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Feb. 25, 2004
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Faculty shares religious faith

By Yuan Sheng

Several Baylor professors talked about their faith and spiritual journey at the Graduate Christian Fellowship meeting Tuesday evening in the Reynolds Conference Suite.

"Before I came to Baylor, I worked at the University of Washington and was the only Christian professor in the engineering department," Dr. Robert J. Marks II, distinguished professor of the engineering department, said.

According to Marks, he once worked as an advisor for the university's chapter Campus Crusade for Christ. However, many people in the secular university were hostile to the organization and wouldn't let it own a mailbox.

"I came to Baylor because of the Baylor 2012, the Christian environment and the leadership of [President Robert B. Sloan Jr.]," Marks said.

Marks said after he came to Baylor, he felt less restraints and more freedom to talk about his beliefs.

Dr. Randall Jean, associate professor in the engineering department, told listeners how God brought him to Baylor.

"About 17 years ago, I left [Texas A&M University] as a professor and worked as an engineer in the industrial sector," Jean said. "As my faith continued to develop, I felt God called me not only to be an engineer, but also an evangelist."

Jean said five years ago, he was tired of all the technical stuff. He tried to sell his house before working as an evangelist without pay.

Although the real estate market was booming at that time, he couldn't find a seller.

"That meant God still wanted me to be in the engineering field," Jean said.

Later, on a Sunday morning, after Jean picked up the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers Spectrum magazine, he saw Baylor's faculty recruitment advertisement.

When he noticed the last criterion - to be an active member of a Christian church - he felt it was the exact place where God wanted him to work.

"The distinct difference between Baylor and a secular university boils down to what is the foundation for truth," Jean said.

"If you lay your foundation outside the ground of God, no matter how many layers of truth you pile on top of that foundation, it will not stand, because it has no internal significance. But if you lay a foundation on the solid faith in Jesus Christ, it will stand."

These professors were invited by Graduate Christian Fellowship to help graduate students know more about God.

"The purpose of Graduate Christian Fellowship is to provide an opportunity for graduate students to encourage one another and to grow in their Christian life in the academic world," Patrick Adair, a graduate student from Palestine and a graduate ministry intern, said.

According to Adair, Graduate Christian Fellowship groups meet every Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the CUB lounge at the Bill Daniel Student Center and every Friday at 4 p.m. in the Cowden room at the student center for Bible study and prayer.

Evan Getz, a graduate student from San Diego, Calif., talked about his feelings of the Friday meetings.

"It is an amazing group," Getz said. "We have different perspectives in this group. People from different departments come together and passionately discuss faith, Christ, the Scripture and what we learn. It is something I look forward to every week."

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Last modified May 02, 2003 12:17 AM.