Meet Eric Peterson, Men's Chaplain

He has filled many different roles during his time at ORU. Starting as a student pursuing a Master of Practical Theology degree, Eric Peterson is now the visionary and leader of the Men's Chaplain Program at ORU. The Chaplain Program which Peterson co-leads with Women's Chaplain, Carol Holderness, consists of about 90 students who promote the spiritual aspect of ORU's Whole Person Education by facilitating and nurturing spiritual growth on campus.

Peterson believes one of the greatest ministry tools at ORU is the student Chaplain. To become a Chaplain, a student completes an application and has an initial interview. Following this, Chaplain candidates perform a six-week internship shadowing and assisting a current Chaplain. Once the internship is completed, the candidate will have a panel interview. Out of this process the Chaplains for the following year are selected.

As the Chaplain Program Men's Coordinator, Peterson's role is to help direct the program, which he sees as a process of empowering the head Chaplains to do their job of helping other students grow spiritually. Chaplains assist in chapel services, lead devotions, hold wing prayer and host outreach events such as mentoring groups and events specifically for men or women allowing for ministry to gender specific needs. Peterson says he absolutely loves working with ORU students, the best college students anywhere, in his view.

This is a special time for both parents and students. Being prepared for change and keeping lines of communication open will prove beneficial. Recognizing change as part of a growth process is also important. Peterson believes your child is in the best place possible to experience growth.  When your child returns home for breaks, Peterson encourages parents (and students) to be mindful that in the time the students have been away, both parties have changed, and for the most part, those changes will be for the better. However, an adjustment process is normal. To parents, Peterson says, "Students have grown over the semester. Your ability to allow them to go through it helps facilitate growth."

"ORU is not an academic university only," says Peterson. "It is a place that allows students to find, grow and struggle in their faith. All these aspects are necessary for a disciple of Christ to be prepared for the world they are entering. There is no other place where a student can receive a whole person education in the world. What a place!"

Eric Peterson can be reached by phone at 918.495.7721 and by email at epeterson@oru.edu.