Like many in this country, over the past week I’ve been incredibly frustrated by the hurricane relief efforts I’ve seen broadcast over the news. I am an alumnus of ACU currently living in Minnesota, far removed from my parents who live in Gulfport where they had chosen to ride out Katrina. It wasn’t until late in the evening of Aug. 30, after two fitful days of anxiety that they located a neighbor with a cell phone to tell me that they were both fine—the house was flooded but still stands. “Well, now the government will come in and get things moving,” I naively thought.
As we all know, the government moved at a snails’ pace while I stewed in Minnesota, picturing various scenarios on how I might get to Mississippi to help in the relief effort (assuming there was a rental car still left and roads clear enough to get through).
“Where are the troops? Where is my government?” I thought as I scanned the news over and over again. Then I saw it. A few minutes ago, NBC News showed a quick image of the Astrodome. In the picture, an ACU student, identified by her T-shirt, was playing with a young African American child. I have to admit, tears came to my eyes.
In a news report filled with looting reports, accusations of racism and government failure, a young Christian was demonstrating what it’s supposed to all be about—showing God’s love, being the first to offer a hand and sharing what you have with people who may or may not look like you. I remembered my own experiences at ACU—Spring Break Campaigns, Habitat for Humanity, Big Purple’s Christmas for Kids and other charitable efforts.
My heart swelled to see the “next generation” of my university doing what we do best. While the rest of the nation clamored for action from someone else, my young brothers and sisters, like generations before them, were called “to lead and to serve,” and that is what you are still doing. God bless that campus, and God bless your efforts to shine his light as you carry the torch forward. I’ve never been more proud to call ACU my alma mater.
Dr. Kenyon Williams
Assistant professor of music
Minnesota State University