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Jon Kennedy's recent book, The Everything Guide to C.S. Lewis and Narnia, from Adams Media, F&W Publications, is available for purchase in support of the Liberty Museum in Nanty Glo and can be ordered here. It is also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and in Kindle and Nook ebook editions.
  

JONAL ENTRY 1230 | JUNE 4 2012

The college reunion referred to last time was for Shelton College, the small Christian Liberal Arts school that awarded my Bachelor of Arts in 1967. The school had only a few more than 100 students in all four years at the time, and eventually it had to close its doors permanently. So the reunion was open to anyone who ever attended the school and wanted to reunite with old friends from Shelton days. Begun as the National Bible Institute in Manhattan early last century, it had moved to the Ramapo Mountains of New Jersey, was renamed for its founding president, Don O. Shelton, and reorganized from a Bible institute into a liberal arts college in 1948. There were some people at the reunion who had attended it when it was still "NBI" and remembered riding the New York subways to school every day.

 

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In 1964, the year I joined the employ of Dr. Carl McIntire in Collingswood, New Jersey, the college moved from the mountains in the state's remote north to the seashore at its remotest southern point, Cape May. Dr. McIntire was editor (and publisher) of the Christian Beacon weekly newspaper and he hired me away from the Nanty Glo Journal to be his paper's managing editor. The paper had established a 333-room Bible conference in Cape May, and Dr. McIntire, who had gained control of Shelton College, moved the college to keep the 333-room facility working throughout the school year, which begins about the same time the Bible conference season ends each year. Only 22 years old at the time and single, I was thilled to be able to interact with such a large population of peers who shared my highest convictions (my boss had given me a standing invitation to spend time as a guest of the Bible conference any time I was able).

Having completed, by this time, three full academic years and 100 units of study at the University of Pittsburgh (most of it at Johnstown College, now UPJ), I was eventually able to complete my undergrad degree by attending Shelton for only one year. But before that year, I was able to attend the Reformed Episcopal Seminary in Philadelphia for two years while spending virtually all of my weekends at Cape May, all the while working as the Christian Beacon's managing editor and serving in various public relations offices in the organizations under McIntire, and on the board of International Christian Youth.

That final year of my undergraduate life, at Shelton, was the best school-year of my life, the only one at which I spent at least a portion of each week "in residence" at the campus, interacting with students in academic ways like dorm bull sessions and working on the school's newspaper, and college- and ministry-related activities. I never made more friends in any other time of life, and ones that have endured despite the radical changes in my life since then. I am spending this week with a couple of them, in Cape May, in fact.

I've rambled into more personal life reflection than expected, but the attached video is fairly self-explanatory, so I'll get this "to press" without more elaboration.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy


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