Extra headerDecember 2019

New partnership to help business owners, university

A new partnership between the Wayland Alumni Association and Clearent, a full-service payment processor and merchant services provider, aims to benefit both business owners and the university.

Clearent is a direct processor, meaning they are able to pass along the best rates since they work directly with merchants without layers of markup and extra fees. This means businesses can enjoy competitive pricing without long-term contracts, and next day funding available, along with PCI compliance, 24/7/365 customer support, a virtual sales terminal and QuickChip technology.

"Clearent actually puts their customers first and employees a very close second, while they are also transparent company, built on integrity, wBarry Pritchard with customerhich is rare these days. Clearent just doesn't play the merchant service game like others. As a direct processor, they don't have long-term contracts, so no early termination fees, no hidden fees, and they don't raise their rates," said Barry Pritchard, a Lubbock-based account executive for Clearent who is also a 2007 graduate of the Wayland Lubbock campus. "Not all companies have a local agent. I reside in Lubbock, Texas, which means businesses in the area will have a local representative to address their needs in person or they can reach me on my cell phone directly."

Pritchard will serve as Wayland's personal liaison for the referral program, which gives a portion of the sales from each merchant who signs up back to the university.

"This program can save business owners thousands of dollars on their credit card processing fees," added Barry. "As an alumnus myself, I wanted to help the Wayland Alumni Association raise donations. So for each business that signs with Clearent to process their cards, the company and I will donate a percentage of the processing revenue directly to the university.

"Not only do businesses save money but Wayland gets more donations at the same time to benefit the worthwhile programs at our university."

Referrals benefit both parties

Barry explained that businesses interested in learning more about how Clearent can help them save money on these services should contact him directly and mention the Wayland partnership. The program is open to businesses of any size or industry and can be owned or run by alumni or simply referred by other alumni.

"What we love about this program is that it will help our alumni who run businesses to save money and be more efficient, while at the same time blessing their university with donations to support operations, scholarship dollars and other things students need," said Teresa Young, director of alumni relations at Wayland. "This really is a win-win since both parties will benefit from this.

"In today's environment that is so competitive for dollars, programs like these are really valuable for schools like Wayland so we can help our alumni as well as bringing in additional dollars that are so greatly needed," she said.

Based in St. Louis, Clearent uses a proprietary payment technology for both processing and online reporting so businesses have a seamless platform to keep up with their sales. Nationwide, the company boasts more than 600 employees, 50,000 active merchants and $20 billion in annual transaction volume. They are A+ accredited with the Better Business Bureau and is on The Nilson Report's list of top U.S. Acquirers.

Coming on board

Barry said joining the company was an easy decision for him after seeing the reputation Clearent had compared to the rest of the industry. After finding himself on the job hunt again after his company lost their contract, Barry said he had four months to search for his next position.

"I had time to research the top five or so companies in the merchant services industry, particularly credit card services which have a bad reputation of many companies with major ethical issues," he said. "I wanted to make sure I checked them out better than they would check me, and I was finding out that many of these companies didn't reveal some important facts to their customers, like hidden fees and long-term contracts that had to be bought out at ridiculous prices."

Barry said while he initially became discouraged at his findings, he then found Clearent's transparency, integrity and customer service refreshing. He wanted to pick a company that would represent his values and back up their words with actions. Two months later, he's loving the business and excited to move forward and see what can happen, particularly with the referral program.

Pioneer experiences

Like many of the nontraditional students at Wayland's campuses, Barry found himself returning to school at age 32. He earned an associate's degree at a local junior college, then planned to head straight into the bachelor's degree. Instead, a job opened up and he took what ended up being a three-year break before finally deciding to focus solely on the degree.

"Wayland offered both classroom and online courses that would work with my work Barry Pritchardschedule better than other schools," he noted. "Being raised as a Baptist, Wayland also fell in line with my own beliefs, which made it even easier to decide to attend Wayland Baptist University."

He earned a degree in business administration, which complemented his background in sales and management and has helped in his previous and current roles.

To learn more about Clearent can save your business money, contact Barry directly at BPritchard@clearent.com or by phone at (806) 620-2090. More information about their services can also be found online at www.clearent.com.


Minister friends pen book on replanting churches

Sometimes moving from one church to pastor another is just that: a change of scenery and a new set of people to minister.

But in Dr. Kyle Bueermann's case, moving into his most recent pastorate at First Baptist Church in Alamogordo, N.M., was really like rebuilding the church and reshaping its focus and ministry altogether. In ministerial terms, that's called Bueermann book promoreplanting, and it's something pastors in rural areas know quite well.

Now, three years after taking the pulpit in Alamogordo, Kyle and pastor friend Matt Henslee from nearby Mayhill Baptist Church joined forces to share their experiences in replanting in hopes of encouraging ministers who find themselves in the same position. Titled "Replanting Rural Churches," the 80-page book was published through Acoma Press in Denver and commissioned through the North American Mission Board, with whom Kyle serves part-time. It is available through Amazon.

"There hasn't been much written focused on rural ministry in general, and my boss at NAMB realized that gap and asked us to write something," explains Kyle, a 2005 Wayland graduate who also holds a master's degree in divinity and a doctorate in ministry from Rockbridge Seminary. "The whole thrust of our book is to share some things we've done that we would not recommend and some things we have learned serving in rural ministry, and it seems like it is connecting with others. We don't approach it as experts but just those learning and passing along to others."

The heart of the matter

Bueermann explained that there are essentially four themes of the replanting movement: preach, pray, love and stay. Those are not super complicated steps, but they can be challenging, he said…. Especially the last.

"Since Matt and I have only been here a few years, we interviewed two pastors in the association who have been in their roles a long time and asked for their advice about staying and investing in rural churches for that chapter," he noted. And while he's also determined to stay in Alamogordo and see the replant work through - he and wife Michelle actually purchased a home in the city when they arrived as a show of commitment - that doesn't mean the road doesn't have some twists and turns.

While big cities may be growing mega-churches, there is still plenty of room for growth and energizing in the rural areas that still cover the country, and that's why NAMB chose to develop a replant team and engage Kyle to serve with them. That started first as just a conversation by phone with replant director Mark Clifton and soon grew.

"I was just asking questions, and that led to writing blog posts for NAMB, then asking me to come on as a contractor with the team and now as a part-time employee," Kyle explained. "The replant team is mostly full-time pastors serving somewhere, so we all have skin in the game. We're not sitting in offices in Alpharetta; we all have boots on the ground."

Finding fertile ground

Kyle said his story likely mirrors many in rural ministry settings. He came to Alamogordo knowing the previous few years had been rough and they had almost closed. About 50 faithful members remained and there were many things to be done. Today, the church is running between 90-100 on most Sundays, growing by young families, a good number of those military families from nearby Holloman Air Force Base.

"It takes time to build relationships and rebuild. It might take three years just to get to the first step of stopping the bleeding and building the budget. I've seen that to be true," said Kyle. "What I'm not sure I appreciated at the beginning was that it's OK for it to be slow. There may be years of hurt, decline and poor leadership and that doesn't go away overnight. It takes time to heal and nurture for the church to be ready for a new season."

Kyle noted that in small communities, there is a unique opportunity for pastors to Bueermann familyreally serve the entire city, ministering in many cases to business owners and school families who may never darken the church doors. The more involved they get, the more they have community respect and those walls begin to come down slowly.

When he came to Wayland from small-town Tahoka, Texas, Kyle imagined a lifetime in youth ministry.

"My goal was to be that 65-year-old guy playing dodgeball. When I got to Wayland, I thought that would be my life," he laughs. "About10 years later, the Lord changed that through some events at a difficult church as a youth pastor, and I felt led to move into lead pastor roles. I wrestled with that a little, but over the course of six months the Lord changed my heart.

"My heart is for rural ministry; it's what I've known my entire life. I think more and more that will be my focus, to encourage rural pastors and associations. We recognize there are guys serving in the middle of nowhere."

Hitting the airwaves

Another outgrowth of the shared rural pastorate has been a regular podcast that Kyle and Matt developed two years ago shortly after he arrived in Mayhill. "Not Another Baptist Podcast" was born out of a conversation on the way to the New Mexico convention about just sharing conversations and thoughts.

"We wondered what if we just turned on a mic and let other people in on the conversation? It just took off," he said. "To our amazement, it is still going two years later. We've had some interesting guests from Southern Baptist life, and folks still seem to be interested in what two pastors in rural New Mexico think."

The pair records the podcast weekly and releases an episode every Friday. They just hit their 100th episode in October, and the archives are available on their website, www.notanotherbaptistpodcast.com or through regular podcast services like Spotify.

"I think the big thing is we've developed a partnership in ministry, where we can share frustrations or high points," Kyle said. "We've both walked through some struggles, and we've been here long enough to see some cool stuff and some frustrating things. Just being able to encourage each other has been good."

All in all, Bueermann and Henslee will readily admit their work is not for the faint of heart and requires patience and perseverance to love on people through growth and change. But it's not without plenty of reward either.

"It's those days where I pause to take a look back at where we were when we started and where we are now and I see the faithfulness of the Lord's hand. We left a church we loved and came to this church with a lot of question marks and a spirit of unsureness in the congregation. There was a distinct possibility it would all fall apart," Kyle says. "Coming here was a leap of faith, and we wanted to invest in the community. To look back at His faithfulness and see how the Lord has carried us through some struggles where we are now stable has been good."

Michelle, also a 2005 Wayland graduate, is a stay at home mom and homeschools their two children: Noah, 12, and Hailey, 10.


Devotional: Choosing teams

We sports fans love complaining about coaching decisions, even yelling at the TV screen. But, in spiritual matters we find God is a perfect coach who knows how to pick the perfect players for the perfect positions within his team, the body of Christ.

Chosen to be God's players

On the playground, a team captain selects the most talented athletes. As a result, some kids who aren't as skilled have to desperately wait and wonder if they will Soccer team conferringeven be chosen, left hungering for a sense of belonging. But, we have the assurance that "because of Christ…He chose us from the beginning, and all things happen just as He decided long ago" (Ephesians 1:11).

Chosen to play God's position

God loves using his people as instruments to carry out his game plan. Ephesians 2:10 says, "We are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so that we can do the good things He planned for us long ago." But, God doesn't select or reject players according to the same standards kids use on the playground. The first quality he looks for is willingness to obey.

Isaiah wrote, "I heard the voice of the Lord saying, 'Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?' And I said, 'Here am I. Send me!'" (Isaiah 6:8). Like those playground kids, Isaiah was eager to be chosen, willing to serve when called. And, like Isaiah, God has set us apart for something special, has gifted each of us for a specific role on his team. "There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord" (1 Corinthians 12:4-6). All our gifts work together to nurture believers and to bring glory to our Coach.

Chosen to give God props

Giving props means to show respect. Our Heavenly Coach is certainly worthy of blessing, glory, honor and praise, and 1 Peter 2:9 declares that you and I are chosen to "declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."

In a 2002 NFL game, maverick wide receiver Terrell Owens put on a touchdown celebration unlike any other in the history of the game. After scoring, he grabbed some pompoms and began to dance, and for a brief moment, Owens doubled as player and cheerleader. That may seem odd to us, but on God's team that's exactly what we're called to do! As good cheerleaders, you and I incite the cheering of others. You "let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:16).

Pro sport leagues issue weekly transaction reports, listing players who've been traded, released, put on the injured list or on the refused-to-report list. But, God has called you to play on his team. What a wonderful position to be in! Will you go on the refused-to-report list? Or, will you report for training camp?

Eric Chaffin attended Wayland in the 1980s and was involved in Spirit of America singers. He currently serves as associate pastor of discipleship and single adults at Southcrest Baptist Church in Lubbock. He and wife Kristi have four children, including Luke, who will attend WBU in the fall of 2020.

From the History Files

In this month's History Files, we share an excerpt from a homecoming presentation by 2002 alumnus and current WBU faculty member Dr. Rebekah Crowe, associate professor of history.

The Women's Airforce Service Pilots, or WASP, was born in August 1943, the merging of two programs that involved women as noncombat pilots during the war years and some ferrying aircraft for the Air Transport Command.

To be considered for WASP training, women had to be between 21 and 35 years old; WASP participantswith a high school diploma or its equivalent; a commercial pilot's license with at first 150 hours logged flying (this was later dropped to 35 hours and a student license while male pilot trainees didn't even have to have seen a plane before); a personal interview with director Jacqueline Cochran or one of her associates; and a Medical examination by an Army Flight Surgeon which included height and weight requirements.

Unofficially, WASP trainees also had to be white, or at least not black. There were a handful of Native American, Asian American, and Hispanic WASPs, but African-American women were turned away. Cochran worried that integrating the WASP would sink the program before it started. Of the 25,000 women who applied, just over 1,800 women were accepted into WASP training.

The life of a WASP

The WASP found a permanent home outside Sweetwater, Texas, in February 1943, at what became known as Avenger Field. They lived in barracks with six women to a room and one restroom for every two rooms. Following military tradition, the women marched everywhere, did calisthenics, took part in parades, infantry drills, barracks inspection and oaths of allegiance, and ended their day with taps.

WASP trainees spent about 12 hours on the airfield, half of it in the air and the other half in ground school, studying navigation, flight training, physics, aerodynamics, electronics, mathematics, weather, communications, meteorology, Morse code, military law and aircraft mechanics. The women also had to pass written and flight tests and an instrument rating.

The 1,074 WASP who graduated scattered to new assignments on air bases across the country, where they ferried planes (12,650 in all); towed targets for anti-aircraft and aerial gunnery training; towed gliders; participated in tracking and searchlight missions; simulated strafing and gassing; tested aircraft and equipment (including rocket-propelled and jet-propelled planes); delivered weapons, cargo, and personnel; became flight instructors; and demonstrated new aircraft. In the end, they flew over 60 million miles in every military aircraft that was part of the Army Air Corps arsenal.

Wayland's own WASP

Proudly, Wayland can claim one of those WASP among its alumni ranks.

Lea Ola May McDonald was born in Hollywood, Ark., on October 12, 1921. She grew up on a farm outside Seagraves, Texas, and came to Wayland in the fall of 1940. During her two years at Wayland, she played guard on the basketball team, was a Lea Ola, basketball playermember of the Young Women's Association, the "W" Club, the Press Club, and was the business manager for the school newspaper, The Jackrabbit.

She also impersonated the dean of women during what must have been an entertaining chapel production. Lea Ola also took ground school classes at Wayland and did the flying portion of her pilot's license at the Plainview airport as part of the Civilian Pilot Training program. When she graduated in 1941, she was a licensed pilot.

Lea Ola went on to West Texas State College (now West Texas A& M), studying business administration; I'm not yet sure if she graduated. The facts get a little fuzzy here. Many sources state that Lea Ola went to work in a McDonnell Douglas Aircraft plant in Long Beach, Calif., for a while before becoming a WASP.

What we do know is that she entered WFTD training in Houston on January 15, 1943, then became a WASP and graduated with class 44-W-3 at Avenger Field on April 5, 1944. The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal wrote a story about her graduation.

After graduation, she was assigned to Biggs Army Air Field outside El Paso. Less than 4 months after graduation, on June 21, 1944, the Douglas RA-24B Banshee attack bomber Lea Ola was flying crashed due to mechanical failure. Lea Ola was 22 years old. She is buried in the Gaines County Cemetery near Seagraves.


Alumni support needed for strong finish at year-end

As 2019 approaches its close, the Office of Advancement is encouraging alumni in particular to consider a year-end gift to help the university programs and operations efforts. In particular, gifts to the Annual Fund provide a way to touchrendering of Moody improvements every campus and every program by allowing the university to meet the most critical needs and ensure the best experience possible for our students.

"We depend so heavily on our alumni -- who represent both our 'product' and our most cherished 'customer' -- to pay forward the blessings they received while students at Wayland so that our current students can be equally blessed," said Teresa Young, director of alumni relations. "Giving at whatever level you are able is simply a way to stay invested in your alma mater and doing your part to make sure it stays viable and healthy into the coming year."

Alumni may give by sending a check in the mail to Wayland Baptist University, 1900 W. 7th St., CMB 1295, Plainview, TX 79072. Gifts may also be made online securely with a credit or debit card at this website: https://give.wbu.edu/. All gifts will be tax-deductible to the full extent the law allows. To be considered for deductions under the 2019 tax year, all gifts must be postmarked by Dec. 31, 2019.

Both checks and online giving allow the donor the opportunity to direct their gift to a specific project, campus or fund of their interest. The Advancement Team encourages alumni to consider the current Impact 2020 campaign since all gifts to the Gates Hall, Moody Science Building or Athletic Training Center projects will go toward a $2 million matching grant that must be received by October 2020. You can learn more about these projects at our campaign website: https://www.impactwayland.com/.

"I always encourage alums to consider a monthly gift to any of these worthwhile projects. Even if your family budget will only allow $20 per month to bless Wayland, that will make a bigger impact over the year than a single check, and it's a little easier on the family finances," said Teresa. "You can choose to do that online and give automatically with a credit card, or you can set up a bank draft by sending us a voided check."

For more information, contact Teresa at (806) 291-3600 or by email at teresa.young@wbu.edu.


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