Community, Student Volunteer Chaplains Honored at BPC

 

By Terry Gaston

BPC Public Relations

MOUNT VERNON -- Brewton-Parker College men's basketball coach and athletic director Steve Barker considers as great assets those community and student volunteers who serve as chaplains for the Baron and Lady Baron athletic teams.

"We are so close to our teams from the first day of school to the last day," Barker said. "What the chaplains have allowed our athletes to have is an outlet to talk about their outside problems or concerns when they might not feel comfortable talking to us coaches.

Volunteer and student chaplains, their assigned coaches and other Brewton-Parker officials met Sept. 18 for a luncheon to recognize those who spend time with the college's student-athletes.

Rev. Al Rahn, Brewton-Parker's campus minister, served as host of the luncheon in the Briscoe Center meeting room, an event that officially marked the beginning of the chaplain program's sixth year.

"We appreciate the time and effort these people take because they love Brewton-Parker," Barker added.

Rev. C.B. Easterlin, pastor of Friendship Baptist Church in Glenwood, is a charter member of the chaplains' team and serves in that role for the Lady Barons' softball squad. Rebecca Timberlake is the student chaplain for the softball team, which is coached by Jason Bryant.

Easterlin, who lives in Vidalia, spoke of his experiences of just making himself available to players and giving them a willing ear away from their coaches and teammates.

Sometimes, he said, the players wanted to talk before or after practice, while others preferred the opportunities he has offered to visit outside their dormitories and away from the athletic environs.

 

Other community volunteers and student assistant chaplains, listed by sport with coaches, are:

Baseball -- Michael Aoa, Brewton-Parker director of student activities, volunteer; Jason Teal, student assistant for varsity; Jeremy Curtis, student assistant for junior varsity; Chad Parker, head coach; and Jeremy Maddox and Michael Rodgers, JV and assistant coaches.

Men's soccer -- Rev. Tom Allen, pastor of First Baptist Church of Mount Vernon, volunteer; Jeremy Moore, student assistant; Ben Moore, coach.

Men's basketball -- Rev. Dan Zellner, pastor of First Baptist Church of Glenwood, volunteer; Josh Stuart, student assistant; Steve Barker, head coach; and Peter Dees, JV and assistant coach.

Volleyball -- Susan Allen of Mount Vernon, volunteer; Renia Avera, student assistant; and Jason Bryant, coach.

Women's basketball -- Nancy Stanley of Vidalia, volunteer; and Tommy Dalley, coach.

Women's soccer -- Carol Jones of Vidalia, volunteer; and Jeremy Aven, coach.

Cheerleaders -- Angela Yarber, student assistant.

"Our student-athletes are very important to Brewton-Parker College," said Dr. David Smith, BPC's president. "More important is our mission to be an unapologetically Christian institution of higher education.

"As we merge those two aspirations into programs such as these, then everyone wins."

 

Volunteer and Brewton-Parker College student chaplains and their assigned coaches gather outside the Briscoe Center after a Sept. 18 luncheon to recognize those who spend time with the college's student-athletes. The event officially marked the beginning of the chaplain program's sixth year.