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CU faculty, staff, students and trustee serve in winter mission trips

Jan. 24, 2014
For Immediate Release

Cortni Cruse, bottom right, at left, and Bethany Thomaston work with children in Haiti.

Cortni Cruse, bottom right, at left, and Bethany Thomaston work with children in Haiti.


By Samantha Stevenson, student news writer

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Citizens in Grand Isle, La., Haiti and Cuba received help from Campbellsville University students and faculty during mission trips over the winter holidays.

Campbellsville University students partnered with First Baptist Church of Grand Isle and worked in and around the church, repairing pews, updating the church landscape, etc. Some of the students also participated in leading a worship service on Sunday nights for the members of First Baptist Church.

There were 22 students who traveled on the trip including:

Elise Bauer, Veronica Clark, Kameron Smith, Katlin Weeks and Taylor Ohlmann, all of Louisville, Ky., Devan Bishop of Columbia, Ky., Noah Blackburn of Mt. Sterling, Ky. Matthew Bradshaw, Dustin Ford and Austin VanMeter of Campbellsville, Ky.,

Savannah Coker of Harrodsburg, Ky., Blake Hanna of Shelbyville, Ind., Derrick Livingston of Midway, Tenn., Sierra McGinnis of Willisburg, Ky., Krista Mitchell of Bloomington, Ind., Olivia Murphy of Mt. Sterling, Ky.,
Taylor Murphy of Rockholds, Ky., Marissa Rehmet of Independence, Ky., Seth and Tanner Royalty, both of Burgin, Ky., Rachel Sasko of Williamsburg, Ky. and Kacy Stinson of Scottsville, Ky.

Campbellsville University sophomores Bethany Thomaston of Auburn, Ky. and Cortni Cruse of Lexington, Ala. went to Haiti on a mission trip with Crossings ministries, a Christian summer camp that reached over 11,000 middle and high school students from across the country last summer.

While in Haiti, Crossings staffers held Vacation Bible Schools in Haitian villages. Crossings also hosted a day camp at Camp Le Phare for the first time, partnering with Baptist Haiti Mission with the assistance of translators.
Board of Trustee member Dr. Joel Carwile and Dr. Twyla Hernandez, assistant professor of Christian ministries, also traveled to Cuba to set up a new center of the Hispanic Baptist Bible Institute in the Iglesia Bautista Ebenezer in Banes, Cuba.

Carwile’s church, Valley View in Louisville, provided the financial support for the center. Dr. John Chowning, pastor of Saloma Baptist Church, also provided a sizeable donation in support of the 47 students there. In addition, they provided a month’s salary for several pastors in the area, provided by other believers in the United States. Chowning is vice president for church and external relations and executive assistant to the president at CU.

“There are a million stories that I could share about how God’s hand was on this trip, and we give Him all the praise for all that is going on there. God is definitely at work in Cuba!” Hernandez said.

The Rev. Clemente Hernandez, pastor of a Hispanic Baptist Church in Georgetown, Ky., also traveled to Mexico with them. He is the husband of Dr. Twyla Hernandez.

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 3,600 students offering 63 undergraduate options, 17 master’s degrees, five postgraduate areas and eight pre-professional programs. The website for complete information is