George Fox pastor accepts position at her alma mater, Asbury University

Sarah and Clint Baldwin will this summer pack up their belongings, their two children, and leave Newberg for Kentucky.

Sarah Baldwin, who has served as campus pastor at George Fox University for the past nine years, has accepted a position at Asbury University in Wilmore, Ky. She leaves GFU in May and begins work a few weeks later as Asbury’s new vice president of student development and dean of studies and athletics. In May, Clint Baldwin will also leave his position as director of the Center for Peace and Justice at GFU.

Neither Baldwin had in mind to move or look for other jobs. They were content staying put and continuing to work at George Fox. Their children GARY ALLEN - Moving on - Sarah and Clint Baldwin will leave George Fox University in July and return to Kentucky, where Sarah will take a new position at Asbury University.

But at the end of May, Sarah said she began to feel a slight calling to be open to something new. What she didn’t know was how investigating that calling would give her and her family a chance to return to the couple’s alma mater.

Once she knew the position was open and the school’s president asked her to apply, she began to ask herself, “Is this it? (Am I) really going back home to my alma mater?” The couple graduated from Asbury in 1993, both with bachelor’s degrees in psychology.

Sarah Baldwin said a tidal wave of emotions hit after she was offered the job in December.

“Two days before Christmas was when the president of Asbury University called,” she said, and at that point she was ready to say yes.

Both have become increasingly excited as they approach the next change in their lives.

“The divine definitely had a role in this. We are going back to a place where we are known, yet offering something new,” Clint Baldwin said.

In Kentucky, the Baldwins will continue to live out of their core values: living in faith, lowering their carbon footprint and being accessible to students.

Since coming to Newberg the Baldwins have made deep connections at Newberg Friends Church, especially with Pastor Gregg Koskela and his wife Elaine.

Gregg Koskela said he had grown to appreciate how the Baldwins have been an encouragement during worship at the church. On occasion Clint Baldwin has shared about his view of global peacemaking and Sarah Baldwin has helped with the children’s ministry.

Both said they can see how attending Newberg Friends Church has enriched their core theology. Prior to coming to George Fox, Clint Baldwin would have said they wanted to be “Wesleyans among friends” and upon returning to Asbury University they are aspiring to be “Friends with Wesleyans.”

Outside of Newberg and George Fox, both of the Baldwins are active members with the organization Word Made Flesh, a Christian outreach organization that ministers to the world’s poor. Clint Baldwin is chairman of the organization’s executive committee.

During his time as the director of Center for Peace and Justice, he further developed the center’s website, created a showcase for Steinfeldt Peace Scholarship winners and established the Woolman Peacemaking Forum, which works to bring racial reconciliation.

Sarah Baldwin’s contributions to the GFU campus includes overseeing more than 1,000 chapel programs since she came to the school nine years ago, as well as mentoring her staff and students.

Clint Baldwin said he is especially pleased that his wife was chosen for the position at Asbury.

“It is neat how it transpired,” he said. “We believe in the empowerment of women and her (Sarah) being hired just is a part of how we live out our calling.”

George Fox is accepting applications for both positions on the university’s human resources page. The application is also posted on the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities’ website. The university has received 56 applications for the campus pastor position as of Feb. 24, according the Vice President of Student Life, Brad Lau, and will continue to take applications through mid-March. The university hopes to hire by the end of April.

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