May 1 2009

Candler Spring Banquet

Spring Banqueteers, from left to right, Becca Storace (MTS ’10),

Cody Case (MDiv ’10), and Justice Schunior (MDiv ’09). They might have been

rocking out to Bon Jovi. Livin’ on a Prayer??? Tough to tell.

Spring is a time of joy, celebration, and transition at Candler. Last Friday, April 24, Candler held its annual Spring Banquet, AKA “The Candler Prom,” an outward expression of all of these for students, faculty, and staff. There is joy in fellowship and dancing with friends, classmates, coworkers, and professors. Though Finals still remain for some, everyone celebrates the end of a rigorous academic year or an entire degree program. And the school begins a transition, as students graduate, classmates move across town and around the world, and faculty and staff retire and follow life on to further adventures.

Here are some photos of and thoughts about the Spring Banquet, from some of our students and faculty.

Above, from left to right, Scott Wilks (MDiv ’09) and Khalif Smith (MDiv ’11)

Scott Wilks, MDiv ’09,

The Candler Prom is that last chance to unwind with friends, to raise a glass and salute good times, and to get that hug or handshake from someone who has shared the laughter and the tears. The Candler Prom included all the fun parts of a wedding reception, except that instead of celebrating just one couple, we were celebrating ALL of us. Friends like Khalif who remind me that my brothers (and sisters), whether in friendship or in Christ, enrich our lives by walking with me and sharing who they are.

During my time at Candler, I built some real friendships which have sustained and enriched the educational component of the academy. Some will remind me of God’s love for all when I hear people say stupid or hateful things. Some will give me hope that God’s work, which is entrusted into human hands and hearts, will be pursued with diligence and purpose.

Above, from left to right, Haemin Lee (ThM ’07, Emory PhD ’13) and Candy Benson (MDiv ’11)

Diane Kenaston, MDiv ’11 (not pictured)

Best parts about Candler Prom:

  • relaxing after a stressful last week of class (and gearing up for finals)
  • being with friends who feel more like family
  • hanging out with the third-years one last time (officially!)
  • watching the choir pose as Calendar Girls
  • the Colbert-Report-styled Candler video
  • and (my personal favorite) seeing professors break it down on the dance floor (especially Dr. Brooks Holifield, below)
Professor Brooks Holifield, with his wife Vicky, doing an old school Swing.

Above, from left to right, Nancy Gerhart, Sarah Glidewell, Maria Presley,

and Christina Repoley, all from the MDiv class of 2011

Nancy Gerhart, MDiv ’11

I had a great time at Candler Prom! I was so fun to watch the videos, eat, and dance with my fellow students, professors, and Candler staff. At Candler you feel like you are part of a community anyway, but it became very evident at the Spring Banquet that we all love each other and are here to support each other and have fun!

Sarah Glidewell, MDiv ’11

Spring Banquet provides an opportunity for the Candler community to come together outside of the classroom. Spending time with classmates, professors, and especially those about to graduate is a great way to end the year!

Maria Presley, MDiv ’11

The highlight of Candler prom for me was celebrating the last day of my first year of classes with the friends who have filled my first year of memories.

Above, from left to right, Susan Evans (MTS ’10) and Nathan Skinner (MTS ’10)

Above, from left to right, Jenna Strizak (MDiv ’11) and Lea Harrison (MTS ’10)

Jenna Strizak, MDiv ’11

Spring Banquet was a great chance to decompress from finals, visit with old friends and new, and celebrate (and poke fun at ourselves!) as a community.

Above, from left to right, Kim Jackson (MDiv ’09), Khalif Smith (MDiv ’11) and Trina Jackson (MTS ’09)

Kim Jackson, MDiv ’09

I missed the Candler Spring banquet my first year, and after seeing the pictures, I vowed to never miss it again during my time at Candler. The “Prom” is such a fun experience, and a great time to share laughs and good food with the Candler community. I especially enjoyed seeing faculty and staff getting on the dance floor with us!

Above, from left to right, Keri Olsen (MDiv ’11), and Duncan Teague (MDiv ’11)

Keri Olsen, MDiv ’11

As a first year student, Spring Banquet seemed like the last of our initiation into the Candler community. It was a witness to the fact that we really were a part of a fun and trusting community composed of professors and students, but most importantly friends.

Duncan Teague, MDiv ’11

The evening was a pleasant distraction from our finals and papers. Everyone cleaned up so nice. It was fun to do the Electric Slide with half of my fellow students from Preaching Class.