EMU to Combine Spiritual Life/King Week Programs

The campus ministries department at Eastern Mennonite University is joining hands with the multicultural services office for a combined spring Spiritual Life/Martin Luther King week.

Activities on the program theme, "Worship and Walk Side by Side," will be held Jan. 14-21 on campus. All events are open to the community.

* The motion picture, "Ray," based on the life of blind musical genius Ray Charles and starring Jamie Fox, will be shown 10 p.m. Fri., Jan. 14 and 10 p.m. Jan. 15 in EMU’s Suter Science Center Auditorium. General admission to the film, rated, PG-13, is $2.50 at the door.

* A worship service in the African-American worship style will be held 10:30 a.m. Sun., Jan. 16 at Court Square Theater, downtown Harrisonburg. The service will celebrate "oneness in Christ" and honor the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Vans will leave campus at 10:15 a.m. from the main entrance to the University Commons (along Park Road).

* A fellowship meal sponsored by the multicultural services office will be held 1 p.m. Sun. in Martin Chapel of the seminary building. Persons should be a dish to share; all are welcome.

* "Thirstborne," a five-member contemporary Christian music band, will present a concert of worship and original music 7 p.m. Sun., Jan. 16 in EMU’s Lehman Auditorium. Group members met at Hesston (Kan.) College and are on a nationwide tour, sharing their testimonies in music and presenting Christian service opportunities. The concert is co-sponsored by Mennonite Mission Network and EMU campus ministries. Admission is free; donations are welcomed for the Campus Ministries Compassion Fund.

* Derrick Parson, campus pastor with the Wesley Foundation at James Madison University, will speak in university chapel 10 a.m. Mon., Jan. 17, in Lehman Auditorium on the theme, "What do Martin Luther King and Jesus Christ teach us about reconciliation?" A campus prayer walk at 9 a.m. will precede the chapel service. Participants should meet at the fountain on front campus.

* Persons will be invited to share stories, give readings and lead songs of faith, struggle and reconciliation at an "open mike coffeehouse" 8 p.m. Mon., Jan. 17, in the Common Grounds Coffeehouse on lower level of the University Commons.

* A panel comprised of local pastors, faculty, staff and students will respond to the question, "How did Christ handle differences," at 8 p.m. Tues., Jan. 18, in the Common Grounds Coffeehouse.

* Regina Shands Stoltzfus, co-founder of the Mennonite Church USA Damascus Road Team initiative, will tell stories in university chapel 10 a.m. Wed., Jan. 19, in Lehman Auditorium. from her ministry of dismantling racism and building relationships across races and cultures.

* A Taize worship service of scripture readings, contemplation, singing and prayer will be held 9 p.m. Wed. in the Discipleship Center at the south end of Hillcrest Drive adjacent to radio station WEMC-FM.

* An "Agape" (love) meal that includes communion will be held 5 p.m. Thur., Jan. 20 in the east dining room of the university cafeteria.

* A "coming together" worship service using a variety of styles will follow at 9 p.m. Jan. 20 in Martin Chapel of the seminary building.

* A candlelight service at 10 a.m. Fri., Jan. 21, in Lehman Auditorium will conclude the week’s activities. Students from a variety of backgrounds, clubs and perspectives will reflect on the week’s events and emphases on healing, reconciliation and spiritual renewal.

"Our hearts’ desire is to bring people of diverse cultural, theological and church/worship-style backgrounds together in the love and nurture of Christ," Brian Martin Burkholder, EMU campus pastor, said of the week’s activities. "We truly hope that students, faculty and staff and the larger community will heed the call to worship and walk side-by-side in this unique theme week and in the days following.

"Doing so, however, will mean getting out of comfort zones to eat, worship and dialogue amidst our differences," he added.

For more information check the Spiritual Life Week event schedule or contact the campus ministries office at 540-432-4196.