caught right above his shoelaces, Lahay threw another pass that was once again intercepted by defensive back Drake Johnson. This led to a Crusaders’ ball on the Lion’s 34 yard-line. While the Crusader offense could not score one more touchdown before the conclusion of the first quarter, kicker Anthony Avila made an impressive 40-yard field goal and took the score to 17-0. The first half of the second quarter was a...

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