BCF News


In life we always want to start what we finish. Come back to where we started. In many ways’ kind of like a circle.

Actually, our lives are a series of circles - circle time in kindergarten, circle of friends in elementary/middle school, circle of trust with friends in high school, and inner circle within our families. 

We experience the winners circle getting a big job and go to Circle K to get gas. Read Family Circle with an article on crop circles as we sit on our couch at 111 Circle. Then we wait for dinner at Circle Grill later seeing Cirque du Soliel.

Whew! But have we ever come full circle in our lives? Being at The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) has brought me, Lisa Kinchen, full circle in many ways. 

When I moved to Graceville in 1990, I thought my life was over. I was a junior in high school and my friend circle was empty. The college, then Florida Baptist Theological College (FBTC), had started BCM (Baptist Collegiate Ministries) and JAM (Jesus and Me) teams to do lock-ins. To meet Christians, close to my own age, I decided to go.  Even though I was younger than the FBTC students, Steve Loy and other students welcomed me. 

I joined a JAM team and the foundation was set. Steve, his girlfriend Leah, myself, and a few others formed a tight knit group that did almost everything - studying, making dinner, selling cookware, watching movies, going to church - together.  Steve and Leah eventually married and I was proud to be a bridesmaid in their wedding. I even caught the bouquet!

I graduated from FBTC, the years passed and we all moved on, but Steve and Leah always kept up and in touch and would ask my parents how I (and eventually my own family) were doing. Steve even offered to help put in a good word for my daughter when she was looking for a college to attend!

God brought me back to work for BCF in the Orlando office and now I'm back at the main campus (again!) working and teaching. My oldest son Neal Potter graduated from BCF; I graduated from BCF with my Master of Arts degree in Music and Worship Leadership; and I received word that Steve and Leah were coming to Preview Day a few weeks ago as their daughter Hannah would be attending BCF in the Fall.  When we saw each other, it was just like no time had passed and we were right back at FBTC. We laughed, talked, and shared what had been happening over the years. 

We never knew when we first met that our circle was starting, that it was going to be so wide, or that our children would bring it back around by both attending their parents' alma mater. I do think though that we always knew in some way our circle was always going to be "full" because of the friendship and love in Christ we found as students.

You CAN start what you finished, and you CAN go back home. God bringing me to Graceville to be a student at FBTC/BCF so many years ago made "coming full circle" with my friends Steve and Leah Loy one of the best circles of my life.

According to Student Life and Marketing Director Sandra Richards, Steve Loy is a two-time graduate of BCF and current pastor of Spruce Creek Baptist Church Daytona, Fla. He was the youngest student on campus when he began his journey at BCF in 1990 the same year Thomas A. Kinchen became president. Loy helped introduce BCM which still has a major impact on the campus today. After earning his Associate of Arts degree in Christian Education in 1996, Loy married his wife Leah and became a church planter. A few years later, he returned to BCF to complete his Bachelor of Arts in Christian Studies. Loy shared that no matter where he was or what ministry he was involved in, BCF came alongside him to encourage his service to the Lord, “I never knew that the school would have such an effect on my ministry and family and play such a big role in it for 31 years.”

Six months ago, Loy was hospitalized for an extreme case of Covid-19. He was on a ventilator for six days and was in a coma for some time. His family began to fear the worst but he believes the power of prayer from his family, BCF and church family, and others around the world is what got him through. His ICU nurse shared that he was one of the few who made it out. He is doing much better now and is excited to see his daughter’s journey beginning at BCF.

Full circle indeed.

For more information about The Baptist College of Florida, please call 800.328.2660 or visit the website at www.baptistcollege.edu.

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