Letters, Spring 2010

March 23, 2010

What a wonderful way to have concluded our 30th anniversary year from graduating from BU--by receiving our copy of the Winter 2009-10 Baylor Magazine. Over the years, this has been the one constant and outstanding reminder of two of the best years of our lives, finding ourselves, solid Calvinists as we are, in the midst of the world's biggest Baptist university in the late 1970s.

We could follow in the magazine the growth in Baylor's academic rankings and the challenges of keeping the faith by being a university based on Christian values. Apart from the feel-good news about new developments and accomplishments, there were also the thought-provoking articles that reminded us of our own dedicated professors.

Reading in the Winter 2009-10 edition about the celebrations of 100 years of Homecoming, it was almost as if we were again on campus.

Thank you very much for 'our' magazine,

Arnold de Beer, MIJ '79
Nicolette de Beer, MsEd '79
Stellenbosch, South Africa

I noted with sadness the obituaries of Charles Wellborn and Paul Baker [Winter 2009-10 issue]. These men, and several persons at Baylor in the history and philosophy departments, changed and shaped my life as a student in the late '50s. Wellborn and Baker were both intellectual giants who were criticized by some as "too liberal." Finally Baker was cashiered and Wellborn resigned as pastor of Seventh and James. Baylor and Waco lost irreplaceable leaders with their leaving.

Baylor was the most important influence on my life, and Wellborn and Baker were two significant persons in my development. 

W. Calvin Dickinson, BA '60, MA '62
Cookeville, Tenn.

In your recent Winter 2009-10 magazine, something jumped out to me as inaccurate. In the article titled "A Mammoth Undertaking," on page 27, it reads, "...the mammoths are believed to have died between 53,000 and 73,000 years ago..." This was surprising to read in a Baylor publication because according to the Bible, the world is no more than 6,000 years old. 

Baylor prides herself on being a "nationally ranked Christian University" (as seen in the header of the Web site as of 1/1/10). If Baylor calls herself Christian, she must uphold the Bible as truth in every area and not trust man's ideas as truth. We can't choose what we believe in. We either trust what the Bible says as truth or we don't.

Using the genealogies found in the Bible, there is no way the age of the Earth can be older than 6,000 years old, which means the article's statement of "53,000-73,000 years" is impossible and inaccurate.

We can not re-interpret Scripture to fit man's viewpoint. Either Baylor is a Christian university that upholds God's truth as found in the Bible, or it is just another private, secular school. 

Christi Jordan Snaufer, BA '04
Beavercreek, Ohio

I recently received my copy of Baylor Magazine, and as I was perusing the articles, I quickly scanned the article "Bear down you Bears" [Winter 2009-10 issue] about the yell leaders writing the fight song. I was looking for Burnie Battle's name, because as I recall, he was a yell leader. I didn't see him mentioned in that article, so I continued reading. Imagine my shock and sadness when I reached the obituaries and saw his name.

In 1972, when I was in junior high school, Baylor Camp in China Spring, Texas, sponsored its first TRIP camp, and this was my first exposure to Baylor University. Burnie Battles was the camp leader, and we traveled on a McLennan County school bus to Carlsbad Caverns and many other interesting stops in Texas, sleeping on the ground in sleeping bags (no tents) each night. He was always such a fun-loving guy and made everyone feel loved and important, even a gangly, red headed, freckle-faced 12-year-old girl like myself. 

I can still remember some of the camp songs and skits that he introduced us to during those fun times. I continued to attend Baylor Camp as a camper throughout my high school years and served as a counselor-in-training the summer of my senior year. I am thoroughly convinced that my attendance at these camps is what influenced my decision to attend Baylor University in the fall of 1978. 

Burnie had such a positive impact on my life. My thoughts and prayers go out to Mary and all of his family. He will be greatly missed.

Donna Clark Taylor, BS '81
Woodville, Texas