A quick spotlight on the Department’s weekly Theatre Chapel, Bravo!
With college classes taking up mornings and afternoons, and rehearsals/performances being held in the evenings there isn’t much time outside of that to have a social life. Your friends become other Theatre majors because those are the people you see daily, work with, and trust. The Theatre Department is in itself its own little community and Bravo is a place where this community can come together to support one another and praise God. For one hour every Monday students are able take a step back from the hustle and bustle of a regular performance filled day and join their classmates in Bible study, student testimonies and worship. The first Monday of every month is a full hour of worship. It’s by far the perfect way to start a new month. The following weeks adjust depending on the needs of the students.
Our former Theatre Manager, Bill Hughes, began Bravo over five years ago and it’s been amazing to see how much this program has grown.
Here’s what Bill had to say about Bravo:
“The Theatre Department always encouraged spiritual development activities for the Theatre majors, but they would ebb and flow depending upon the initiative of the students. After earning my bachelor’s degree through the VU Religion Department in 2009, I asked Sue if I could make it more structured and and be the representative from the Department who would be responsible to keep it functioning.
Since it was always the result of student generated activity, my leadership philosophy was to encourage that to continue and equip them with whatever they needed to keep that type of activity going. Therein lies the success. They keep it going. They minister to each other. They seem to know what they need from each other. I would just facilitate.
So, there have always been student leaders. And that is a great thing. It creates an opportunity for the leaders to exercise their gifts and it creates an environment for the group to be self-owned. It is their group.
They would say I did more, but what I always tried to do was know the pulse that was flowing through the group and guide them in it. The ‘Spiritual Sexuality’ topic is a good example. I sensed it. I brought it up. And they jumped on it. I think it was really really helping a huge issue for them. But again, they were doing all of the work. I would get the discussions going and then they would take off. It was great!
They don’t need another talking head. They need intimate open time with each other, to build relationships. We always made it a point to make sure that God’s Spirit was welcome and present. And over and over again He showed up and took over the meetings. It was always a wonderful awesome beautiful experience to be in His presence together with them.”
Now, not only do we have half of the Theatre Department joining weekly, we have students from other majors sitting in as well. College can be a stressful place. Without community one could become lost. For many Theatre students Bravo has become a safe area to open up and speak what’s in their heart, as well as a time to refocus on why we’re here: to serve and praise our Lord.