Students Brave Rain to Serve Louisville through 1937 Project

Communications Staff — April 19, 2021

On April 10, a rainy Saturday, 106 students served the city of Louisville through the Bevin Center’s 1937 project. Each year, SBTS and Boyce volunteers spread out across Jefferson County and work in the community. Along with parks and churches, Coleridge-Taylor Elementary was among the worksites this year.

“Several of my roommates and I were able to participate in this year’s 1937 Project.” said Tommy Nissen, SBTS MDiv Student, “our site was Coleridge-Taylor Elementary. We put up fencing, repaired garden boxes, cleaned out chicken coops, mulched, weeded, raked leaves, and prepped the grounds for the rest of the semester and the summer.”

Principal Marcia Carmichael tweeted her appreciation.

“Thanks to @SBTS @BoyceCollege for lending a few hands to replace raised beds, tidy our school garden, spread mulch, & support our STREAM teacher @Jennife22039261 Prepare our outdoor classroom for our students!”

The 1937 project began when the Ohio River flooded Louisville in 1937. Southern Seminary rowed out in boats to help stranded people, housed individuals on campus, and even provided temporary office space for the mayor.

In honor of that historic event, Southern serves the city of Louisville every year by partnering with the mayor’s office in an event called the 1937 Project.

Students are driven to participate because of their love for the gospel.

“We share the love of Christ through our words and actions.” Nissen said, “we hope to continue in these new friendships and are eager to return soon and finish another project or two left unfinished due to rain.”

Said Billy Graham School dean Paul Akin: “What takes place at Boyce College and Southern Seminary is never merely an intellectual exercise. Our desire as followers of Jesus is to take what we learn in the classroom and apply it in our lives. We want to share and show the love of Christ to our neighbors and to the nations. The 1937 Project provides our students and faculty with a hands-on opportunity to serve our neighbors, neighborhoods, and the city of Louisville.”

Rain and COVID raised unique challenges for this year.

But “God’s Glory was shown in their kind acts of service” said Ray Hayes, Pastor of Maple Grove Baptist Church.

Nissen and the rest of those involved with the project are ready for 2022: “Needless to say, we look forward to next year’s 1937 Project, rain or shine.”

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