Bible studies

Pepperdine University Introduces New Center for Spiritual Living | Writing

On May 3, 2021, Pepperdine University President Jim Gash (JD ’93) announced the launch of the Hub for Spiritual Life at Pepperdine – a new initiative to reinvent and enhance spiritual life at Pepperdine. At the heart of the hub’s mission and programming is a focus on developing students as leaders throughout their religious journey with community support from fellow students as well as spiritual mentors from faculty and staff. personal.

“Jesus modeled an open arms approach to life and faith,” Gash shared in his message to the community announcing the change. The new hub, Gash explained, will seek to embody this approach in every spiritual life experience at Pepperdine.

The Hub for Spiritual Life will be led by University Chaplain Sara Barton, who will move into a new role as Associate Vice President for Spiritual Life, alongside Associate Chaplains Lauren Begert (MA ’15) and Rachel Collins. Barton, Begert and Collins have already begun collaborating with the university community to continue to develop and implement the hub’s vision.

“On our team, we recognize and celebrate that we don’t provide the whole spiritual experience, but are part of a bigger whole,” says Barton. “Collaboration is my style of leadership, a style that aims to get people out of silos to work together, and that’s inherent in the language of a hub.”

The team’s new approach will connect students to all opportunities for spiritual life, whether in their residence halls, on sports teams, or while studying abroad. With this holistic focus, collaboration with university partners is essential to embed spiritual growth at every level of undergraduate careers.

“I look forward to the community continuing to partner with us,” Begert shares, “especially as we seek to cultivate a thriving spiritual life together at Pepperdine.”

One of the first changes resulting from the new initiative includes the restructuring of Seaver College’s Convocation Series, which will now be known as Seaver 200. The program creates congregations for first- and second-year undergraduate students to to explore faith and to feel welcome in the community. and also enables third- and fourth-year students to take an active and empowered role in their spiritual lives through optional involvement and spiritual leadership opportunities.

“We think it’s important to foster spaces of connection on our campus — small groups, Bible studies, and one-on-one spiritual mentoring,” Collins says. “We are excited to help students connect with religious and spiritual programs as they become leaders in their communities.”