Jul. 21, 2017
Nearly 1,190 new undergraduate and 560 graduate students commenced their collegiate journey at Biola University on Wednesday, Aug. 24. Biola President Barry H. Corey commissioned the students, who represent 40 countries and 42 states and U.S. territories, to live fully committed to loving God at the Fall 2016 convocation chapel on Wednesday morning.
“God cares about undivided hearts, undivided loyalty, undivided devotion. That is the true cost of discipleship,” said Corey.
He exhorted students to be obedient to God and give him their undivided devotion bringing Joel 2:12-13 into focus: “‘Even now,’ declares the Lord, ‘return to me with all your hearts with fasting and weeping and mourning. Tear your heart and not your clothes. Return to the Lord you God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity.’”
“When he [Joel] says tear your heart, ‘heart’ means essentially tear your will and tear your mind, which need to be reshaped, retooled toward worshipping the God of all creation,” said Corey.
“Undivided devotion at Biola means undivided devotion to the God of all truth.”
This year’s Chapel Programs and Student Development theme at Biola is “Undivided.”
Corey charged students to be a people of undivided hearts by being people of torn hearts: “Be undivided in your love of God. Be undivided in seeing God’s truth throughout all of your learning. Be undivided as a community of those daughters and sons unified in Christ.”
Within in the framework of this year’s theme, the Spiritual Development department will seek to explore how both a heart and a people might more wholly unite to love and fear God, praying “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10).
“We see God’s truth transcending and integrating all subjects, from the humanities to accounting to physics to education to social sciences to music to theology,” said Corey. “At Biola, a unified body of knowledge and not a fragmented body of knowledge is how we approach learning, as we believe this best mirrors the world God created.”
The incoming undergraduate students — about one fourth of the approximately 5,816 students who will study at Biola this fall — began to arrive on campus Friday, Aug. 19. Student leaders and employees decked out in Biola red welcomed new residential students and their families, helping them carry in boxes and get situated in their new homes.
Corey held a welcome celebration for new students and their families Friday evening, looking ahead to the upcoming year, followed by a communion service Saturday evening that allowed students time to reflect on the grace of God in their life stories and end the evening praying and saying goodbye to their families. Student Orientation Services (SOS) hosted a slew of other events throughout the weekend to prepare new students for their Biola journey. Parents and families were able to attend information sessions hosted by Parent Relations as well.
Written by Jenna Loumagne, media relations specialist. For more information, contact Jenna at 562.777.4061 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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