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2011 Communio: A Retreat for New Faculty
On May 16, 2011, twenty-nine Baylor faculty members, administrators, graduate students and retreat leaders boarded a bus to Laity Lodge in the Texas Hill Country. This marked the beginning of Communio: A Retreat for New Faculty, the annual IFL event designed for faculty completing their first year at Baylor. Held May 16-20, 2011, the retreat provided an opportunity for participants to step out of the daily routine of life for a week of discussion, reflection, prayer, and fellowship.
Communio centers on conversations related to vocation and scholarship, inviting participants to consider the relation of their Christian faith to their work in the university. Through lectures by leading figures in Christian scholarship, group discussions, and assigned readings, participants join the important conversation that animates Baylor's mission to exemplify excellence in scholarship with a deep commitment to Christian faith in the Baptist tradition.
Yet it is not only during the sessions devoted to vocation and scholarly identity that significant moments happen. Those on the retreat enjoy time to experience the beauty of the Laity Lodge with hiking, canoeing, an art studio, and simply rest. Most importantly, however, as the title of the retreat suggests, time at Laity Lodge offers the chance to develop relationships with colleagues from across the university. Over meals, during free time, and in worship, faculty and staff members share life together reflecting on their common calling to the life of the mind and the life of faith.
SHIRLEY J. ROELS (B.A., Calvin College; M.B.A, University of Michigan; Ph.D., Michigan State University) is director of the Van Lunen Center for Executive Management in Christian Schools at Calvin College. She is also the Council of Independent Colleges senior advisor for the Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE). She began her teaching career in the department of economics and finance at Calvin before serving as dean of ac