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Alumnus Chuck Teagle Using Technology Trends for Ministry

Alumnus Chuck Teagle Using Technology Trends for Ministry

Pastor and Calvary alum, Chuck Teagle, is serving at Church of the Cross in Pine Grove, California, while pursuing a Master of Bible and Theology degree using Calvary’s blended course model.

Calvary alum is using technology to reach his community and further his education.

Pastor Chuck Teagle found his way to Calvary in 1969 when he transferred in to complete his degree. He had finished a three-year program at a different institute associated with Moody and wanted a full 4-year degree as he pursued a career in ministry. Calvary transferred his credits, and he graduated in 1970 with his bachelor’s degree in Bible and Theology.

Teagle commented, “The 70s to 2019 are big changes, just in our culture.” He pointed out that, while Calvary still has the same welcoming and close-knit campus atmosphere and biblical focus, “[Calvary] has expanded with her campus. Calvary is very innovative in their courses and their teaching methods. They’ve expanded in the degree programs and in the seminary… I think technology has allowed the innovation for Calvary to expand.”

Pastor Teagle has served in a variety of churches since his graduation in 1970. Currently, he pastors at Church of the Cross in Pine Grove, California, where he has been for 25 years. When asked how God is working there, Teagle said, “It’s California, meaning it is exceptionally liberal, politically as well as spiritually. Liberalism has penetrated our churches. It’s now more for entertainment than it is for exposition.”

Teagle responds to these challenges by “trying not to be a relic of the past. We are trying to integrate technology in the social networking of Northern California, as well as in our own community.” As his church strives to stay involved and contributing to its community, it’s ultimate goal is, “To bring the clarity of the gospel of Jesus Christ to our neighborhood.”

Looking back on his time at Calvary, Teagle said, “It prepared me with the foundation of biblical truth. It’s assisted us [as a church] over the years, as we’ve had to change in our methods and technology. But it gave us a foundation.”

Advancing technology affects Teagle’s personal life as well, as he pursues his Master of Bible and Theology degree using Calvary’s blended course model. He reflected, “I think I would have liked to have finished the master’s degree program immediately after college.” In the 70s, Calvary didn’t have options for remote learning, “and the innovation wasn’t available where I was located. But today, I wanted an academic challenge. I’m freed up to do that.” And Calvary’s robust online program options are enabling Pastor Teagle to achieve this goal.

As he continues his theological education, Pastor Teagle commented, “I have a lot of great memories from my experience at Calvary. And [God’s] not done with me, so I’m still at it.”

Director of Advancement Awarded in National Contest

Director of Advancement Awarded in National Contest

Either we truly believe that God is God, or we crumble when we face difficult circumstances.”

Glennis Lamb, Director of Advancement and PhD student at Calvary, recently received an honorable mention award in a national essay contest. 

At the urging of some of her graduate professors, Lamb entered the contest which was sponsored by Townsend Press. Townsend was soliciting articles on “What do you believe, and how did you come to believe it?” offering awards and essay publication.

Lamb explained, “I wrote about how tragedy has a way of truly defining what we believe. Either we truly believe that God is God, or we crumble when we face difficult circumstances.” Her essay detailed struggles in her life and how she came to a deeper belief in God through them.

In her article, “The Ultimate Goal: Allowing Tragedy to Shape My Deepest Beliefs,” Lamb wrote that the question she wrestled with was, “Do I really believe God is God?” Through the painful experiences she faced, she found that God was ever faithful.

Lamb discovered Calvary University through her son, who recently graduated with his Bachelor’s Degree from the school. She followed him to Calvary shortly thereafter to complete her own Bachelor’s degree in Bible and History. After graduating with her undergraduate degree in just two years, she completed her Master of Arts in Bible and Theology and started in Calvary’s PhD program. She was hired as Director of Advancement in September of this year.

“My big goals are, I want to teach…” Lamb said, “and I want to write curriculum from an apologetics point of view. And I’m a real big history buff… I’m actually thinking about starting on my master’s in History.”

She is excited about her opportunities here at Calvary, both in Advancement and in investing in students’ lives. She has told more than one student, “If I can do this at my age… you can do this!” Lamb is committed to encouraging Calvary’s students to persevere and rely on God.

Looking toward the future, she said, “I will stay here as long as the Lord can use me here and as long as I am a blessing to others… I am sure I will go through many ups and downs, but being faithful to the Lord is the bottom line to my reason for working at Calvary.”

Calvary’s Volleyball Team to Host Youth Volleyball Program

Calvary’s Volleyball Team to Host Youth Volleyball Program

Women’s Volleyball Team partners with local recreation center to reach kids.

Calvary University’s Women’s Volleyball team is partnering with Belton Parks and Recreation to run a youth volleyball program called Little Diggers. Kevin Goodman, High Blue Wellness’s Recreational Manager, will be heading the program, with the cooperative efforts of the Calvary team. Little Diggers is designed for “1st and 2nd graders who would like to get a jump on learning the basic skills before entering the 3rd and 4th grade recreational volleyball league.” Calvary’s team will be training the students and investing in our local community.

Coach Ashley Spicer is optimistic about the opportunity her team has to serve and build up young athletes. She said, “We’ve been looking for way for Calvary to partner with the community when we met Kevin Goodman. We asked him what his needs were, and he said that he needs workers and would love for our college athletes to help build and start programs for young athletes in the Belton community.”

Spicer pointed out that lower grade sports programs are rare, and Calvary’s partnership with Belton Parks and Recreation will help to fill that need. Esther Schwarze, who plays Right Side on the volleyball team, expressed excitement “because of the opportunity to influence these young players and show them the love of Christ. I enjoy working with kids so this is a perfect situation to combine my love for volleyball and children.”

Participating students and their families will be invited to attend Calvary’s volleyball home games. For more information or to register, visit http://teamsideline.com/belton.

Doubts, Sorrows, and the God Who Carries Them: Reflections From a Dumpster

Doubts, Sorrows, and the God Who Carries Them: Reflections From a Dumpster

What is the place for a show called Doubt?

Calvary’s fall theatre production, Doubt: A Parable, tells the story of a nun in the 1960s. The nun believes a priest has been sexually abusing a boy named Donald in the parish school and sets out to have him removed. The topic and content raise the question: What is the intent of a production titled Doubt?

I read the script for Doubt my first semester at Calvary, and immediately loved its literary craft. I read it again the next year and found it resonated even more. It echoed passions God had already begun planting in my heart. As Calvary gears up to tell this thoughtful story, it is vital for us to know why it matters.

Finding Freedom in a Dumpster

How does this story speak the truth, love, and beauty of God? The answer, for me, was found in a dumpster. Some of the most prayerful and vulnerable moments of my life were spent there when, as a cabin leader playing hide-and-seek with the campers, I found myself crouched in a dumpster with plenty of time to think and process.

The camp I counseled at serves indigenous kids in western Canada, and I felt way out of my depth. Their culture is defined by both a history of sexual abuse perpetrated by religious leaders in schools during the 1800s and a destructive cycle that has far outlived the original abuse. Victims turn to substance, sexual,  and domestic abuse and suicide in a culture that identifies itself by these tragedies. Every year, the reservations hold memorial services for the children whose identity and innocence were taken in the residential schools. These wounds of sexual abuse, inflicted by those who were and are meant to protect, last generations.

In a training session at the camp, a man who grew up in the indigenous culture spoke from Isaiah 53 and pointed out a verse I had previously overlooked. When we share the gospel, we communicate that Jesus can save you from your sins. This is true, but it is only part of the picture. Was he pierced for our transgressions, and crushed for our iniquities? Absolutely. But that was not all Christ accomplished at the cross. Isaiah also says, “Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering.” So often we give Christ our sins but hold on to our sorrows, even though we cannot hope to carry them. And it is this deep grief that Doubt addresses.

These offenses create pain that only the God-man can heal. But the story and the pain run deeper. What Donald needs—someone to carry his pain—he looks for in Father Flynn. This solidarity is exactly what Sister Aloysius, Sister James, and even Father Flynn are also looking for. Someone to lift the weight.

The God Who Carries Pain

Pain is very real. You don’t have to look farther than your neighbor down the street to see that our world is wracked by the consequences of sin and legacies of suffering. We know what it is to hurt. Our lives have given us huge burdens to carry, but sin is an offense against God and causes sorrows that only God in the flesh can carry.

The truth is, the only thing people can do with their pain is feel hurt. We can’t fix it; we can’t ignore it, and no matter how we try to hide it, it’s going to come out eventually. That’s what I came to grips with in the dumpster. My campers had complicated, often horrible lives, and I couldn’t fix them. They had burdens far beyond their—or my—strength.

But, if a person understands that Christ not only paid the price for his sin, but also willingly carries his suffering, he is freed. Not from pain’s existence, but from its control. Instead of being dominated by struggles, he can surrender them to God in a continuous act. That is the glory of life with Christ—something Donald and my campers don’t have. They have all the sorrow and none of the hope.

As I huddled in the dumpster, my thoughts turned to Psalm 139, our theme passage for camp. David asks, “Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence?” He paints a picture of God hunting him down wherever he tries to hide. Everywhere we go, God is with us, offering to take our punishment and our sorrows. That is true for everyone. It’s true for the girl who changes foster homes every year, for the boy who just lost his father to cancer, for the doubting, for the abused, for you, and for me. God continually, perfectly, lovingly offers to carry our pain.

Creating a Space for Redemption

How does Doubt speak into this need? Doubt does not flinch from the truth of human depravity but acknowledges the pain and speaks to often-overlooked brokenness. And all of these things are exactly what the church is called to do. I love Isaiah 61 because it reveals the heart of God “to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound.” This is the same spirit we want to see reflected in ourselves, our school, and the global church. But it is God who does the binding; we can only be conduits of His healing.

At camp, I discovered that I could not change the sorrows inflicted by centuries of abuse. I can’t get my camper’s father out of prison or stop her uncle from raping her. All I could do was love and create a space for God to speak. Michael Card calls it “a frame around the silence where God speaks to the heart,” a space without distraction that encourages vulnerability with the Creator. A space that offers redemption.

So, back to the original question: Why Doubt? Why this play now? Because we need that space. As a campus, as a community, as the body of Christ, we need a space for vulnerability. We long for a frame around the silence for God to speak and for Christ to heal. We are weighed down with burdens only Christ can carry. How much lighter the load would be if they were surrendered to Him.

As we prepare for this show, I feel very much like a camp counselor again. I am staring down the giant of Sorrows that Calvary is about to meet head on. Doubt reveals a world’s weight of sorrow we cannot carry. But my time in the dumpster taught me that we were never meant to. We love wholeheartedly and pray for God to speak in the space we create.

Because in the end, this production is God’s work. All we can do is lend ourselves to its power, stand in the wings, and pray: “Thy Kingdom come.”

Calvary University Academy Officially Launched

Calvary University Academy Officially Launched

Calvary’s K-12 school offering quality Christian education in Colorado and worldwide through blended model.

Calvary’s K-12 Academy in Colorado has begun its first independent school year. Calvary University Academy (CUA) was created through a partnership between Calvary University Innovation Center and Riverview Christian School. CUA offers quality Christian education to Morgan County, Colorado, families as well as students worldwide, using Calvary’s blended model of education.

Superintendent Ian Bacon said classes were going well, and students were “settling in getting to know each other and the school.” CUA spent the last school year in transition, and Bacon said, “There is curiosity of what we are doing. We are establishing ourselves within the community now that the transition has occurred.” He deemed it a definite positive response from the local community.

With the transitional period over, this is the first school year CUA has used the blended course structure, and Bacon explained that the response had been good with their online student base. Especially in the upper grades, the format is causing waves of interest. High school students take early college courses streamed from the Kansas City campus. Bacon said, “It has been wonderful watching the students begin the courses and realize they are much more capable than they knew.”

Bacon estimated half of the on-campus students were returning families who were involved in the transition, and half had no prior knowledge of Calvary. As the campus expands, Bacon anticipates the growth that their course structure facilitates. “It is exciting to think that in the future our students in Colorado will be able to interact with classmates around the world!”

For more information about Calvary University Academy, please visit our website or call (970) 842-4604. 

CUA Students performing science experiments.

Upper level students take dual enrollment college courses.