BJU to celebrate new era in ministry

Photo Story
September 23, 2016
COLUMN
September 23, 2016

BJU to celebrate new era in ministry

Photo of the view of the CGO from the hall. Photo by Stephen Dysert, 30.2

After the overwhelming fundraising success at Bible Conference which exceeded the $150,000 goal, the Center for Global Opportunities has transitioned from a vague concept in students’ minds to a reality on campus.

Located on the first floor of the Alumni Building, the CGO consists of multiple renovated offices as well as an attractive open space equipped with a reception and lobby area and conference tables.

Although the CGO has been operating since the beginning of the semester, the entire Bob Jones University family will celebrate the ceremonial grand opening in a special dedication chapel.

The service will be held Oct. 3 on West Drive alongside the Alumni Building.

Dr. Pettit will address a joint audience of students, faculty, local pastors and media.

Pettit is expected to share the University’s vision for the CGO and participate in a ribbon-cutting ceremony along with community service council member Sarah Darlin and Missions Advance assistant director Esdras Oliveira Borges.

Pettit, Darlin and Borges explain that the CGO exists for more reasons than just helping students, faculty and staff locate and participate in outreaches to the Greenville community and the world at large.

CGO Director Mark Vowels explained that the Center for Global Opportunities is a 21st century response to the Great Commission to go into all the world and make disciples.

But within this overarching response, the CGO is a response to both globalization and trends away from full-time ministry.

The world is a smaller place than ever with advanced communication technology that allows a message to be sent from North Dakota to south Bangladesh within seconds.

The shrinking world has given teachers, businesspeople and professionals of all kinds opportunities to go across the globe, carrying the Gospel with them.

In contrast to the openness created by globalization, recent years have shown a decrease in countries willing to accept missionaries, leading many to seek alternative means of entry.

“I like to say [the CGO] connects the dots between what God is doing in the world and what God is doing here,” Vowels said.

Vowels expressed the role of CGO as connecting, not controling.

As a networking organization, the CGO links students, alumni, faculty and those not directly connected to BJU with potential avenues of service.
 The CGO is not concerned with everyone becoming a Bible or ministry major but about everyone using what God has made them to be to spread the Gospel.

Already this semester, the CGO has engaged in multiple Go Greenville events, outreaches designed to spread the Gospel in the community.   

Representatives from the freshman class were among those to participate in the outreach.

Even now it’s clear that the CGO is revitalizing and reinterpreting the University’s heritage of furthering the Gospel.

Vowels explained that the Center for Global Opportunities is fulfilling the Great Commission through students using the skills they already have and are acquiring at BJU, connecting like-minded believers and creating a culture of service.