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Director of Alumni Relations

Celebrating the Past and Embracing the Future: Person to Person, Fall 2014

No Comments » Written on October 1st, 2014 by
Categories: Newsletter

It’s an exciting time in Multnomah’s history. Our presidential inauguration for Dr. Craig Williford is just a few weeks away now. As a community, we are energized and enthusiastic in looking forward to this significant celebration. Our focus will be one of “Praise and Worship” – a theme most fitting, I believe, in response to God’s overwhelming blessing to MU at this time.

On the trails of such a difficult season, with the loss of Dr. Lockwood, it feels as if new life is being breathed into the University in beautiful and undeniable ways. I am humbled and honored to be an eye witness participant.

dan and michelle

Dr. Dan and I

As it is with any season of transition, I am learning anew the importance of letting go and of joyfully embracing the future. While, no doubt, history plays a significant role in shaping us and feelings of great loss often accompany that of letting go; it is with this understanding and a hopeful expectation that I look forward to what God has ahead.

I’d like to commemorate this season, if I may, by reflecting on history past and sharing with you a few of my favorite “Dr. Dan” memories.

When I think of Dr. Dan, I remember a man of humility, wisdom, strength, character and ‘over the top’ optimism.

He was inspiring as a biblical scholar, and a remarkable orator with an unbelievable ability to alliterate. His Dr. Dan Magic shows were an all-time favorite for many — an entertaining illusionist extraordinaire.

Over the past decade and a half, I had the privilege of working alongside him and witnessing up close a faith that was awe-inspiring. He was indeed a man of intense faith, demonstrated consistently in his response to what it meant to trust God amidst adversity and in times of life’s unknowns.

He was a man with a beautiful servant’s heart and a genuine interest in people. While there are many things I admired about Dr. Dan, probably one of the most significant memories I have was during the summer of 2009 when I was facing a season of my own adversity. I had been suffering from a relapse of malaria that I had picked up on a mission’s trip a few weeks prior.  Dr. Dan came into my office and sat across from my desk and, with compassion and concern in his eyes, inquired about my health and the decision I had made to follow through with an upcoming alumni trip. He was genuinely concerned. It didn’t matter to him the events that had been scheduled, the plans that had been made, the airfares that had been purchased, or the hotels that had been booked. What he communicated clearly to me that day, was that I mattered!  People were important to him. I was important to him, and he wanted me to be sure that I knew it.

There are no words deep and/or meaningful enough to express the impact of his leadership and the great privilege it has been to know him and serve alongside him these past eighteen years.

I will never forget his last chapel as Multnomah’s president, when he announced to the MU community the grim prognosis from his doctor, and the recommendation to step down from his presidency in order that he might spend some cherished time with family. He spoke with such courage and confidence that day — full of faith and optimism, as one would only imagine coming from Dr. Dan. He said, If ever you are wondering, ‘Is God really a God who loves me...a God who cares for me…is God one who is concerned about every aspect of my life?’...just remember Dan Lockwood as someone who can testify — even in the midst of cancer, maybe near the end of that journey and looking forward to the next great adventure, that God has been good, God has been faithful and God can be trusted.” He graciously and humbly shared from a heart of gratitude that saw God at work even in the face of intense adversity. His cancer journey truly demonstrated what it meant to live a life of faith with full endurance to the finish line.

The values and characteristics of his life have indelibly marked this University and those he has served. Today on Multnomah’s campus, you’ll find in our prayer circle a bronze plaque placed in his honor that reads: “Honoring A Legacy of Faith – Dr. Daniel R. Lockwood, Multnomah University’s Fourth President, 1997-2013. And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him. Hebrews 11:6.” We have also changed the name and focus of the Multnomah Fund to “The Dr. Dan Lockwood Student Aid Fund”.

My hope is that this commemorative plaque and Dr. Dan’s student aid fund will serve as a continued reminder to the Multnomah community of the faith he demonstrated in the life that he lived.

Whether or not you knew Dan personally, my prayer for all of us today is that our hearts would be encouraged and challenged to live with such faith. As we embrace the future, the unknowns and what God has ahead, let us not forget: “God is good. God is faithful, and God can be trusted.”

Celebrating the past and embracing the future,

Michelle M. Peel-Underwood  B.A. '00, M.A. '10

Director of Alumni Relations

P.S. I’m looking forward to helping introduce Multnomah’s fifth president, Dr. Craig Williford, during our Presidential tour coming next spring. Look for more details to come.

 

Learn more about the Dr. Dan Lockwood Student Aid Fund or continue his legacy by contributing to it. 

Looking Back and Looking Forward

Of the many activities held during commencement, our 50-year alumni society event has traditionally been one of my favorites. This year was no different. We inducted 24 members from the class of 1964 into Multnomah’s 50-year alumni society, and I was, once again, struck by the significance of this half-century mark that underscores the legacy of a Multnomah education. I believe it is a tangible expression of our rich heritage that demonstrates God’s faithfulness throughout the generations and the importance of a vital daily relationship with Him.

"Our years of training at Multnomah have resulted in much fruit, both here and abroad," said 50-year society member Dr. Tim Aldrich. The former faculty member was encouraged by the reunion with his former classmates — and by meeting MU's new president, Dr. Craig Williford, at the event.

"During the last 50 years, Multnomah has changed in response to the needs of a changing world by adding facilities, new majors and faculty members," Aldrich said. "And yet, at its core is a solid commitment to the transforming power of the Word. Having met Dr. Williford, I am confident that he will continue the Multnomah tradition and its commitment to the Word of God."

Anticipating What is Ahead

It is an honor and a great joy to be a part of the ongoing legacy of Multnomah. As I reflect back on our history, in anticipation of what is ahead, I am excited for the future. While admittedly it has been a challenging season, I have never been more encouraged to see God at work in such amazing ways.

It has been a season of prayer, as we’ve collectively sought the Lord for the man or woman who would lead the ministry of Multnomah in this next chapter. Thank you for the part you’ve played in partnering with us here. God has far exceeded our expectations and we are humbled by His graciousness in His selection of Multnomah’s new president.

I’m excited for you to meet Dr. Craig and his wife Carolyn. I think you’ll find that beyond the wealth of experience in higher education, leadership and pastoral ministry that Craig brings, he and Carolyn both have a heart for the Savior and a recognition of  their deep dependence upon Him.

A Man of Humility and Prayer

“We humbly take our place within the distinguished line of former and current trustees, faculty, staff, administration and presidents who served so sacrificially,” Craig said in response to the board of trustee’s invitation to serve as Multnomah’s fifth president. In reading his latest book, "How to Treat a Staff Infection — Resolving Problems in Your Church or Ministry Team", I’ve been encouraged to see his heart for people and ministry, as well as his incredible insight and vision for leadership. His obvious dependence on the Lord, his humility and his heart for prayer is most inspiring.

In closing, I want to leave you with the charge Craig gave to his readers: “May you always lead with godliness, humility, wisdom, courage, grace, mercy, respect, and love. As under-shepherds who report to the Head Shepherd — Christ himself — how else will we mobilize others to serve in God’s kingdom with distinction? What an awesome responsibility!”

What an awesome responsibility indeed, and what a privilege it is to serve and be a part of what God is doing this side of heaven.

In awe of God’s grace,

Michelle M. Peel-Underwood,  B.A. '00, M.A. '10

Director of Alumni Relations

Multnomah University

 

MU Celebrates its 50-Year Alumni during Graduation Week

Comments Off Written on May 7th, 2014 by
Categories: Alumni, Events
Every year, Multnomah honors its graduates of 50 years by inducting them into our 50-Year Alumni Society. To applaud this important achievement, we have a special day of celebration planned on Friday May 9, 2014. This year will mark our 13th annual celebration.
MU's 50-Year Alum Society

MU's 50-Year Alum Society

The day's events

The day's activities will include baccalaureate chapel, a special luncheon and induction ceremony, a 50-year class reunion and tour of the campus. The day will conclude with participation in Multnomah's graduation ceremony at Rolling Hills Community Church. It will be a wonderful time to reconnect with friends and review the Lord's faithfulness over the last 50 years.

'These society members are a testimony to us and to the generations that have followed'

I think there is something very special about this half-century mark that underscores the legacy of a Multnomah education. I believe it's a tangible expression of our rich heritage that truly demonstrates God’s faithfulness throughout the generations and the vitality of our daily relationship with Him. These 50-Year Alumni society members are a testimony to us and to the generations that have followed.

In speaking with Bill Kramer, one of this year’s 50 year society members, I was so encouraged by his heart for our graduates and his desire to encourage them in the journey ahead. I hope you enjoy his story and words of wisdom.

Encouragement to the Class of 2014 from 50-Year Society member Bill Kramer

Class of 2014, you’re not finished yet. Be ready to let Him amaze you. He delights in doing more than you can imagine. He will put before you opportunities that will force you to totally depend on Him. You are His servant. You are called to glorify Him and Him alone.

I completed my work at Multnomah in 1964. On November 28, 1967, Cadence International asked me if I would be willing to open a ministry with the U.S. Air Force in Ubon, Thailand. Their goal was for me to be in Thailand by the first of the year. That was in 30 days.

'God amazed me'

I had known for years I would end up somewhere overseas. But I was thinking, “Who will support me? I am a nobody.  I’m a farmer from Kansas.” One truth I had not grasped was that God is in charge. He delights in taking a nobody to show that He is somebody. What He does, He does for His glory.

I had 30 days to get my passport, my visa and my financial support. To my knowledge, my 70-year-old dad was not a believer. Every time I would bring up the subject, he would say, “I don’t want to talk about it.” I wanted to go back to Kansas to see my parents and talk to my dad one more time before I left for Thailand.

50YearAlum_main2

Bill and Jeannette Kramer

God amazed me. My support came in. My passport and visa were in order. And what thrilled my heart most was that my dad received Jesus a few days before I returned to Portland and departed for Thailand.

'We have found your wife'

Then God started to amaze me by the growing number of men he brought to my ministry. When I had been in Thailand for about a year, a close friend who was teaching at an elementary school wrote to me: “We have found your wife.”

My future wife, Jeannette, had been in Cameroon, Africa, teaching at a teacher training college, but was now teaching at the same school as my friend. I started writing to Jeannette. Our relationship via letters grew so naturally.

After five months, I proposed, and she accepted. In September of 1969, I returned to the States to meet  and marry Jeannette. As the aircraft  began its descent on the Portland Airport,  it hit me that there was a woman down there that I loved and was looking forward to spending the rest of my life with. Yet we had never met. That was almost 45 years ago. Jeannette was perfect for me.

'He is about to write His story on your life'

We were with Cadence for 23 years. We have worked in Thailand, Korea, Japan and Spain. God has given us fruit who are serving Him all over the U. S. and some overseas. We worked in pastoral ministry for another 20 years. For the last four years, we have been providing pastoral counselling and Bible Study materials for men in four different prisons.

God took me, that Kansas farmer, and amazed me by doing what I could have never imagined. He is about to write His story on your life.  Let Him, and you will be amazed.

— Bill Kramer

Change, Challenges and Opportunities

These past few months have been characterized by change — a season that has marked me, shaped me and continued to challenge me towards a deeper dependence on Jesus than I have ever known.

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Listen to Dead Sea Scrolls Expert Via Live Stream

Dr. Robert Duke, who graduated from Multnomah in 1996, will present his research on the Dead Sea Scrolls at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, January 15. Michelle Peel-Underwood, director of Alumni Relations, provides details below.
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Being Transformed Into His Image

Comments Off Written on May 30th, 2013 by
Categories: Alumni, Faculty, General, Students

"And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit."
II Corinthians 3:18

“Dr. G” – As He is Affectionately Known

The auditorium erupted into applause and a standing ovation as Dr. Garry Friesen, this year’s commencement speaker, was introduced and presented with the special honor of Professor Emeritus by Multnomah’s President and Board of Trustees. The influence “Dr. G” has had in the lives of students, faculty, staff and alumni alike is remarkable.  The evening was especially significant for our Multnomah community in light of Garry’s retirement announcement after 37 years of teaching on Multnomah’s faculty.
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Stretching to Grow

Stretching to Grow

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10

Being Stretched

Welcome to Multnomah University! You’re going to be stretched during your time here,” Dr. Lockwood challenged our students at this year’s spring convocation chapel.

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A New Year’s Beginning

A New Year’s Beginning

"So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom." - Psalm 90:12

Pastoral Reflections

Sunday I had the privilege of hearing from my pastoral staff, all Multnomah alumni, as they reflected on this past year. My senior pastor spoke excitedly about a PhD program he began this year with an emphasis in homiletics. Read the rest of this entry »

Unwrapping the Gift of Christ

Comments Off Written on November 30th, 2012 by
Categories: Alumni, General
Unwrapping the Gift of Christ

"For God so loved the world that he gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

‘Tis the Season

‘Tis the season of tinsel and twinkling lights…holiday tunes and crowded shopping malls. December has come and brought along with it the joys of Christmas. I love this season and everything that it brings. Read the rest of this entry »

A Season of Thanks

Comments Off Written on October 31st, 2012 by
Categories: Alumni, General
A Season of Thanks

“Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him” Psalm 34:8

Autumn is in full swing here in the Pacific Northwest! Signs of fall are evident everywhere—the freshness in the crisp cool air, the smell of fires, warm and vibrantly colored leaves beginning to fall and cover the ground. It’s that time of year again when thoughts are naturally turned towards feelings of nostalgia, holiday memories and family traditions. I love this time of year for these reasons, as well as for the opportunity to consider a season of gratitude. Read the rest of this entry »