Joy Gerig

Joy Gerig

Joy M. Gerig, 1926-2012

Miss Joy Gerig served Fort Wayne Bible College from 1959-1990, first as a secretary and Bethany Dorm Supervisor (affectionately known as "Mom"), then as Christian Service Director, a position she held with great distinction until her retirement in the spring, 1990.

During her years she pioneered Christian Service devolopment, taking it from a group of activities to a well-monitored, degree-related system of field experiences designed to ease the transition into a student's chosen profession. Since music groups were also C.S. assignments, she worked closely with the Public Relations Office to represent the college and recruit students. When understanding that every student was required to have six semesters of C.S. assignments and that every student would meet with Miss Gerig or other staff, the department was a constant buzz of activity, first in the NE corner of Bethany basement, then on third floor of Witmer. Her years as Youth Conference advisor also helped students learn how to follow-up on assigned tasks.

Miss Gerig also earned a reputation for having great spiritual insight. Many sought her out to gain her perspective on life choices, life partners, and family problems. Her chapel messages and devotionals were always insightful and significant. When she prayed, one sensed God's presence in a vital way.

She also helped Fort Wayne Bible College gain a national reputation by furthering Christian Service evaluation and devlopment among all American Association of Bible Colleges schools.

Joy Gerig

Joy Gerig grew up with Fort Wayne Bible Institute, attending the summer camp meetings in the big tent where Founders Hall used to be. She attended college here in the early 1950s, and after serving as an Associate Pastor at Hopewell United Brethren Church, she returned to Fort Wayne Bible College in the late 1950s and remaining until her retirement in 1990. First she served as a secretary and Bethany Dorm Supervisor. In 1960 the college board appointed Miss Gerig to the Christian Service Department as acting Director. A year later she was appointed as the first full-time Christian Service Director.  She immediately worked to develop an effective and efficient Christian service program, basing the program on best practices from several Bible colleges.  Christian service assignments became a graduation requirement for every student, foreshadowing the field work experiences so common in today’s college programs.

Joy invested her life into co-workers and students. Her devotionals, chapels, and dorm meetings were valued for their spiritual insight. Her personal walk with the Lord was seasoned with prayer and caring for individuals. She took every opportunity to invest her life into others. This investment resulted in many, many lifelong friendships, long-distance counseling sessions and invitations to weddings. For years she was a Youth Conference advisor, holding student leaders accountable and helping/teaching them to follow through on detail. Her staff, Marilyn Dissinger, Jay Platte, Marilyn Grubb, Sue Strunk, Carol Neuenschwander, Lorraine Meek, and Dick Baxter who served with Joy for 21 years, teamed together to build a Christian Service program that came to the attention of the American Association of Bible Colleges as a model for other Bible Colleges to use in developing their programs. 

As a further contribution to students’ education were the various manuals and guides which oriented, trained and educated students in their various tasks and responsibilities in their CS assignments. These manuals gave the scope and responsibilities as well as assessment tools by which students could evaluate their performance. Joy and staff also worked constantly with faculty to correlate assignments with majors so the practical work help prepare students for professions after graduation. As the program developed, By the mid 1980s the department became part of the Professional Studies Division.  By 1988 every student was required to be involved in a Christian service internship program correlated with their major.  The CS department provided this correlation.

Early in 1980, AABC requested that Joy and Dick Baxter give leadership to forming a professional association for Christian Service personnel where leaders could strengthen their programs through professional development and resource sharing.  The Association of Christian Service Personnel (ACSP) was formed in 1981 and held its first meeting in Fort Wayne.  Joy was elected vice president and later as President.  A Handbook for Christian Service Directors was published in 1988.

As a result of her leadership, the Association presented a number of recommendations on Christian service to the AABC membership and they were approved.Furthermore, AABC approved and accepted a major revision of the standards used for evaluating Christian service programs.  These standards remain to this day for all Bible colleges seeking accreditation.

After 30 years of faithful service, this quote from the 1990 North Central Accreditation Team final report is a lasting legacy of a job well done…

“The Christian Service program is much more than a requirement for graduation; it is an integral and outstanding component of the Summit Christian College education; it is well-organized and effecting in coordinating students from across all academic programs with extensive community resources.“

Joy Gerig continued to serve the Fort Wayne campus up to her homegoing through as an active member of the Alumni Counsel, through mentoring students, and through an active prayer life.

Comments

Deb (Lehman) Shaw | Posted Sep 29, 2017 04:16 AM

Class of 1980

How grateful I am for the friend and example she was to me!


 

Add Your Tribute to Joy

Joy Gerig Joy Gerig
1961 yearbook photo Joy Gerig 1961 yearbook photo Joy Gerig
1961 CSGroups Grace Notes Trio0001 1961 CSGroups Grace Notes Trio0001
1964 Youth Conf Comm Adv E Conrad J Gerig W Gerig 1964 Youth Conf Comm Adv E Conrad J Gerig W Gerig
Gerig,Joy,Marilyn (Dissinger) Steiner,Linda Mosier,Jay Platte  '68-'69 Gerig,Joy,Marilyn (Dissinger) Steiner,Linda Mosier,Jay Platte '68-'69
19680212 Singing Collegians at Kennedy Int on way to Kingston 19680212 Singing Collegians at Kennedy Int on way to Kingston
1969 Valentines Day -  D Foust, J Gerig, S Miller w 1969 Valentines Day - D Foust, J Gerig, S Miller w
1969-70 Christian Service Staff L Mosier, J Gerig, J Platte, M Grubb, D Baxter 1969-70 Christian Service Staff L Mosier, J Gerig, J Platte, M Grubb, D Baxter
1972 Youth Conference Joy Gerig and Gary Wilber 1972 Youth Conference Joy Gerig and Gary Wilber
Gerig, Joy - teaching  '72 Gerig, Joy - teaching '72
ca 1974 Dick Baxter and Joy Gerig in Joy's office ca 1974 Dick Baxter and Joy Gerig in Joy's office
Gerig, Joy @ desk '70's Gerig, Joy @ desk '70's
1973 CS Staff J Gerig, S Strunk, D Baxter, J Seawell 1973 CS Staff J Gerig, S Strunk, D Baxter, J Seawell
1971 Christian Service Director Joy Gerig 1971 Christian Service Director Joy Gerig
1973 J Gerig G Cline outside Foundrs 1973 J Gerig G Cline outside Foundrs
Dr. Don Gerig recognizes Joy Gerig at Alumni Banquet Dr. Don Gerig recognizes Joy Gerig at Alumni Banquet
Jackie & Joy Jackie & Joy
Joy Gerig laughing Joy Gerig laughing
Joy Gerig Speaking at Service of Reflection Joy Gerig Speaking at Service of Reflection

Highlights of Service

  • 1959
  • Secretary & Bethany Dorm Supervisor
  • 1960
  • Acting Christian Service Director
  • 1961
  • Christian Service Director
  • 1982
  • Help found the ACSP
  • 1990
  • Retired but remained active, serving on Alumni Council and mentoring women students