Reverend David Beelen, Lead Pastor, and Ricardo Tavarez, Director of Outreach, from Madison Square Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, will visit Geneva College on Wednesday, January 16, 2013. They will speak to a variety of audiences throughout the day about issues of diversity.
Tavarez will speak in Chapel at 10:10 a.m. in Metheny Fieldhouse. Chapel is a weekly devotional time for the Geneva College community, which provides an opportunity for the campus to gather together to praise God, hear His word, and seek His favor and direction.
Both Rev. Beelen and Tavarez will present “A Journey toward Diversity” at 7 p.m. in Skye Lounge of the Student Center. The duo will share their experiences in facilitating diversity in their church and community followed by a question and answer session.
Both events are free and open to the public.
Madison Square Church was established in 1914 as a storefront gospel mission and has grown into a multisite church that, throughout its history, has “sought to break down racial and cultural barriers to bring together all of God’s children and celebrate our differences and our similarities.” As evidence of this longstanding tradition, the church’s staff and congregation represent many different backgrounds and cultures.
Rev. Beelen has been at Madison Square Church for over 30 years. In his current position as Lead Pastor, Rev. Beelen is a leadership developer for the church’s Preaching Team and a mentor for seminary students and other leaders.
Tavarez is a student at Calvin Seminary and a mentee of Rev. Beelen. As Madison’s Director of Outreach, Tavarez oversees the church’s outreach efforts, as well as community partnerships with other organizations.
Also on Wednesday, Rev. Beelen and Tavarez will take part in a Pastors’ Lunch and an Employee Training at Geneva. On Tuesday, they will speak to the college’s Student Development staff on “Developing Multicultural Leaders.” These events are by invitation only.
Geneva College is a comprehensive Christian college of the arts, sciences and professional studies. Founded in the tradition of the Reformed Christian faith, Geneva prepares students to serve Christ in all areas of society: work, family and the church. Geneva College’s philosophy of education is based on the Foundational Concepts of Christian Higher Education. Geneva is a founding member of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU).
A great majority of Geneva students – 70% – complete internships during the course of their study.