Upcoming graduate shares story of his time at JU

KNOXVILLE – Johnson University senior Kenyon Helmuth, who is a preaching and youth ministry major with a minor in intercultural studies, looks back fondly on his years in Johnson University.

Although he has enjoyed his experience here and treasures the relationships he has found, he is very excited to move on to the new adventures in his life.

Helmuth grew up in the midst of cornfields and farms, and found his way to Johnson through a search for change.

“I just wanted something different” Helmuth said.

He didn’t know at first what he wanted to do, other than feeling called to work with teenagers.

Originally, Helmuth wanted to work with high school-aged kids in athletic training. It was a voice in his head – a voice Helmuth had never heard before – that led him to preaching and youth ministry, and he hasn’t looked back.

Since coming to Johnson, Helmuth has fulfilled multiple roles on campus.

“I’m involved in a few things,” Helmuth said. “I’m the Spiritual Director for the SGA, I played baseball, did intramurals, I was an RA.”

Helmuth acts as the Spiritual Director in SGA, taking part in the planning of multiple events on campus. He has also started accountability groups for the men on campus, as part of his role as Spiritual Director is to address the spiritual needs of fellow students.

Helmuth enjoys his job as an RA, but he is grateful that this year is a bit less stressful than last year. He appreciates the community he is able to be a part of.

“Making sure all the guys are okay being away from home, and just being an encouragement, that’s kind of what I was doing when I was a freshman RA,” Helmuth said. “This year is definitely more relaxed, getting to be more of a friend to the guys.”

Helmuth looks forward to his future after Johnson.

After taking part in an internship in New Zealand as a youth minister last summer, he has been invited back after he graduates.

He plans on taking a year to raise support and funds, and then will head back to continue his work with them for a year. When the year ends he will look for God’s guidance on whether to stay or find a new path, but either way he is excited to see where God leads him.

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