Freshmen Year During A Pandemic

Lessons learned being a college freshman during the pandemic: Blessings are found in even the darkest of times. Since coming to college it feels like everything I have been excited for or looked forward to has been taken away. I can’t have guests in my room or friends from other residence halls enter my building.[…]

“In the Garden”

One of my all time favorite hymns is “In the Garden,” and I often find myself humming the tune as I work in the UGrow garden at UKirk. The song opens with the line “I come to the garden alone,” and as I hummed that verse while gardening last week I couldn’t help but laugh.[…]

Finding Gratitude Amidst the Chaos

On Friday February 28th, I was sitting on the bed in a tiny Paris AirBnb, daydreaming out the sixth-story slanted window, when my friend interrupted my thoughts: “They’re getting sent home.” They were our friends studying abroad in Rome, Italy, and this led to a disheartening, foreboding question: Would we be next? I am an[…]

Navigating College Amidst COVID-19

I’m sure we are all tired of hearing about the repercussions of COVID-19, I know I am. But I’ll say it one more time for the people in the back, these are weird times we are going through. One of the weirdest adjustments that UT students have been making is switching to online classes. In[…]

UKirk is doing GREAT!

In the late spring our campus minister resigned to take a new call. With the timing of everything we knew we would not be able to have a new campus minister in place by the time the new school year started, but we were ready for the challenge. The Board of Directors stepped up to[…]

A Weekend in Charlotte Well Spent

Over the first weekend of spring break, a few of my fellow UKirk friends and I travelled to Charlotte, NC—my hometown—to take part in a mini-mission trip through CROSS Missions. We arrived on a chilly Friday night and were immediately welcomed by Joel Tomkinson, who greeted us with an enormous amount of energy for late[…]

Shining Light in the Darkness: Searching for Hope in the Midst of Tragedy

Two weeks ago today, a fire started in the Smoky Mountain National Park spread furiously into the City of Gatlinburg and the surrounding areas of Sevier County, Tennessee. Thousands of acres burned, homes and businesses were destroyed and 14 people died as a result of this tragedy. While travesties of this nature are not restricted[…]

Exclusive Interview with Jan Edmiston, Co-Moderator of the 222nd General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

I must admit, I get star struck by presby-celebs. I have a hard time keeping it cool when I’m around academic superstars like Dr. Brian Blount and Dr. Katie Cannon, powerhouse pastors like John Morgan, cutting-edge colleagues like Brittany Porch and Howard Dudley (don’t worry if you weren’t selected for this, I am doing pairs…there are[…]