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Photo by Scott Laird

Partners, July 2021

Featured image (above): Silvia and Chris Crooks, left, of the Belgrade Church of Christ in Montana and Mike and Annette Christensen of the Cody Church of Christ in Wyoming participate in a discussion during The Rising, a retreat for preachers and their wives in the Northern Plains. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Canadian church members weren’t able to cross the border for the annual event, which had 16 participants. For the past decade, the retreat has helped ministry couples “remain spiritually healthy” and has provided “a safe place of encouragement,” said Scott Laird, minister for the Great Falls Church of Christ in Montana.



ABILENE, Texas. — ACU’s newest residence hall, scheduled for completion in August, will be named in honor of JoLynn and the late Joe Bullock, parents of ACU Board of Trustees chair April Anthony. Both were active teachers, mentors and leaders in Churches of Christ. Joe Bullock served as a deacon and elder for more than two decades. 

“They made sacrifices to provide their children the opportunity to attend this university,” Anthony said, “and the naming of this residence hall honors that sacrifice and those of so many parents on behalf of their children.”


MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Fewer and fewer students are entering ministry degree programs, according to recent studies by Barna Group and other research firms.

Faulker plans to identify its “most pressing needs and potential innovations” in ministry education, said public relations and social media manager Rebecca Burylo, with a $50,000 grant from the Lilly Endowment’s Pathways for Tomorrow initiative.   

The grant from the Indianapolis-based foundation will “help provide a foundation for improving our programs” and increase student recruitment, said Todd Brenneman, chair of Faulkner’s Bible department.


SEARCY, Ark. — Harding’s international programs, closed in spring 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, are reopening. Study abroad programs available this summer include Greece, Italy and England. Harding’s Australia/Asia, Latin America and Zambia programs will resume this fall.

“We have spent months planning, hoping and praying together and are overjoyed to celebrate the return of study abroad,” said Audra Pleasant, executive director of international programs for Harding, adding that students will follow local regulations and COVID-19 protocols throughout the semester.

Filed under: Abilene Christian University Church of Christ Faulkner University Harding University News Partners

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