Yorks provide matching gift opportunity for SOT updates

Mon, 2008-11-03 16:45 -- univcomm
November 3, 2008

The School of Theology needs an update more than any other building on campus, and now alumni and friends can help made a huge difference. Dr. James and Elizabeth York, longtime friends of the School of Theology, have promised to match $100,000 in donations made to the seminary. “What a great opportunity that the Yorks have given to the alumni and friends of the School of Theology to step forward and make a gift knowing every dollar they give will be matched by the Yorks,” says Don Taylor, the advancement officer who partners with the School of Theology.

The total $200,000 will be used to upgrade the School of Theology building. The list of improvements includes new windows and refinished pews in Miller chapel, new glass panel doors to the entrances of the building, a refinished and repainted steeple, and a new roof.

For the seminary, the relationship with the Yorks has been transforming, says David Sebastian, dean of the School of Theology. Elizabeth’s parents, Harry L. and Henrietta Harp, were longtime Church of God ministers. For years, Harry and Henrietta’s family have supported the Harp Lecture Series. James and Elizabeth have also given in other tremendous ways, such as establishing a scholarship for non-Church of God students and financing the York Seminary Village. For the second year in row, the Yorks have sponsored a visiting professor. This year it is Dr. Robert Lang’at from Kenya. He is teaching in the field of missiology, offering evening classes in African religions, the history of missions, and the biblical theology of poverty. He is also teaching a class in the Doctor of Ministry program on leadership in different contexts.

“We feel that being on the campus is one of our best recruiting tools,” says Sebastian. “When we get prospective students into the classroom and with faculty and students, that’s always a positive experience.” But sometimes the appearance of the building leaves something to be desired. Incoming donations matched by the Yorks would relieve this problem.

Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,750 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson continues to be recognized as a top Christian college: in 2008, U.S. News and World Report ranked Anderson University among the best colleges and universities in the Midwest for the fourth consecutive year. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education, music, nursing and theology.