November 12, 2009 Volume CXXVI Issue 9

Pat Day talks about faith, calling

By TORI BACHMAN-JOHNSON
Opinion Editor

On Tuesday, Nov. 10, Georgetown College had the honor of welcoming world renowned jockey Pat Day to speak at the Chapel Service. Day shared his testimony, beginning with an experience from his adolescence. When Day was 13 years old, an evangelical family of Southern Baptists moved into his hometown. While in their home, the mother, Mrs. Allen, described the life and times of Jesus to Day. Day had heard it all before; he was raised in a Lutheran home. Mrs. Allen then asked that he pray the Sinner’s Prayer with her. Day did so, but only because he felt uncomfortable. Afterwards, he quickly forgot about this experience, but now refers to it as the day when he took the Lord into his heart.

Day’s entrance into the world of horse racing was not quite an intentional one. He grew up in Colorado in a more rodeo-centered setting. Though many people suggested to him that, because of his small stature and experience with horses, jockeying might be the career for him, he brushed them aside. However, in 1972, he had no job, so he used a phone number that had been given to him and called up a man, looking for a job as a jockey. He was hired. As explained by his boss, he would work on a farm, learning the business for two to three years, then watch races and such for one year. After that, he would start racing professionally. At that time in his life, Day didn’t have the patience for that sort of training, so he quit the job after a month. Despite this, Day said that it was God’s will for him to be a jockey, and so, seven months later, in July 1973, he began his racing career. That same month, on July 29, he won his first race.

Obviously, Day had natural talent. “I had all of the equipment for sucofcess except for a good attitude,” said Day. He found that the pleasures of victory were fleeting, and so he turned to drugs and alcohol, searching for “abundant life.” In 1982, Day was in the position to be the leading rider in the United States. He thought that that might be the level of success he needed to finally be happy. He won his title and spent several weeks afterward in a drug-and-alcohol-induced stupor, celebrating his victory. When he finally came out of the stupor, he took personal inventory of his life, and was frustrated with his lack of purpose. But he made no great changes, and he next year, the was again the leading rider. Life continued on in much the same manner.

But in 1984, Day had a life-changing experience. While traveling for a race, he checked into a Howard Johnson hotel in Miami and switched on the TV. A televised crusade with Jimmy Swaggart was airing. After flipping through the channels, Day found that nothing interesting was on, so he turned off the TV and went to sleep. He awoke what felt like six hours later, but as it turned out, much less time had passed. Day sensed a presence in the room, and moved to turn on the TV again— whether he was trying to shake the feeling of that presence, or was being guided by the hand of God, Day wasn’t sure. Jimmy Swaggart was still on. At that moment, Day was sure that God was in the room there with him. He fell to his knees, wept and invited Jesus to take His rightful place in Day’s heart.

The next day, the whole world seemed brighter. While flying home, Day refused an alcoholic beverage from the stewardess, though he usually would’ve asked for two. He was born again. Following this experience, Day thought God might be calling him to a career as a minister, and through a friend, he met a chaplain from the Racetrack Chaplaincy of America. He befriended the chaplain, who prayed with him and helped him realize that the Lord was calling him to work within the horseracing industry. Day made it his goal to win the Kentucky Derby, and prepared a sermon to present when he won, to “give the world a little bit of Jesus.” But this didn’t happen on the first try, or the second.

In 1992, on Day’s tenth attempt at the title, he finally won the Kentucky Derby. Day said he considers it one of his greatest victories in life, besides committing his life to Christ. In 2005, Day retired, and now he devotes his time to spreading the word of God. Currently, he is the racing industry’s representative on the board of the Racetrack Chaplaincy of America. Day said that we often fail to talk about our faith, and the Devil makes excuses readily available. For instance, witnessing may cost us friendships. But the one thing we can’t do in heaven is witness to the lost.

 


SNATS hosts parody concert

By WHITLEY ARENS
Foreign Correspondent

The students of SNATS posed for this picture after last year’s concert.

It’s time to gear up, ladies and gents. A fun-filled evening is about to arrive on GC’s campus. Tonight at 8 p.m. in the Chapel, SNATS will host their Second Annual Parody Concert. SNATS is the Students National Association of the Teachers of Singing. SNATS Vice President and Parody Concert Chair, Chuck Harris, explained the organization. He said, “We are a group of students who enjoy singing and competing in singing competitions. We have had success in these competitions before with many semi-finalists, finalists and Overall Best Winner (Ryland Pope).”

Specifically, the students in SNATS participate in the NATS (National Association of the Teachers of Singing) vocal competition every semester: the district competition in the fall and the regional competition in the spring. Participating in NATS is fun and provides a good learning experience for the students, mostly Music majors and minors, who participate in it. Unfortunately, the price quickly adds up for sending students to these types of competitions. Hence, the SNATS Parody Concert was born. Admission for the event will only be $2 a person. As Dr. Heather Hunnicutt explained, “All proceeds go to provide scholarships that send our voice students to singing competitions. The scholarships cover their entry fees, accompanying fees, travel expenses, etc.”

Besides going to help a good cause, the SNATS Parody Concert is sure to be one entertaining evening. It’s a good opportunity to see some of your favorite music people let their hair down a little, singing some lighter, funnier pieces rather than just some “boring” opera. Harris added, “Students should come because this is a chance to come to a musical event and not be bored out of their minds. This is to show everyone that we [Music department] are more than just a bunch of classical music lovers who aren’t funny and who don’t know how to have a good time.”

Elizabeth Maines, Nathan Van Til, Cate Kilgore and Elizabeth LeVay show off their costumes for the SNATS Parody Concert.

The First Annual SNATS Parody Concert was hosted last fall and was a definite success. Junior Sheli Woodward still maintains that, “it was the best live performance [she’s] seen at Georgetown College.” Junior Rae Dunn and Senior Cate Kilgore both performed in the Parody Concert last year and will be singing again this year. This year, Kilgore will be singing “Girl in 14G,” a fun song that combines elements of jazz, opera and musical theatre. In effect, Kilgore will be singing the parts of three different characters. Watching Kilgore juggle her tri-fold persona should definitely be a highlight of the evening. Dunn will be performing a piece called “A Little China Figure.” She added, “I picked this song out a month or so ago, specifically for the Parody concert, while last year I used something I had already been working on.”

Also, Harris will be a performer and the emcee for the event, as he was last year. His emcee abilities got rave reviews last year. More reminiscent of standup comedy, Harris’ interludes are a reason in itself to make it to the Chapel. So, come on down and enjoy a fun-filled, light-hearted evening for a low price! And if any more encouragement is needed, it’s also a NEXUS/ CEP event.

 

 

 


Stempel discusses Iran

By VICTORIA ENGELHARDT
Copy Editor

Dr. George Stempel is the former Director of the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce and currently serves as the Senior Professor of International Relations. He was in the Foreign Service for 23 years and stationed in places such as Guinea, Burundi and Iran. His experience in Iran, which he considers his most exciting assignment, provided material for his book “Inside the Iranian Revolution,” which was just recently republished and is available in the GC bookstore. Dr. Stempel’s talk in the Hall of Fame Room last Thursday, Nov. 4 was a symbolic one in that it was the 30th anniversary of the hostage- taking crisis in Iran.

Before the actual hostage-taking, Stempel was stationed in the American Embassy in Tehran, and he was the Embassy’s principal liaison with the different opposition factions because he could speak Farsi. He left in the summer of 1979, so he was not one of the Americans taken by a group of students on Nov. 4, 1979 and held hostage for 444 days. During the crisis, the Carter administration was “held hostage to the hostage situation.” After Dr. Stempel finished explaining the situation, he took questions from the audience. Amy Carrington, Director of the Global Scholars Program, asked, “When dealing with international relations, you set high goals, but it takes a lot of time to get there and sometimes the whole goal isn’t accomplished. How did you not go crazy and give up in the negotiations as you were trying to help resolve this?” His response was, “Diplomacy is about relationships and you have to build them up before something happens. It is the art of letting the other fellow have your way…and saying ‘nice doggy’ while getting a bigger rock. You get mad but you are trying to carry out/do something to keep disaster from happening.”

When asked where we go from here, Stempel replied, “We are going to have to stand firm and let this play itself out, because as each week goes by the Iranian administration becomes less anti-American—they are looking for freedom (and a good example of that is the June election). We need to be ready to use selective force, such as if they assassinate American officials in other countries we need to take out a (revolutionary) Red Guard base. When you work with people who consider you corrupt, you have to be willing to respond to that, and if we would have responded proportionally, we wou ldn’t be in the situation we are in now. In the end, I hope a government will come to power that will make a deal—to stop attacking us and our people—and we will open up trade.”

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