Finding my voice – with a little help

Aaron Strumpel poses for a photo shoot with Shekinah, who is an art major at George Fox with an emphasis in photography.
Nationally known musician Aaron Strumpel joined George Fox during the fall 2012 semester as artist in residence. He offered guidance and inspiration for various student music ensembles, including the chapel band and Shalom worship team, but also spent a good deal of time working one-on-one with students. Below sophomore Shekinah Davis recalls her experience with Aaron.

By Shekinah Davis, Class of 2015

It was the first Shalom gathering of the semester when Aaron Strumpel announced that he would be leading a singer-songwriter class. At first I felt a little nervous about joining because I don’t often sing in front of people. The last time I performed for an audience was for a talent show in high school that didn’t go so well. I thought, ‘If singing in front of my high school friends was nerve-racking, just think about trying to sing in front of Aaron, who is such an amazing worship leader and musician.’
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Study Abroad Options

One of the greatest things about George Fox, in my opinion, is the many study abroad options. If you have a passion for traveling and experiencing other cultures, like I do, then George Fox has opportunities for you! One extremely rewarding trip that George Fox offers is May Serve.

May Serve is a three week long mission trip to another country. The location changes most years and is a great way to serve the Lord all over the world. There is an application process and only about 20 students are able to go on the trip.

Last year about 18 students, including myself, were lucky enough to go to Nsoka, a tiny town in Swaziland, Africa. Through ministering to the people of Nsoko, we learned a lot about parts of the world that we so often forget about, experiencing things we had never dreamed of. It was incredible. Not only did I get the opportunity to love God’s people in ways that I never thought possible, but I learned a lot about the woman that God is making me into.

The May Serve 2011 team has been meeting all semester and they are gearing up for their upcoming trip to Peru. I will be praying for them and can hardly wait to hear how God shapes their trip.

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Saah Joseph: Liberian war survivor

When the war came to Liberia in 1989, Saah Joseph was just 14 years old. Rebels shot both of his parents. He escaped, and walked for nine days to a refugee camp in Sierra Leone. Joseph lived in the camp for 10 years.

Then the war came to Sierra Leone. Rebels attacked the refugee camp, looking for young boys to capture and turn into soldiers. Joseph fled again and escaped to Guinea. But the war came to Guinea, too. His life was a blur of West African countries and refugee camps.

When he returned to Sierra Leone, he was arrested for being a Liberian. Government officials couldn’t tell who was a rebel fighter or who was a refugee so they threw them in jail indiscriminately. Joseph, who became a Christian when he was young, began leading morning devotions. Prison officials made him the Chaplain, which got him out of his cell more often.

“I was happy to go around because I got to feel the cool breeze on my face,” he said.

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Free the 43

George Fox University students and faculty are raising awareness this week for 43 Filipino health care workers they think are wrongly imprisoned. Melanie Newell told us in this video what students are doing to help. Read an article about Melanie’s experience in the Philippines here.

December 17th Update from Melanie:

I just wanted everyone to know that the Morong 43 have now officially been freed!!
The supreme court passed the motion filed by President Aquino yesterday afternoon. The 43 walked out of the military detention center and into the arms of relatives and friends Dec. 16 around 11:30pm (Filipino time).
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