By: Dezaray Barr
Annually, Indiana Wesleyan University presents the Distinguished Wesley Seminary Alumni Award to a deserving candidate. Two of the finalists this year include John and Patty Bray. John and Patty currently work at the university, where John serves as Dean of the Chapel and Patty teaches Old Testament Survey and mentors young women in the community.
Even as the couple continues to serve in the IWU community, their educations from IWU still have a large impact on their lives. John said, “In formative periods of my life, IWU equipped me for life’s practical ministry opportunities. It shaped my thinking.” His favorite professor while studying at IWU was Wilbur
Williams, and at Wesley Seminary was Chris Bounds.
Patty says earning her master’s degree at IWU taught her how to be a, “life-long learner.” Her favorite professors while receiving her master’s degree included Wayne Schmidt, JoAnn Lyon and Steve Lennox.
Before returning to IWU to serve as Dean of the Chapel, John and Patty pastored for 41 years at Heritage Wesleyan Church in Rock Island, Illinois. After serving at Heritage, they lead as interim pastors at First Wesleyan Church in Battle Creek, Michigan, and then Patty served as the interim senior pastor at Fall Creek Wesleyan Church (now, Trinity East Fishers) in Fishers, Indiana.
This award is granted to an alumnus or alumna of the Seminary who has exhibited excellence in serving his or her profession, community, church, or alma mater in the spirit of Jesus Christ, and will be awarded during the Homecoming Weekend of October 7th.
Written by Dezaray Barr, Writer for the Alumni Office. Dezaray is a Sophomore Strategic Communication and Honors Humanities double major at Indiana Wesleyan University in the John Wesley Honors College. At IWU Dezaray is involved in PRSSA leadership and runs both the JWHC Blog and her own blog. Visit Dez’s website at www.dezaraybarr.weebly.com.