Category: Florida

Story originating from Johnson University Florida.

FeaturesFloridaHomeNewsStaff

Staff Feature: Katherine Barnhart

KISSIMMEE — Katherine Barnhart works at Johnson University Florida as the Administrative Assistant of the School of Education and the Assistant Coach of the girl’s basketball team.

Katherine’s husband, Jay Barnhart, accepted the position as Florida’s first-ever women’s basketball coach in June 2018. Katherine joined Johnson staff in August 2018. She said it has been a joy for them to work together.

This is not their first time coaching together, however, as they both coached teams through Camps for Christ. Camps for Christ is a summer camp program that teaches students aged 7-18 about basketball and Christ. Jay Barnhart started this program at age 19 while still attending Messiah College. These years of experience shape how they now teach the girl’s basketball team.

Katherine calls herself the coach mom. It is not just basketball for them, it is a discipleship opportunity.

“I see myself in a position of just being there for the girls,” Barnhart said. “Whatever their needs are, whether they are personal or basketball related.”

Katherine believes the Lord prepared her for this type of position. She grew up in a small rural town in Amherst, Va. She is the fourth born child out of 14. Growing up, she had to be very independent and hard-working. She was required to grow up quickly and took on a motherly role among her siblings. She was very prepared for life once she left her home.

“It was really a blessing because it was training me to be a leader and an example in my own household,” Barnhart said.

When it was time to have her own kids, Katherine decided to be a stay-at-home mother like her mom. She home-schooled all three of her children.

“I really enjoyed being home with the children to nurture, care and guide them,” Barnhart said.

Katherine enjoys spending her time praying and fasting. From a young age, her parents taught her to prioritize prayer in her relationship with God. It was often her practice to spend time outdoors in reflection and prayer.

She also enjoys writing short stories, poems, parables, and plays. She published her first book, Where are you? Am I dead?: Words of Wisdom with Westbow publishers in April 2018. This book is a result of extensive reflection on the story of Adam and Eve found in Genesis. She hopes to one day direct plays for the benefit of the body of Christ.

When asked what was the highlight of working at Johnson, she said it was the opportunity to work with the girl’s basketball team. Nothing compares to the joy of discipling future leaders. She wants students to know she cares for them and that her door is always open if any student wants prayer.

FloridaHomeStudents

Fall Senior Recitals

KISSIMMEE — Two seniors at the Johnson University Florida campus performed recitals to cap off their education.

Audrey Olsheske, a Musical Arts student, was first to perform her recital entitled “More Than A Conqueror” October 26 at 6:30 p.m. in the gym.

Brent Glover, a Worship Ministry student, followed with his recital entitled “Hold Us Together” on November 9.

Each recital lasted approximately one hour and consisted of vocal and piano pieces. During vocal pieces, both students were accompanied by Tony Cason on piano.

The senior recital is required for music majors and serves as a class.  It is a “…time for us music students to use what we have learned,” stated Olsheske. “It is a time for people to gather around and support you.”

Students prepare for this moment every year of their studies.  “It is an opportunity to show our professors, family, and friends what we have learned and how we have grown as musicians/worship leaders during our time at Johnson,” Glover said.

Additionally, Glover saw his recital as a personal confirmation that he obtained the skills necessary for his calling.

“I went from someone who could sing a little bit and play guitar to someone who can sing a lot better and lead worship from multiple instruments, along with being able to responsibly and biblically structure services,” Glover said.

Olsheske experienced difficulty when planning her recital. She was nervous and uncertain if she should perform. But, her nerves turned to joy after her recital.

“My favorite part would be the standing ovation I received at the end,” Olsheske said. “I’m an introvert and definitely NOT an attention seeker, but it felt great to know people really enjoyed what I had done.”

Glover’s favorite part was being able to minister to his family members through his recital. He encouraged all by witnessing to Christ in both song and word. He led the audience in an extended time of worship featuring songs “Is He Worthy?” and “Hold Us Together.”

Both Glover and Olsheske extended special thanks to their professors without whom their success would have been impossible.

“I have grown exponentially in my singing ability and my musicianship,” Glover said.

“Dr. Reyes, Dirk Donahue, and Tony Cason have all done such a great job at helping me get to where I am today, musically and more,” Olsheske said.

Glover accepted a job as the campus worship pastor for Tomoka Christian Church’s Palm Bay campus and will be joining them full-time after he graduates.

Olsheske is unsure what she will do after graduation. She said she is certain, however, that things will all work out.

 

 

 

 

FloridaHomeMissions/CultureStaffStudents

JUFL Cycling Event Raises over $30,000 for Missions

Over Spring Break (March 17-21) faculty and students from JUFL participated in the Key West Bike Ride 2018 (#KWBR2018), a cycling tour created by Ends of the Earth Cycling (a division of New Mission Systems International).

In 2016 Ends Cycling hosted the Tennessee Bike Ride in conjunction with JU—a 300-mile trek from JUTN to VA and back. After experiencing near-freezing temperatures in the Cherokee National Forest in March 2016, Ends made a decision to host this year’s JU-partnered tour in Florida.  

The KWBR2018 took more than 30 cyclists, and support staff from NMSI headquarters in Ft. Myers to the southernmost point of the U.S. in Key West. Cyclists included students Christian Arnold, Jessica Hammock, Rodrigo Monteroso, Leah Hardin, and Dr. Les Hardin (Professor of NT). Seth McManus (student, SGA President) and Elisabeth Arnold (alumnus) provided support staff for the tour.

Ends Cycling hosts tours specifically to raise money and awareness of worldwide mission work. This year’s KWBR2018 sought to raise money for Africa Hope’s School of Youth Ministry Training. The median age on the continent of Africa is currently 18 years old, making youth ministry key for the growth of the Kingdom there.

Justin Hanneken, Executive Director of Ends Cycling, had the following to say about Ends Cycling’s partnership with JU:

“Following a successful Tennessee Bike Ride in March 2016, we at Ends Cycling were so excited to partner with Johnson University again. We knew the only way this would work for the Key West Bike Ride 2017 was to have the tour over JU’s Spring Break. We also knew that God would have to provide a staff member on campus to help us out. He did exactly that through our ‘bro’ and friend, Dr. Les Hardin. Les organized an incredible group of students and JU alumni who were an absolute blessing to the team! Over the course of 5 days, we became family and God was glorified as we had the opportunity to #PrayPedalRepeat for the youth of Africa.”  

Each Ends Cycling participant is asked to commit to raise funds for the designated mission. The KWBR2018 group raised an excess of $30,000 to promote and facilitate youth work in Africa.

Participants in Key West Bike Ride had the following to say about their experiences:

“The KWBR was an awesome way to spend my spring break. Even though I’m not a cyclist, I found a way to plug-in and help serve the riders by moving equipment, helping with worship, and preaching at one of the stops.” —Seth McManus, SGA President

“Intentional discipleship occurs at every part in the team: praising one another for daily accomplishments, pushing one another to work harder, and supporting one another when trouble arises.” —Christian Arnold, JUFL Alumnus and M.A. Student

“KWBR was an awesome opportunity that trained my body and exercised my faith. Carving out specific time to train 6 days a week helped me prioritize my day and even helped me do better in my classes because I was forced to stick to a strict schedule. On the ride I was constantly praying for YouthHOPE in Africa because being on the bike for 8 or so hours a day provides a great opportunity for focusing on prayer.” —Jessica Hammock, JUFL student

“The past two years (2017 & 2018), I have served as a support staff member caring for the needs of cyclists. It is such a rewarding experience as I grow close to people from different faith backgrounds all coming together to use their love of cycling for the cause of global youth outreach.” —Elisabeth Arnold, JUFL Alumnus

JUFL students will once again have the opportunity to participate in the KWBR this upcoming Spring Break (Mar. 16-21, 2019). KWBR19 will raise funds for youth work in Thailand. Anyone interested in cycling or helping as a support staff member is encouraged to speak with Dr. Les Hardin for more information.

For more on the work of Ends of the Earth Cycling, visit www.endscycling.com and follow them at #PrayPedalRepeat.

Florida

JUFL’s Missions Emphasis Week focuses on justice

Johnson University Florida welcomed dozens of missionaries and missions organizations Oct. 2-4 for Missions Emphasis Week.

Noteworthy among them was featured speaker David Peters, a JU alumnus and Director of Strategic Planning for Rapha House. He shared about God’s desire for justice and the work of Rapha house.

His first message of the week clearly laid out the calling of all Christians to justice from Matt. 23: 23-24. He said, “whatever you think your particular calling is, whether you are right about it or whether you are wrong about it, there are some things that I know you are called to,” that is, the weightier matters of the law.

He summarized the church’s primary calling as the need to pursue justice for all “the marginalized, the forgotten, the oppressed, the powerless,  and the voiceless more diligently than any other institution in the world.”

The pursuit of justice for oppressed people is precisely why Rapha House exists. Rapha House is a nonprofit organization whose primary goal is to end sex trafficking and slavery around the world through the raising of awareness and the rescue and aftercare of survivors.

Although efforts have been directed towards this mission, there are still 40-46 million people in slavery today. A large percentage of them being children.

Rapha House has participated in Missions Emphasis Week for several years. Florida Christian and Johnson students have been involved in their work on various levels from donations to missions trips.

During this week, some students have committed to supporting the cause of Rapha House both financially and prayerfully. Brittnay Parsons, a junior, reflected on the work of Rapha House: “I have never witnessed God’s power more than I have through learning about Rapha House.”

Peters understood that not every student’s fight for justice looks the same. However, all students were exhorted to seek justice in every sphere of their lives. “There is justice to be done in the home”, explained Peters.

As the book of Micah says, “What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?”

FloridaHomeTennessee

Johnson University to celebrate 125th anniversary with various events

JU 125thIn celebration of their 125th anniversary, Johnson University will hold many different events Oct. 25-27.

There will be a JU Birthday Bash, which will include games, a tractor hay-ride, music and food on Oct. 25 at 5 p.m. in front of the Philips-Welshimer Building.

On Fri. morning, there will be outings with Dr. Smith to Cades Cove, hiking with Dr. Eubanks, a tour of the Athletic and Recreation Complex with Dr. Weedman, and golfing with various alumni and professors. To reserve a spot on any of the excursions, email ESmith@johnsonu.edu.

Faculty workshops will be held on Fri. afternoon and Sat. morning. These will include topics such as preaching, leadership, Biblical interpretation, Emma Johnson, and more.

Guests can reserve a spot on the Riverboat Banquet Cruise, which will take place Fri. evening. This will include a full dinner, the ride, and entertainment. Tickets cost $35 per person and can be purchased here.

To find out more information about any of the events taking place, click here.

FloridaHomeNewsTennessee

L. Thomas Smith Jr. inaugurated as Johnson University’s seventh president

Written by Drew Tapp and Jenna Stahlman

KNOXVILLE   On Friday, Sept. 21, at 3 p.m., in the Phillips-Welshimer gym, Johnson University inaugurated its seventh president, L. Thomas Smith Jr.

Various faculty, institutional leaders, community members, students, and others, welcomed those in attendance    in person and online via livestream.

“Your presence also represents your participation, prayer and encouragement towards the achievement of Johnson University’s mission and your prayerful support of Dr. Smith’s role in leading the pursuit of that mission,” said Jon Weatherly, Provost. “For those we are especially grateful.”

Former President Gary Weedman gave his thoughts titled “Reflections of a Presidential Mentor” to encourage and show support for his successor.

“As provost you had to deal with deans, faculty and accrediting agencies,” said Weedman. “Now you have a Board of Trustees and senior administrators and staff and faculty and the budget. You have students and parents and alumni and friends of the university, and the budget…You have a wife and children and grandchildren and in-laws and yes, the budget. You get the point.”

Smith was welcomed into presidency with three gifts    a Bible that was compiled and signed by Ashley S. Johnson, the founder of the university, a medallion with the college motto, and a portrait of himself which will be hung in the Marble Hallway of the Phillips-Welshimer Building, beside the portraits of the previous six presidents.

 The Board of Trustees, the campus community, and the extended community all pledged to pray for the new president.

Former President David Eubanks also spoke and encouraged Smith with charges from Jesus, Paul, and other various biblical figures.

Smith gave his inaugural address which was titled “Take Care Lest We Forget” from Deuteronomy 6:10-13. In it he said that he and the university must not forget to take care of the great gifts that we have inherited from those who have gone before us and charged the university to be a good steward of its many gifts.

The Johnson University choirs performed throughout the event.

Following the ceremony, was a reception at the White House lawn where students, staff and alumni were invited to socialize and celebrate with the new president and first lady.

 

 

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JU Students celebrate alongside new president

The student event kicked off at 6 p.m. with the Cruze Farm ice-cream truck on campus to give away ice-cream to the students, faculty, and campus guests. Other events included games like Kan Jam, corn hole, and 9 Square Up in the Air which President Smith played along with students.

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President Smith and some of the students who played with him in 9 Square Up in the Air.

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Morgan Kast, a sophomore majoring in Intercultural Studies, said that she is excited to see what President Smith will do for the university.

“…I think that he’s a really humble leader already,” Kast said. “I can see that off the bat, so I’m really excited and I think that he’ll do great things for our school.”

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Morgan Kast

Kast also said that she enjoyed the events of the day.

It was really unique and it was really cool to be able to be a part of history for our school, because something like that will probably not happen (again) before I graduate,” Kast said.

 

AcademicsFloridaHomeNewsTennessee

Stone-Campbell Journal Conference paper competition open for submission

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The Fourteenth Annual Student Paper Competition of the Stone-Campbell Journal Conference is asking for entries before the Dec. 15, 2018 deadline.

The 2019 contest is open to undergraduate juniors and seniors, and graduate MA/MDiv. Papers falling under any SCJ discipline are eligible for entry. The requirements state that papers must be 8-12 pages in length.

Contest winners will receive a certificate and books, and will also be recognized in an article on the SCJ website. The Isaac Errett winner    Stone-Campbell topics only    will receive a $250 cash prize.  In addition, several Christian universities have pledged scholarships of $2500 toward one year of graduate school for the winners of the respective divisions.

Finalists will be notified by Feb. 17, 2019. The top three students from each category will present their papers before judges at the conference, which will be held April 5-6, 2019 at Johnson University in Knoxville. Paper presentations must be under 20 minutes for undergraduates, and 25 minutes for graduate students.

Undergraduate and graduate participators should submit their papers to Les Hardin by Dec. 15, 2018. Any questions should be directed to Dr. Hardin at LHardin@johnsonu.edu.

Errett Paper contestants in Stone-Campbell history should submit their papers and area of program study to Newell Williams by Dec. 15, 2018. All questions for this category should be directed to Dr. Williams at n.williams@tcu.edu.

FloridaHomeNewsTennessee

Fall semester brings all new changes in Royal Scribe staff

Staff Photo-1

Johnson University’s official student publication, The Royal Scribe, has brand new staff for the 2018-19 academic year.

InezThe new advisor for the Royal Scribe is Inez Reyes. Inez joined Johnson last semester as a speech professor. She graduated from Orangeburg Wilkinson High School in South Carolina. She then received her Bachelor’s in Marketing from South Carolina State University and her Master’s in Media Communications from Governors State University. Her hobbies include reading, teaching, sewing, and building things. Some of her passions include health and nutrition, as well as God and His love for humanity. She is married to Mubanga Chisulo. She has two daughters – Dania Reyes, 14, and Anya Reyes, 7. Her favorite thing about Johnson is the atmosphere and the friendliness of the campus.

Jenna-1Jenna Stahlman is the Editor of the Royal Scribe. She was born and raised in Summerville, PA. She graduated from homeschooling in 2016. This was also when her family moved to the Sevierville, TN area. She is majoring in mass communications. Although she is not yet sure what career path she wants to pursue, she would love to be involved in the horse or rodeo industry in some way. Her hobbies and passions include her horse Rusty, hiking, fishing, photography, being in nature, and southern culture. She is a country music enthusiast, specifically older country. She also has a cat and dog. Her favorite thing about Johnson is the beautiful setting of the campus, the relationships she has made so far, and the doors that have opened, bringing new opportunities.

drewDrew Tapp is Royal Scribe’s Assistant Editor. He graduated from Southport High School in Indianapolis, IN. He is a freshman studying Preaching and Youth Ministry. In addition to working in youth ministry, Drew hopes to obtain his master’s and doctorate in the New Testament. One thing he would enjoy in the future is watching a kid bring their friend to Christ and then baptizing them, as he has a heart for middle and high school students and believes that they will radically change the world. Some of his hobbies include crosswords, watching Netflix, and spending time with friends. His passions include working with refugees and supporting his friends. He wanted to attend Johnson because of the belonging he felt when visiting, and the great ministry program. He appreciates the uncommon community and the support and love people give each other at Johnson.  His favorite thing about the local area is getting to the top of a hike and looking out at the view. It reminds him that things in life may seem big and impossible to deal with, but in reality are quite small, and he serves a great God who will help him through them.

MadisonMadison Buchanan is Copy Editor of the Royal Scribe. She graduated from Robinson High School in Robinson, IL. She is currently a junior pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in English. With that, she hopes to teach middle school or high school English. In addition, Madison hopes to work with missional organizations and write for them. She also desires to publish a book someday. Her hobbies include reading, hanging out with family and friends, and listening to music. Her passions are writing, tennis, and social justice. She has a Husky/Shepherd named Sully, and two cats. Madison desired to go to a Christian University that offered an English degree, where she thought she would be challenged, in both her major and her faith. She loves the community of Johnson. Her favorite thing about the Smoky Mountains are the beautiful views, as she is from a state where everything is flat and in cornfields.

kyara.pngKyara Vinales is a reporter for the Royal Scribe from the Florida campus. Her hometown is Kissimmee, FL. She graduated from Gateway High school just down the street from campus. She is a senior pursuing a Bachelor’s in Worship Ministry. She hopes to be able to use that to facilitate worship in a unique way. She desires to serve along side her husband, Isaias, who wants to become a pastor. Her hobbies include playing guitar and singing, painting, drawing, and crocheting. Kyara is passionate about helping people and discipling them, and incorporating art into the Christian faith as another way of worship. In searching for a college, she wanted one that was close to home and based off of the  Word of God, and Johnson fit that. Her favorite thing about Johnson is how Scripture based the university is and that they require students to major in Bible and Theology in addition to their chosen major.

AcademicsFloridaHomeNewsTennessee

Smith named seventh president of JU

Tommy Smith

Knoxville — Today in a ceremony at Alumni Memorial Chapel, Johnson University Board of Trustees Chairman L. D. Campbell announced that Tommy Smith has been named the president-elect of the Johnson University System.

Smith, JU’s current Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs, will be installed into office July 1, 2018 upon the retirement of current JU President Gary Weedman.

“Dr. Smith was an obvious choice for our board of trustees,” Campbell said.

He said Smith embodies the values and beliefs of the university

According to University Media Relations, Smith served Johnson University as a Professor of History from 1989-2012, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences from 2012-2014 and Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs since 2014.

In a statement of acceptance from Smith, he wrote “When the Board of Trustees extended the invitation to me to become the seventh president of Johnson University, I replied by stating, ‘There are many who love Johnson University as much as I do, but no one loves Johnson any more than me. I am humbled and honored to accept.’”

Smith said he has  invested the past 28 years of his life in this institution.

“I know much about the past of this school, have had a hand in shaping the present, and am so grateful that the trustees have given me opportunity to lead Johnson into the future,” Smith said.

Smith will have a year to prepare for his new role.

“I will have a full year of preparation for my work, and there will be more appropriate times to discuss specific plans, but I want to affirm from the beginning of this transition my commitment to the mission and core values of Johnson University,” he said. “I fully support the Third Way, Great Commission Mandate ‘to educate students for Christian ministries and other strategic vocations framed by the Great Commission in order to extend the kingdom of God among all nations.’”

Smith holds a B.A. degree from Johnson University, a M.A.R. in Church History from Emmanuel Christian Seminary, and a Ph.D. in American History from the University of Tennessee.

“He has held preaching, associate, youth, and worship ministries in East Tennessee and has engaged in several interim preaching ministries, seeking to assist churches during important transitional periods,” his official university bio says.

Smith is also the author of Above Every Other Desire: A Centennial History of Johnson Bible College.

He and his wife Debbie have two sons, Jacob and Joshua, and six grandchildren.

Weedman announced his retirement to the JU board Feb. 21. and the JU faculty and staff May 8.

Weedman was named president July 1, 2007.

 

Click here for more information about the president-elect.