SIP Series: Nina Brock & Gordon Carpenter

After producing Covenant’s first New Play Festival as one of the last Theatre graduates, Nina Brock says that the stage has taught her invaluable lessons in leadership, vision, and illumination.

At first, Brock was apprehensive about adopting Deborah Kirby’s brain-child, becoming fully responsible for orchestrating the event.  “It was a huge learning experience,” she said, “especially since I would not typically refer to myself as a leader.”

Last fall, she selected 10 submissions and began mulling over the logistics with Kirby.  This semester, she selected directors, directing them with email announcements and acting tips.  

“Through it all, I learned how to lead people well, which was really humbling,” she said.  “In the realm of the arts, the artist is so in love with their work, it is difficult to come in and tell them what to do and how I want things done.” Despite these difficulties, she enjoyed “getting to work with my peers” and watching the dream take on flesh.   “Every theatre production has a vision and to make it come to life, it needs a producer,” she said. “It is really fun being part of the process and seeing the final product.”

While she doesn’t think she will produce again, Brock aspires to take the acting skills she has acquired to Hollywood.  “To transform the heart of the media, we have to work to transform the hearts of the people in the media,” she said. “In a world that is so impacted by the media, it is important to have Christians working in the industry, shining God’s light from the inside.”   

“However, in order to do so, we must be equipped,” she said., “I wish Covenant would realize what an impact this department has not just on students, but also society as a whole.”

Today, homosexuality is at the fiery forefront of contraversy plaguing the modern church. Biblical studies major, Gordon Carpenter tackles this touchy issue head on in his SIP, “Holy, Homo, or Hetero: A Gracious and Truthful Defense of the Traditionally Held View of Homosexuality.”

Carpenter stands firm in the belief that homosexual marriage should not be condoned by the church, despite the overwhelming flow of cultural currents towards universal acceptance.  He says, “There is an increasing push for tolerance in both secular and Christian society, where sin is imposing your views on someone else.”

In his research paper and SIP defense, Carpenter supported his claims with Biblical references and the PCA’s orthodox views on homosexual union.  As stated by the PCA, “Homosexual practice is sin…[but] Just as with any other sin, the PCA deals with people in a pastoral way, seeking to transform their lifestyle through the power of the gospel as applied by the Holy Spirit.”

Carpenter, however, acknowledges that in the church, there are “people sitting behind the right doctrine, excusing it to mistreat a minority group.”  Furthermore, this minority takes a distinct and dear face for him, as “I have some very close friends and family members who…are openly and actively gay.  It has always been something that has been on my heart.”

After weighing these conclusions, Carpenter determined that while the Church should not be swayed by the current cultural trends of acceptance and ambivalence, it should correct homosexual relations in love.  In his future position as a youth pastor in San Diego, he will disclose his views on homosexual relations as “a personal, pastoral plea for people I know struggling.”

“Any time we enact doctrine,” he says, “it should be through grace and truth.”