Archive | News

Homecoming 2016

Homecoming 2016

Posted on 18 January 2017 by editor

IMG_0097

More than 140 friends and alumni came back to campus for the annual Homecoming celebration. Alumni enjoyed chapel emceed by student body president Josh Pace. Dr. Jim Eckman, president emeritus, discussed the challenges facing Christian higher education and the need for support and prayer. Worship time was led by Alyxandra Callahan, granddaughter of Jared Burkholder ‘65. Charles Wilson ‘99 opened the testimony time where alumni shared the impact of Grace University and what God has done in their lives since graduation. During the Alumni Luncheon, current undergraduate, graduate and adult degree completion students shared how God brought them to GU and what He continues to do on campus. The Chamber Singers and 4Front performed as well. Following afternoon class reunions, alumni enjoyed a basketball game and family picnic dinner.

Comments (0)

Outreach Opportunities

Outreach Opportunities

Posted on 18 January 2017 by editor

As part of walking out the Grace University mission of being servant leaders in the community, class officers organized a weekend GO Project in partnership with Release Ministries. Release Ministries reaches out to at-risk youth through a variety of ways to show them Christ’s love. Grace University students helped upgrade a house by painting and doing yardwork for one of Release Ministries’ group homes.

Comments (0)

Festival of Christmas

Festival of Christmas

Posted on 18 January 2017 by editor

31439026631_7772733a27_k

A packed house of friends and alumni celebrated the birth of Jesus during Grace University’s annual Festival of Christmas Scholarship Concert. Proceeds from the event went to support the important mission of Grace University. The event featured special guests Uncommon Times from Plattsmouth High School and Omaha Academy Choir. The Grace University Chorale, Chamber Singers, Concert Band, and instrumental ensembles performed a variety of classic and contemporary Christmas tunes. A highlight of the night was the 4Front quartet’s version of “The 12 Days of Christmas.” Enjoy a version of their tune here.

Comments (0)

Pirates of Penzance

Pirates of Penzance

Posted on 18 January 2017 by editor

pop ac 11817

Get your tickets now for this hilarious farce that follows Frederic, an orphan apprenticed to an ineffectual band of pirates. Frederic disavows the way of life and jumps ship. Adventure, romance and mishap follow him ashore as he falls for the beautiful Mabel, runs amuck with timid constabulary, and faces the downfall of a very model of a modern Major-General.

January 20-28

7 p.m. in the Suckau Chapel, 810 Pine St., Omaha

Click here to buy tickets.

Comments (0)

Being Salt and Light

Being Salt and Light

Posted on 18 January 2017 by editor

dk11817

Dana ’13 and Kirstie ‘14 (Webster) Drege have been busy since leaving Omaha. Currently, they are serving Jesus in Ames, Iowa. As the Worship Arts Leader of the Salt Company, Dana uses music to reach the community and students connected to Iowa State University. Kirstie serves alongside Dana and uses music to help students become closer to God. The Salt Company is a ministry that reaches more than 1,100 students each week during corporate teaching and worship sessions, has international student outreach groups, more than 900 students involved in small groups, and foreign mission opportunities.

In addition, Dana and Kirstie have been using their musical talent to serve in churches, camps and retreats around the Midwest. They have also recorded a single. Check it out here.

Comments (0)

Welcome Coach Kliewer ‘03

Welcome Coach Kliewer ‘03

Posted on 14 December 2016 by editor

skbc1216Grace University alumnus Shawn Kliewer ‘03 begins his first season as the head men’s basketball coach. Kliewer makes it clear that he loves coaching and has a deep desire to affect people for Christ though athletics. “The goal of the men’s basketball team is to come together as a family in order to have a successful basketball team while keeping our central focus on glorifying and honoring God,” said Kliewer.

Coach Kliewer stands on a long history with Grace University. While earning his B.S. with a double major in urban ministries and biblical studies, Coach Kliewer played basketball for four years and served as team captain his senior year. During the ’03-’04 season Shawn was the assistant men’s basketball coach before playing professional basketball in Germany the following year.

He returned to Grace University to coach the women’s basketball team from 2009 to 2015. It was during the ’11-’12 season that he led the women’s basketball team to the regional championship. This was the first time grace women had ever gone to the NCCAA D2 national tournament. Coach Kliewer also earned the regional coach of the year for that season.

Comments (0)

Men’s Soccer welcomes new coach

Men’s Soccer welcomes new coach

Posted on 14 December 2016 by editor

Brian_Locke_asst_coachBrian Locke will enter the 2017 season as head coach of the men’s soccer team after serving as the assistant coach in 2016. Coach Locke is excited to work with the current student-athletes and bring in new recruits to shape them into collegiate players who honor Christ in all their actions, on and off the field. Brian played for the Royals in 2003 when the team went to their second consecutive NCCAA National Tournament. After the season, Brian joined the U.S Air Force and continued to play soccer for the base team.

Brian’s soccer experience began at age four and has continued ever since. He played three years at the varsity level for his high school, as well as at Bellevue Soccer Club and other various teams, and he continues to play in local indoor and outdoor leagues. In addition to coaching youth soccer, Coach Locke has also been a Martial Arts instructor in Jiu Jitsu. To further his education and coaching abilities Brian is currently enrolled at the United States Sports Academy.

“The most rewarding aspect of the position is being able to watch the student-athletes grow and mature, not only as soccer players, as men serving Christ,” said Coach Locke.

Comments (0)

The Benefit of Qualified Charitable Distributions from IRAs (QCDs)

The Benefit of Qualified Charitable Distributions from IRAs (QCDs)

Posted on 05 December 2016 by editor

I want to share with you a giving method that has proven advantageous to me and one of my favorite investments, Grace University.

In December 2015, Congress made permanent a law allowing you to give up to $100,000 to charity directly from your individual retirement account (IRA) when you 26853920325_7ff150590b_k-1are over 70 1/2 years old without counting the distribution as taxable income. This type of charitable gift is called a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD). I have used this method of giving for a good number of years but each year waited to see if it would be renewed. Now it is possible to plan for current and future years.

When you take money out of your IRA it is a taxable event, whether it is the Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) or a larger amount. The withdrawal adds to your taxable income and inflates your adjusted gross income (AGI). Since a QCD is not taxable income in the first place, it has no effect on your AGI. This is important because itemized deduction phase-outs, exemption phase-outs, Roth contribution eligibility, the net investment income Medicare surtax, Medicare premium costs, the taxability of Social Security income, and some credit phase-outs all factor off your AGI. Furthermore, giving a QCD directly from your IRA can allow you to benefit from charitable giving even if you don’t normally itemize your deductions. Giving directly from your IRA allows you to ignore your QCD IRA distribution when calculating your taxable income and also take the standard deduction.

Normally, charitable giving can only be deducted if it is less than 50% of your AGI. Giving directly from your IRA allows you to effectively reduce your AGI even if the gift amount would otherwise be greater than 50% of your AGI. Qualified Charitable Distributions count as IRA distributions and can be used to satisfy all or part of your Required Minimum Distribution (RMD). This makes them particularly useful for senior citizens who are still working, have a large pension, or, in general, find themselves in a higher tax bracket.

The Board of Trustees of Grace University approved a budget last summer that anticipates significant financial support from friends and alumni this year end. I encourage you to make a significant Qualified Charitable Distribution from your IRA, as I have done. I am very willing to answer any questions you may have regarding how to process this. Please notify Grace University of a check coming from your IRA custodian so checks sent direct to the charity are donors identified.

Enjoy the season of Thanksgiving as a time of giving and a time for family celebration.

Mel Friesen, Planned Giving Volunteer
402.490.4795
mfriesen@graceu.edu

How To Do A Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD)

  1. Already be age 70 ½ on the date of distribution
  2. Submit a distribution form to the IRA custodian, requesting that the check be made payable directly to the charity
  3. Ensure that no tax withholding is being done from the QCD to the charity (as the money must actually go to the charity to qualify, and as a non-taxable distribution no withholding should be necessary)
  4. Send the check directly to the charity, or to the IRA owner to be forwarded along to the charity

While the process of completing a QCD to a charity is fairly straightforward, the key administrative requirement is that the distribution check must be made payable directly to the charitable entity. If the funds go to the IRA owner and are then passed along to the charity, it is still a taxable distribution to the IRA owner and not a QCD.

Comments (0)

Alumni Weekend 2016

Alumni Weekend 2016

Posted on 06 October 2016 by editor

IMG_2171

Mark your calendars and plan to be on campus with your fellow classmates October 28-29. Watch your inbox for details about the dinners, concerts, and athletic events going on all weekend. There will be class reunions and activities for the entire family:

  • Chorale and Collegians Reunion Concert
  • Family picnic
  • Nate Drege Concert
  • Band Festival
  • Volleyball, Basketball and Soccer games
  • Meet & Greet with Trustees and University leadership

Class officers will be in touch with you soon. Please send your updated contact information to alumni@graceu.edu.

Comments (1)

From the Desk of Dr. Eckman

From the Desk of Dr. Eckman

Posted on 06 July 2016 by editor

ftdoe070516July 4th is Independence Day in the United States, a day in which we celebrate our independence from the British Empire; the birth of our nation.  From 1776 to 1783, this new nation fought a war of independence, and then, in the summer of 1787, the founders of this new Republic wrote the Constitution.  You cannot understand these momentous events from 1776 to 1787 if you neglect the issue of religious liberty.  The founders of this new Republic were committed equally to the pursuit of both political liberty and religious liberty.  As the First Amendment declares, protecting the “free exercise” of religion is one of the obligations of the state.  In these early years of the 21st century, there is a growing threat to the free exercise of religion in this Republic.  The mission of Grace University is to develop servant leaders through, among other things, “excellence in biblically integrated education.”  The Bible is the beginning point of all knowledge and the integrating center of everything done at Grace.  To lose this integrating center would end the uniqueness of Grace’s mission.  For that reason, Grace needs to be a robust institution financially.  After three years of poor stewardship, we must “right the ship.”

Under the capable leadership of Dr. John Holmes, Interim President, Bill Bauhard, CEO, and Dr. Karl Pagenkemper, Academic VP, Grace University is retooling.  We are paying down debt and righting all accounts so that we can begin the new academic year, which begins in mid-August, financially stable.  As our friends and donors, you play an important role in the mission of Grace.  Your prayers are necessary in these difficult times and we covet those persistent, regular, passionate prayers for Grace University.  We also crave your financial support to achieve the financial stability we need for the new year.  Thank you for your investment, through your prayers and your gifts, in this eternally significant work of God.

In His mighty grasp,

James P. Eckman, Ph.D.
President Emeritus, Grace University

Comments (0)

Photos from our Flickr stream

See all photos

Tidings 2015

RELATED SITES