Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Looking Back, Looking Forward


Our UTD pastoral team this year! From left to right / top to bottom (ready for this?):
April, Cort, Peter, Brandon, Stian, Mandy, me, Andrea, Kylie, Coral, Amy, Hannah, Michelle, Lindsey, and Lailah.

This has been an incredibly bittersweet month of ministry for me! With the exception of my apprenticeship year at UNT, I have been involved at UTD for a decade, and now I'm getting to move on to a new chapter.
As I mentioned in my last ministry update, my wife and I are moving to Arlington at the end of this month- I'll be coming onto the UT Arlington team as their assistant director and continuing to help plant a chapter of FOCUS at TCU. I've felt called to the Ft. Worth / Arlington area for almost five years now, so this has been a long time coming, but it's still shocking that the time has already come. 
It's been such a blessing to get to be a pastor for the last several years at the campus that I first walked onto as a 17 year old with little to no direction and drive. God has blessed me immensely in this time, and I hope I can continue to be faithful and be a part of God changing many other students' stories out west.

Parking Lot Graduation

Parking Lot Graduation is an annual tradition that UTD FOCUS has been doing since 2020. It started as a spur-of-the-moment idea from Peter (one of our pastors) to do something for students who weren't going to get to walk the stage to receive their diplomas because of the pandemic. Now, it's a fun way for our students to celebrate each other and be able to invite more family members. The structure is simple: almost two hundred people line up along the sides of a parking lot on campus, and we play Pomp and Circumstance over a set of speakers and give students who are getting degrees their own (not official) FOCUS diplomas. It's very silly and very sweet.

Our fearless director Brandon graduated from seminary, and I got to congratulate him!

End of Year Party

All of our male pastors at UTD got together for a picture, and SOMEONE had to ruin it by blinking.

We got to celebrate the end of the school year by throwing a party for our students. It's incredibly rewarding to see all of the friendships that have formed between students by the end of the year that didn't exist at the beginning.

  • Please be praying for our students as they go back to their respective homes and hometowns for the summer break. The summer can be a time of rest and growth for some students, but it's a time of spiritual struggle for many.
  • Pray for our pastors as their raise their salaries. It can be a daunting journey (and a humbling one), but we're always blown away by God's faithfulness and peoples' generosity.

No comments:

Post a Comment