From the Office of the President

A message from Olivet Nazarene University’s President Dr. Bowling:

June 10, 2020

Dear Students, Faculty, Staff, and the greater Olivet community,

As I compose this letter to you, I am well aware that we are in a time of unrest – nationally, locally, and personally. The murder of George Floyd has awakened us to the injustice and prejudice in our communities, our businesses, and even our own homes. This moment is changing our nation, and my prayer is that it will change us, too. Change can bring understanding. Understanding can bring wisdom. Wisdom can bring healing.


I know that words alone cannot immediately solve the challenges of our community or country, or necessarily comfort those who are experiencing the compounded grief of this moment, but neither can silence. In moments of distress and/or times when I seek wisdom, I turn not to “words” but to “the Word.” Genesis 1:27 says, “God created mankind in His own image,” and Romans 12:5 reminds us, “…so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” We must view one another as God views His children.

It is unacceptable that our African American students live in a world of fear. I also understand that Olivet is not exempt from the challenges facing the rest of our country. As president of Olivet Nazarene University, I will continue to seek to foster a community of higher learning, a community of faith, and a community of grace and reconciliation – a place of belonging. 

This fall, in cooperation with our Diversity Task Force, we will continue to work to ensure a safe place for all students to learn and grow. I will personally be leading a series of “Listening Sessions” to allow students, faculty, and staff to speak into the culture of Olivet Nazarene University and share openly and honestly about issues of racism.  

I will also continue our efforts to develop a strong, diverse faculty, and encourage leaders across campus to be fully engaged in our University-wide efforts for candid communication and healing. As president, I have joined the conversation now underway among leaders within Christian higher education to develop future leaders who will be agents of change, promoting biblical justice and racial equity.   

The young men and women of Olivet Nazarene University, our faculty, staff, and alumni are too gifted, too discerning, and too compassionate to allow hatred to stand in the way of our great mission. Although we cannot be together in one place right now, I do call on the entire community to join in this prayer:

Our Great God,

We know that racism is a sin against You.  

Help us to live in community with our brothers and sisters—all people, acknowledging that we are your children, your special creation, and created in Your image.

We cannot and will not tolerate any form of racism in our work and/or our communities. We will speak out against it, as we do all forms of sin and injustice. We will listen to those who have been oppressed and speak for those who feel they have no voice. We will walk side-by-side with those who feel they are alone in their struggle.

Lord, we seek to honor You in all we do. Help us forgive those who have committed wrongs against us. We ask forgiveness for our own sin, and confess our need of You.

Heal our hearts. Lord, heal our land.


I am confident that as we work together, Olivet Nazarene University will be a place of grace and reconciliation.


John C. Bowling



Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Eat some froyo or chocolate ice cream

Sunday is a day very close to my heart—National Chocolate Ice Day and National Frozen Yogurt Day. Enjoy a cool treat during this unusually warm June.

  • Visit Navy Pier

As Illinois slowly enters Phase Three, Navy Pier plans to reopen on Wednesday (June 10). This is a great way to get some fresh air after the months of quarantine and experience. To ensure visitors are safe, the staff at the Pier will be strictly enforcing social distancing, which may entail limiting the number of people admitted throughout the day, and only outside attractions will be open. Any person without a mask covering their nose and mouth will not be admitted, but they can purchase a mask on site. To learn more about the shopping, rides, and experiences available at Navy Pier, visit and to learn more about how staff are ensuring safety and what changes throughout the Pier will be go to (Remember everything is subject to change and to work with Navy Pier staff if the information online is different than what they say on site.)

  • Watch The Goonies

Thirty five years ago, the world first experienced The Goonies, an adventure comedy cult classic. On Sunday (June 7) relive the adventure as the goonies stumble upon the treasure map of One-Eye Willy. Celebrate The Goonies and its 35th anniversary by watching the movie and learning some fun Goonies trivia by visiting  You can rent or buy the film on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Prime, YouTube, and Vudu.

  • Celebrate Donald Duck

Did you know that Donald Duck was outlawed in Finland for not wearing pants? And he has a twin sister named Dumbella? Celebrate this character’s great history on Donald Duck Day on Sunday (June 9) by watching some classic animated videos (here is a 6 hour mix of Donald Duck fun) or watch Ducktales and other Donald Duck appearances on Disney+. To learn more about Donald Duck with some trivia, go to

  • Relax

Life has been extremely chaotic as of late, so take a well-needed break. Do something that centers you. Maybe for you that’s reading a book, or watching a movie, or taking a nap. Whatever you do stay safe right now and relax.


Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Document reopening

As Illinois is finally opening back up from sheltering in place, document your return. When you go outside, take out your phone and video record the world as it is now. Take photos as you eat in a restaurant for the first time post quarantine. Once the world returns to a regular rhythm, edit the photos and videos together and share your journey with others.

  • Eat outside

Since the weather is supposed to be warm and sunny, enjoy a meal outside. Go out to the backyard, have a picnic, or go to a restaurant (most of which will be opening at the end of the month in Illinois) and eat alfresco. Just enjoy some good food and some good weather.

  • Try meditation or mindfulness

Meditating is a great way to take a deep breath and calm down from the stresses of life. Meditation has many benefits to your health including helping with focus, being more alert, and enhancing a sense of self awareness. For meditation instructions, visit For a list of apps that promote mindfulness, go to

  • Read a book and then watch its movie

So many great movies are based on great books, so why not experience both. This is a fun way to explore a story and dive deeper into it. Some great choices are To Kill a Mockingbird, any Harry Potter book/movie, Lord of the Rings, or To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. For a list of more movie adaptions of books, visit

  • Watch Back to the Future Part III

On Monday (June 1st), Back to the Future Part III celebrates its thirty-year anniversary. Relive the time-traveling adventure with Marty McFly and Doc Brown in the wild west. To learn some interesting trivia about the film, go to You can watch the movie on Netflix or rent or buy it on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Prime, YouTube, or Vudu.


Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Have a happy Memorial Day

If you are like me, your state is still sheltering in place, but that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate Memorial Day.  If you have a backyard, you can grill or support a local restaurant and order some food. If you do not have a backyard, no problem. Take a walk through a local park. If you’re looking for something different to do, you can watch the National Memorial Day Concert on PBS at 7 pm CDT on Sunday (May 24) honoring United States Service Men.

  • Eat a hamburger

Enjoy a hamburger this Thursday (May 28) on Hamburger Day. Whether you grill some burgers outside, make them in your kitchen, or order in at a restaurant, celebrate this fun day with a tasty burger.

  • Do a puzzle

Although you probably have done a lot of puzzles during quarantine, you can always try a new puzzle to kill some time. To add a challenge, do a photomosaic or solid color puzzle. For a list of some of the hardest puzzles to complete, visit

  • Watch Braveheart

On Sunday (May 24), Braveheart celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary. Relive the exploits of William Wallace as he fought in the First War of Scottish Independence. To learn more about the film, visit You can watch Braveheart on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon Prime, YouTube, and Vudu.

  • Ractice-pay ig-pay atin-lay

Quarantine continues to go on in Illinois, so mix it up at home by speaking in Pig Latin.


Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Celebrate Love a Tree Day

Enjoy the outdoors, on Love a Tree Day on Saturday (May 16). Since you are probably like me and have been spending way too much time indoors, use this day as a reminder to get some fresh air. Take a walk and find a tree. Depending on what state you live in you might be able to have a picnic under a tree, have fun climbing it, or sit under it and try sketching the nature you see all around you. Whatever you decide to do, just enjoy some trees on Love a Tree Day.

  • Start crosswords

A great way to kill time a strengthen your mind is with crosswords. My favorite place to get challenging-but-possible-to-solve crosswords is Daily Themed Crosswords. It is a free app available in the App Store and the Google Play Store. If crosswords aren’t your thing try sudoku, which you can find in the App Store, Google Play Store, and the Microsoft Store. Both are great problem-solving time killers that will also keep your mind sharp.

  • Use your non-dominate hand

To mix things up in quarantine, try using your non-dominate hand to do something you normally do. Not only is it a silly way to pass the time, but it is also good for building dexterity and helps strengthen your mind. It can be kind of silly, but it can be fun.

  • Watch The Revenge of the Sith or The Empire Strikes Back

On Tuesday (May 19), The Revenge of the Sith celebrates its fifteenth anniversary, and on Thursday (May 21) The Empire Strikes Back celebrates its fortieth anniversary. Enjoy the final installmentSpark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig of the prequels and the original trilogy this week on their anniversaries. Both films can be streamed on Disney+ and Hulu and can be rented or bought on YouTube, iTunes, Google Play, Vudu, and Amazon Prime. May the force be with you!

  • Listen to spark!

As quarantine seems to drag on, some positive messages are always great, so have some fun and listen to spark. You can listen on spark 89.7 HD3 or download the radio FX app and listen there.


Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Call your mom or grandmother

Just because you are in quarantine, doesn’t mean you can’t tell the important women in your life how much they mean to you. Whether the woman in your life is your mother, grandma, sister, aunt, or anyone else, you can wish them a happy Mother’s Day via video chat. If you like baking, drop some cookies or a cake by her door, or try making your mom a hand made card. If you have a hobby, find a way to make this unusual Mother’s Day special this Sunday, For example, I knit my mom a hat. Have a happy Mother’s Day!

  • Solve riddles

As classes are finishing up (or are completely finished), keep your brain in shape with riddles. Do them with your family or get a video chat with friends. For some easier riddles, go to, and for some more difficult ones visit If riddles are not your things but you like word puzzles, try these out-

  • Try origami

Origami, the Chinese art of paper folding, actually originated in Japan. You can try your hand at origami with regular copy paper you probably already have at home, but there is a slightly thinner paper designed solely for paper folding which you can buy on Amazon. Although there are many advanced patterns, there are hundreds of easy beginner projects. One of the easiest patterns is the paper crane ( I’m a fan of the T-Rex (, but you can also try a slightly more advanced pattern called a flexagon, an infinitely moving structure ( If these patterns are not for you, just search “origami” into your search engine and you can try any pattern you can find. YouTube is a great resource for instruction. If paper folding isn’t your style, you can try kirigami, the art of paper cutting. To get started with kirigami, go to

  • Watch your favorite movie series

Are you a Potterhead? Maybe you are more of a Marvel Cinematic Universe fan? You could be a Trekkie or a Star Wars buff. Whatever your favorite movie series is, pick a day and binge as many as possible. Or get some friends together and get a watch party going. Using the Party feature on Netflix, anyone with an account can watch a movie with you, or you can have one person stream whatever they are watching. I’ve done this with my friends on Discord and Zoom. Zoom tends to have a stronger quality stream, but if you have more than two people in a call, the meetings only last for 40 minutes.

  • Write some parodies

If you like music or words, try your hand at writing a parody of your favorite song. For example take the lyrics of “My Sharonda” and turn it into “My Corona.” This is a great way to kill some time and have some laughs. One thing that helps with writing parodies, is counting the syllables of each line of lyrics. Although you can add or remove a syllable here and there, making sure your new lyrics have a similar cadence with help your parody sound more polished. It also helps to rhyme (or near/slant rhyme) with original lyrics at the end of phrases and lines. Go to for all your rhyming needs. If parody writing isn’t for you but you still enjoy them, try listening to Weird Al Yankovic, the king of parody writing.


Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Watch Gladiator

Ridley Scott’s Gladiator celebrates its twentieth anniversary this Tuesday (May 5th). Follow the tale of Maximus, a Roman general during 180 AD, who falls from power when the emperor is slain. After being sold as a gladiator, Maximus realizes his only way to avenge his losses is by becoming a successful gladiator. Although you may be familiar with this dramatic historical fiction, did you know the movie is based on Daniel P. Mannix’s novel Those About to Die published in 1958? To learn more trivia about Gladiator, visit You can rent or buy Gladiator on YouTube, Amazon Video, iTunes, Vudu, Google Play, and Philo.

  • May the Fourth be with you

Celebrate Star Wars Day on Monday (May 4th). One of the easiest ways to celebrate Star Wars Day is watching the films. If you have too much time on your hands during quarantine or you’re a hardcore fan like me, try watching all nine films (and the two companion films) in the days leading up to May 4th saving Rise of Skywalker for Monday when it is released to Disney+. If this is too ambitious, pick a trilogy or watch The Mandalorian. Episodes I-VIII, Rogue One, and The Mandalorian are currently streaming on Disney+ and Rise of Skywalker will be available on the platform starting on Star Wars Day. All Star Wars films may be rented or purchased on YouTube, Amazon Video, iTunes, Vudu, and Google Play. If you want to take your fandom to a new level, try following these Star Wars Day celebrations at, which includes making Star Wars themed treats. Remember, May the Fourth be with and watch out for the Revenge of the Fifth!

  • Watch some Marvel movies

If you are like me, you are bummed out that Black Widow had its release date moved back to November 6th instead of this Friday (May 1st) due to the pandemic. Although you can’t watch the newest Marvel release quite yet, you can still celebrate Black Widow by watching Iron Man 2, which celebrates its tenth anniversary on Tuesday (May 5th). Natasha Romanoff (aka the Black Widow) had her first cinematic appearance in Iron Man 2, but it wasn’t her last. The Widow has appeared in The Avengers, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Captain America: Civil War, Thor: Ragnarök (this one is splitting hairs- she appears in archival footage for a few brief seconds onscreen), Avengers: Infinity War, Captain Marvel (in the mid-credit scene), and Avengers: Endgame. All of Black Widow’s appearances can be streamed on Disney+, most of these films can be streamed on Netflix or Hulu, and can be found for rent/purchase on YouTube, Amazon Video, iTunes, Vudu, and Google Play.

  • Try a self-portrait

You’re probably already staring at a mirror wishing you could go get a haircut, so why not spend some time looking at your reflection while getting creative? Get out some pencils, markers, crayons, paint, or whatever art supplies you might have lying around at home and try to do a self-portrait. It may be difficult and look nothing like you, but self-portraits can be a lot of fun. Try making a game of it by setting a timer. Or have friends try it too. Then have everyone send them to you and anonymously share them with everyone. Have your friends guess who each portrait is of. Another way to have fun with portraiture is by taking a picture of yourself and send it to friends to have them draw you.

  • Create a COVID playlist

If you’re anything like me, you have listened to a lot more music during the shelter in place. Create a playlist of the music that is helping you get through the extended hours at home. Or make light of the situation by finding music all about sickness and disease. (Once you start looking, you’ll be surprised what you find). If creating a playlist isn’t your thing, try listening to show tunes. Find a show you have never listened to or listen to different cast productions of your favorite show. Some of my favorite musicals that I recommend Be More Chill, Godspell, In the Heights, Heathers, Mean Girls, The Lightning Thief, Hamilton, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat. If you are looking for obscure musicals, visit–BWW-Readers-Weigh-In-20151125.


Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Try knitting or crochet

If you are spending time in front of the TV or in lectures you don’t take notes in, knitting or crochet can be a great way to prevent you from going stir crazy when stuck at home because it is something productive. Although it may take some time to learn, both knitting and crochet are super fun. To get started knitting, visit, and crocheting go to Materials can easily be purchased online from Amazon, Michaels, or Hobby Lobby. Once you feel comfortable with all the practice you’ve done, I recommend trying to make a scarf. They’re long (meaning they take time to make), but it’s a simple process. Just Google “free scarf knitting pattern” or “free scarf crochet pattern.”

  • Make a photo album

Go through all the photos on your phone from the last year and sort them into a photo album. You can turn them into a slide show or print your favorite ones and put them on display. Use the pictures as reminders of when you were allowed outside and know those days will be here again sooner than you know it.

  • Make a fitness routine

Even if you don’t enjoy working out, there is no arguing that it is important to do. Personally, I enjoy working out if I find a way to make it fun. One way to do that is by doing a movie workout. For example, every time Hakuna Matata is said in The Lion King, you do ten supermans. This is a great way to watch a movie and get some exercise in. For a list of Disney movie workouts visit, If you’re looking for other movie workouts, search “movie workout” and your favorite movie or tv show in Google Images. If you can’t find one for the movie or show you’re looking for, try making your own.

  • Learn some magic tricks

Spend some of your time in quarantine with some magic practice. You can perfect sleight of hand from home with materials that you probably already have. Watch to get started. For more trick ideas visit, Oscar Owens on YouTube His videos show how to perform the tricks from several angles, making it easier to understand the procedure. I also like his channel because he uses clear langue to explain techniques, so anyone can learn the tricks.

  • Watch some Oscar-winning films

Pick a year and watch some (or all) of the Oscar-winning films. Not only will this give you a variety of genres to pick from, but you also will get to watch some great movies. If you don’t want to watch the winners, try watching the Oscar runner ups. For a list of Academy Award winners by year, visit To find some of the best runner ups, go to If you’re looking for a great runner up, Double Indemnity, one of the first noir films is a personal favorite. If you want something a little brighter, have fun rewatching Mary Poppins.



Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Color

Coloring isn’t just for kids. Spend some of your time in quarantine relieving stress with coloring. Just Google “coloring pages” and you can easily download some great, free pages. Adding a keyword to a search such as “Disney” or “detailed” will help if you’re looking for something specific.

  • Learn to braid

Get ready to come out of quarantine with a new hairstyle. Try learning to braid with four or more pieces instead of the traditional three or learn to do a braid inspired by a character from your favorite movie or show, like Katniss’s braid from The Hunger Games (, Arwen’s braids from The Lord of the Rings (, or Daenerys Targaryen’s braids from Game of Thrones ( YouTube and WikiHow have loads of tutorials on braiding skills and specific styles.

  • Play some board games (in person or virtually)

Board games are a great way to have some fun, kill some time, and get competitive. Grab your favorite game and have some fun. You can play games with those sheltering in place with you or with friends via video chats. Some games will not be able to be played over this platform, but charades, Never Have I Ever, and Would You Rather? all are playable in a video call. IOS and android have several board game apps available for free including Uno, Scrabble, Risk, YAHTZEE, Four in a Row, Settlers of Catan, Guess the Person (another name for Guess Who), Battleship, mancala, and Othello. Many of these games have limited numbers of players, but you can still play alongside a friend or two or purchase the expansions to include more players. You can also try playing on with friends for traditional games like chess or checkers.

  • Learn some card tricks

Ever wonder how magicians perform their card tricks? Most of it is misdirection with fancy shuffling techniques. Learn to cut the deck with one hand ( or try a new shuffling technique Once you have that down, try learning some magic tricks. YouTube is a great place to start. Here is a video with some beginner-level magic tricks, but there are so many more than these-

  • Do some citizen science

Right now many scientific research projects are short-staffed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but you can help by going to, were teams are crowdsourcing to get the job done. Each project has different needs, but you can do something productive for the world from the comfort of your home.


Spark Welcome to Weekends by Sarah Breinig

If SPARK and Welcome to Weekends is helping you have great weekends, share your experience on Facebook @spark897hd3 and Instagram @spark897hd3 and use #sparkweekend to show what you have been doing. I hope you keep having wonderful weekends!

  • Bake

One of the best ways to kill some time while stuck in quarantine is baking. Not only can you fill a few hours with activity, but you can also fill your belly with some delicious foods like cream cheese filled pumpkin bread, quadruple chocolate pudding cookies, and salted caramel pretzel snickerdoodles. For more fun quarantine recipes, visit

  • Write a short story or start a blog

With all the hours stuck at home, why not start writing. If you have always had a cool idea for a story in mind, finally put pen to paper (fingers to keys, more likely) and get your ideas out there. Maybe stories aren’t your forte. Have you always wanted to write a blog? Use the fact you’re stuck at home to get started. Blogging can be a lot of fun. I find great joy connecting with you on a weekly basis. Even if you never expect someone to read your posts, if you want to write just do it.

  • Memorize something random

If you enjoy having random information at the tip of your fingers, try memorizing some random piece of information like twenty digits of pi or Liam Neeson’s speech from Taken. You can also try using silly voices or impersonating characters while memorizing. Will this information help you get ahead in life? Probably not. But, will it be fun to be able to access this information to any of your friends when you see them next? Definitely. Here are some ideas for random things to memorize.


  • Join the American Film Institute Club

Daily during quarantine, the American Film Institute is encouraging people to watch a new classic movie from home. Their goal is to build community with “movies to watch together while we’re apart.” With information on where to rent and buy the films found on their website, all you have to is go to

  • Random PowerPoints

This activity can be done at home with those who are quarantined with you or through video chats. All you must do is grab a friend and each create a PowerPoint. In this presentation put a random picture with a header that makes no sense on each slide. Next, you and your friend send each other your PowerPoints, give each other 10 minutes, and then watch each other give the presentations. Although it can be fun to watch, you can also feed into your competitive side by creating a scoring system or giving awards like most creative slides or best delivery if more than two people present.