Wilson seeks unity as ‘one heart,  one mouth’ for coming year

With kind eyes and a booming, honest laugh, it's hard not to like the new campus pastor at Huntington University.

When you walk into his office, he makes sure you're in good company. He beckons you into the room, turning down the sounds of the Olympic swim team. He pauses to tidy some theology books, and throws his long dreadlocks over his shoulder with a smile. He welcomes any question, any question at all.

"What vision do I see for HU students long term?" he mused. "That's a good question."

With one energetic year as interim campus pastor already under his belt, the Rev. Arthur Wilson hopes that he can continue that momentum again with a new school year.

"He definitely brought a more energetic atmosphere to chapel last year," junior Allison Finley said. "He also incorporated new culture. I really appreciated that."

Wilson's vision for the spiritual encouragement of HU students starts with this year's Bible verse, Romans 15:5-6. It calls for unity so that the body of Christ can worship with "one heart and mouth." It's this scriptural unity that Wilson hopes to grow toward as a community.

"The spirit in which we seek after God is not the responsibility of a Campus Ministries team, but the community," he said. "It will take the collective efforts of every person in this community to change the way we seek the face of God together."

Wilson hopes to create opportunities for people to worship in this type of atmosphere, ranging from prayer walks on campus to an annual campus-wide chapel held in the fieldhouse where "faculty, staff and students can worship together as the Body," he said.

But he also believes that the students could gain new perspective by broadening the way they interact with God in their daily lives.

"I think that we need to take our ideas about worship beyond the context of the building we briefly meet in," he said. "I want us to see what can happen when we desire to draw closer to God together for more than just those 45 minutes on a Tuesday or Thursday. What would it look like if we invited God into every aspect of our lives?"

Wilson previously served as City Life coordinator for Fort Wayne Area Youth for Christ, and worked as the head of the Horizon Leadership Program at HU before accepting the position of campus pastor. In 2004, he graduated from Taylor University Fort Wayne with a Bachelor of Science degree in pastoral ministries, and recently received his master's degree in youth ministry leadership from Huntington.

Excited for the new beginning that lies ahead for him, Wilson recognizes his new job as a blessing.

"I don't know if I could piece it all together on how I got to this point," he said. "When I started working in the Campus Ministries Office, the job wasn't even on my radar. It had to be a God thing."