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First Light Christian Fellowship hosts launch party for inaugural book


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(Sept. 4, 2013) -- Faculty, staff and students gathered in Sombrilla Plaza on the UTSA Main Campus on Wednesday to celebrate the launch of First Light Christian Fellowship's inaugural book, "Spiritual Journeys of Christian Faculty and Staff." The book includes 27 Christian testimonials and is a first for the organization.

The launch party opened with Christian music from Chi Alpha, a registered Christian student organization. Kerry Kennedy, UTSA vice president for business affairs offered a brief welcome.

Sonja Lanehart, UTSA Brackenridge Endowed Chair of Literature and Humanities, read from her testimony, "I'm Tired: A Manifesto for Faith." Jimmie Neff, UTSA facilities planning analyst, then read from his testimony, "The Birth of a Christian." The launch party closed with a prayer from Kennedy and the singing of "Amazing Grace."

In 2008, UTSA faculty and staff formalized the First Light Christian Fellowship. In 2009, the organization hosted an inaugural dinner meeting, welcoming nearly 100 faculty, staff and students. Since that time, the registered organization has grown and continues to meet weekly. Members learn from each other and encourage each other through biblical teachings, scriptures, prayer and personal testimonies of faith.

"Our purpose is to reach those people who are reaching out to God -- who need Him," said Kennedy. "The book does that through stories, and at the end of the book it does it very specifically."

First Light began working on the book in fall 2012. Initial drafts of the book's 27 testimonies were completed in January 2013 and the book was subsequently prepared for publication.

Wanda Guntz, UTSA administrative services officer, worked for months to ensure the book would be completed.

"This process has been extremely rewarding. It was interesting to learn about the people in First Light and to see all the amazing stories," said Guntz. "We all come from diverse backgrounds, but there are definitely similarities in our lives when Christ is present and he reveals himself, whether in times of joy or tribulation."

"Spiritual Journeys of Christian Faculty and Staff" can be purchased at a discounted cover price through the Office of the Vice President for Business Affairs by contacting Wanda Guntz at 210-458-4201. It also is available on and will be available soon in the UTSA Bookstore.

In the future, First Light hopes to engage local church bookstores, Family Christian Stores, and Barnes and Noble to carry the book.

First Light Christian Fellowship meets 7-7:45 a.m. each Wednesday in the Biosciences Building Loeffler Room (3.03.02) on the UTSA Main Campus.

The book's authors are available to speak at UTSA and in the community. To learn more, visit the First Light website or contact Wanda Guntz at 210-458-4201.



Dec. 1, 9 a.m.

CITE Venture Competition & Exposition

The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus

Dec. 3, 5:30 p.m.

UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert

This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown Campus

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Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.

At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.

Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.

With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.

Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.

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UTSA's Vision

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