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October 6, 2014 / Whitworth University

Welcome Home

Oct. 5-12

“For through Christ we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. So, then, you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of God’s household, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone.”
Ephesians 2:19-20

This week we pray for…

  • our beloved Whitworth, as the university celebrates its 125th anniversary this week. This historic marker reminds us of God’s constant faithfulness to this institution. May we be faithful in the future to honor all those who have contributed their time, energy, resources and commitment to Whitworth University.
  • our students, as many are introduced to Whitworth’s inspiring history. We ask that they would be grateful for Whitworth, which is as it is today because of the incredible sacrifices of past Whitworthians,
  • Tuesday’s Community Chapel, as Stephaine Beans preaches from Paul’s letter to the church in Ephesus (2:10-22). May the Whitworth community reflect the reality that the “dividing wall of hostility” has been eliminated in Christ, calling us to be the welcoming community Christ intended.
  • the members of our board of trustees as they arrive to meet Wednesday through Friday in conjunction with the 125th year celebration. May our board members have a clear sense of the responsibilities they carry as they lead this institution, and may God’s Spirit guide them in their deliberations.
  • Thursday’s Community Chapel, as we gather around the table to celebrate the Lord’s Supper, to learn and grow in our various gifts, and to offer our lives to God through diverse worship styles. Services will be led by Whitworth University choirs, sacred dancers, and many other members of the Whitworth community.
  • the President’s Leadership Forum, to be held at the Spokane Convention Center. We welcome former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice., our featured speaker for the Forum. May the Spokane community listen well to Dr. Rice as she engages in courageous conversations about her perspectives on the United States’ role in the world.
  • the flurry of activity on campus between Friday and Sunday, which will include theatre productions, multiple athletics events, Homecoming Weekend, and the 125th Anniversary Celebration at the Spokane Convention Center on Saturday evening, with President Beck A. Taylor. This weekend provides an opportunity to look into our past, present, and future as Whitworthians. May God prompt the kind of “holy remembrance” that draws our hearts and minds closer to God and to each other.
  • Celebration Weekend concludes with a worship service on Sunday morning at which the entire Whitworth community is invited to worship together during one of the weekend’s signature events. This service will include a performance by the Choral Reunion Choir, and a sermon delivered by Professor of Theology Jerry Sittser. May God fill our hearts with profound gratitude as we conclude this historic weekend.

Lord we are so thankful that we are no longer foreigners and aliens. Now we are members of Your household; we are family. We are grateful that, as citizens of the kingdom, we have been drawn into the Whitworth family, as well. Thank you for the grace we know in Christ and for the ways in which that grace comes to us through this university. Praise God, from whom all blessings flow! Amen.

September 29, 2014 / Whitworth University

Alive In Christ

Sept. 28-Oct. 5

“But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions – it is by grace you have been saved.”
Ephesians 2:4-5

This week we pray for…

  • our students as they realize that the Whitworth experience is a journey that will stretch them in so many different ways, intellectually, spiritually, and relationally. As they encounter difference in thought and culture, attitudes and perceptions, may they be filled with wonder at the rich array of God’s creation, each person made uniquely and purposefully in God’s image.
  • the institutional advancement team, as they go through final preparations for the 125th-anniversary celebration, which will take place Oct. 9-12. They have worked tirelessly to serve the entire Whitworth community in celebrating our unique Christian mission of mind and heart, and may God’s grace, wisdom and endurance be with them as they make their final preparations.
  • those involved in this week of significant lectures on campus. Please pray for these lecturers, that their wise perspectives will be received with open minds and hearts.
    • Monday, Sept. 29, Randy Balmer will offer “His Own Received Him Not,” a lecture regarding the mixing of Christian faith and presidential politics.
    • Tuesday, Sept. 30, Brenda Allen, associate vice chancellor for diversity and inclusion at the University of Colorado, will speak on the topic “Community Difference Matters,” about the importance of welcoming, relating to, and learning from the varieties of difference in our community.
    • Friday, Oct. 2, Whitworth Lindaman Chair Julia Stronks speaks on “Christians, Public Policy, and Sexual Identity,” addressing the tensions present in church and public policy concerning the ongoing discussions about human sexuality.
  • Tuesday’s Community Worship Service, as Kent McDonald shares with us from the book of Ephesians, Chapter 2:1-10; please pray, too, for other opportunities for community worship: Hosanna, on Tuesday night; Awake, on Wednesday night; and for the Community Chapel Lord’s Supper on Thursday morning.

Lord, it is good to know that you are here with us; we are aware of your limitless love and your quick forgiveness, and we are thankful for your mercy, which forgives us our sins and offers us salvation.

September 22, 2014 / Whitworth University

Praying For You

Sept. 21-28

“I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know God better.”
Ephesians 1:17-18

This week we pray for…

  • students who are encountering life’s struggles as they try to focus on their studies. Some students are stressed by health issues, some by the lack of finances to sustain their Whitworth education, and still others by relational strains with family and friends.
  • our athletics coaches, who have prepared for this season of competition through recruiting and planning, strategizing and developing relationships with their athletes. May they know the presence of God’s Spirit as they lead, especially during competition and while they are travelling with their athletes.
  • Tuesday morning’s President’s Coffee, as Beck Taylor gathers with the staff and faculty for a time of reflection, information, support and encouragement. May these meetings deepen our sense of common purpose to the Christian mission of the university as each employee seeks to serve our students.
  • Tuesday’s Community Worship Service as Campus Pastor Mindy Smith preaches on Paul’s charge to recognize our identity in Christ and to follow Christ faithfully (from Ephesians 1:15-23).
  • small-group coordinators as they guide the development of their groups with various student populations. May each student in a small group have the freedom to be honest in discussions across a wide spectrum of faith perspectives while being supported by other students in the group.
  • Friday’s first Why Whitworth Day, as we welcome prospective students and parents to visit our campus and to consider Whitworth as their college choice. In the weeks and months of decision-making ahead, may God give every student a clear sense of direction.
  • YouthWorship, a seminar led by Associate Professor of Music Ben Brody and student leaders. This seminar, hosted by the newly established Whitworth Office of Church Engagement, is designed to provide reflection on the theology of worship as well as development of practical skills. May God give inspiration and a profound sense of responsibility to every worship leader who attends.

Lord, we are grateful that, as a community, we pray for one another. We are thankful for your spirit of wisdom and revelation as we continue to build a relationship with you and have a deep desire to know you more deeply.

September 15, 2014 / Whitworth University

A Prayer For You

Sept. 14-21

“I pray that, according to the riches of God’s glory, you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through the Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are rooted and grounded in love.”
Ephesians 3:16-17

This week we pray for…

  • student ambassadors who help in sharing the Whitworth story with prospective students/parents – tour guides, dorm hosts, callers, admissions office assistants, and students who help with our visitation programs. May God guide every prospective student for the fall 2015 incoming class.
  • students to have wisdom, understanding and knowledge in making life-giving decisions in their use of time and resources, in their studies and recreation, and in their relationships on campus and with the Spokane community.
  • the department assistants in each academic office, who facilitate the instructional process through their support of the faculty. May each of them be assured of the essential role they play in Whitworth’s mind-and-heart mission as they go about their work.
  • Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning’s prayer services as Director of Campus Worship Ben Brody will lead morning prayer from 7:30-7:50 a.m. in the chapel. Morning prayer is an opportunity all faculty, staff, and students to begin the day with scripture, silence, prayer and song. The simple service, based on the Book of Common Prayer, invites us to join Christians around the world as we lift up our hearts to the Lord.
  • the fall service-learning fair, on Monday, as it provides an opportunity for students and faculty to connect with local service agencies that assist a variety of populations within Spokane and surrounding areas. These connections can lead to academic service-learning opportunities, as well as to general ongoing group and individual service relationships.
  • Community Building Day, Tuesday morning, as Whitworth faculty, staff and students engage in meaningful service activities throughout Spokane County. May this effort extend Whitworth’s emphasis on community into Spokane as we establish and strengthen relationships through our service.
  • Hosanna, Tuesday night; Awake, Wednesday night, and our Thursday morning Community Chapel Communion Service, which serve to provide opportunities for spiritual renewal.

Lord, we thank you that the love of Christ dwells within us. We are grateful that we have the opportunity to share that love in tangible ways on our campus and in the community. As we experience your love for us, may we learn to share that love on campus and in the community. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

September 8, 2014 / Whitworth University

Grace and Peace

Sept. 7-14

“Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Ephesians 1:2

This week we pray for…

  • our students, faculty and staff in their first full week of classes. We are now adjusting to the rhythm of fall semester, and these next few weeks will be both exhilarating and exhausting, filled with relationships and opportunities in the classrooms, dorms, dining hall and athletics facilities. May God guide each of us to participate in the development of the Whitworth community.
  • families and friends who have left students here on campus, and who now return to different rhythms in their homes and communities. May God give them peace and comfort as the adjustment process continues at home.
  • students, who will develop patterns in these first few weeks that will carry them through the year. May they build healthy relationships as they grow in their understanding of their personal worldviews and faith perspectives.
  • the faculty, and their commitment to academic excellence and helping students engage fully in the process of discovering new knowledge and gaining wisdom through Whitworth’s education of their minds and their hearts.
  • the beginning of all of our worship gatherings: 1) Community Chapel meets Tuesday at 11 a.m. and includes campus ministry staff and Whitworth President Beck Taylor preaching through the book of Ephesians. This Tuesday, Kent McDonald will preach on Ephesians 1:1-14. 2) Tuesday night at 9:45 p.m. Hosanna, a student-led ministry, seeks to create a space that allows students to engage in authentic worship in a variety of different styles. 3) Wednesday night’s Awake, at 9:45 p.m., creates a welcoming, conversational environment with a primary and inclusive focus on student athletes as well as a variety of other student groups. 4) Thursday Community Chapel at 11 a.m. invites the entire community to gather around the table to celebrate the Lord’s Supper. All these services are led by student leaders and other members of the Whitworth community.
  • the Chris Jordan Art Exhibit, from Sept. 9 to Oct. 31, in the Lied Art Center. The opening reception takes place Thursday, Sept. 11, from 5-6 p.m. in Lied, with a lecture by the artist following, at 6 p.m., in Weyerhaeuser Hall, Robinson Teaching Theatre.
  • the Fall Jobs and Internships Fair, on Thursday. Representatives from organizations that are hiring for jobs and internships will be available to talk about their opportunities with students. Ask that God will guide our students to find the right employment opportunities to meet their financial needs.

You are the Triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And you bestow upon us, your people, the lavish love that binds us to you and to each other in community. May your grace summon us into relationships that will honor you and reflect your love. Please enable the Whitworth community to fulfill its mission commitment to honor and follow You while we engage our world with the grace and truth of Jesus, our Redeemer and Friend, in whose name we pray. Amen.

September 1, 2014 / Whitworth University

Spiritual Blessings

Sept. 1-7

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.”
Ephesians 1:3

We pray for…

  • new freshmen and transfer, graduate and returning adult students as they adjust to the first full week of university life. May they have a sense of peace as they navigate new relationships and academic requirements.
  • our student leaders in residence halls and student government who will set the tone for the development of community on campus. Ask that they will lead with wisdom and integrity so that all students feel welcomed as contributors to the Whitworth community.
  • our student-athletes as they prepare to play in fall sports. Pray for their protection and ask that they represent the university well in the way they compete.
  • the entire community on Wednesday, when day and evening classes begin in all programs. May our faculty be guided by God’s Spirit to teach with insight and wisdom, inspiring our students to aspire to an education of mind and heart.
  • Opening Convocation, on Thursday, which marks the beginning of Whitworth’s 125th year. President Beck Taylor will speak from Joshua 1, The Next Chapter, as we begin Whitworth’s 125th academic year.
  • the Church Ministry Fair, on Friday, as we welcome our many partner churches onto our campus to provide students with opportunities to be involved with our local churches and community.
  • for all of the student ambassadors who help in sharing the Whitworth story with prospective students/parents – tour guides, dorm hosts, callers, admissions office assistants, and students who help with our visit programs.

Throughout this academic year we will highlight praise and prayer from members of the president’s cabinet, who have been entrusted with the operations of the university. In this first week of the academic year, we feature Greg Orwig, our vice president for admissions and financial aid, who is particularly thankful to be welcoming a freshman class that is right on our target goal of 625 students: We are particularly fortunate to welcome our ideal number when so many schools are facing enrollment challenges.

As we begin this academic year, we are mindful, our God, of your amazing grace, which has brought each of us to Whitworth for this academic year. Gathered among us are people whose lives tell myriad stories of your faithfulness on our campus, and among our employees and all of our beginning and returning students. Our hearts are filled with joy as we sense Your leading us into our 125th year, even as we look back and celebrate your providential guidance of this university over many generations. For all that has been, thank you. For all that will be, we trust you in the name of the Triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.

August 25, 2014 / Whitworth University

A Life Worthy of the Calling

Aug. 24-31

“Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord….”
Ephesians 6:7

This week we begin another cycle of praying for the Whitworth community. The summer has brought times of renewal and refreshment, along with challenges, for the employees of the university. We are now making final preparations to welcome the incoming class on Saturday, Aug. 30. Student-athletes and residence-life leaders are already on campus preparing for the upcoming academic year. Now we turn our hearts to prayer for our community’s faculty, staff and students.

We pray for…

  • our athletes to be protected from injury, both physical and emotional. May they continue to be people of integrity in both victory and in defeat, to be good examples to others, and to display the Whitworth spirit.
  • our student leaders, who set the tone for our community in residential and spiritual life and student government. May each moment of their lives be a living expression of Whitworth’s commitment to “honor God, follow Christ, and serve humanity.”
  • our Wednesday worship celebration of the beginning the academic year, with Stephy Nobles-Beans preaching and those gathered taking part in communion. After Stephy’s sermon, President Beck Taylor will deliver the State of the University address, to be followed by a staff luncheon. May these activities provide a common vision for how Whitworth’s staff and faculty can be the embodiment of Christ’s grace and truth throughout the coming year.
  • Thursday evening’s faculty dinner, followed by the installation worship service for new faculty members. Provost Carol Simon will preach, and we will celebrate communion. On Friday, the faculty will gather for a retreat at Camp Spalding. All of these activities and worship services on Wednesday and Thursday are intended to provide a rich sense of welcome for faculty members who have recently joined the university. May each one feel empowered in his/her calling by God’s Spirit to Whitworth.
  • Residence-Hall Moving Day, on Saturday morning, as we welcome our incoming freshmen. Please pray, too, for our returning students, who will arrive the following Monday. The halls become students’ homes for the next nine months; may each student feel a sense of belonging as all become members of the residence life community.
  • Saturday’s Plug-In Picnic and Sunday’s worship service with Campus Pastor Mindy Smith preaching. We also ask your prayers for special meetings throughout the weekend, each designed to aid students, parents, family and friends in this very important moment of life transition. May God’s Spirit of peace calm our collective anxiety as we are reminded of God’s faithfulness, which has brought us this far and which will lead us all the way through this academic year.

Our gracious and loving God, Lord, as we begin this new academic school year, we call out to you with thankful hearts for all your mercies, which are new every morning. We thank you for the gifts of renewal and preparation as the summer passes into autumn, marking another new beginning to another academic year. We thank you for the time you give us to enjoy our families and friends and to reflect on what is important in our lives. Please let this year be marked by enthusiasm and love so that, with the inspiration of your spirit, we may continue to grow in our faith. May our lives be worthy of the calling you have for us. Please enable us to fulfill your purposes for the Whitworth community as together we pursue the lofty vision of providing our students a mind-and-heart education in the service of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

May 19, 2014 / Whitworth University

Give Thanks

May 19-25

Give thanks to the LORD, for God is good.
God’s covenant love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods
God’s covenant love endures forever
Give thanks to the LORD of lords
God’s covenant love endures forever.
Psalm 136:1-3

This week we pray for…

  • all students who graduated this weekend, that they will know God’s presence in this time of enormous transition. Pray especially for provision for housing, employment and community to nurture them in Christian faith.
  • Monday evening when we celebrate our employees, especially those who mark incremental five years of service to the university, as well as those who are leaving Whitworth to pursue other employment, and those who are retiring. The university’s Christian mission is only as strong as those who serve here, and we are so grateful for the way God has provided wonderful, faithful employees who serve Whitworth as an expression of their Christian vocation.
  • faculty who now bear the responsibility of finishing the academic year with a heavy load of grading papers and final exams in the next few days. May they have strength to endure, and wisdom to grade, students’ work in a manner which will continue to enhance the learning process.
  • every summer brings many transitions to the university, as we say goodbye to some colleagues and begin to welcome others. Please pray for every search committee across the staff and faculty who continue to pursue candidates to come and serve at Whitworth. May these committees have insightful discernment and the patience to “wait upon the Lord” for God’s guidance and timing.
  • our facilities services staff members, who begin the process of major projects across the campus to upgrade our buildings and grounds. Pray for the “Big Dig” as new electrical and heating lines are run across the campus. We are especially mindful of our employees’ safety, and we ask for prayer for their protection as they labor throughout the summer.

At Whitworth we are most grateful for your prayer support throughout this year. Thanks for praying with us and for us. Look for the beginning of next academic year’s “On Bended Knee” postings in late August. Have a great, safe, and blessed summer. May the Peace of Christ rule in your lives and hearts.

Lord we thank you so much for being our strength and our shield during this school year. We know we can trust you, and we are assured that you will be there always in our time of need. We are thankful, and our hearts rejoice in you, because You are our Rock, our Fortress, our Salvation. Amen!

May 12, 2014 / Whitworth University

Commencement Week

May 12-18

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord; “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Jeremiah 29:11

This is graduation week, marking the end of the academic year. We pray for…

  • all of our students, that the Lord’s presence will generate confidence as they prepare for and take their final exams Tuesday-Friday. Pray for calm hearts and focused minds free from distractions.
  • Friday night’s Senior Communion & Commissioning Service and Sunday morning’s Baccalaureate Service, that graduates will experience a powerful sense of God’s presence as they leave Whitworth and enter into the world in Christ’s service.
  • graduate students completing their master’s degrees on Saturday. Pray that doors of opportunity will open in this competitive job market, and that the Lord will grant them favor.
  • undergraduate students completing their degrees on Sunday. Ask that they will find hope to override fear, knowing that they can trust in the Lord, the Author and Finisher of their faith, to watch over their future.
  • students as the residence halls close on May 19, for traveling mercies as they move home or to other parts of the world to begin new journeys.
  • student leaders who have carried well the responsibility of developing and sustaining the “Whitworth culture” throughout the year; ask that this summer might provide for them an opportunity to experience rest and renewal.
  • the Whitworth community as we seek to carry out Initiative 1 of the Whitworth 2021 Courage at the Crossroads vision and strategic plan: “Advance Whitworth’s distinctive approach to integrating Christian faith and learning.” May this foundational commitment to a Christian education rooted in the Reformed, evangelical, and ecumenical traditions bear fruit throughout the lives of our graduates.

Lord we pray for all those who have met the challenge and kept the faith to the finish their studies. We thank you for the success of their journey. We thank you for granting them focus and direction and strength and endurance. You created the knowledge and understanding they have mastered. You have created the curiosity and capacity for them to learn with passion and insight. All these good things came from you. We are most thankful for our graduating students, as we are for the incoming Class of 2018 and for our current juniors, sophomores and freshmen, who will return in the fall. We are grateful to you Lord, for You know the plans that You have for us.

May 5, 2014 / Whitworth University

Jesus Prays for All Believers

May 5-11

“I ask …that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you sent me.”
John 17:20-21

This week we pray for…

  • all of our students, during this last week of regular classes; we ask that they will have diligence to pursue their responsibilities with enthusiasm and discipline to finish this academic year well.
  • Whitworth students and faculty who have been involved in study-abroad programs and will soon return to Spokane. We ask God to bless each one as they re-enter familiar cultural and relational spaces after experiencing life in very different cultural contexts.
  • those students who face uncertainty about summer jobs and internships. We ask that they may find opportunities to use their talents and earn money to enable them to continue to pursue education here at Whitworth.
  • members of the Class of 2014, now in the last two weeks of their time here. We pray that they will have opportunities to reflect upon all that God has done in them and through them during their Whitworth careers. May their hearts be filled with gratitude for God’s faithfulness.
  • God’s provenance and guidance as the university seeks replacements for key faculty, staff, and administration positions.
  • faculty and staff members who have lost family members in the past few weeks; may they be filled with a deep sense of God’s presence and peace in the midst of their grief.
  • faculty members, who, through their teaching, grading, and mentoring responsibilities, serve our students so diligently.
  • us to be mindful of God’s faithfulness to Whitworth throughout this year as we gather for…
    • Tuesday’s Community Worship, where Terry McGonigal will share the final message from John 13-17, in which Jesus prays for the unity of all God’s people as a witness to the truth of the gospel.
    • Tuesday’s Hosanna and Wednesday’s Awake, student-led ministries coordinated for the past two years by Graduate Assistants Aly Quartier and Austin Rovazzini, as they create a space for students to experience their last authentic, casual worship service of the 2013-14 academic year.
    • Thursday’s Community Worship, as we gather around the table to celebrate the Lord’s Supper.
  • the entire community as we seek to implement Initiative 1:2 of Whitworth’s Courage at the Crossroads 2011-21 Vision and Strategic Plan: “Advance Whitworth’s distinctive approach to integrating Christian faith and learning to deepen the capacity of students and faculty to integrate faith and learning, ensuring that 100 percent of Whitworth’s academic departments assess student-learning outcomes in faith-learning integration.”

Gracious God, in Jesus Christ you poured out your extravagant love upon our broken world, and you have redeemed in and through that love. Now you ask us to do the same for each other, loving our sisters and brothers in Christ as a sign to to the world that you did, indeed, send Jesus for the reconciliation of the world. May we live into your love, and may your gospel of love in Jesus’ name go forth to all the world through us. Amen.


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