Matthew Jones of Eureka receives Olivet's 2014 homiletics award

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Matthew Jones of Eureka, recipient of Olivet's 2014 homiletics award

BOURBONNAIS, IL (04/04/2014)(readMedia)-- Olivet Nazarene University's School of Theology and Christian Ministry is pleased to present the 2014 Sylvanus Carter Homiletics Award to Matthew Jones, a senior religious studies major from Eureka. During a special chapel service at College Church of the Nazarene on April 1, 2014, Jones received the award from University President John C. Bowling and delivered the sermon he had written.

Seniors Nick Kellar and Adrian Calhoun were also finalists for this award. Both received scholarships and were recognized during the service.

Each participant in the competition for this award researches, writes and submits the manuscript of a sermon that he/she has prepared. Next, selected participants deliver their sermons to an audience. Each sermon is rated on exegesis of scripture, focus and relevance for the audience who will hear it, as well as the participant's delivery of it. Three finalists are then chosen to receive scholarships, and one of those is designated as recipient of the award.

"We are pleased to honor three men of God who will preach the Word of God," said Professor Jason Robertson, chair of the selection committee.

Matthew Jones has been involved with many aspects of campus life during his years at Olivet. He has participated in Associated Student Council, Spiritual Life Council, Orpheus Choir, and Olivet's improvisational comedy troupe, Spoons4Forks. In addition, he is a resident assistant for Hills Hall, a role that he plans to continue while pursuing his Masters of Arts in Pastoral Ministry degree at Olivet next year.

Jones's award-winning sermon, "The Foundation of our Faith," was based on John 5. "The resurrection is what we are about," said Jones in his sermon. "It is in the resurrection that we have the possibility of hope. The resurrection makes all the difference."

"Preach the Word. That is central to the work of the ministry," Dr. Bowling said as he addressed Jones, Kellar and Calhoun during the service.

The Sylvanus Carter Homiletics Award was established by Dr. and Mrs. Stephen Carter in honor of Stephen's father, Rev. Sylvanus Carter - a pastor in the Church of the Nazarene for 56 years. Rev. Carter's life and ministry modeled a strong commitment to preaching and pastoral care.

Olivet Nazarene University is an accredited Christian, liberal arts university offering more than 100 areas of undergraduate and graduate study, including the Doctor of Education in ethical leadership. Olivet has one main campus in Bourbonnais, Ill. - just 50 miles south of Chicago; three additional sites: Rolling Meadows and Oak Brook, Ill., and Hong Kong; and more than 100 School of Graduate and Continuing Studies learning locations throughout Chicagoland and the Midwest. From Oxford to Tokyo, hundreds of Olivet students also experience the global classroom each year, whether through study abroad opportunities or worldwide mission trips.


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Laura Warfel

Public Relations Specialist

Olivet Nazarene University

Bourbonnais, Ill.