Earlier this month, Augustine and Allie Mendoza were promoted to the positions of Director and Associate Director of Spiritual Life and Chaplain Programs on campus.
This is the first time ORU has had director positions of this sort. With the Women’s Head Chaplain position recently vacated as former Chaplain Carol Holderness transitioned into a new position, leadership within the chaplain program was open for the Mendozas to gracefully step in.
By working together, the couple hopes to encourage students to be spiritually alive.
“That’s a priority for us,” said Augustine. “Setting methods to really ground you and grow you spiritually. You could’ve gone to any university, but since you’re here, you might as well take advantage of the deep roots that ORU has of pursuing God.”
The Mendoza’s new job has come with different responsibilities as the chaplain program is being grown into something more than weekly devotionals (devos). Augustine hopes that men in the chaplain program can learn to step out more.
“I see the men in the chaplain program really stepping out and being seen as key spiritual leaders on campus, not just part of the floor or just a person that does devos,” Augustine said. “I want them to be seen as what they carry versus what they do. I see them being spiritual catalysts on campus.”
Meanwhile, Allie seeks to encourage the women on campus in a new way.
“For the women, I want to establish identity. We talk about being daughters of God, but what does that actually look like for you personally?”
Through the changes, they are looking forward to learning more and serving where they can.
“There’s always a learning curve when you jump into a new job. We’re trying to develop new relationships and plan for next year. There’s a lot of new faces and names, but it’s a lot of fun,” Allie said.
With the new job comes bigger dreams, and the couple hopes to keep expanding the spiritual resources available to ORU students through new programs.
“We are probably starting a mentorship group in the fall,” Augustine said. “We’ve already talked about doing a group together for guys and girls addressing topics, spiritual growth, mentoring, that kind of thing. So, stay tuned, fall 2018.”
But most of all, the Mendoza’s just want to be there for students.
“We are not here to be stage faces, but to come alongside them in their lives and be available and present.”
With the Mendozas as designated spiritual leaders on campus, students can expect exciting change and growth in the new year.