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Mission Alumni Return to “Pay it Forward”

Mission Alumni Return to “Pay it Forward”

Posted on 13 February 2015 by editor

Jared T. Burkholder Conference on Global Engagement

Grace University friends and alumni are invited to the Jared T. Burkholder Conference on Global Engagement Feb. 23-26 in Suckau Chapel at 840 Pine Street on the Grace University campus to hear from alumni and missionaries Mark and Diane (Hofer) Ellis. This great week of study and prayer is organized annually by student leaders to help students learn more about what mission field God is calling them.

Some of you may remember that Mark and Diane met at Grace University on the first day of their sophomore year when both were in the missions program. For him, it was love at first sight; for her, not so much. Nevertheless, Mark was persistent, and they were married a month after graduation. Mark, who served as president for both Grace World Outreach and the 1980 senior class, will be returning to Grace to share from the Word of God and personal experiences how a person can discern God’s calling upon their lives, and practical advice on being a fruitful, lifelong missionary.

“God powerfully and effectively used professors and special speakers at Grace University to prepare us for life and ministry, and especially in our preparation for missions,” said Mark. “During our missionary training after arriving on the field, so much of what we heard from ‘cutting edge’ missiologists we had already learned at Grace University. My hope is that God will use us to touch the lives of Grace students in 2015 and ‘pay forward’ the blessings we received.”

Since graduation, Mark and Diane have been learning and serving around the Western Hemisphere. Prior to going to Brazil in 1995, they served as missionaries in Canada, and then Mark pastored churches in Nebraska and Texas. As missionaries in Brazil with the IMB/SBC, the focus of Mark’s ministry has been teaching and equipping the leaders of the future; together with Diane, he has also planted four churches. The focus of Diane’s ministry is discipling and counseling women. In addition, Diane homeschooled their five children who have graduated from college and are living out God’s purposes for their lives.

Mark and Diane are back in the U.S.A. for a year of “stateside assignment,” serving as Missionaries in Residence at the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C., seeking out opportunities to minister to students. Mark also continues to lead a Brazil-wide project to build a distance education platform and record on-line courses for use by Brazilian seminaries.

To hear more from Mark and Diane, join us at the conference or checkout the podcasts at http://blogs.graceuniversity.edu/gracelife/ Get the full schedule of events at www.graceu.edu or contact Dr. Mike Schmidt at mschmidt1096@GraceU.edu.

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Your Teen Can Experience Grace!

Your Teen Can Experience Grace!

Posted on 13 February 2015 by editor

Last month, more than 50 high school students arrived on campus with siblings and parents in tow. Over a fun weekend, the teens experienced Grace University as they stayed in the dorms, attended class, met with student leaders and faculty, and learned how a Christ-centered education can impact the call on their lives.

While the teens were shadowing the college students, the parents learned about the more than 40 academic areas of study, scholarship opportunities and financial aid. The parents also learned how a biblically based education impacts their children’s long-term relationship with Christ, compared with the typical college experience where 70% of Christian students leave the church.

We would love to see you and your children, grandchildren, youth group members, or friends join us for the next visit weekend:

Grace Summer Event!!!

Friday-Saturday, June 12-13

Hang out with future Grace U students, run through the zoo on a scavenger hunt, and enjoy the College World Series!

For more information or to register, contact the Admissions office at 800.383.1422 or email rebekah@graceuniversity.edu.

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Visit the Secret Space

Visit the Secret Space

Posted on 13 February 2015 by editor

Thoughts from Fellow Alumni 

Have you visited Grace University’s Secret Space? This is a great place where you can be challenged and refreshed. Check out some thoughts from Becky Swanberg ’04 who describes herself as “a wife, mom, writer, book lover, and Dr. Pepper enthusiast.”

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Raisin’ Bread

Raisin’ Bread

Posted on 13 February 2015 by editor

Who knew that dried grapes could be so fun?

On March 4, we are teaming up with the Woodhouse Auto Family for a special giving event. Woodhouse is again providing a $100,000 matching challenge to raise some dough for scholarship funds. To find out more information about doubling your dough, the identity of Raisin Bread Man or to get great raisin bread recipes, like us on Facebook and go to www.graceu.edu/givingday.

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Life-Saving Note

Life-Saving Note

Posted on 13 February 2015 by editor

Did you see the Omaha World-Herald story about how God is using Grace University?

Check it out at: http://graceuniversity.edu/news/suicidal-man-receives-life-saving-note-from-grace-student/

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Homecoming 2014 Highlights

Homecoming 2014 Highlights

Posted on 15 September 2014 by editor

Where your relationships began and continue!

Click here to register for homecoming 2014.

Thursday, October 30

Lee Strobel will be on campus for an interactive chapel at 2 p.m.  He will also be guest speaker for the Perspectives in Faith fundraising dinner at 7 p.m.  Click here to register for this special dinner.

Friday, October 31

The art fair continues.  Art may be dropped off from 9-11 a.m. to be view through Saturday.

Bring the family!  Area museums and attractions will be discounted for alumni and students on Friday and Saturday.  Local restaurant favorites will have discounts as well. Details will be available at registration on both days.

Need an alternative for trick-or-treating on October 31?  Fall festival will be a fun, relaxed and safe time for families to enjoy game booths, candy and snacks.  Bring the kids and have fall family fun!  It runs from 5-7 p.m. and dress warm—it’s outside.

Special campus visits for kids of alumni will be held Friday afternoon.  Click here to register for a visit geared toward your teen.

Alumni and students will come together for an art fair throughout the weekend.  Share your one-of-a-kind art in any format for all to see.  Art may be delivered Thursday 1 p.m. or on Friday from 9-11 a.m. to the Burkholder Center lobby at 810 Pine Street.

Saturday, November 1

The art fair continues.

Alumni class reunions will begin at 9 a.m. with a continental breakfast.  The worship time will begin at 10:30 in Suckau chapel.  Alumni and students will share testimonies and student music groups will perform.

The Alumni Luncheon will include awards given to alumni, emerging alumni and honorary alumni for their faithful service to God.  President, Dr. David Barnes will share how God is at work and his vision for the future.

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Grace University students get a jump start on the year by helping others

Grace University students get a jump start on the year by helping others

Posted on 15 September 2014 by editor

GO Project story on local news stations

Even before classes began, Grace University students made a difference in our community by reaching out and serving others.

“All for the glory of God. That’s what everything we’re doing out here is — to represent Christ well. We know that Christ served others and he served us, and we want to show others Christ’s love through our service,” said CJ Snodgrass, student body president.

See full news report here.

Click here to view the article from KETV.

Click here to view the article from WOWT.

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To the class of 1954 from your President Johnny Reimer

To the class of 1954 from your President Johnny Reimer

Posted on 15 September 2014 by editor

Members of the Class of ’54, Grace University, greetings!

By the grace of God we have come thus far and grace will lead us on.  “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons (and daughters) by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.”  Ephesians 1:3-6 (NKJ).

It hardly seems possible that 60 years have gone by since we gathered at the Omaha Tabernacle for the commencement exercises.  Some of our class mates have gone on to their rest and the rest of us are not far removed from the same journey.  May God be glorified in us and through us until that time arrives.

The Grace Homecoming is scheduled for October 30 – November 1.  Since this is the 60th anniversary for our class I encourage as many of you as are able to make your way to the Grace Campus for this festive occasion.  You need to let Grace know if you are coming so that proper arrangements can be made.

As much as I would love to be there I do not see that this will be possible.  Rachel and I are in fairly good health but there are limitations and long distance travel is one of them.  Rachel has not regained the strength and energy since her serious illness the first half of 2011 and she needs my help.

I am quite well and am thankful that I can continue being involved in the ministry that the Evangelical Bible Church has here in Dallas, OR.  I regularly teach an adult Sunday school class, serve as a deacon, and am involved in the music ministry in the church.

May God be gracious to you all.  For those of you who will be able to attend the reunion I pray that God will grant you safety, blessing and encouragement as you fellowship and reminisce with one another.

Until that great reunion of the redeemed in glory –

Johnny Reimer, President

Class of ’54, (GBI), Grace University

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Omaha Gives! 2014

Omaha Gives! 2014

Posted on 20 May 2014 by editor

Be part of the party & impact others for eternity!

Go to GraceU.edu/OmahaGives to donate to Grace University!

Omaha Gives! is a 24-hour, online giving event organized by the Omaha Community Foundation to grow philanthropy in the metro area. The minimum donation is $10 and there is no maximum. Matching funds and prize money will be made available to amplify charitable donations. The goal is to inspire the community to come together for 24 hours to contribute as many charitable dollars as possible to support the work of local nonprofit organizations.

  • Help Christ-centered students by giving to GU
  • Give your gift on Wednesday, May 21
  • Your gift may be matched
  • Prizes for GU if we receive the most gifts hourly

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She Came Because Someone Gave.

She Came Because Someone Gave.

Posted on 15 April 2014 by editor

Alyssa Smith, ‘06 Tells Her Story

”You’re going where for college?” was a common question after I announced I would leave my family and friends in southern California to attend Grace University. People would say, “There’s nothing there but cows and cornfields.” My decision was unexpected to many, including me.

My dad and I had attended a seminar titled “How to Choose a Christian College” and the pastor referred to Grace as the “best Christian college” for its cost in the country. My dad, a native of the Midwest, suggested we visit Grace later that year. Despite an adamant “No!” my dad was persuasive. We visited Grace and I immediately felt welcomed by the students with whom I stayed and could easily imagine my future life on campus.

I was awarded a full tuition scholarship. That combined with federal grants and scholarship money from my parents’ mission organization, my school and living expenses were covered, including funds for travel home each year. As God often does, He provided beyond what I asked. I gratefully received this provision for school as clear direction that God had opened wide the doors for me to attend Grace.

Because I was planning to do mission work with children overseas, I selected Teacher Education as my major. A study abroad opportunity in Mexico allowed me to add an English Language Learners (E.L.L.) endorsement. My junior year, I served on the student mission organization Grace World Outreach. We wanted to involve students in consistent service to others (opposed to one-time trips or events), so I started taking a small group of girls to volunteer weekly at the Hope Center for Kids, where I later took a full-time job.

I had hoped to student teach overseas, but after that door closed, I did my student teaching in Omaha Public Schools. God began nudging my heart to consider staying in Omaha after graduation. My final few months at Grace were filled with a multitude of phone calls with my parents, many tears, and numerous nights in the “prayer closet” (our converted storage closet at the end of the hall), as I prayed through my future possibilities and plans.

In late April, I was offered a teaching position where I was student teaching and was also considering a position at the Hope Center for Kids. The Friday of graduation week was my deadline for giving the school district an answer. At the Senior Breakfast that day, a microphone was passed around for seniors to share their post-graduation plans. A huge knot grew in my stomach as the mic neared my table. My mind raced as I realized I had to share a decision I had not yet been able to settle with confidence. As the mic was placed in my hand, I stood and announced to everyone—including my parents—that I hoped I would be taking a position as Education Coordinator at the Hope Center for Kids that fall.

I graduated in May 2006 with my Bachelor of Science in Teacher Education with an Elementary Education and ELL endorsement and started my job at the Hope Center in September. I worked for five years as the education coordinator and then became the director. For the past two years, I have served as the Hope Employment and Learning Academy director. I oversee a program that provides part-time employment for high school youth, which includes academic support, employability training, and small group mentoring.

Eleven years ago, I could not have imagined Omaha becoming my home, but today I am very thankful that God brought and kept me here.

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