The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor scheduled a one-day on-campus World Tour as part of its annual Missions Emphasis Week. The walk-through event was intended to give participants a taste of some of the cultures represented by more than a dozen missionaries who staffed booths dedicated to the regions in which they serve. Some brought games, snacks or simulations of the daily lives of the communities they serve, while others brought musical instruments from their region and performed praise and worship authentic to their field. The World Tour originally was scheduled as an outdoor event, but heavy rains forced organizers to move the event indoors to the McLane Great Hall. Hannah Murray, a junior Christian Studies major, was one of the co-directors of Missions Emphasis Week and helped organize the event. “My biggest joy was seeing the students have really good, intentional conversations with the missionaries. I’m just really praying that fruit will come from that,” Murray said. “It was not just an event to have fun and hang out, but it’s also an event to light their hearts on fire for missions and get them excited about what the Lord is doing in each culture.”
Thomas S. Kidd has been named the inaugural holder of the James Vardaman Endowed Professorship of History at Baylor University. Kidd, who joined the Baylor faculty in 2002, is a distinguished professor of history and associate director of the Baylor Institute for Studies of Religion, where he also co-directs the program on historical studies of religion. The professorship was made possible by gifts from former students of Vardaman, who taught 33 years at Baylor, and other donors, including a lead gift from the Eula Mae and John Baugh Foundation. The focus of Kidd’s research is 18th century North America, particularly the history of evangelicalism, and he teaches courses on colonial America, the American Revolution and American religious history. Kidd’s 2017 book, Benjamin Franklin: The Religious Life of a Founding Father, was named one of the 2017 Top 10 Religion and Spirituality Books by Booklist Online. Two of his books, God of Liberty: A Religious History of the American Revolution and The Great Awakening: The Roots of Evangelical Christianity in Colonial America, earned an Award of Merit from Christianity Today. Kidd earned an undergraduate degree in political science and a master’s degree in history from Clemson University, and he completed his doctorate in history from the University of Notre Dame.
10th for Eric Howell as pastor of DaySpring Baptist Church in Waco.