Spirit and Truth

Last week, the Society for Pentecostal Studies (SPS), a community of scholars and students focused on exploring the history, theology, and cultural impact of the Pentecostal movement, held its 40th annual conference in Memphis, Tennessee. Vanguard was represented by a great team, as I got to join Dr. Rich Israel, Dr. Frank Macchia, Dr. Derrick Rosenior, Dr. Ed Rybarczyk, and Dr. Gary Tyra. Each of us presented papers or facilitated sessions at the conference and enjoyed interaction with more than 300 other scholars of Pentecostalism from around the world. Vanguard professors are leaders in this international fellowship and are highly esteemed by their colleagues and students.

The opening session was held at Mason Temple, headquarters of the Church of God in Christ (COGIC), one of the earliest Pentecostal denominations. COGIC was founded by African-American leader Charles Mason, who was a participant in the Azusa Street revival that began in 1906 and launched the global Pentecostal movement from which Vanguard University was birthed. Mason Temple was also the site where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., preached his “I’ve Seen the Promised Land” sermon. You might recall that on that night, April 3, 1968, King said, “I might not get there with you… But we as a people will get to the promised land…I’m not worried about anything. I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.” The next day, at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Martin Luther King was shot to death by James Earl Ray. But the truth of the Gospel that shaped King and Mason continues to ring out today, and it echoes through the singing at Mason Temple and the insights of SPS scholar-servants like Rich, Frank, Derrick, Ed, and Gary.

Grace and peace,



Have you read Switch?  Tell us what you think.

This is the description of Switch from the website, heathbrothers.com

“Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard is the latest book by Chip and Dan Heath, authors of Made to Stick, the critically acclaimed bestseller. Switch debuted at #1 on both the Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestseller lists.

Switch asks the following question: Why is it so hard to make lasting changes in our companies, in our communities, and in our own lives? The primary obstacle, say the Heaths, is a conflict that’s built into our brains. Psychologists have discovered that our minds are ruled by two different systems—the rational mind and the emotional mind—that compete for control. The rational mind wants a great beach body; the emotional mind wants that Oreo cookie. The rational mind wants to change something at work; the emotional mind loves the comfort of the existing routine. This tension can doom a change effort—but if it is overcome, change can come quickly.”

What is Advancement

I have the pleasure of serving Vanguard in the office of University Advancement. The first question people ask me is “what is advancement?”  That’s a great question.  Advancement refers to all the work that promotes and furthers the mission of the University.  Institutional advancement brings together marketing, public relations, alumni relations, fund raising, community relations, church relations, and government relations.  We all work together to build relationships with people, corporations, and foundations that may support the work of Vanguard University.

Together, we work to provide for Vanguard’s future while celebrating the present work of God through the University.  We serve the community by telling our stories and providing friends ways to discover, explore, and experience the spirit of Vanguard.  Through events, programs, opportunities to meet students, academic conferences, and the like we share how God is working through Vanguard University.

As a life long community, we foster a rich network of friends, services, and support that is Vanguard alumni.  Even though graduates are spread all over the world, working in a myriad of professions, serving others in unique ways, Vanguard strives to both promote and support each graduate and their families.  Both through our online communities on social media sites such as Facebook and in our personal events such as homecoming, we seek to nurture the ongoing relationships that define Vanguard.

We also have the privilege of thanking donors and showing how their support directly supports the Christ-centered education offered by Vanguard.  Stewardship is at the heart of our work, assuring that donors’ gifts are honored.

What is University Advancement?  It is everything we do to support God’s mission through Vanguard.  I am proud to work with such a talented and committed team of leaders and excited to see how God will further his work in the world through Vanguard.

Kelly Kannwischer

Interim Vice President of University Advancement