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Winter 2006 | Volume 29, Number 1 | From the President

President Eaton Sets Direction for a New Year

As the 2005–06 academic year opened, Seattle Pacific University President Philip Eaton spoke before many campus audiences, laying out his priorities for a new year and a new era. Among his presentations were three key events:

State of the University Address, “Building on Ancient Foundations”
September 21, 2005
After celebrating the strong momentum Seattle Pacific is experiencing, President Eaton officially unveiled to faculty, staff, and student leaders the 10-year plan for the University’s future titled 2014: A Blueprint for Excellence. The plan, he said, is driven by vision. “Our vision is this: We want to change the world with the transforming gospel of Jesus Christ. Can a university change the world? Well, that’s what our vision says. We want to enter into God’s big drama for his world, and God’s drama is about changing things to be better. For all of his children. Everywhere. Always.”

Welcome to New Students and Parents
September 22, 2005
Speaking to the largest and most highly qualified class of new students in Seattle Pacific’s history — and their parents and families — President Eaton stated that a great university requires “big ideas and great people.” “This education is not just about your career,” he told the students. “We will, of course, pay attention to that, but we also want to give you a big picture for your life, a big purpose. You are joining one of the finest Christian universities in the country, a university with a big, audacious sense of calling and a deep, abiding commitment to Christian community.”

Opening Convocation, “What We Need Now Is a Conversion of the Imagination”
September 27, 2005
As the entire campus community gathered to launch the academic year, President Eaton spoke about Seattle Pacific’s responsibility to President Eaton Sets Direction for a New Year address poverty, inequality, and pain in the world. “The cultural, social, economic, religious, and global shifts taking place in our world today are seismic, and must change the way we do education,” he said. “We cannot withdraw into the comfort and safety of an intellectual ghetto. We cannot indulge in Christian separatism. ... We have to look right into the heart of all this profound and confusing change, and offer a response that is meaningful and helpful.”

The President’s Bookshelf
What books does a university president read in his “spare” time? An avid reader, President Eaton’s choices are eclectic. Here are some recent selections, with his comments:

David McCullough, 1776.
“McCullough captures in amazingly fresh detail the great pivotal year of 1776, when the future of America, involved in a war of independence with Britain, hung in the balance. We get the war with all its bloody, messy chaos, and we get the hero, George Washington, with all his faults and indecision and, ultimately, his heroism. Somehow McCullough takes us right into the white-hot confusion of battle where things could have turned out very differently.”

George Weigel, The Cube and the Cathedral: Europe, America, and Politics Without God.
“This is a fabulous book reflecting on what is happening as Europe persists in cutting itself from its Christian roots, an all-out effort, as Weigel sees it, to secularize Western civilization. Weigel argues that the culture we enjoy today, with values like the rule of law, dignity of the individual, freedom of speech, and civility of discourse, all have Christian roots, and we cut our ties with those roots at our peril.”

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Katrina's Call
SPU professors, graduate students, and staff help with hurricane relief efforts on the Gulf Coast and on SPU's campus. [Campus]

Allowing Scripture to Transform Our Lives
Kerry Dearborn, associate professor of theology, contributes introductions and study notes to the Renovaré Spiritual Study Bible. [Faculty]

Quality Always
Alumni of the Year, Kathi and Jerry Teel, live out their Vitamilk Diary slogan, "Quality Always," in all areas of their lives. [Alumni]

The Gospel According to Miller
Author of best-selling book, Blue Like Jazz, tells SPU students that "engaging the culture is not rocket science." [Books & Film]

Field Goals
Courted by Division I soccer teams while in high school, stand-out Falcon forward, Sarah Martinez, hits goals on and off the field. [Athletics]

My Response
John Perkins writes a letter to Seattle Pacific about God's grace during and after Hurricane Katrina.

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