Independence Village rolls out red carpet
Nov25

Independence Village rolls out red carpet

Lights. Camera. Action. There were men in tuxedos, women in dresses and even a red carpet at the first ever Independence Village Video Awards. A variety of free candy, drinks and an endless supply of popcorn filled the McLane Great Hall in Bawcom in preparation for the entertaining videos.   Nov. 13, the I.V.V. Awards show began at 7 p.m., emceed by Independence Village RA’s Nathan Forester and Lindsay Harrell.   Forester enjoyed being a part of the unique night.   “My favorite part about being an emcee was the great opportunity to showcase the hard work of the many talented individuals of UMHB,” he said.   The show kicked off with previews for upcoming feature films such as Avengers: Age of Ulton, Exodus: Gods and Kings, Mockingjay and more. Viewers were also treated to a brief video highlighting some of the projects of the I.V.V. Awards sponsor group, Astra Club.   Astra is a do-it-all student organization. They’ve done anything and everything from picking up trash around Lake Belton to serving food at a soup kitchen. They’re involvement earned them the UMHB student organizations Community Service Award. At the event, they had a table set up where they were accepting donations.   Next, attendees were able to watch all 10 videos that had been submitted for the contest. The subject matter in the videos ranged from a comedic look at the life of a nursing major, to interviews with the “twelve disciples,” to even the bathroom habits of sloths.   After all the videos were shown, there was a brief intermission. During this time, students were able to vote on which video was their favorite. This vote eventually decided who won the top prize. The judges, RD’s Chris Green, Colleen Mitchel and Traci Squarcette, were responsible for selecting the various other awards.   The best actress award went to Rachel Lewis for her role as sloth expert in Sloth Potty Training. She delivered absurdly funny lines about sloths’ bathroom habits with a seriousness which was surely hard to maintain with Leah White (best supporting actress) next to her, pretending to be a sloth.   The best actor award went to Alex Lanoux for his serious portrayal of a man who lost an election in Black Infinity. This video also won the most dramatic award and the drama began and ended with Lanoux’s superb work at inhabiting his character.   The best director award went to Justin Minchew for Black Infinity. This video clearly had the most professional look to it, which probably had a lot to do with the directing.   Minchew and his friends created the movie...

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Lecture translates well with students
Oct23

Lecture translates well with students

William Carey never received the equivalent of a high school or college education. But he has translated the Bible into six different languages.   The department of Christian studies hosted the first installment of the Manning Chapel Lecture series Oct. 17.   The stained glass windows in the chapel are dedicated to several great missionaries and are indicative of the giving of the Great Commission in the Gospel of Matthew. The lectures will focus on the evangelists honored in the windows.   “The unique aspect of this chapel are the four Baptist missions windows around you — a part of what that great cloud of witnesses which the New Testament book of Hebrews says surround us,” Dean of the College of Christian Studies Dr. Timothy Crawford said as he opened the address. “These lectures are being offered to tell the stories of these people celebrated and remembered in these windows.”   Professor in the department of Christian Studies Dr. Carol Holcomb took the podium next to welcome the guest lecturer Dr. David Bebbington. His lecture was about William Carey, to whom the back left window commemorates.   “He is indeed a distinguished professor and we are very grateful that he is able to take time out of his busy schedule and join us here to talk about William Carey,” Holcomb said.   Expert on the life of Carey, Bebbington jumped into his lecture after some quick jokes about the university, Baylor and Judge Baylor’s bones.   Carey, recognized as the father of modern missionary work, influenced the Baptist Missionary Society. His zeal for missions at the time was different from English Baptists, many of which thought evangelism was pointless.   The self-taught man formed the BMS and then moved to India, where he began his missionary work. It was here that Carey began working on translating the Bible into six languages.   For seven years, he had no converts. But the work took root and Carey and his team began to start churches in India.   Bebbington spoke in depth about the work and life of Carey. He also talked about his influence on American Baptists.   “He was a marvel to the American,” Bebbington said. “The Philadelphia Baptist Association, the best organized organization in America, soon gave him some … support. In 1810 the American board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions was established. Its first missionary to India was Adoniram Judson.”   Senior Biblical studies major James Williams attended the lecture and really liked the additional information about Carey’s personal life, which Bebbington was able to relate.   “You can tell that he actually knows what he’s talking...

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Alumnus and former alcoholic sheds light, creates buzz
Oct13

Alumnus and former alcoholic sheds light, creates buzz

“NO!” the audience shouted as the lights dimmed and the fates of thousands of lives were altered. This response was provoked by the cliff-hanger ending to the play My Name is Bill: An Afternoon with an Alcoholic. When the only character on stage turned to the rows of faces and asked if he should take a drink or not, the crowd in Hughes Hall answered with one word and a standing ovation.   When Bryan Bounds attended UMHB, he said he had no idea he would one day be caught in the clutches of alcoholism.   But that was exactly his condition when a friend told him the story of Bill Wilson, the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, which helped him recover from his illness.   Bounds is the single performer and author of the play, which has received rave reviews over its five year tour in Europe. The performance in UMHB’s Hughes Hall served as its American premiere.   “You know if you have a story that you want to tell … sometimes (it) won’t go away until you tell that story,” Bounds said. “And that’s how this play was with me. Partly because I’m a recovered alcoholic myself, and I felt that a theater presentation would be a good way to tell the story of the man who started the recovery movement.”   Bounds conducted a vast amount of research in order to write this play about the New York stockbroker who founded AA in the 1930s.   The play depicts an afternoon in the life of Wilson when he hits rock bottom and makes an important decision.   When Wilson made it through the afternoon without drinking, he ensured the success of AA, which in turn, has helped thousands to recover from alcoholism.   The university was selected for the first performance in the states because it served as a homecoming for Bounds.   Also, his mother, who lives in Temple, has wanted to see the play but hasn’t been able to make the trip to England.   After the show was over, he recognized his mother, who worked at UMHB for 30 years.   Bounds grew up in Temple and earned his undergraduate English degree at UMHB.   Next, he moved to the University of Texas to complete his masters before moving to Houston where he worked for NASA, giving briefings to the public about the space program.   He started his professional acting career in Houston, a city with one of America’s largest theater districts, before he moved to New York where he met his wife, who was visiting from England. After they married, they...

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U.S. Responds
Oct13

U.S. Responds

President Obama may have brought home all the ground troops from Iraq, but make no mistake, the war in the Middle East continues. Islamic extremists have reared their heads in the form of another terrorism group: ISIL.   How has the United States been combating this new threat? Since early August, the U.S. has been carrying out airstrikes against the group in Iraq. In retaliation, ISIL began beheading people and videoing the acts.   In late September, the U.S. teamed up with a handful of ally nations and began airstrikes in Syria with the U.S. and Great Britain doing the brunt of the work … again. Obama made it clear that air attacks are the sole strategy we will employ for combatting ISIL. But the question lingers — is it enough?   According to the White House, no troops will return to Iraq, and the president said he will not allow us to be dragged into another Iraq-style war. While these words are reassuring to many citizens of a nation that has grown tired of the never-ending war against terrorism, which has claimed the lives of thousands of troops, others argue airstrikes alone will not be enough.   Initially, it makes sense to launch strategically–pointed attacks by air against ISIL because we obviously have a distinct military advantage in the sky. But this tactic will likely drive the militants into hiding, where they will stay and plot until we leave, at which point they will reemerge to continue acts of ruthless violence.   ISIL is radical. To defeat an opponent so brutally dedicated and loyal, one must resort to radical measures. I’m just not sure that airstrikes will be enough to finish the job.   A former senior British general said ISIL could not be defeated without sending ground soldiers to finish what the airstrikes have begun.   Obama doesn’t want another Iraq war. Well, ISIL is not like al-Qaida in the way they present themselves. They have tanks, artillery, wealth and troops who form up in rank.   They don’t operate out of caves. They are an army. And to defeat an army, we must make them face the greatest army in the...

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Turtle Fest: One shell of a time
May06

Turtle Fest: One shell of a time

THE BELLS — And they’re off.   Green Lightning takes a quick lead but Hard Shell is right on his heels. It’s neck-and-neck. Neither of these racers is giving one inch to the other.   But wait. Out of nowhere here comes Franklin to take the lead. Oh my goodness he came out of nowhere. Can he win? Yes. It’s Franklin with the win. Chances are most people have been participants and onlookers at some form of a race. But have they ever seen a turtle race? Those lucky enough to have attended the 7th annual Belton Kiwanis Club Turtle Festival April 26 can answer this question with an enlightened nod of confirmation. Steven Kirkpatrick has coordinated the event for five years in a row, so he’s had the chance to see this fundraiser grow into the large-scale community gathering it is today. “We have taken a simple fundraiser that merely started out with a duck race and fun day in the park for kids just over seven years ago,” he said. “And in addition to its fundraising component, it has transformed into a complete community resource event during the planning stages of the festival’s third year.” Kirkpatrick said the funds raised go directly toward supporting the “ongoing Service Leadership Programs, the Kiwanis Citizenship Award, hands-on projects and other community organizations in the area that support children.” The event was held at Yettie Polk Park. Organizations from around the Belton area participated by hosting stations that had activities for the children. Helping Hands was one of these organizations. The UMHB chapter of Gamma Beta Phi teamed up with Helping Hands to run a coloring station at the festival. GBP is a national academic honor society. “Our club is all about community service,” chapter president Brooke Cabelo said. “As Gamma Beta Phi, we want to help the community as part of our mission. The Turtle Fest was a great way to get involved with the community and show them that we want to help.” Kaitlyn Zettler is a GBP member and was also volunteering on behalf of the group at the event. She said all the children at the event had a good time. “I thought the festival was a really good family event,” Zettler said. “The kids really seemed to enjoy it.” In addition to the actual turtles racing, 2,000 rubber turtles were released into Nolan Creek. Each was numbered, and adults could “adopt” a racer by purchase. The owner of the first turtle trapped at the end of the race won $1,000 in certificates. This event, the Ultimate Turtle Race, served as the main fundraising activity of the...

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