Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Convocation of a New Academic Year

Pre-Convocation New Student Banquet in the Student Commons
The 2013-2014 academic year at Greenville Seminary got under way with festivities and ceremony August 26 and 27. Class registrations and new-student orientation began on Monday of opening week, a day concluded with the traditional banquet welcoming new students to the seminary. More orientation continued on Tuesday, and on Tuesday evening the seminary held its 27th annual convocation. Classes and chapel services began on Wednesday.

Peter Van Doodewaard, an alumnus and now pastor of neighboring Covenant Community Church (OPC) in Taylors, S.C., gave the convocation address, "Courage in Kingdom Endeavors," focusing on King David's "Mighty Men," as described in I Chronicles 11-12 (listen here). A charge to the students following a similar theme was given by Student Body Association President Thomas Van Maanan. The ceremony concluded with the taking of annual vows by students, pledging to remain faithful to the seminary's distinctives and requirements, and by faculty, pledging full subscription to the Holy Scriptures and Reformed theology as set forth in the Westminster Standards.

With the Fall Semester registration, GPTS now has 78 students in all enrollment categories, including full- and part-time resident/distance, bachelor's and master's degree, advanced degree and special students.

Following are some photographic highlights of the new year's kickoff activities.

Peter Van Doodewaard delivers Convocation adddress.
Left, President Pipa. Right, Dr. Shaw & Dr. McGoldrick

Students take vows of fidelity patterned after those 
established at Princeton Theological Seminary in 1812.

SBA President Tom Van Maanen delivers charge to fellow students.
Cake shared during reception following Convocation
Student wife Gwen Hill serves punch to Dr. Sid Dyer.