The College’s 53rd annual Convocation welcomed students and faculty back to campus on Friday, September 2.
Convocation is a service of celebration and commissioning for the upcoming year. The event celebrates Trinity’s mission, community, and identity.
President Steve Timmermans, Ph.D., presented the address titled “Engagement Rules,” his topic based on “beauty and brokenness,” the chapel theme for the academic year. Discussing a history of separateness from the world to which the Dutch once clung and contrasting that with theologian Abraham Kuyper’s challenge to instead engage in the world, Timmermans said, “Silence and separation just doesn’t cut it. Christians must speak-out; they must become engaged in society. For if they remain silent and separate, God’s world is abandoned to Satan’s awful ways. Brokenness wins.”
Timmermans moved from the story of the Dutch people participating in healing a world devastated by World War II to a story from his own life, illustrating why Christians need to engage. He then shared guidelines for that engagement.
The story begins with the millions of children in Africa orphaned because of AIDS and, for him and his wife Dr. Barbara Timmermans, continues with the adoption of two orphaned brothers from Ethiopia. Convocation day at Trinity marked the one-year anniversary of the day the Timmermans brought Getenet and Fekadu home to Palos Heights.
From this experience, Timmermans shared three guidelines for engagement:
“Whether your past story is one of separateness or involvement, it’s time to turn your story toward engagement as you prepare for a calling,” said Timmermans, “just as the tradition that has shaped Trinity Christian College changed from seeking to be separate from the world to one of engaging the world in and through the power of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.”
Prior to the benediction by Chaplain Willis Van Groningen, Ph.D., three students offered prayers for the community:
Brian Hofman ’13 of Waupun, Wisconsin, the leader of Sunday Night Worship—prayer reflecting on the educational mission to which God has called Trinity
Lette Huisman ’14 of Hudsonville, Michigan, a resident assistant—prayer with a focus on our call to be a Christian community of learners
Brenda Romo ’12 of Chicago, a Prayer Ministry leader—offering the Lord’s Prayer in Spanish