Good News – April 2018

Pastors and Leaders Conference (PALCON) Coming to SNU

PALCON – a dynamic, quadrennial pastors conference, is coming to the campus of Southern Nazarene University. From June 25 to 27, 2018, several hundred Nazarene clergy from primarily the South Central Region, USA, will experience what is described as intensive, inspiring and equipping. Built around the common theme, Come & See (John 1:35-51), each region’s conference is initiated by Clergy Development for the USA/Canada Region of the Church of the Nazarene, but shaped by its own schedule and resourced by a unique set of plenary speakers and seminar presenters.

Several hundred men and women, serving the Church of the Nazarene in a wide range of ministry settings, will hear from Dr. Carla Sunberg, General Superintendent for the Church of the Nazarene in the opening worship session. The following evening’s plenary message will be brought by Albert Hung, Superintendent of the California District (Nazarene) who, prior to his present assignment was leading a multi-site, ethnically diverse multi-congregational church. The culmination of the conference services will feature SNU’s president, Dr. Keith Newman, an inspiring and sought-after speaker, and ordained Elder in the Church of the Nazarene.

Conference days will be packed with times of fellowship, opportunities for practical ministry workshops, and – highlighting the gathering will be a series of Organic Outreach Intensives, led by pastor and co-founder of Organic Outreach, Kevin Harney, his wife, Sherry Harney, and Executive Pastor of Organic Outreach International, Walt Bennett. This series of seminars is helping local churches around the world effectively engage in living the kind of life that naturally draws people to Jesus and has proven to be highly successful in increasing evangelism, resulting in spiritual and numerical growth.

All three presenters are seasoned pastors, authors and seminar leaders who have effectively infused the passion for natural evangelism into their ministries and congregations. Kevin Harney served as the keynote speaker for the Fall 2017 Pastors Forum at SNU, and his passion for reaching people with the good news of Jesus Christ was so inspiring that an invitation was extended to Dr. Harney to serve as a seminar leader for PALCON 2018.

Registration is now open at and all Nazarene congregations are encouraged to support your pastor’s attendance. PALCON 2018 promises to be a time of refreshing, renewal and recommitment. Learn more about PALCON 2018 at SNU.

Sharing the SNU Story on the South Central Region

Southern Nazarene University serves the Church of the Nazarene primarily on the South Central Region, which encompasses the states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and the majority of the state of Texas. Within these states, the Church has ten unique Districts that meet each year in a gathering known as the annual District Assembly.

One of the privileges of partnering with the 600 plus local churches on the Region is the opportunity for the president of Southern Nazarene University to share at each District Assembly about the work of the university. In his inaugural year as president of SNU, Dr. Keith Newman has received a warm welcome from constituents of several Districts that have already convened for their annual gathering, and is anticipating great times of sharing and fellowship at the assemblies scheduled to take place in the coming weeks.

Dr. Newman has shared stories of student success in academics, of those who have given sacrificially in service, and of transformational experiences in the lives of young people attending SNU. His tour of the Region has been something of a Homecoming, having served as a pastor on the South Central Region, as well as a regional youth leader, before entering Christian higher education. This added, as Dr. Newman has said, “a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by pastors and lay leaders in the local church.”

Importantly, representation of the university at each assembly further strengthens the partnership between SNU and the local church, and provides a means to publicly express the gratitude of the campus family for the strong, consistent support of the Region in prayer, sending of students, and financially through their sacrificial giving.

This year, Dr. Newman is concluding his presentation with an invitation to join him as a prayer partner, promising to share prayer requests several times a year and give important updates to partners. For those who did not, or will not, have an opportunity to complete a card at an Assembly, you can participate by contacting Dr. Newman’s assistant, Mrs. Tollya Spindle, at As Dr. Newman stated, “My prayer is that SNU will continue this great 119 year partnership of discipling our young people for service.”

SNU Senior Bound for Summer Study at Oxford University

Britain Dawson, senior student in The School of Theology and Ministry, will be on scholarship with stipend at Oxford University in May and June of 2018. The seventh consecutive SNU student to participate in a scholarship fellowship with the Museum of the Bible, Dawson is in a strategic mentorship program hosted by SNU Professor, Dr. Marty Alan Michelson, via a partnership with the Museum, now open in Washington, D.C. Dawson has studied Biblical languages in Hebrew and Greek in his Bible coursework and in the summer program at Oxford he will be given hands-on access to early Christian texts in the context of mentoring relationships with professors that help emerging scholars train for issues unique to Christian vocation in academic life.

Dawson, a Theology major with a minor in Biblical Languages from Kansas City, MO, will begin graduate studies at Duke Divinity School, Duke University, in the fall of 2018. Entering SNU with a strong interest in the teaching profession, Dawson says he found his true calling in his Theology classes during his freshman year. With a goal of obtaining a doctorate degree, he hopes to someday be instructing at the college level. In addition to a full schedule of classes, he has served three years as a staff member and mentor to underserved youth in the after-school program at Oklahoma City First Church of the Nazarene.

As one of approximately 40 university students chosen for Logos at Oxford from applicants in an international pool of candidates, Dawson received congratulations from SNU President Keith Newman, who said, “We’re really proud of Britain and excited for the opportunity that is being afforded to him and Dr. Michelson.” “Having personally been with many of the faculty and student scholars who have completed research in Oxford, I know what is before Britain is a tremendous experience,” he added.

Dawson expressed his appreciation for the personal investment, academic preparation and support of his professors in the SNU School of Theology and Ministry, especially Dr. Michelson, and Dr. Steve Green, whom he credits with giving him confidence and guidance in applying for this study opportunity and entry to Duke University.

Learn more about the SNU School of Theology and Ministry.

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