Around the State: HPU engages community in family Christmas

The combined Howard Payne University choirs and the HPU Festival Orchestra perform at First Baptist Church in Brownwood as part of “An HPU Family Christmas.” (HPU Photo)

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Howard Payne University personnel and students joined with the university’s neighbors in Brownwood, Early and other area communities to celebrate the Christmas season during “An HPU Family Christmas.” The event included a Christmas concert at First Baptist Church in Brownwood involving the combined HPU choirs and the HPU Festival Orchestra, carol singing, the lighting of Christmas decorations at Old Main Park and a reading of the Christmas story by HPU President Cory Hines.

Pastor Michael Evans

Michael Evans, pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Mansfield and president of the Baptist General Convention of Texas, announced to his church his intention to run for mayor of Mansfield in the 2020 general election on May 2. Evans has served as president of the school board for the Mansfield Independent School District and currently is on the board of trustees at Tarrant County College. He also is a newly elected regent of Baylor University.

Recipients of the Ruth Award, presented by the Dallas Baptist University Women’s Auxiliary Board, are (left to right) Peggy Horner, Beth Grace and Patty Holcomb. (DBU Photo)

Dallas Baptist University recognized Beth Grace, Patty Holcomb and Peggy Horner at the 2019 Ruth Awards Luncheon. DBU’s Women’s Auxiliary Board sponsored the event at the Hillcrest Great Hall of the John G. Mahler Student Center. The Ruth Awards are presented annually to women who exemplify a devotion to God, family and community as exemplified in the biblical story of Ruth.



Wayland Baptist University senior guard J.J. Culver (left) scored 100 points during the Pioneer’s 124-60 victory over Southwest Adventist University. Culver’s head coach, Ty Harrelson (right), called Culver’s feat an “amazing performance.” (Wayland Baptist University Photo courtesy of the Baptist New Mexican)

Wayland Baptist University guard J.J. Culver became the fourth player in the history of men’s college basketball to score at least 100 points in a single game. The 6-foot-5-inch religion major, a preacher’s kid from Lubbock, reached the century mark during a 124-60 win against Southwestern Adventist University. Culver scored 51 points by halftime, breaking Wayland’s single-game record of 50 points. Needing 15 more points to reach 1,500 for his career, Head Coach Ty Harrelson decided to leave Culver in the game so that he could attempt to reach that milestone. At 84 points, Harrelson realized Culver had a chance to make college basketball history. Harrelson praised Culver’s character and work ethic, telling the Baptist New Mexican Culver has been “a great leader,” both among his teammates and on campus. “He’s been a great ambassador for the university. He consistently has been the hardest worker in our skill sessions and in the weight room and conditioning—whatever it might be. He goes the extra mile,” Harrelson said.

East Texas Baptist University received word Dec. 10 from its regional accrediting body—the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges—that ETBU was in compliance with all 75 standards and 25 policies to reaffirm accreditation with no recommendations. Accreditation signifies the institution has a mission appropriate to higher education; has resources, programs, and services sufficient to accomplish and sustain that mission; and maintains clearly specified educational objectives consistent with its mission and appropriate to the degrees it offers, and that indicate whether it is successful in achieving its stated objectives. The next reaffirmation period is set to begin in 10 years.

The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor awarded the Provost Medal for highest grade-point average to 10 students who graduated Dec. 13 with a perfect 4.0 GPA. Jacob Alexander Chesser of Boerne, who also received the President’s Award for meritorious service, was one of the Provost Medal recipients. Other graduates sharing the honor were Ryley Bryanne Cox of Waco, Sierra Renee Elrod of Angleton, Jacob Earl Fitzwater of Belton, Abigail Joy Perez Garcia of Georgetown, Damien Michael Hawkins of Copperas Cove, Noelle Joyce Maire of Plano, Schyler Reagan Malloy of League City, Hannah Michelle Rodgers of Granbury and Hannah Rose Wolfe of Robinson.




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