A MOMENT…

December 15, 2009

Oral Roberts, Evangelist

Oral Roberts died today in Newport Beach, California.  Thanks to Erin Amos for letting me know.

The following news outlets have the story:

According to this TulsaWorld article, he took a fall on Saturday and suffered some broken bones.

I’m deeply moved and still experiencing gratitude for the education I received at ORU.  More thoughts will follow later.

UPDATE:  The thoughts I have are echoed by fellow alum, Sarah, over at Emerging Mummy.  Key quote:

“I loved Oral’s bigness. There was nothing small about the man. He was huge – even his ears were enormous.”

I like that Sarah also says, “His faith was enormous.”  It’s so true.  My mother and I were talking about him yesterday.  The legacy that my mother and I discussed was Oral’s courage.  And Sarah mentions how his final years were spent telling us all to be obedient.  Let’s put it together.

Be courageously obedient to God.

That’s a good treasure to leave behind.

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ORU: PASTOR BILLY JOE

November 21, 2009

ORIGINAL POST (2009-11-21):

You may have heard this already, but in case you haven’t…

Pastor Billy Joe, of Victory Christian Center, was diagnosed with lymphoma last month and is currently in the hospital being treated for complications resulting from an infection, according to articles by KJRH and News9.

UPDATE (2009-11-23):

Yesterday at 4:40 am, Pastor Billy Joe ‘graduated to heaven’ according to this NewsOK article and this excellent Tulsa World article.  He was 57.  A memorial service is being planned for November 30th.

I remember visiting VCC when I was 11 years old and also during my time at ORU.  I remember that he seemed like a sweet, kind, and well-respected leader.  I know that he will be missed by many.


ORU LAWSUIT: ECFA ACCREDITATION!

May 6, 2009

I missed posting this in March.  So sorry!

Apparently, ORU has recieved their Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) accreditation!  Those following the news about the lawsuit since 2007 will know that this was a huge part of the problem at the time – that ORU had a history and a reputation for being massively non-transparent.  That ORU has recieved this accreditation, is a huge sign that things are certainly changing for the better under Mart’s leadership.

Thanks to the kids at SaveORU.com for the heads up!


ORU LAWSUIT: DEBT ALMOST PAID OFF!

April 29, 2009

According to this NewsOK article, the debt that ORU carried for many years is close to being eradicated.

Check out the Renew the Vision donation page here.  It’s fun to watch the bars go from right to left and vice versa.

Good news!


DC – THE FIRST FEW DAYS IN TULSA

February 5, 2009

Ryan and I spent most of the Fall of 2008 working on the feature film called “The Rock ‘n’ Roll Dreams of Duncan Christopher” in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  While I was there, I didn’t have much time to write.  So I’m going to spend a few blog posts now talking about my experiences in Tulsa.   Here’s the first of many!

I went out for pre-production in early October.  I stayed with our good friend and business partner Justin Monroe and his wife Kasey.  They were so gracious to give me the spare bedroom with a desk!  I was spoiled to be able to work late into the night and roll back out of bed early in the morning and keep working.  Perhaps that was some strategery on Justin’s part?  Nah…

The night I got there, Heather Roberts came over with coconut ice cream (made with coconut milk, not cow’s milk) and a back massage for me.  Thank you Heather!

I had been back a few days before I finally made it down to ORU for a visit.  I was nervous.  I didn’t know how I’d feel.  After having felt like I was escaping, seven years previous (having finished my last semester), and after all that’d gone on at ORU in the previous year (see this post), I was more than a little anxious to get the first visit over with.

Heather Roberts (who plays Angeline in the film) had told me on my first night back that when I went by ORU, I should just crack the doors of Howard “How Weird” Auditorium and breath in the air.  Memories, she said, would come flooding back.

As I walked toward Howard Aud., I felt that excitement that comes when visiting an old haunt.  So much of my life was lived within those curved walls.  So much of my artistic development and maturation…  So much of my pride and fear was cultivated and crushed…  The doors were chained.  So I did as Heather instructed and cracked them just a little.  And I breathed in the air that escaped.

It’s an unmistakeable smell.

I remembered auditioning in the lobby, playing sardines in the girl’s bathroom, running sound in the upstairs booth, designing makeup in the dressing rooms, sewing hundreds of yards of costumes in the costume shop, dancing across the stage, striding barefoot through the scene shop, tromping around in the orchestra pit…  tears, laughter, nervousness, eureka moments!  My memory was flooded with images.  Four years of my life flashed before my eyes.

And then I closed the door.  And paused.

As I slowly walked the rest of the campus, bathed in memories, I tried to put my finger on the emotion I felt.  I called my parents and talked it over with them as I relived discovering the campus anew.  Finally, it came to me.

Gratitude.  I felt gratitude!  I felt grateful for my education.  It came as a shock.  But it was honest-to-goodness gratitude.

Back at Justin’s I didn’t have long to dwell on my experience as I had a monumental task at hand.  It was a full six weeks before I would be able to return to ORU for a real visit with one of my favourite profs.  In the meantime, I produced a feature film.  More on that next time…


ORU LAWSUIT: NEW PREZ?

January 19, 2009

Yesterday, my momma sent me this article from Fox23 which explains that the ORU presidential “search committee is recommending Southeastern University President Mark Rutland for the job.”  Of course the Tulsa World has the story as well.

Here’s some Mark Rutland info:

  • Southeastern University bio.
  • Global Servants profile.
  • Books by Mark Rutland.

My momma, who remembers Dr. Rutland from our days in Texas at Aldersgate UMC where he was a friend of then pastor, Terry Teykl, describes him as a warm, intelligent, engaging person and she’s very excited about him potentially becoming ORU’s new president.

Channel 8, and Channel 7 confirm the Mark Rutland story while Channel 2 announces layoffs at ORU.  While Ryan and I were in Tulsa, we spoke with several faculty members.  There seemed to be a real sorrow at the impending layoffs, but a sense of understanding that it was necessary to continue to make improvements. We trust that current leadership are doing their best with the resources they’ve been given.

In other news, ORU has made a motion to dismiss Huddleston’s lawsuit according to Christian Web News.


ORU LAWSUIT: MAKING IT OFFICIAL

November 14, 2008

I don’t have time to find a ton of links.  So here’s Phil Cooke’s post about it.