Talbot East Groundbreaking Ceremony
Celebrating the Miracle of May
Following a rapid succession of large commitments totaling $6.4 million, Biola University broke ground on its new Talbot Building complex on Thursday, May 20, 2010. This series of gifts and cash pledges, which has come to be known as the “Miracle of May 2010,” coincided with a 40-day community-wide period of prayer and fasting for the long-planned project.
“As I have reflected on the last few weeks I believe that the miracle of May 2010 will be a time forever captured in the history books of Biola as more than $6.4 million of funding was provided in just 40 days,” said Biola’s President Barry H. Corey in a letter sent to the Biola community on May 12, 2010. “This story will be told for generations to come. What a mighty God we serve!”
The “Miracle of May 2010” started months prior when the school’s leadership, along with Corey, invited the Biola community to turn their hearts to God and ask him to do the miraculous by moving people to give the remaining funds necessary to break ground. Staff, faculty and students gathered for the “Great 40 Day Fast and Prayer” on Tuesday, March 16 at the future site of the Talbot East building to petition God for the remaining funds. Advancement leaders asked the Biola community to commit to fasting one meal over the next forty days and distributed prayer stones inscribed with 1 Samuel 7:12 as a reminder to pray for the project.
The days that followed brought unimaginable events. The first gift of $1 million arrived only seven days after the prayer and fasting began. The family that made the donation expressed gratitude for their association to Biola and shared their excitement about how God had allowed them to provide this kind of financial support.
Only a week later, another $1 million donation was received. In the weeks to follow, gifts to the project continued to pour in, including gifts and pledges of $60,000, $150,000, and $250,000.
May 1, 2010 marked the conclusion of the 40 days of prayer and fasting. The Biola community was faithful in prayer and fasting for 40 days and God was faithful to Biola in the days to follow.
The first pledge received in May was for $1.89 million. The family that made the donation had also been praying with Biola for a miracle, not knowing God would use them to provide financial support.
Then, a family wired $1 million toward their multi-million dollar pledge to the Talbot project on May 3, 2010, citing their belief in the importance of Biola’s seminary.
“Talbot must continue to anchor Biola. It must also symbolically occupy a central place on the campus,” the family stated in an email to Biola.
Within the same week another $2 million commitment to the new Talbot building was received.
After the 40 days ended there was a total of more than $6.4 million in financial commitments raised for the building of the new Talbot facilities. It was the five days in May that brought in unprecedented financial support for this project.
“The final week of this prayer campaign has been staggering, bolstering our faith and invigorating this community as we are reminded of God's unfailing faithfulness,” said Corey.
On Thursday, May 20, nearly 700 members of the Biola community gathered to witness the fruits of the Miracle of May firsthand. Ground was broken for the Talbot East Building and Biola's staff, students, alumni and honored guests took part in celebrating this testimony of God's faithfulness. President Corey dedicated the building for the incredible work that will one day take place within its walls--training up disciples and ministers to impact the world for Jesus Christ.
Staff and students had the opportunity to bring forward the prayer stones they received at the "Great 40 Day Fast." The stones will eventually be displayed in the Talbot Building as a visual reminder of God's faithfulness in answering the prayers of His people. As is customary at all Biola groundbreakings, dating back to the original downtown Los Angeles groundbreaking in 1908, the community joined in singing the hymn, "The Solid Rock," accompanied by the Conservatory of Music Brass Ensemble.
University representatives, Talbot faculty and donors later enjoyed a special lunch during which Talbot faculty had the opportunity to express the significance of this occassion and convey their gratitude for the community's support. The lunch served as a fitting celebration for a truly historic and momentous occasion for Biola University.
The Talbot Building Complex Project is a $55.4 million project to be erected in two phases.
Phase one will add a new 30,617 square-foot building adjacent to the existing Feinberg Hall. This $21.4 million project will add 7 classrooms, 31 academic offices, and feature a faculty meeting room, prayer chapel, two conference rooms and a Ph.D. seminar room.
Phase two will raze the antiquated Myers Hall and replace it with a state-of-the-art 57,798 square-foot building, providing 17 classrooms, 53 academic offices, a reading room, a student lounge/cafe' and a recreation room. Rooftop gardens will mitigate the energy required to heat and cool the building. Phase two will also remodel the basement of Feinberg Hall to accommodate the Institute for Spiritual Formation.
Written by Brenda Velasco, Manager of Public Relations & Internal Communications. For more information, contact Jenna Bartlo, Media Relations Coordinator, at (562)777-4061 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.