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Carson-Newman presents students with Ministry and Missions Cords

Dr. William and Linda Viel (front center) gather with Carson-Newman seniors following the Ministry and Missions Cording ceremony on campus. Lifetime missionaries and C-N alumni, the Viels helped award cords to the students, who have exemplified living a life ministry or mission during their time at Carson-Newman.

Carson-Newman University’s Campus Ministries awarded special recognition to seniors who have demonstrated exemplary service to ministry and missions during a cording ceremony April 7.

The Ministry and Missions Cords were awarded by Dr. Bill and Linda Viel, who served as missionaries for over 40 years after graduating from Carson-Newman.

During a charge to the cord recipients, Dr. Jonathan Akin, vice president for Church Relations and Campus Ministries, acknowledged that young graduates often wrestle with many life questions. “Let me give some direction by telling you what the most important thing you can do with the rest of your life,” Akin said. “Follow Jesus.” Referencing how Jesus called Peter and Andrew to follow him and become fishers of men, Akin challenged the seniors to do likewise, saying that regardless of “wherever you are, or whatever you do, do as missionaries for Christ.”

Akin said having the Viels on campus to help celebrate these students was special. “Throughout their lives and ministry, the Viels have embodied what we hope our students aspire toward,” Akin said.

The students received red and white cords, symbolic of God’s love, the blood of Jesus, his sinless purity, and sins that are white as snow because of Jesus’ sacrificial blood.

Those receiving the cords are equipped to share the Gospel and have demonstrated experience in living out a Gospel-shaped life while sharing the hope of the Gospel with others. The ceremony and cords represent the University’s obedience to the teachings of Scripture and as an expression of its Christian convictions and heritage.

“It is with great honor to recognize these students with this year’s Ministry and Missions Cords,” said University President Charles A. Fowler. “Each of these recipients have demonstrated their love for Christ and their obedience to sharing the Gospel with others. They are doing what all followers of Christ are called to do – to spread the Good News and show the love of Jesus to our world.”

Those awarded shared God’s word on mission trips, responded to the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of others, participated in community outreach, and considered encounters with other people as a divine appointment.

Founded in 1851, Carson-Newman is a Christian liberal arts-based university affiliated with the Tennessee Baptist Convention. The University is located in Jefferson City, Tennessee, among the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. Carson-Newman offers 50 undergraduate majors, as well as associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees.

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