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Crossing, Stepping, Marching—by God's Grace 

President's Message

Crossing Safely

The short walk I took on May 8 wasn't physically taxing. Yet I'll remember that brief stroll for the rest of my life. On that windy May day my presidential predecessors, Drs. William Spoelhof and Anthony Diekema, joined me to traverse the bustling East Beltline via "Calvin's Crossing," the new pedestrian overpass that links the emerging East Campus with the Knollcrest Campus.

We were full of delight, marveling at the amazing architectural span around us, grateful to God for His powerful hand in shaping Calvin's past, present and future. The writer Frederick Buechner refers to these moments as having one step in eternity; for a brief moment we're able to glimpse the larger picture of God's great plan for His own.

It was good for the Calvin community to end the 2001-02 school year with the dedication of "Calvin's Crossing" after having begun the college's 126th annual academic journey on such a tragic note with the September 11 terrorist attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C. At the dedication service, we talked much about God providing us a "safe passage," using Joshua 1:9 as our text: "…for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."

These powerful words have meaning, not just for our endeavors at Calvin, but also for our grieving nation and a troubled world. Now, more than ever, our world needs Christian leaders like those who graduate from Calvin College—persons shaped by a rigorous education and guided by the Spirit to use their gifts to build shalom wherever God places them.

Despite the unnerving events of September 11, God granted Calvin safe passage through a stormy opening month, punctuated by a threat that caused the evacuation of the campus on September 20. Even during that incredible experience, His light shone brightly. More than 2,000 on-campus students were taken in by local families in less than an hour. The campus pulled together in its time of need.


Gaylen J. Byker
Gaylen J. Byker
 "For the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."
~ Joshua 1:9
the dedication of "Calvin's Crossing"

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